STOCKIST FEATURE // THE MODERN BRIDE
14th April 2021
We love our stockists!
MWL has stockists all over the globe and we want to give our MWL girls a chance to get to know them better.
We’re carrying on our new blog series hearing from Jessica Hirst, Co-Owner at The Modern Bride in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
The story of TMB
What inspired you to go into the bridal industry?
I honestly stumbled into the industry as serendipitous as that may sound. My background is in event management and I was a General Manager/Bartender for a LONG time. I loved the fast pace of hospitality and weddings specifically and I knew one thing for sure; I wanted to be my own boss. I was certified as a Wedding Coordinator and very much in love with our city (having come to University here) and one day I thought, Guelph could use a really beautiful, cool, non-mainstream wedding boutique. Within a couple of weeks I had a former business partner, a newly signed lease, and my personal closet filled with dresses I had purchased from another bridal boutique that was closing. The next seven years were a wild ride (my mom and dedicated business partner can attest to that) and I wouldn’t change any of it.
Tell us a bride memory that always brings a smile to your face.
Ok, so as a bridal boutique owner you can never forget your first YES (shoutout to Brittney) ! But, a more recent bride memory that I know will stick in my heart and bring a smile to all of our team’s faces for a long time is when we called the winner of the TMB of the Year to let her know that we will be taking care of the cost of her dress. TMB of the Year was a contest to highlight and honour all of the amazing bride-to-be frontline workers throughout Ontario. Brides were nominated by loved ones and then we opened up voting to the world! Laura, a TMB x Made With Love bride, is a Neo-Natal Nurse at a hospital in Ontario and has spent endless hours throughout the pandemic caring for vulnerable babies in their first days while navigating the unknowns of the pandemic. When we called Laura to tell her she had won she was overcome with emotions. To be able to give such a deserving bride that financial relief as a very small token of all of our appreciation was something we will never forget. We can’t wait to see her photos when she ties the knot this spring.
What gets you most excited to go to work each day?
Building something that we can be proud of. My mom and I care about this business and our staff so much. We pour SO much of myself into making sure that our staff are excited, challenged, and of course, thrilled to be part of something that is worthwhile. Our brides built this, but our team carries this dream and we wouldn’t trust anyone else with it.
“Our brides built this, but our team carries this dream and we wouldn’t trust anyone else with it”
What’s one moment in your career in bridal that you’ll never forget?
I think when the first BIG name in bridal wanted to make sure that their gowns hung in our boutique. This was before the age of Instagram (or maybe just at the birth) and you real had to hustle to make sure people knew your name AND your experience. When designers started coming knocking (instead of the other way around) I couldn’t believe my ears. I of course played cool, but I think back now and I probably did a happy dance for 3 days straight. One more thing that I HAVE to note; Opening our forever home in the historic Petrie Building. After almost a 4 year renovation process we were finally able to open our doors to brides in the most spectacular space we are SO lucky to call home.
If you were choosing a MWL dress for your big day, which one would you pick?
Bella! I love the sophisticated simplicity of the crepe mixed with the drama in the bow! One-shoulder dresses are so high-fashion and not something we see every day in bridal wear. I love the uniqueness Bella has while still having the structural fundamentals we all love about Made With Love dresses. And if not Bella, you know my heart belongs to Georgie’s stunning sister ARCHIE!
What makes your team stand out from the crowd? Tell us about them!
Ahhh where do I even begin – there is not possibly enough room or time to tell you what makes this band of women so next level! First a HUGE shoutout to TMB’s CFO and co-owner, my mom, Donna! She is a force and we would not be here today without her! Our team is a sisterhood of independent modern women who believe in empowering, supporting, and women in all facets of life and business. Each team member brings such a unique element, personality, and outlook on life to create such an inviting, memorable, and elevated bridal experience. Our team isn’t just a team of stylists, we are a bunch of friends who are investing ourselves in the bride and her journey. We are always there to cheer on each and every one of our brides. At the end of the day, I know it is a cliche, but teamwork makes the dream work.
What’s one piece of advice you give every bride?
My staff and I always try to remind brides that you should feel like an elevated version of yourself. Wearing a wedding gown should never be an uncomfortable game of dress-up, rather you should feel like your absolute best self strutting your best look. It is so important to stay true to your style and what YOU want.
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All photos by: Jessica Imrie Photography