We caught up with 'The Boys' about what it’s like to be men in a predominantly female wedding world and about how being men might even give them an advantage in business. It’s always lovely to chat to this dynamic partnership of Andrew and Rob Pearce, who we at WIN have been friends with for many years…
When did you decide that bridal was the business you wanted to be in? Andrew started to make dance costumes around 30 years ago, during which time he was approached to make a friend's wedding dress and it progressed from there.
We met 21 years ago when I was working for John Lewis, and I approached Andrew about making tiaras and other jewellery for his bridal business… It was decided at this point to take the business out of a workroom at home to a High Street location, and the rest is history!
How does it work between the two of you? It works because we bounce ideas off each other, and we each have completely different personalities and strengths – Andrew is more directive and I'm much more laid back, for example.
Do you find that the idea of having a man help them choose their dream dress actually attracts brides? Yes, we often think that brides feel less judged by a man… Saying that, we also have a female member of the team who is very approachable and that also helps.
What are the advantages of having a man take a bride on that journey? We think a lot of brides that have a male partner wish that they could be there to give a male perspective so we become the surrogate groom and the best male friend! Because Say Yes to the Dress is fronted by men we find girls have confidence in us, and they certainly trust a male opinion!
In a predominantly female world dealing mainly with brides, how do you find the wedding industry? When we first started our buying journey we soon realised that we were unique and we became referred to as ‘The Boys’. We have been told that one rep only gave us three months in the industry, wrongly thinking that we would not survive in a female environment. Since then we have won 35 awards and we love supporting and advising other boutiques ,who approach us for advice on employing men.
What’s new and exciting for 2024? Watch this space – we are in big negotiations, which will elevate our visibility nationwide and internationally.
What do Creatiques do differently to make it a success? We continually think out of the box – we are also an all-inclusive business that thrives on diversity and body inclusivity. We are primarily designers who own a wedding boutique not salesmen who own a boutique. We aren’t pushy – we are creative!
You do a bit of designing yourself, don’t you? Tell us about it! We don’t design as such anymore but because of our background we can demonstrate and advise on the customisation of any of our gowns to achieve a bride's vision.
It’s been so lovely to catch up with Andrew and Rob and we cannot wait to see what the next 12 months hold in store for them. Find out more about Creatiques here.