Celebrating our third month in Campbell
We’ve just passed the marker of three months in our flagship store in Campbell, ACT, and boy has it been a whirlwind of a quarter. Amy and I are the same in that we operate in our lives strategically but also so quickly that we have a hard time digesting what’s happening. Only once we get to the end of a process do we allow ourselves the opportunity to sit back and say, “Whoa… what just happened?”
Not too dissimilar to the feeling you get on a wedding day, has been the past twelve months of seeing our dreams realised through the building of Mrs Fray. The emotions, excitement, anticipation, anxiety, and the rest of it come together in one big ball of “what just happened?” and before you know it, what you started has already come to be.
Twelve months ago we hosted our first pop up within the beautiful walls of the Nishi Gallery, and as we did I’m sure neither of us knew the enormity of the process we were beginning.
Four months after that, I had a baby.
One month later we had our second pop up (with a three-week-old in tow) and a flurry of the same question over and over again (“I’d like to try this on again. Where is your permanent store?”).
Six weeks after that we were full swing on the hunt for commercial properties that ticked all the boxes for our dream bridal concept space.
One month later we were signing the documents and getting our fit-out plans underway, while my husband and I were struggling to learn how to hold a newborn, and all four of us were balancing other businesses on the side.
We opened our doors in July, me holding a glass of champagne and being described as little other than ‘a ball of emotions’, Amy and I arm-in-arm and disbelieving as to what we’d created.
Three months on, we’ve hosted 130 appointments. Each day that we’re open, Amy or I turn the keys in our shop door and our breath catches in our chests when we see the beauty within. I often take a moment, even just 20 seconds, to behold our creation and fight back a tear or two of gratitude. We feel incredibly honoured to meet the beautiful women who come through those double doors and offer to share with us this incredibly precious and vulnerable time in their lives.
We’ve met every variety of bride, which when we think about it have so much in common regardless of their differences. When we meet a woman for her bridal appointment, she comes to us with different faces on but always the same intent behind her eyes: she wants to feel special. She wants to enjoy this process. She feels fear on so many levels: fear of not finding the one, fear of finding the gown of her dreams but her friends not loving it the way she does, fear of the perfect gown for her not existing, and the biggest and most prominent fear for us all: fear of rejection.
Our favourite moment, however, is the one where we watch that fear behind her eyes melt away. When we say, “there’s truly no pressure, love. Don’t feel rushed,” we watch her shoulders relax and the smile on her face turn genuine. When whichever bride we have in store that day feels she is in a safe space, we know our job here is done.
Our ethos remains as it was at the beginning of this dream, now more than it ever, which is to advocate for the woman, not the gown. As we watch this space help our dream come to life five days a week, we’re in awe at the culture that it’s generating around it, all on its own.
Thank you Mrs Frays, thank you Canberra, and thank you every single one of you beautiful humans who has been a part of this story along the way. We cannot tell you how grateful we are for your time, energy, and enthusiasm.
Andi & Amy x