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Sunday, August 5, 2012

Salt Lake City Trip & Dallas Trip...

A couple of weeks ago my store manager (who just so happens to be my mother) and I jetted off to Salt Lake City, Utah for a quick buying trip.  As most of you know we bring in a line of beautiful wedding gowns that are exclusive to our store in Southwestern Ontario.  Many brides love the fact that these gowns have beautiful attention to detail, are fashion forward and are not found in any magazines or websites.  Brides who are looking for something unique, find it at Once Upon A Time.  So once a year we go down to meet with the designer & finalize these designs before they arrive to the store in January.  Here's a photo of the designer, Heather and I beside one of the most beautiful, fashion forward gowns I have ever seen.

And here is one more sneak peak of the kind of gowns that will be coming to the store.  We're so excited!

Then last week we headed off to Dallas, Texas for a conference and more buying for the store.  While there we met designer Diane D'Angelo who owns a bridal store in California.  She designs a line of jewellery that we will be carrying in the store.  She's been in the trenches of the bridal business so she knows what brides love.  We're happy to carry her line exclusively in Southwestern Ontario.  These fashion forward pieces will be sure to finish every bride's look.

While there we also went over the Fall 2012 bridesmaids gown that we also carry exclusively in Southwestern Ontario.  These gowns are very fashion forward and the designer is really great to work with.  This is a photo of her with her daughter.

A great part of my job is that I can take time to travel and meet these designers in person.  Once Upon A Time Weddings is proud that the gowns that we carry are made from the highest quality material, the finest beadwork and at reputable factories.  Most of the gowns that we carry are only found at Once Upon A Time Weddings which means you can find a beautiful, unique gown without traveling far.  It's the reason that so many brides fall in love with their gown at our store.  Click here to make an appointment to find your dream gown or call the store at 519.245.7997.


Friday, July 20, 2012

Benefits of Shopping at Once Upon A Time Weddings

            This article is dedicated to those shopping for a wedding gown. It can be a scary purchase and for many young women, it is one of the most expensive purchases they have ever made. Some people feel like they need to stick with chain stores like Alfred Angelo and David’s Bridal (also called’ Big Box’ stores) to play it safe. Those big stores pay for tons and tons of ads annually, so we all know they are there. The primary benefits that these kind of stores offer are that they have hanging stock, and they offer a credit card or financing options for your wedding gown. Their ads make it seem cheap and easy to shop there. The truth is rather different and often frustrating. So here is an article to clear up some hoopla you have wondered about big box shopping vs. bridal boutique shopping.

                Here are some of the primary perks of “boutiqing it” with your wedding gown:

PERSONAL SERVICE: This makes a world of difference when shopping for something that resembles a huge white marshmallow shoved into a see-through plastic bag. Smaller bridal boutiques learn their stock and know it by heart. They can easily match up the right girl with the right gown at the right price. Tah-dah! All the stuff about it taking 10-12 shops to find the right gown only happens when you meet with people who don’t care, don’t know their stock, and haven’t the foggiest idea of what cuts will flatter your figure. Personalized service can do all that, plus some!

CUSTOM OPTIONS: Have you ever seen a gown and thought it was almos t perfect? It just needed…that top with that bottom; or that neckline; or less stuff; or more sparkles, etc! When shopping at a bridal boutique you have the option to special order or to make adjustments. A special order gown is one that is being made JUST FOR YOU. That means it is truly a one of a kind gown. You can get exactly what you want without settling. Those other stores mass produce gowns with no options for changes like this. At Once Upon A Time Weddings, we specialize in custom gowns. Brides have added embellishments, added lace, added straps, changed the colors, etc. Then they ordered their gown and it was exactly what they wanted. And it must cost a fortune to do that, right? Nope. Our alterations are relatively inexpensive and making minor changes is inexpensive.

CUSTOM FIT: Adding on to the previous thought - brides can order custom sizes and heights at Once Upon A Time Weddings. The bridal boutique that special orders is your BFF if you have a figure that doesn’t play nice with standard sizing. This works really well and saves you time AND money. At Once Upon A Time Weddings, almost all of our designers allow us to change the length of the gown. This fee is $50-75 depending on the designer. This means that if you're short, you won't have to pay $350 to hem eight layers of your gown. Plus, you have more time after your gown arrives since these changes were made in the factory.

NEED A GOWN NOW? No problem, all of our styles that are in store are ready to take home TODAY. The truth is that Once Upon A Time Weddings carries stock that helps all of their brides, so whether you need a specialty size and have time to order or your wedding is tomorrow, Once Upon A Time Weddings is the perfect place to shop. We also can work with our designers to have gowns arrive faster than standard delivery times, sometimes at no additional charge.

SAMPLE SALE: Sample sales are an awesome way to save money and get a designer gown. A couple times a year Once Upon A Time Weddings will sell sample gowns and you can save up to 50% off! What’s the difference between a designer gown and a mass produced copy? FIT & FLATTER. The bodices are constructed so differently, its insane. Instead of 2 seams in the bodice of a mass produced gown (the top of the gown that is shaped around your curves), you have 6- 12 in a designer gown. What does that mean? It means the construction of the gown can now curve with your curves. All of a sudden, gowns fit you correctly, they don’t pull, and you don’t have chicken-wings popping out from your pits over the neckline of the gown. Most women don’t like that feature of cheap gowns. Inexpensive gowns are often guilty of using the neckline to hold up a strapless gown - which gives you armpit spill/ aka chicken wings. A designer bodice is held up through the waist, and the fit is to die for. And cost on a designer gown? They start at only $899. Totally reasonable and totally worth it. If you care how you look, you should check out the designer version of your gown. Who wants Prado when you can have Prada? And if you get it in a sample sale, odds are it is cheaper than the knock off hanging at the big box store.

PAYMENT PLANS: One thing that draws people to the big box stores in masses is their financing programs. Well, did you know that you can get the same deal at the local boutique? We can arrange a payment plan if you need it.

SAVING MONEY & TIME: This is the main reason people flock to the discounters. They think they are saving money. Brides purchase a $99 wedding gown only to pay $424 in alteration fees (national average cost of alterations at chain bridal stores). If you really want to save money, shop when there is a sale. You can truly save money on your gown and get a gown that has the quality and construction that does not require spending almost $500 to make it wearable. Examine the total cost of your gown, including bustier, crinolines, and alterations. Gowns with cheaper construction cost more to alter and need all those foundational garments to keep you from looking like a frumpy mess. You’ll find that many designer gowns have the bustiers and crinolines built into the gowns. Remember to also factor in your cost of alterations. At Once Upon A Time Weddings we strive to keep our alterations costs down. So you might be able to find a similar gown at a box store, but the quality isn't going to be as good. Then you'll spend up to four times as much in alterations.

OTHER SAVINGS: Did you know that your local bridal shop has partnered with other local wedding vendors to give Once Upon A Time Weddings Brides special offers not available anywhere else? We've got some savings on photography, and other wedding day services, and you’ll be saving some serious dough.

9. SPACIOUS STORE: People are always shocked when they first walk into our store. Our selection is incredible, our sales staff approachable and the size and spaciousness of our store is unlike any of the area's stores. We have three stages, five fitting rooms, a VIP room, and tons of mirrors. We've got comfortable seating and we serve coffee and tea to you and your guests. We go above and beyond to make this an experience you'll never forget!
10. IT’S MORE FUN! Yeah, I said it. ;o) Once Upon A Time Weddings is a more fun place to shop. Have you been at one of those other places on a Saturday afternoon? Oh goodness. I hate shopping like that - getting bumped every 5 seconds, it’s so loud, people are everywhere, you can’t see anything, there is no place for your mom to sit, the high school girl helping you gave you a gown that is too small and now you have your arms plastered over your head while trying to pull the gown off…Now you have to open that door to the 100 people out there to get unstuck. Compare that to a private shopping appointment - even on sale days - where you have an entire bridal lounge to yourself and your friends, with a plush chair for mom, it’s quiet, no one’s bumping you, and you don’t have to beat another bride with a whistle to get your wedding gown.

                We hope you’ll come visit us soon.  Call 519.245.7997 today to make your specialized appointment.  We’re excited about helping you find your dream gown.  In fact, so many of our brides purchase on their first visit because they love the experience they have at Once Upon A Time Weddings.  Being decisive saves us time and we pass those savings onto you with a $100 off your wedding gown and a book of coupons exclusively for our first time buying brides.

We can’t wait to meet you and welcome you into our Once Upon A Time Weddings family. 


Erin Bouchard
Owner of Once Upon A Time Weddings

Friday, March 2, 2012

Bridal Shows

So, we find ourselves in the midst of bridal show season!   WE LOVE IT!  Meeting newly engaged couples head over heels in love, moms with excitement and anticipation in their eyes, what's not to love!

This past Friday night we were at Hiawatha Tracks in Sarnia for the True Fanatasies Bridal Show.  What a great show put on by Blackburn Radio Station.  We had brides in attendance from all over Southwestern Ontario.

Last Sunday we were at Divine Details Bridal Show at Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in London.  Four Points has just recently redone their foyer and it's so beautiul!  Check it out if you still need a venue in the London, ON area.  We participated in the fashion show and we wanted to share some photos from the event.  A huge thanks to Harding Photography for shooting the show for us.  A special thanks to Wright Hair & Co for doing our models hair and to Glam Squad for doing the makeup.
Enjoy the photos!

For more information on Once Upon A Time Weddings please check us out here or call the store at 519.245.7997.  Appointments are strongly suggested!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Once Upon A Time Weddings Bride...

Julia and Darryl tied the knot on October 8, 2011.  Julia first came into Once Upon A Time Weddings with her mom in December 2010.  She tried a few gowns on but when she put hers on, she instantly knew it was the one!  Her mom agreed that Julia looked beautiful!  Julia purchased the one shoulder strap to add to the gown.  A couple weeks before the wedding Julia decided she wanted to wear a veil to finish the bride look and we were able to find her one that matched the gown perfectly!  Julia we think you were an absolutely breathtaking bride!  Congratulations to you and Darryl!  We wish you many years of happiness and love.  Thank you for allowing Once Upon A Time Weddings to be part of your wedding day!

 Darryl and his groomsmen also rented their tuxedos through Bud Gowan at
Once Upon A Time Weddings.
What a great looking wedding party!
The happy bride & groom!

If you've recently been married or attended an event in Once Upon A Time Weddings wear, send us your photos to  We would love to see them and share them!

Check us out online at or call the store at 519.245.7997 for more information or to book an appointment to find YOUR gown.

Be beautiful!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Sneak Peek of Some More New Wedding Gowns..

Hey guys!  It's Erin here with some more beautiful, hot off the press wedding gowns.  These beauties arrived in the store yesterday!  We steamed them as fast as we could so that we could get them on mannequins and see their real beauty.  It's amazing how gowns look so different when you see them on then just hanging on a hanger!  Alright, alright, let's see some pictures...
This drop dead gorgeous gown features a sweetheart neckline with the most delicate details.  The beadwork on the bodice run in soft lines.  The organza material is so romantic and flowy.

I've paired it a hair clip that has two organza flowers and some crystal detailing.

Look at those hand sewn flower detailing.  Gah.. it's seriously so sophisticated.  It would look great in so many different venues! 
 Up next, a sexy fit and flare that will hug those hips and flatter that waistline!  This number features a flowered one shoulder with beautiful rouching.
The back of the gown features a corset back with beautiful detailing.  I love how the beadwork continues into the back.  Gorgeous. 

Here is a close up of that one shoulder.

As always check us out online at  If you're in the market for a wedding gown then give us a call at 519.245.7997 and we'd be more than happy to have you!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

New Arrivals!

So we've had a very busy couple of weeks here at the store!  We love bridal season!  But unfortunately we've fallen behind in our blogging.  So I wanted to take a few minutes to show you some of our newest beauties that we've got in the store!  Cuz who doesn't love new wedding gowns?!

So if you've been following us or have been to our store before you know we carry the unique.  The gowns that aren't in every bridal magazine and that every other store doesn't carry.  In fact many of our wedding gowns are sold exclusively at Once Upon A Time Weddings.  Two of the wedding gowns I'm about to post are such gowns, gowns that are only available at Once Upon A Time Weddings.

So are you ready to see them or what??  First up..
Why hello there beautiful! This stunning gown features a slight sweetheart neckline with soft layers.  It's made from organza material which gives it a romantic feel.  It has a ribbon and bow at the empire waist which is accented with a small swarovski crystal pin.  

I think this dress would be adorable with a colored belt.  I've thrown on a red one just for fun.  But you could do it in any color.  What a fun way to match your girls or wedding party.

okay, now for dress number two..

This mermaid lace is absolutely stunning.  It's form fitting silhoutte will flatter many body types.  It has a beautiful sweetheart neckline with a beaded bust.  The beautiful belt at the empire waist line is blush colored like the satin under the lace.  It can also be ordered solid ivory. 

This dress is all about the details.. the beautiful hand sewn beads, the delicate ruffles of the flower on the belt, and the beautiful lace edging on the train all combine to make this a showstopper!

And last, not but not least.. another ruffled gown with beautiful beadwork throughout the gown. 
 I love how the beadwork is continued into the back of the gown.  The detailing is immaculate, with the zipper and the little buttons down the back.
 The way this gown pulls gives you a beautiful hourglass waistline.  Talk about spectacular.
So if you're still in search of THE DRESS you need to get your little toosh down to Once Upon A Time Weddings to try some of our gorgeous gowns on.  You won't be disappointed!  Be sure to check us out online at

Here's what one of our recent brides said about her experience.  "Thank you so much Erin for all help today.  For the first time since I got engaged I am truly excited for my wedding!"

Be beautiful!

Erin Bouchard

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Prom Gowns.

So, if you've been following our facebook fan page, you know that some of our prom gowns have arrived this week.  This has caused the owner, Erin Bouchard to have a bit of prom envy, so I decided to take a minute to share my pick of the new gowns.  This is my absolute favourite gown and if I had somewhere to wear this to, it would be mine :)  It's such a stunning gown.

Wouldn't you be so elegant showing up to your prom in this little stunner.  Here's a close up of the intricate beadwork at the waist.  Those beauties are all hand sewn on.

Okay, the very best part of this gown is.... drum roll please... it has this wicked adorable print on the inside of the gown.  Classy and elegant, but also fun and playful!

And of course, this beauty and so many more will be included in our PROM PHENOMENON event in 8 days.  Gah.. 8 more sleeps until all these these gorgeous gowns make their way down the runway.

Read all about this event here.

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