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While shopping for a wedding dress with a friend, Molly Kang realized that the typical bridal salon experience kind of sucks. “I had this romantic vision of what it's like to actually say yes to the dress,” she says. “But you go to bridal stores and realize that's not really reality for most women.”
A few years later, she founded Floravere, a new direct-to-consumer bridal brand that will send you up to three dress samples by mail. The idea is that you can try them on in the privacy of your own home and avoid all the pretension of high-end bridal salons. Each “bride box” comes with a measuring tape and dress clips, plus favors like champagne gummy bears if you want to make a thing out of it with your friends or bridal party.
“Overall, I didn't love the styles that were offered at local stores,” explains Kang. “As I did the bridal shopping experience with friends and soon-to-be brides, I found over and over that the styles you see on Pinterest were not at all reflective of the styles that are available at the local boutiques outside of Manhattan or Los Angeles.”
Like most direct-to-consumer brands, the selection of products is tight and pared down. There are eleven different styles of dresses available. Each of the dresses in the first collection are named after famous fictional women like Holly Golightly, Annie Hall, and even Rory Gilmore; the dresses in the second are named after celebrities like Emma Stone, Kerry Washington, and Michelle Williams.
Right now, there are only two sample size options: size 6 and size 12 However, Floravere can make custom dresses up to a size 24 (expanded sample options is on Kang’s wish list). Gowns will arrive between ten and 15 weeks after they’re purchased; to compare, turnaround time for a regular custom gown could take a minimum of six months and require several in-person appointments.
“I couldn't help but notice over the years that bridal was not really having any innovations in e-commerce,” Kang says. “Was there a way where we could offer an alternative experience for the modern woman who’s very comfortable online and loves digital experiences? Could we also offer her incredible value by sourcing and making the exact same type of dresses that designers will often charge two to three times more than we do?”
The answer, it seems, is yes. Though it just launched officially this month, Floravere has big plans for modernizing the bridal industry. In addition to a wider selection of sample sizes, Kang hopes to add an online database of vetted seamstresses across the country to the brand’s services — just one more thing to make it all a bit easier.