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Keveza, who also designs a more upscale bridal collection, expects Legends to generate $1.5 million in sales. The line consists of 14 silhouettes that make 64 outfits.
Richard Tyler, who has stepped back from designing rtw and eveningwear to focus on wedding dresses and made-to-measure, agreed that people are spending money again on bridal. “They don’t mind spending the money, and dad foots the bill. They want something fantastic.”
Brides-to-be aren’t shying away from Tyler’s retail price points, which range from $3,000 to $9,000.
Ursula Hegewisch, co-owner of Wearkstatt, said brides are overwhelmed with so many choices that it is “really hard for them to make up their minds.” Customers are taking six months on average to make a purchase, whereas six weeks to two months was the norm a year ago, she said.
Joseph Murphy, president and chief executive officer of JLM Couture, has seen a shift of a different kind. “There’s more of a separation between the lower end and the higher end of the market. The middle is just not there.”
The change is due in part to mass-market brands knocking off designs from pricier collections, he said. JLM is trying to address the lack of middle-tier labels by introducing Occasions, a collection that will bow this fall and will wholesale from $500 to $625.