Colette Andari’s passion for the pearly reflection of a white wispy bridal gown echoes in the wedding wear collection available at her recently launched boutique, Simply White.
Colette, who hails from Lebanon, reveals her unwavering interest in all things chic. “ I am not a fashion designer. I have done a course in audio-visual communication from St Joseph University, Lebanon. I used to work with a popular TV channel in Lebanon before joining this 25 year old family business. Knowing a lot of stars, models and fashion designers exposed me a great deal to fashion and glamour,” she says.
“I think the wedding day is very special for a woman since she gets all the attention and is the star for that day. I aspire to turn her day into a magical moment,” says Colette who also plays the important role of a bridal consultant at her stores.
With over 15 boutiques, ten in Lebanon and five in Brazil, Simply White has entered the GCC market with Muscat.
Located on Sarooj Street, Shatti al Qurum, the store offers a wide range of wedding gowns to choose from, including more than 20 international brands like Vera Wang, Christian Lacroix and Carolina Herrera.
The store also offers customised gowns. “Simple designs, extremely fine fabric and flattering cuts are aspects that we lay great emphasis on. The idea is to make elegant and classy gowns within a person’s budget. Modifications in sleeves, length, embellishments or other such aspects can be done based on customer preferences,” says Colette.
At present, the store has more than 100 gowns to choose from and Colette is set to travel to Italy, Spain, France and Lebanon to gather the 2012 collection for her stores.
Colette is delighted with the response in Oman for wedding dresses. “Oman truly has a huge market. In Muscat, I have observed that brides prefer elegant and light gowns that not only look beautiful but also allow them to be at ease. However, in the Salalah region, they like ruffles and frills and are fond of the ball-gown style.”
No matter what the brides choose to wear, Colette likes to advise them to balance it with jewellery and accessories.
With rare stones and Swarovski crystals set in hand-made contemporary designs of rings, earrings, tiaras and bracelets, she also offers jewellery to go with minimalist as well as ornate gowns.
“ I hope to ease the tension of young brides who often have to travel to different places to look for a perfect gown and even, jewellery to go with it. The price of the gowns available at the store starts at RO700 and goes up to RO15,000,” she says.
Telling brides to not get disheartened with their limited budget, she suggests, “Within this price range ‘gorgeousness’ of a dress remains common. Some of the gowns can even be rented since their maintenance is very difficult. In this climate, the colour pales sooner than in other climates and many find it difficult to handle such a piece.”