With many weddings being postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses in the wedding industry saw a boom this year.
As wedding season quickly approaches, along with warmer temperatures on their way, many businesses in the wedding industry expect to be catering to more brides this year.
“People were canceling their weddings in other metropolitan areas like Portland and Seattle and LA and New York, and getting married in Montana, but they were eloping so we served a lot of those customers last year,” said Cara Lard, owner of Mum's Flowers in Whitefish.
Lard says that despite the struggles, the flower shop has been busy.
“This year everything that was canceled last year got moved to this year, plus we have all of our normal weddings for this year so we're feeling like it's almost double our normal load,” said Lard.
Lard says that providing brides with their bouquet is rewarding.
“Weddings are so special and especially the bridal bouquet is such a special place that the girls want to preserve forever and I think it's just such an honor to be able to provide that for them,”said Lard.
The flower shop has also seen a huge use of their online service where brides can pick out floral décor from the comfort of their own homes.
“This has taken off, especially in the pandemic when people were just the two of them getting married and eloping; otherwise, we're happy to do like a large-scale custom wedding where we come and install ceiling installations and centerpieces and arbor décor and all of that,” said Lard.
Down Highway 93 in Kalispell, bridal shops have had more of a struggle in the beginning of the pandemic.
“I mean, when COVID happened we had to shut our doors down just as a lot of people did and that was really scary,” said Bethany Owens, manager of Mimi's Bridal.
Regardless of the shutdown, Owens says that now the business is booming.
“It's a million times better than it ever has been which we're very thankful for it,” said Owens.
And with the cancellations of last year's weddings, more brides are wanting the perfect dress to wow.
“But last year, everybody just kind of having to postpone their weddings to this year, so the wedding season is bigger than it ever has been,” said Owens.
Mimi’s offers brides that personal experience, despite what other shops offer.
“When you walk in here, you definitely have that bridal experience and it's not like it would be in cities, where you're going to be right next to somebody or like on "Say Yes to the Dress," when you're standing right next to another bride," Owens said. "You really get this time back here to be with your closest friends and your family and just enjoy the day because it's just really the beginning of the entire wedding."
Lard and Owens are excited to provide brides with décor and dresses that will help them feel confident when they tie the knot.