Wedding industry suffering during pandemic

Wedding industry suffering during pandemic

LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - With limits on outdoor and indoor gatherings, many brides and grooms across the nation are choosing to postpone their big day.

Mam’selle, a Lake Charles bridal boutique has seen the aftermath of the recession and Hurricane Rita, but owner Delanie Cooley says after the coronavirus, the effects have been much worse.

“I have noticed I have a lot less shoppers,” Cooley said. “A lot of brides that are coming in now, their weddings aren’t till 2021, 2022, so it just seems like there’s just a lot less people getting engaged.”

Even the industry itself is suffering.

“The availability to order something is taking a lot longer time because a lot of products come from China or warehouses,” Cooley said. “It’s taking a lot longer to get here. Instead of 8 to 12 weeks, we’re looking at 15 to 25 weeks even for bridesmaids, and that’s hard.”

There is an increased worry that online shopping will lessen the need for bridal shops like hers.

“As far as mother’s dresses, I haven’t had a woman coming in for a mother’s dress since the pandemic started. Not one mother has looked for a dress and that’s unusual. And that’s something they can get online, bridesmaids also, that’s gone down a lot because they can order that online.”

She wants people to know they’re still here and open, even to try on.

“I felt like nobody cared about us like if it’s not something that you eat or drink, it didn’t matter,” Cooley said. “Nobody even talks about the retail businesses that are suffering, it’s all restaurants or bars. There’s more going on than just restaurants and bars.”

Due to the increase in prices to ship dresses, Cooley recommends that even brides that are getting married in 2021 should start thinking about purchasing a dress now.

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