NEW YORK (AP) – Designer Andrea Peter’s boutique, Pantora Bridal, has tripled in size since it opened in Brooklyn seven years ago as a safe haven for black women who have been neglected by the bridal industry. His works feature a grid that complements different skin tones and contours that cover all body types. She starred in Vogue Paris, Brides և Essence, and is now being designed by Kleinfeld, the world’s largest luxury wedding retailer.
This year, she joined the Global Wedding Planning Company as a mentor for a new program for minority wedding professionals. The Knot has also created filters on its website that allow vendors to identify themselves as minority, women-owned, and LGBT-owned veterans.
But Peter, a graduate of the Fashion Technology Institute, remembers the difficult, often lonely, beginning of his career. At first he stopped attending trade shows, turning to other retailers, finding that he, as a designer, had resistance. The lack of diversity in the wedding industry came to the fore two years ago when The Knot այլ other wedding planning sites changed their policy of promoting their slave plantations as a site in response to a Color Change advocacy campaign. The wedding industry is now hit hard by the coronavirus epidemic.
This interview was edited for length and simplicity.
H. Can you tell us about the inspiration for your brand?
Answer. These women are usually always underrepresented, I wanted to make sure they were seen and recognized. We came from brides to our store where they have been to other places, և people say the dress can’t fit them, or maybe you should wear an A-line because you do not want to show your hips or your thighs are too big. And we are like that. “It’s too big. There is not too much for a wedding dress if you have shown your booty. ”
H. What kind of perceptions about couples do you see in the media մեջ in the wedding industry?
Answer: In time, the LMs will imagine it as if black men are not in the house և it’s just not true. I know this because I grew up in a house with this man. Indeed, it is possible for people to understand that love really matters. Women are actually getting married. That’s why I built my business.
Question. What were some of the challenges you faced at the beginning of your career?
Answer. I went to the bridal market twice (trade show) – in both cases I would be the “only” or one of the few. Many of the tips I was given were that I should put up a white sales representative in your booth or you would not be there. She felt very lonely. I felt excluded in many ways. Of course, I was a little green in the industry, but there were times when people found out that I was the designer, that they were no longer interested in the brand.
Q: What is your new role in Node?
– They welcomed me with open arms, took me as they were or. They took my opinion on everything that needs to change. I’m going to mentor their scholarship program. And they put me in a position where I can tell my story so that others can relate to what it’s like to fight, to stay in this industry, to succeed.
Question. Would initiatives like The Knot’s Diversity Filters help you get started?
A. Since my brand is really supported և I would say it was popular with black women, I think it would definitely be useful because when I was just starting out, women were looking for me but just didn’t know where or how. find me The tips will be really useful for people who are now really deliberate about how they spend their dollars.
H. How do you see the future of businesses, professionals, and families when the epidemic hit them so hard?
– I think that a lot of attention is being paid to inclusion now, և we should use it. One thing I can always do is rely on black people. I am very optimistic about how we survive, have always existed.
Question. How has the epidemic affected your own business?
Answer. I had to redesign our latest collection. Usually I put 60 to 75 dresses in one collection. I had to tighten the number of dresses և decide that we would be releasing every two months to understand where the trend was. They no longer have weddings attended by these 100 to 150 people. They are now having weddings in the park with maybe 20 or 30 people. We had to introduce some styles that were a little softer.