Friday, 26 April 2013

Simply Bows and Chair Covers in The Sunday Times!

On Sunday 21st April Simply Bows and Chair Covers MD Sarah Pittendrigh featured in the Sunday Times talking of her fascinating tale of triumph of setting up what is now the multi award winning Simply Bows and Chair Covers.

Read more here.... Sunday Times

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Simply Bows and Chair Covers Real Life Bride Emma shares her story!

Today we bring you our interview with Emma and Laurie who married in January...

 Where and when did you get engaged?

Well, we just kind of talked about it and decided to get married. Romance is missing in this aspect I’m afraid.

What was your wedding date?

25th January 2013

Where did you get married?

Farnham House Hotel

Why did you choose your venue?

I wanted the ceremony and the reception under one roof and it needed to be quite near my mother and father as they are elderly. I liked the Farnham House Hotel because it is small and would feel a bit more personal.

Did you have a “theme”?

I decided on deep red roses and diamant√©’s 

What was your wedding colour scheme?

Red, Black, White and Silver

Why did you choose Simply Bows and Chair Covers and what were they like to work with?

I choose Simply Bows and Chair Covers because I didn’t want to go with the traditional wedding style decorations. I wanted something very different. I saw the website and it looked like they may be able to help. I met Michaela and she was so professional, really knew her product, but very friendly and pleasant at the same time. I knew I would be able to work with her. 
For me, the person is as important as the product. Michaela listened to what I wanted and sent me a quotation very quickly. I loved the product, it was exactly what I wanted and so accepted immediately. Michaela met me at my venue a few times and spotted things I did not. She has an excellent trained eye. This however, led me to keep adding to the list of things I needed from her which she kindly (and very inexpensively) added to her list of things to do. 
She went way over and above what she needed to by bringing ivy from her garden and adding it to my decorations. The morning of the wedding, I was in a bit of a panic because my bridesmaids dress had some horrible, very noticeable, creases in it. Michaela was truly amazing and got her travel ironing board out and pressed it for me there and then. I can never thank her enough for all her support and help. Simply Bows and Chair Covers are very reasonably priced as well.

What sort of dress did you choose and where from?

I picked an Enzoani Dakota in black

What did your bridesmaids wear?

I had one bridesmaid, my daughter Mollie. She wore a white long satin and chiffon dress that I actually got from China through Ebay!

 Who was your photographer?

Steven Etheridge was our photographer and was great!

What “special touches” did you add to your day?

My chair covers provided by Simply Bows and Chair Covers were white with a black overlay and were truly stunning. The table cloths were white, with a black table runner to match the chair covers. I added 2ft high conical vases to the centre of my tables, filled with LED lights and clear water beads. These were then topped with a huge ball of deep red roses. From the top of the red roses came silver twisted willow with crystals hanging from them.

What was your favourite part of the day?

Saying my vows. I was amazed at how emotional I was. I usually very level headed, but I cried, shocked myself and everyone else.

Where did you go on honeymoon?

We spend 5 days in York and Lincoln. We have our ‘proper’ honeymoon planned next year to Malaysia and Singapore.

What would be your top tip for another bride to be?

When you are looking at venues, remember that you can transform it into almost anything with the right chair covers and decorations. Also, after months of planning, your day will fly by. Take 5 minutes with your new husband to just stop, look and take it all in.

Monday, 15 April 2013

You and Your Wedding Magazine reveal wedding trends....

A bridal survey by You & Your Wedding magazine has found that despite the downturn in the UK economy the average spend on weddings has increased by over 8.5% since 2008.
The You & Your Wedding 21st Century Bride survey was completed by over 2,300 brides to-be in September and October 2012 to examine wedding trends across the UK. The survey revealed the average cost of a wedding has increased from 20,207 in 2008 (the start of the financial crisis) to 21,939 in 2012. However, the 2012 figure is down from a high of 22,550 and 108 guests in 2011. Over the same period the average number of guests invited to weddings has fallen almost 10%, from 104 in 2008 to 94 is 2012; with the average spend per guest rising to 233, up from 194 in 2008.
The You & Your Wedding survey shows that a majority of couples still turn to their parents to help fund their big day; with 53% accepting financial help from their parents, whilst 31% of couples fund their weddings themselves. The biggest wedding expense is food and drink, accounting for 21% of the total budget, followed by 16% on the honeymoon, and 14% on engagement and wedding rings.

The length of engagements has also fallen from 21 months in 2008 to just 17 months in 2012, with 14 months spent planning for the big day.
When it comes to planning the wedding the onus clearly falls upon the bride: 61% of respondents said they were planning the big day on their own, with only 31% of couples planning together. Ahead of the wedding itself, getting in shape is a priority with 43% of couples intending to lose weight ahead of the wedding. 37% of the brides said they would have their teeth whitened for their wedding, 9% would have laser hair removal and 5% would have botox.
Church weddings remain the most popular venue for the ceremony itself (35%), with almost a third (29%) of receptions held in hotels. 15% of couples plan to marry overseas, with Italy, the Caribbean and Cyprus being the most popular destinations. Conversely only 7% of respondents were planning a honeymoon in the UK, whilst 8% were not having a honeymoon at all.
Summer is still the most popular time of the year to get married accounting for 37% of , with August, 15%, and September, 14%, being the most popular months to tie the knot; whilst January and February each attract just 2% of couples.

You & You Wedding editor Maxine Briggs says: Couples still want their big day despite the tough economic climate. Its a great occasion that people are still willing to save and invest in to ensure they and their guests have a day to remember. Personalisation is the key trend now, wanting something a little bit different. The You & Your Wedding survey illustrates just how diverse 21st Century weddings are becoming and how vibrant the wedding industry is in the UK.
This is why Simply Bows and Chair Covers are having yet another record year and are growing rapidly across the UK! We offer brides something a little different to ensure their wedding is unique and different from their friends'. What better a time to join our exciting team? For more info please visit our website franchise opportunity page.

*Statistical information above has been taken from You and Your Wedding press release for accuracy dated 28/03/13

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Simply an amazing opportunity to run your own business!

RBS Group recently revealed the following statistics:
    • Women who own their own businesses are more satisfied than those who don't
    • Female bosses report improved work-life balance and greater confidence
    • 31% of women in the North East want to run their own business
RBS research shows that women who run their own businesses are happier, more satisfied and enjoy a better work-life balance than those who work for someone else. The survey of 300 UK-based female entrepreneurs compared the experiences of female business owners across a range of sectors - investigating how running their own business had impacted on confidence, work-life balance and job satisfaction.
For example, women who own their own business s claim that their job satisfaction levels had increased from 55% to 75% after they started their company. Similarly, women reported that their confidence went from an average of 64% to 73%; while their work-life balance improved from 60% to 70%.

The research also found that women who hope to start up their own businesses are the most dissatisfied in their current jobs, while those who own their own businesses are the most satisfied. It is no surprise therefore that so many women want to set up their own company.
This indeed is no mean feat but Simply Bows and Chair Covers provide a fantastic franchise opportunity that offers all of the benefits of owning your own business but with a safety net of support, training, sharing of expertise and knowledge and an already established reputation and contact network that allows your business to see rapid growth from launch.
The franchise offers all of the initial training and support that you need to help get your business off the ground. The first twelve months of any business is crucial, and our comprehensive franchise support service includes:
  • Use of the unique Simply Bows & Chair Covers brand
  • Pre opening support to establish the business
  • Assistance with the production of a business plan and raising finance, if it is required
  • An in depth induction training programme
  • Comprehensive local launch strategy, including marketing and promotional activities
  • Ongoing advice and support, with access to our in depth knowledge and experience
  • Stock
  • Marketing Collateral
  • A business operating manual (containing details of our operating systems, marketing, administration, etc)
  • Initial stationery pack
  • Uniform
  • Point of Sale
Franchising is now a well established industry with a successful track record, and you’re possibly already aware of some of the general potential benefits franchising offers, such as funding arrangements with most of the high street banks, operating your own business but with the ongoing support from the franchisor. As the franchise network grows additional benefits will include greater brand awareness which in turn generates more demand for your service. You’re in business for yourself but not by yourself.

It's win win!