Which Style of Service Providers is for you ?
-- The One-Stop Bridal Shop VS. The Designer Class Bridal Boutique ?
The 'One-stop' Bridal Shops
The days of 'One-stop' packages from Bridal Shops, ( aka "Taiwanese-style" management Wedding Shops) may be numbered, and the trend towards going 'ala carte' is on the Rise.
Many are mis-led by the so-called 'package deal' from the so-called One-stop bridal shops, as these may be hidden with additional costs and extras, rendering post sign-ups dis-satisfaction and many are re-thinking of transferring or selling-off their packages -- ending with even costlier mistakes and regrets.
Typical Taiwanese-style shops' strategy is to promised you anything and everything, and even pressurised you, with sales gimmicks to get you signed the dotted lines. However, the 'night-mares' are only the beginning, once you have paid the initial deposit, or when you are making further requests ( when top-ups are not uncommon, and 'bleeding-of-the-wallet' begins ).
The tell-tale signs are Shops that uses Wedding Exhibitions to entice you with so-called 'Road show Promotions' and giving-away 'steep discounts', and the promotional sales-staffs using superb selling skills and entrapment techniques on many unsuspecting couples, which many a times end-up in dis-satisfaction from the package deal, from exhibitions and road shows sign-ups.
The other tell-tale signs include mandarin-accents & speaking staffs, in Bridal shops that named themselves with English-sounding or European-bias shops' Names, but actually locally-owned or Taiwanese-owned companies, which could be a mis-representation for ill-informed consumers.
These Shops' business model are on Quantity, rather than Quality -- in another words, they are targeting the mass-market consumers ( although, many a times many unsuspecting clients may ended up actually paying a premium for such run-of-the-mill works and services ). For example, you may finds that many of the shops' basic packages are near identical, and if not are quite similar in terms of offerings, contents and pricing. Even their photo products and styles of works are pretty similar, in terms of poses, back-drops and artifacts, props and even locations ! ... The difference could be just the subjects -- it is like "See-One-See-All".
It is understandably that these are employees of companies, whom work non-stop each day, churning-out photo works of countless couples, in ala mass-production fashion, and that your album(s) are just the by-products of their 'assembly lines' ... Yes, they may showcase fantastic Portfolios of Great In-house photographers' Works, but how many times, when the Couples' turn for their Shoots, its either the photographer is no longer with the company, or they are 'engaged' with other jobs, leaving you with the 'poorer' photographers, which works are mediocre or amateurish ...
The question asked here is :"Are You willing to be just another Wedding Couple in their eyes, whom would called you by "Invoice Numbers" or simply address you as "Miss Bride" or "Mr. Groom", rather then remembering your names and your special requests ?
The Designer Class Bridal Boutiques
Those who want to avoid 'hard-selling' and gimmicks from those 'One-stop bridal shops', should be encouraged to get the real stuff straight from the Creators and Talents direct -- Gown Designers, Make-up Artists and Bridal Photographers -- The Designer Class Boutiques
These can be found normally at the fringe or at the heart of the main bridal belt in Tanjong Pagar and South bridge Road, Maxwell Road, Chinatown zone. Most of these Designer Boutiques establishments scattered around the by-streets in this belt, example are Wallich Street, Club Street, etc .. And in the last 2 years ( 2007 - 2008 ), many Boutiques have had moved-out of the Tanjong Pagar Bridal enclave, and can be spotted and taken root at around Bugis Junctions, Beach Road area, and all the way till Lavender MRT vicinity.
The typical Designer Class Boutiques will requires you to made a prior appointment with them, so that they will set-up for a consultation ( Unlike the One-stop Shops, that mainly operated for Walk-ins Customers ). These Professionals will typically spend time identifying and listening to your needs and concerns, beside showcasing their signature works.
If premium and good quality services and no-hard sellings is your preference, these are the alternative and best choice, for many to-be-wed couples. More often than not, word-of-mouths from ex-brides and potential customers, form a majority of these Boutiques' businesses.
From one's research and many friend's testimonials from the past years, have saved many brides from certain bridal shopping pit-falls and budgeting nightmares, and the answers still point toward ala carte ways -- where optimal shopping between Value and Performance shines ( in local context ).
[ > Related Article : Excuse me, We are not your 'Normal Bridal Shops' ! ... ]
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