Wedding Wednesdays allow us to spotlight creatives, local and not-so-local, whose work we love! These wedding vendors, artists, and small businesses are all doing amazing things and we think that our couples should know about them! We invite you to come along with us to learn more about these businesses that will help you make your day as meaningful as possible (and, if you’re a Radian Bride/Groom, that we would love to work with)!
This week, we’re talking with Susan Langford, who owns Gilded Bridal, a wedding dress shop in Raleigh, North Carolina that specializes in providing brides a chic setting to shop for unique dresses made by independent designers. Choosing your gown is such a fun part of the process, and we can’t imagine a better place to go with your closest family and friends to try one one on than Gilded! We loved exploring the shop and photographing the beautiful gowns and dressing rooms. Read on to learn more about Gilded Bridal!
RP: Tell us about Gilded Bridal and who you love to serve!
Susan: At Gilded we are all about creating a fun and relaxed wedding dress shopping experience in a beautiful atmosphere. We bring our brides a curated collection of gorgeous dresses from smaller, independent designers, and we cater to brides looking for something just a little different or unique in their dream dress. We get so excited when we get to help a bride and her crew find the perfect dress – then it’s refill the champagne and cheers all around!
RP: What do you wish brides and grooms knew when thinking about dresses (and suits/tuxes!) for their wedding?
Susan: Don’t get caught up in what you are supposed to wear. If you want to rock a killer grey lace dress with a rose quartz crown – well, you do you girl! And if you want a strapless white ballgown and a cathedral veil, that’s great too! So many of us get all tangled up in what we think we should be wearing to our wedding, or what we think people expect of us. At Gilded, we encourage you to keep an open mind and try on different kinds of dresses: you never know what will make you feel like your most beautiful you!
RP: What resources or advice do you suggest for brides and grooms who are thinking about their dream wedding?
Susan: Friends and family are great resources to get referrals for talented wedding vendors – do you have a friend who was recently married and you loved their photos? Ask them who their photographer was. The food at your cousin’s wedding was phenomenal? Get the number of that caterer!
RP: What are you working on right now that’s keeping you happy and energized?
Susan: As of May, Gilded has been open for 8 months. At this point I have learned a lot about what my Raleigh brides are looking for – and I am really enjoying the challenge of making sure that I am bringing in new dresses to delight my brides. I thrive when I constantly strive to do better, and I always think there is room for improvement: the pursuit of making Gilded the most welcoming and happy little bridal shop with the coolest dresses definitely keeps me energized! Outside of Gilded, my husband and I have been renovating our 1960’s ranch house, and I love crafting the interior and watching it transform into our dream home.
RP: When you planned your wedding, what is one unforgettable thing that you did to make sure your day and marriage were intentionally crafted?
Susan: While planning every element of our wedding day, my husband Michael and I considered two things: first, what choices would be the most reflective of who we were as individuals coming together in a marriage, and second, what would create the best experience for our guests. Nothing was over the top, so I find it hard to give a specific example of something that was unforgettable – but the whole day came together as a beautiful expression of those two key ideas. We were married at the North Carolina Museum of Art by our friend Dan who flew in from Tanzania for the occasion. Our vows were pilfered from a children’s book, and we exchanged leis made of origami cranes we had folded ourselves. I wore a Jenny Packham dress and a garter hand-sewn by my grandmother. My husband wore Hugo Boss and a bowtie, and his father stood beside him as his best man. After the ceremony, the band was swinging, the toasts were heartfelt, the food was amazing, the bar was open, and we wouldn’t have changed a thing.
Where can we see more of your work and learn more about you?
See more about Gilded Bridal here!
Want more tips for planning your wedding? Head here to see more interviews and ideas!