Sometimes, you know when it’s your time. “With my children growing up and my husband’s business going well, I thought, ‘now it’s my turn’,” says #girlboss Georgina Sheward of her decision to open Georgina Sheward Bridal in Glasgow’s bustling Shawlands neighbourhood.
Like most of us, Georgina’s career has been full of twists and turns: “I have previously worked all over the place, from film and TV to ballet, opera and, eventually, museum restoration,” she reflects.
Her education, on the other hand, was strictly fashion-orientated. Rest assured Georgina knows her stuff. “I specialised in costume and after studying for three years and gaining experience in all these different roles, I moved into freelance costume and teaching,” she explains. “In 2011, I went back to university to do my MLitt in Dress and Textile History. This was fantastic, giving me the chance to develop my beading skills, as well as the same restoration techniques I make use of now in the cleaning and boxing side of the bridal business.
“After working at another boutique for a few years, I was desperate to open my own shop,” she continues. “As a seamstress, I felt there was a gap in the market. I wanted to bring new designers to the city, to introduce brands that I felt were not very well represented.”
And what a line-up of names you have to look forward to: Goddess by Nature (a series of ‘gorgeous, beachy, bohemian styles’), Elbeth Gillis (we’re waiting impatiently for Annabelle, above, £POA), Charlotte Balbier, Marquise Bridal and KWH by Karen Willis Holmes are all expected.
There’s accessories on the cards too. “I am planning to stock Ava Grace Design, a designer based in Prestwick,” Georgina reveals. “Her pieces are beautiful and tie in well with the store.”
As gowns and collections begin to arrive, Georgina is concentrating on alterations and boxing services at first, but is ambitious for the future. “I hope to provide brides with an intimate atmosphere,” Georgina adds. “You’ll get the place to yourself during appointments and if you book a two-hour or evening slot on selected nights, there will be refreshments.”
Her neighbours are also part of her strategy. “If you’re not familiar with Skirving Street where we’re based, there are some interesting, independent stores, such as Bejouled, where you can pick up your wedding rings; Paper Plane, which does lovely cards and stationery; Ruby Woo, where you can pick up guest outfits; and lots of hair and beauty salons,” she lists. “At some point, we might offer a package deal, where you can make a day of it and treat yourself to a treatment or have afternoon tea, following your bridal appointment.”
We predict big things for you, Georgina.