The concept of Cherish the dress™ came about from a brainstorming session between Chris Hanley and I. We wanted to put a thoroughly British twist on the very American ‘Trash the Dress’ concept. Many brides… hate the idea of ruining a dress that they have paid many thousands of pounds for. It’s not just the money either, respect for the dress designer is a key factor too. After all, they have carefully sculpted and worked the fabric of the dress to create a uniquely beautiful garment. And what about mum or mom? The bride’s mum would likely be horrified to know that her darling daughter had disrespected her dress to the point of destruction. But not in America it seems, and that is my point. We’ve all seen the pictures of the bride with her dress on fire and quite frankly I’d have trouble selling that concept to my clients.
We brainstormed on… why just a wedding dress we thought? Why not any dress, even a prom dress? Another American tradition that has crossed the Atlantic in the past few years. So we set about creating a concept where everyone is a winner and came up with the brand Cherish the dress™ together with the slogan – ‘Make your dress a star, not the victim’.
The shoots happen in fine hotels, penthouse apartments, city centre cafés, and if the weather is fine then urban exteriors too. There are no wedding day pressures, no weather worries, and plenty of time to get the hair and make up perfect between shots. Concentrating the shoots in locations of splendor, beauty and opportunity maximise the client’s enjoyment of wearing their dress again.
It’s not just a girls shoot either, we get husbands and boyfriends involved too. It’s a bit like a very dressy pre wedding shoot but post wedding or post event. There’s room for passion and romance too. There’s time to use off camera lighting creatively and a fantastic opportunity to put together a collection of fine prints that command a high price. As a guide, I would expect photograph sales equivalent to the value of the dress.
Such is going to be the demand for this new genre, we sold out of places on our first Cherish the Dress workshop in Manchester within 5 hours of making them available. It was billed as a one off workshop but if you would like the opportunity to attend a workshop yourself, let Laura know and feel free to suggest cities and venues too. Any European city is easily within our reach. You never know we might get invited back to the Manchester Hilton.