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Five Minutes With Rachel Allan

Premier bridal brand, Rachel Allan share details about their latest collections and an insight into what we can expect from them in the near future

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How was 2019 for the brand?

2019 was a year of substantial growth for Rachel Allan UK. We are thrilled to be working with over 100 stockists in the UK. We are also now servicing stores throughout Europe with an increasing network of sales agents covering France, Scandinavia, Spain, Portugal and Poland.

We have seen a massive increase in reorder business which has established the brand’s importance in our partner stores. We receive a high amount of new account enquiries through recommendations, which proves that the package we offer is highly effective and successful.

Can you tell us more about the latest collections?

We have over 60 styles through our Marys Bridal sub-brands, which include Moda Bella, Ballgowns, Florencia and Couture D’Amour. Lo’Adoro by Rachel Allan then offers a further 15 bridal styles. Each style is available from 0-30W with no surcharge for plus-size brides.

Mary’s Bridal’s diverse Fall 2020 collections offer every retailer the chance to pick unique styles applicable to their store and more importantly, their brides. Shimmering organza, luxurious hammered satins, soft net, structured mikado and form-fitting crepe fabrics have been expertly married with 3D floral accents, shimmering lace appliques, 3D glitter fabrics and bonded lace.

In addition, multi-pattern appliques and oversized embroideries are expertly blended with glitter fabrics, crystal appliques and intense beadwork to create flattering silhouettes with outstanding construction. Coverage is a key component of the collection, concentrating on high back and neck details and sleeves. Longer trains for drama and detachable trains add a contemporary twist to classical shapes.

Lo’Adoro by Rachel Allan continues its design brief by offering a glamourous and showstopping Fall 2020 collection. Texture is making a comeback with unique hand-designed lace, laser cutting detail and patterned glitter. Oversized floral embroideries with 3D elements are layered with lace, glitter, tulle and applique to create dimension.

Alongside this, transparent crystal beading offers a surreal and understated elegance to fitted silhouettes which lengthen and flatter a range of body shapes. Finally, warm champagne and nude tones are expertly blended with traditional ivories to complement all skin tones and offer a truly contemporary feel.

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Can you talk about the brand’s relationship with the UK bridal market?

Rachel Allan prom has a had a small UK presence throughout the years and because of their high profile in the US, it has been a simple transition into the UK market.

However Mary’s Bridal was unknown, so this part of the business needed more work to establish. The fact that we were able to utilise our vast network of relationships we had built up over the years, and a familiar design concept from designer Jason Gillen, has accelerated the importance of the brand to existing stores and the desirability to new accounts.

How does the process with new stockists work?

New stockist enquiries can come through various methods. New accounts may contact us through our website, in response to our targeted marketing efforts or direct contact at trade events. In each circumstance, the distance to the next stockist is established and we inform the potential new retailer if we can accept and what collections are available to them.

We then discuss the account with them and see how they would like to proceed. Do they require further information via email, a shop visit to assess the collections or an appointment at a trade show, at our showroom, or at the office?

During the appointment, they are walked through our collections, what we can do to support them and how our business works. If an order is placed the customer will then receive a welcome pack containing all of the paperwork they will require and some branded merchandise.

Do you have a minimum order?

Minimum orders are one of the most contentious issues in bridal and I can never see this changing. A very fine balance needs to be found to ensure commercial success for both parties. We do not have a minimum order and the main reason for this is, if the brand is working for a stockist, they will, of course, want to buy stock. If the brand does not work then a conversation is needed to determine the best way forward for both parties.

Where can UK retailers see the brand next?

Fall 2020 is shaping up to be an extremely busy season. In March alone you will see us at The Bridal Roadshows in Birmingham South and Harrogate followed by LBFW and straight onto Paris Bridal Fair. We already have appointments booked in for on the road presentations as well as visits to our office showroom.

Rachel Allan will be showcasing their latest designs at London Bridal Fashion Week in March on Stand E40. Make sure you register for the event here to be among the first to see the latest collections in bridal fashion.

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