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Bridal brands on rebound after COVID-19

By Kristopher Fraser


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Image: Justin Alexander

Here come the brides again. New York Bridal Fashion Week was back in full force this season, with many designers celebrating another season of in-person events, as well as a rebounding bridal industry. Like most industries, bridal took a hit due to the global COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns. The Wedding Report estimated the bridal industry lost 47 billion dollars between 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

Now, with most lockdown restrictions lifted, the bridal industry is on a rebound. Bridal designer Nadia Manjarrez recently married, and her necessities as a bride inspired her collections, as well as the needs of her friends getting married. Manjarrez is revolutionizing the bridal market with convertible gowns. Her bridal line is still in its infancy, Manjarrez believes versatility will help the brand succeed. She’s already finding popularity in her home country of Mexico, and is planning on translating that success in America as she focuses on landing in more U.S. retail doors.

Bridal Fashion Week sees brands on the rebound post COVID-19 lockdown

For some brands, the past year has been a comeback. A representative for Anne Barge told FashionUnited that 2021 was one of their strongest years on record with brides flocking to get married once people were vaccinated. While the brand has seen a strong rebound, they said that COVID-19 and 2020 weren’t without their challenges. Supporting stores became difficult with supply chain issues and the delivery calendar was thrown off. There was also the postponing of wedding dates, which also set their customer orders back. However, the brand has since picked up new retailers in Ohio, Canada, Florida, and Korea. They are seeing incremental international growth now, which is great for business.

Dubai-based brand Rami Al Ali, best known for its couture, is successfully growing their bridal business since the COVID-19 lockdowns ended. Most of the success they’ve found has been through trunk shows. Neiman Marcus in Dallas and Panache in Beverly Hills have helped the brand amass a customer following for their bridal. In addition to wedding dresses, they are also growing their ready-to-wear offerings with their targets set on luxury stores like Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue.

Other international designers seeing success at New York Bridal Fashion Week include Japan-based Ituwa. The very young brand is finding incremental success internationally. A representative for the brand told FashionUnited they have been receiving requests for photo shoots, and they are projected to pick up many U.S. retailers here.

Like many sectors of the retail industry, bridal is still on the rebound, but the comeback is going strong. With Technavio predicting the global bridal market will grow by 13.5 billion dollars for the period 2021 to 2026, things are looking promising for the bridal industry.

Image: Nadia Manjarrez
Image: Savannah Miller
New York Bridal Fashion Week