Monday, November 7, 2011

This past weekend my husband and I visited the Trau Dich Bridal Fair in Cologne. Earlier this year we talked about the possibility of renting a booth at the event but, after looking over the cost of renting the booth, advertising and other expenses, we decided that it wasn't worth it for us at this point. My business is still too small.

Ralf, that's my husband, and I attended Trau Dich after we became engaged in 2009. At that time, I hadn't focused my business on bridal so, our attention was primarily on wedding rings. Although we decided not to attend the event as vendors this time, we though it might be a good idea to go with the intention of getting an overview just to be prepared in case we want to participate next year.

My goal was to get a better idea of what is "trending" for German brides in 2012. The bridal market here, in my opinion is a bit conservative. There were a couple of gowns which one might consider over the top, or unique but, most of the gowns were quite similar to the very traditional ones that I sold when I worked at Davids's Bridal four years ago.

I wanted to find out more about the German bride so, I decided to ask this nice gentleman who was marketing his bridal salon a couple of questions.

My first question was one that has been on my mind for quite some time. Why is the ivory bridal gown so popular here in Germany? He explained to me that is has to do with skin tone. European, or at least German brides feel that ivory complements their skin tone better than white. Interesting I thought. When I sold bridal gowns to my customers with" lighter skin "at David's Bridal, skin tone came very rarely in to play. White bridal gowns ruled! Of course I sold ivory gowns but, the majority of my brides preferred white. The nice gentleman also told me that he had never sold a white bridal gown, German brides just don't buy them.

My next question, what are brides wearing in their hair? Veils are the accessory of choice for the German bride. They also like to use Curlies to accessorize their hair. Curlies are small hair pins with floral or beaded detailing. I did notice a few fascinators and flower combs on display but, nothing at all close to what I do. I'm not sure if that is a good or a bad thing.


I was really intested to see if American bridal trends had at all influenced the bridal market here. I follow a couple of German bridal blogs which feature American wedding fashion quite often and I thought that maybe a bit of the American trends may show up here. Well, the closest thing to American wedding style that I was were these three short wedding dress.

and this lace vintage style gown.

It appears that German brides at the moment prefer a more traditional, conservative look when walking down the aisle. I think that's great. But, I can't help but wonder if German bridal blogs, which are growing in number, will help turn the trends more towards the American retro, vintage themed wedding? I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Have a nice day,

1 comment

  1. I loved this post! It always fascinates me how each culture carries out certain traditions, like weddings. When you grow up in one area you formulate an idea of what "tradition" is. Then take a look next door and the "tradition" is something else. Ivory bridal dresses, interesting. :-)

    I hope that you are able to truly market your work in your new area. All the best to you! And kudos to having such a supportive husband.


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