For this, I am absolutely clueless, because every time I flip through bridal magazines or browse a wedding website, such as The Wedding Scoop, Perfect Weddings or Singapore Brides etc, I see beautiful gowns. Being a sucker for beautiful clothes all the while, this put me on a spot.
So I decided to start with the conventional method of contacting a couple of bridal studios that have long history, with gowns that I used to admire whenever I passed by the Tanjong Pagar stretch. Next, to contact bridal studios recommended by friends or new ones advertising heavily on social media platforms. Finally, to pop by wedding fairs. I shall list them down here one by one (not in order of preference) and a little review of our communications.
Let me first start by mentioning that our requirements are very simple: 1 wedding gown, 1 to 2 evening gowns, accessories, 1 men's suit, day & night makeup, hairdo, corsages, and decor for bridal car brigade.
1. FRENCH WEDDING
62 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088483
One of the bridal studios that have been around for many years - I used to enjoy looking at their studios whenever I passed by, gawking at the gowns, and telling myself that when I got married I would work with them. Anyway, I visited their website and it seemed that alot of information was not updated, and the contact form did not work. My email went unanswered for days, and the reply that came informed me that they would be at a wedding / bridal fair at Vivocity in late November 2015. For this, I was grateful, since I was not aware of the fair. The gowns are beautiful and aplenty, featured in many fashion magazines as well. The price they quoted at the bridal fair was very unbelievable - around SGD$3,000.00. The lady who attended to me was Alice; she was very warm, personable,and very enthusiastic - I went back a day later and she remembered my name on sight. We did have some initial concern about hidden costs, but were later reassured otherwise. We then signed up with the wedding boutique I have been admiring since young. By the way, Jazz Bridal is the sister company.
2. Z WEDDING DESIGN
93 Tanjong Pagar Road Singapore 088514
Tel: 6337 2678
This is one of the older bridal studios as well, the other one that I used to admire their stunning and bold gown designs for, when I was younger. Their sister company is Le Grand Wedding. They did not reply my emails as well, but the lady who attended to me when I did a walk-in was helpful enough. Not extremely friendly, but coolly professional - like what you would expect from a sophisticated bridal studio as such. Their package was close to SGD$4,000.00, and they cleverly priced many things under "complimentary" so that even if you did not want them, there would not be any discount. Things such as men's suits, I think. Either that, or tea dress - reason being because we do not require tea dress and 2 men's suits, so I tried to negotiate, and was informed that they could not help us. Nothing shown to me in their albums captured my attention anyway.
3. THOMSON WEDDING COLLECTION
71 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088492
Tel: 6227 6008
4. CANG AI WEDDING
39 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088460
Tel: 6220 8520
This was one of the Taiwanese bridal shops with an outlet in Singapore, and I knew about them because a friend used their studio and her gowns were breathtaking.. I fixed an appointment and went down; service there was excellent. They were affable, professional and enthusiatic in bringing out their beautiful (and massive) collections of gowns for me to try on. I really liked it that they had a good eye and made sharp recommendations on what gowns flattered our body shape and what did not. I would have nearly signed with them on the spot because the price was very reasonable - under SGD$3,000.00, and service was excellent. I fixed a second appointment to bring my fiance down, but before the appointment I realised that they were at the recent wedding / bridal fair as well, even the coordinator who attended to me was there - and she did not once mention to me that they were at the fair (I visited them on the same week!) so I should check out the special rates. Pity, because I really liked some of the gowns I had tried on that day.
5. WHITE LINK BRIDAL STUDIO
60 Kaki Bukit Place #01-02 Eunos Techpark, Singapore 415979
Tel: 6841 3886
I passed by their studio at Orchid Hotel, Tanjong Pagar, the other day but did not stay to linger since they were not under my list of consideration. They were rather aggressive in approaching me at the wedding / bridal fair today, so I sat in. The lady with ashen-pink hair who served me was atrocious - did not seem to understand what I was saying at all, kept repeating about their photography services even though I made it clear time and again that it was DONE and photos were COLLECTED, thrice. Then she kept asking to see the photos I took in Vancouver and Singapore when I asked her for their package price, as if she did not believe that I have already gotten my wedding photos done! The final straw came when she commented that my skintone was considered "tanned" - which was amazing, because for as far as I am concerned I am always fair, and I am not exposed to outdoors! I guess when you cannot have proper communication and chemistry with the wedding coordinators, it would be a tough feat trying to work with them for your Big Day. I stood up and thanked her immediately. Thumbs down for this, for sure.
6. MEMOIRE & CO
40 Petain Road, Singapore 208104
Tel: 6669 4666
I regret to say that I have never heard of this as a wedding studio, but yes, I have definitely came across their photography profile. I remember this exact photo, and I did send in an enquiry earlier this year before I signed up for my photoshoot / videography services. Anyway, service here was definitely professional, affable, amicable and right at home. They were the only booth that offered their customers a bottle of water (such a simple gesture, but they were the only one!), the beautiful Hong Kong designer Amber herself sat in to discuss the designs and portfolio, and the package was reasonably priced below SGD$3,500.00. They were huge on customisation and comfort, besides beauty. The good-looking owner himself came over to say hi as well, and they assured us that they had applied to CASE (something about protection of customers' interest, after the Sophia's Wedding sudden closure episode) and purchased insurance for the to-be-wedded couples! This was something fascinating - again, another point I did not hear from the other bridal studios here. They had been on the top of my list until I returned a day later - they tried to jack up the price and then dropped a whooping SGD$700.00 for the exact same set of services proposed.
7. FELINE WEDDING
2 Alexandra Road #06-02D Delta House, Singapore 159919
Tel: 6339 5669
Coincidentally, when I was taking a breather and doing some research online, this bridal studio came up a few times, being some of the top choices in Singapore. In fact, I passed by their studio yesterday enroute to a work appointment with my boss. So when I was "pulled" to sit down with the friendly Christine, I was treated to an eyeful of very exquisite gowns in multiple styles. She was patient, understanding and friendly without being fake. Price was below SGD$3,000.00 and customisation was promised to me. This one also stood a high chance; until the next day when we returned to negotiate a little. During their "seek-approval-from-boss" period, I informed them that I wanted to visit the restrooms and would be back - they stunned us by asking one of the staff to escort us to the restroom! My god, even if we had not thought of "running away" before, this would be the moment we decided to do so.
8. LOUVRE BRIDAL
69 Kim Yan Road, Singapore 239368
Tel: 6337 7808
This bridal shop is the sister company of my photography / videography studio, Coffee & Tea Dreamcoffeez. I got to know to know about Louvre that way, and the briefly discussed price earlier on in the year was less than SGD$3,000.00 for us, since we were their customers already. However, the collection and service did not wow me. And to be honest, I wondered why a bridal boutique offering Korean bridal gowns would give themselves a French name - rather misleading, no?
9. THE WEDDING PRESENT BRIDE
30 Joo Chiat Place, Singapore 427754
Tel: 6327 4423
I fell in love with their website collection, though the collection displayed seemed limited, and not updated. Their response is awesome - even when overseas, they would reply emails. Their quoted price was SGD$3,999.00, flowers additional SGD$500.00 and makeup SGD$800.00. I thought this was rather steep, so even though we'd fixed an appointment, I am sorry we had to let this go. Maybe this was more of a designer boutique?
10. WHITE WEDDINGS / BRIDAL BOUQUETS
100 Orchard Road #03-16 Concorde Hotel, Singapore 238840
Tel: 9068 0356
I am very confused by this boutique. They were being referred to me by my fiance's colleague, so we decided to see if we could lend our support. The gowns on display on website seemed nice enough, so I tried to fix an appointment. The emails went unanswered, so I sent an SMS, which was replied only days later. I was informed that they were "moving" and they would call me back the following day, but that did not happen. I then received an email reply finally, and under the signature was another website (Bridal Bouquets). My queries via email aka replies to her went unanswered again. I don't know - too busy to, or don't care about the new potential clients, or what? I am sorry to concede that I am very displeased and not assured of their services and professionalism at all, and will not be engaging them.
Besides these, I also note that there is a number of them advertising rather heavily, with pretty gowns too. Unfortunately there is only one of me and I cannot have time and energy to talk to everyone, so I will have to give them a miss. Some of them are Digio Bridal with sister-company Rico A Mona, as well as Beautiful Love Weddings. I am glad to have settled another portion of wedding preparation, especially with the festive seasons (Christmas and Chinese New Year) coming up soon.
For the rest of the Nuptial Series:
Part (i) - The Proposal
Part (ii) - Solemnisation procedure
Part (iii) - Solemnisation venues
Part (iv) - Finding the right photography studios
Part (v) - Hunting for the suits and gowns
Part (vi) - Bespoke (tailored gown) - Review on Kelly's Bridal
Part (vii) - Pre-wedding photoshoot in Vancouver, Canada
Part (viii) - Pre-wedding photoshoot in Singapore - Loov Production