The outer candles were lit and the wax dripped down the tapers.The one candle in the center of the candelabra stood dark. A wick unlit. The bride and groom each took their candles, lit the one in the middle, blew out their candles and left only one glowing in the center. A sign of their union and eternal love. How do you capture that setting and recreate it in a bridal shop? Walking in the door of our friend, Katie Ward’s, shop – Bliss Bridal in Fairhope, AL reminded me of this very scene in my own wedding 34 years ago.
Without a single candle to be found in her shop, there is a golden glow of incandescence that resembles the soft glimmer of candlelight. The white gowns reflect a prism of lustrous colors where light bounces off of sequins, beads, pearls and rhinestones. The dresses form their own constellation among the silk, satin and chiffon that line the walls.
As I walked around snapping photos, every where I looked, the romance of the shop seemed to radiate the splendor of the day. After all, this is the most important garment a girl will ever wear. From elegant, comfortable seating to spacious dressing rooms, Katie has thought of everything. The gown selection is wide and varied, with both short and long gowns. She also offers several choices of Mother of the Bride and Bridesmaids’ gowns with accessories for all. If you are thinking of renewing your vows anytime soon, you’ll find just the right dress for rekindling those flames as well.
Picture a bride dancing until the first crown of light in this gorgeous knee-length dress.
An elegant tissue box is strategically placed to capture Mom’s tears when the perfect dress is modeled.
An orchid whispers sweet suggestions for a fragrant bouquet.
Light seems to reflect everywhere in this shop, including the dressing rooms.
The waiting area (white room) where dresses are modeled.
This painting reminds us that a bride glows with the same intensity whether entering the church or exiting the party. Bliss Bridal has that same soft sparkle. If you’ve ever watched a Doris Day movie and noticed how the camera lens softens as it focuses on Miss Day, you’ll know exactly what I mean.
Can’t you just imagine that first blush of the groom as he sees his bride for the first time in this gown?
We met Katie in Fairhope a few weeks ago, while waiting for a table at a local restaurant. We realized that our husbands work together and struck up a conversation. They are the cutest couple, so as we passed by her shop on our anniversary, we just had to stop in to say hello. It was appropriate, don’t you think, to visit a bridal shop on our anniversary?
We found that in addition to being a beautiful young lady, Katie is doing what she was called to do. Finding each bride that brilliant gown that will hold her groom mesmerized until he can mutter those two little words that transform her from bride to wife. All beginning with a little candlelight.