Samantha Hallaran, Rituals of Love Bridal, Vancouver
Samantha Hallaran’s business offers a bridal experience beyond the ordinary! Her sense of fashion and style inspired her to start Rituals of Love Bridal in Vancouver. she found her market niche after working with brides, as she felt that there was a strong need to improve experience and style to women who wanted to move away from the general bridal aesthetic and towards a timeless look tailored to them.
Rituals of Love Bridal is an intimate appointment only boutique offering wedding dresses, accessories, jewelry and lingerie for the modern west coast bride to be. According to Samantha, “We focus on the memory, the experience and of course the dress. It’s all about enjoying the journey to your sacred ceremony, choosing a gown should be treated as a Ritual.”
Q. What services has Women’s Enterprise Centre provided you and how have these services helped you?
A. Women’s Enterprise centre has been incredibly helpful. The business loan helped us get started. I have also participated in the WEC webinars to improve my business skills. They are a great source of support to us.
Q. What inspired you to take the leap and start your own business?
A. While working with brides, I knew there was something missing within bridal wear. I strongly feel that every bride should wear a gown they are beyond excited about, something that is a reflection of their own personality. I started this business to celebrate women and provide them with luxurious bridal wear that represents their style.
Q. What’s the biggest lesson you learned when starting your business?
A. To be prepared for the unexpected! Be prepared to work everyday and when you sleep expect to be dreaming about your business. It’s hard work but incredibly rewarding.
Q. What are your goals for the business?
A. Currently, we are focusing on our bridal collection and the experience. Moving forward, we would really like to start hosting workshops with local florists, artists, musicians and DJ’s. Vancouver is all about the community and a big part of running a small business is supporting like-minded individuals. We want to support and collaborate with other small, creative local businesses.
Q. What is your greatest strength as an entrepreneur?
A. As an entrepreneur, I know my strengths and weaknesses. So, I don’t try and do it all. I know what I excel at and I hire people to help do the things I am not great at such as Book-keeping and accounting. Though this may be financially tough for a new business, it is essential to hire professionals.
Q. What personal lessons have you learned as an entrepreneur?
A. I wear my heart on my sleeve and trust the world. It is important to look out for yourself. My advice to other entrepreneurs is to make sure you have everything in writing. I have also become incredibly detail oriented. I have learned to let things go. I have realised that any business is constantly evolving - it will never be perfect. So, it is important to keep on moving upwards and onwards.
Q. What were your major successes? At what point did you know you had achieved success?
A. When we secured the lease to our beautiful space, everything felt real and truly incredible. It was a great feeling when the Vancouver Sun wrote a half page article on us. Our customers’ excellent responses/reviews inspire us to grow.