Welcome back to the second part of our interview with Sam from Revival Bridal Boutique. Based in the quaint, independent shopping centre that is Castle Emporium in the centre of Cardiff; Revival Bridal Boutique offers you eco-friendly, bespoke and one-of-a-kind wedding dresses.
Sam makes all of the dresses myself from fabrics he sources and from vintage wedding dresses. These dresses are absolutely incredible, and it is well worth booking in an appointed with Sam if you want something unique, vintage and eco-friendly for your wedding day.
In part 1 we got to know who Sam is, why he started Revival Bridal Boutique, some business advice he has, what makes his bridal shop unique and much more. I highly recommend that you read the first part of the interview to so you don’t feel lost during Part 2.
This time round we dig into his favourite dresses, wedding advice he has for brides, wedding stories and more. So, strap yourself in, as this is a very funny and entertaining read.
A Heads Up
I like my things to be real, I didn’t want this interview to be a tame, fake write up that gives you nothing and means nothing. I told this to Sam at the start and he loved it! So, be warned, this is a very real and juicy interview. If you get offended easily, well then…
The interview was firstly recorded and transcribed by a phenomenal person who I am so grateful for transcribing it! It would have taken me days! This being said, I haven’t changed anything that Sam has said, but I have slightly edited it so that it reads better in blog format. I’ve tried to make it as readable as possible for you all. Sam liked to jump from one part of a conversation to another, this I found really fun, but obviously reading some of it might not make sense, but that’s just how the conversation went.
With the heads up done! Now time to dig into the second part of the interview with Revival Bridal Boutique and Sam!
An Interview with Revival Bridal Boutique: Part 2
Question 6 – What Do You Offer the Brides?
Sam: What do I offer them? Everyone whose come in so far has said that they really like the feel of the boutique and that it’s really warm and welcoming.
I sit down and have a cup of tea or coffee with them when they come in because I like to get to know them, rather than just being “yeah come in, have a look, you have to buy one otherwise I’m not hitting my sales targets”.
I like to think it’s quite relaxed and informal but still try to make them feel special.
Question 7 – Do you have any insider tips for brides?
Don’t let people tell you what to do. Your day your way.
I’ve have had brides in here already that are seeking approval from their mum. It’s sometimes really difficult to not to p**s them off *the mums*, but also at the same time say “it’s your day, if you want to wear sparkly wellies and snazzy umbrella you go for it”. I think I mentioned in my editorial for Cardiff Life “if you want to wear a denim jacket and a top hat, do what you have to do.”
It’s the day and age we live in and it is your special day. So yeah, you do what you want to do.
Question 8 – What’s your favourite dress?
Favourite dress…I did think about this the other day, but I don’t really know. Maybe like the one that I’ve recently made. I don’t think I can pinpoint one exactly. I couldn’t pick a favourite to be honest with you.
A lot of the ones that I’ve done, like the vintage ones I have been restored I really like. Where I’ve tweaked them and made them look pretty again, but my favourite ones are the ones where I’ve had more creativity over. And I mean I don’t have ultimate say of what happens but the ones where I’ve had a really creative time with are probably the ones that are my favourite dresses.
Like where I’ve found two dresses that look similar and the bottom of one needs hacking off, and put it with the top of another one because the lace goes really well with the silk – so those are the ones that are my favourites I think.
Question 9 – What do you love about making the dresses? What drives your passion?
I think it’s the whole process, particularly bridal dresses in the style that I’m doing them. Cutting them up to then be influenced by the original dress to what I can then make out of that dress. The design process can be completely different, rather than getting a roll of fabric in and being like “oh what shall I do with this”. You’re kind of restricted with what you can do, and I like that restriction as in working within those parameters creates something that’s different but you inevitably still have essence of the original dress and sort of trying to keep it within its era.
That’s the bit that drives the passion, it’s the creativity of it, and the weird creative parameters. I find it easier to work within a confined space rather than just do “whatever you want”. There’s almost too much choice.
Driving the passion sewing wise, with the boutique especially, it’s knowing that materials aren’t going to waste, there’s no chemicals used in re-dying the fabric and it eliminates the single use of the dress. It’s what helps drive the boutique forward, I think. (Some of this was also touched upon in Part One with Question 4 – What makes Revival Bridal Boutique Unique?)
Question 10 – Do you have any good wedding stories?
I DO have a good wedding story. I went to my friend’s wedding last year; it was all lovely – oh just as a minor side street, she didn’t have a wedding breakfast she had an afternoon tea. And when you’ve spent all day at someone’s wedding and all you’ve had to eat until 8 o’clock at night is a scone and a few sandwiches, everyone was hangry as f**k. Or some of the people were horny as f**k, but anyway.
One of these bridesmaids was there with her husband and child. And the bride’s brother was there as well, you know family wedding. We’re all having a lovely time at said reception, and all I remember, I mean I was quite drunk, but there was this girl that was like begging of everyone’s attention on the dance floor and by 11:30pm you’re thinking okay this child needs to go to bed.
But the reason she wasn’t in bed was because the bride’s brother was sh**ging the bridesmaid in the toilets WHILST the husband and daughter are still there…
And it literally all unfolded at about midnight and it was horrendous, like utterly horrendous. They were caught in the act and you know the brother was no oil painting but there were fights and all sorts.
Question 11 – Any challenges that you’ve faced?
It’s hard being the only person that sews. I have support from family and friends that help out, my other half painted the floor and his dad did all the wiring for the lights for the shop. But the challenge of it has been the sewing, and I’m quite precious about it as well because it is the product at the end of the day.
I don’t have the cash to pay anyone to do it for me, so that is challenging to do it all; and be the face of the business, doing posts on social media, being the seller, but it’s good fun, keeps me on my toes.
Question 14 – As part of the something old, something new wedding rhyme, have you heard the last line “and a silver sixpence in your shoes” and what do you think of it?
I have, I really like it. I only came across it because I was doing a similar thing back in 2014 and I bought a load of old wedding dresses. It wasn’t so much going down an eco-friendly sort of route, it was more of a bespoke thing.
At the time I was getting lots of requests from brides that wanted bespoke dresses but didn’t want to pay the price for the fabric and stuff. So funnily enough I heard the last line of the rhyme and called the business silver sixpence bridal, but, that’s gone down the toilet and now I’m “Revival Bridal Boutique” because I’m reviving wedding dresses.
So yes, I have heard of the rhyme, but I like what you guys are doing, like actually completing the rhyme and the tradition rather than just taking a silver sixpence and calling it a business.
Oh, you know what I was actually going to put silver sixpence in the dress. I know it’s supposed to be in the shoe but I was going to stick it on the labels or something. I was going to do something with a sixpence. I got like a bag of 50 but they’re probably not even silver. Not the real deal like yours. I put that on my Instagram actually, “these ones are real man, they’re not the fake shit”.
Rob: You know what, I just got now why it’s called revival. *laughs*
Sam: Bloody hell Rob, embarrassing that it’s recorded as well, when the pennies dropped. *laughs*
Where to find Sam and Revival Bridal Boutique
You can find Revival Bridal Boutique in all the usual places online. Sam has made a great Instagram account @revivalbridal. He also has Facebook @revivalbridalboutique and Twitter @revival_bridal, but he has said he doesn’t really use that!
I loved interviewing Sam! He is such a funny guy and I hugely appreciate the time he made for me to come in and chat with him. As we’ve got to know each other more my mum has decided to give him her wedding dress that she wore for her wedding. I know Sam is going use it to create an incredible dress for someone else, and it may also include one of our I Do Silver sixpences for your shoe.
I hope you have enjoyed this interview with Sam and have found it funny and interesting. Sam’s uniqueness is what drew me to him, and he shows that throughout this interview and with the dresses he makes.
So you know, there is no affiliate link between I Do Silver and Revival Bridal Boutique. I just want to bring you great content from truly awesome people within the wedding industry. If you believe you offer something different to people for their wedding day then please get in touch . At I Do Silver we love collaborating and getting to meet new and interesting people.