When I think about J.Crew, it's with that fuzzy, fondly warm feeling usually deployed by my psyche when recalling kind deeds and thoughtful gestures. This is because J.Crew Weddings has saved me, and a number of people I know, from sheer wedding hell. And I adore them for it.
The new J.Crew Bridal Salon in NY!

They design ATTRACTIVE bridesmaids dresses at reasonable prices. Like discovering life on other planets, or the secrets of string theory, this was an insurmountable task until J.Crew decided to do bridal. For decades, hapless brides and their victimized friends have been wondering, why oh WHY! mid-price clients' only options for the supporting cast have zero style. I'll tell you why:  THE BRIDAL MAFIA. This is a secret cartel of industry experts who regulate designers, penalizing anyone who uses insufficient amounts of peach chiffon or polyester. Those that stray are liable to wake up one morning and find a smashed red velvet groom's cake in bed beside them. It took all the corporate power of J.Crew, and the mighty strength of secret superhero Jenna Lyons (clad in a ruffle tee and sparkly cape!) to defeat TBM's evil tyranny. At least that's what I'm guessing.
Interior of the new J.Crew bridal salon.

J.Crew's designs alerted OTHER bridal fashion designers, anesthetized to style, to see what true fashion freedom looks like. And just like Jean Valjean, experiencing the fresh, free air after years of wrongful imprisonment, these designers aren't likely to go back. From Ann Taylor to Chadwicks, numerous stores are styling themselves after J.Crew, adding current trends and a variety of looks for different body types to their racks. 

They make real fabrics affordable! J.Crew's prices for bridal gowns - BRIDAL GOWNS! - range from $275 to $3,500, with many dresses falling into the lower end of the price range. Anyone who has dared to breathe the rarified air inside a bridal salon in the last decade knows this is an insane deal. For polyester. Yet most of the J.Crew gowns are 100% silk, and their tulle and lace is sourced from lace weaver Sophie Halette, based in France.

Perhaps this revolutionary "decent quality for a decent cost" concept will spread into other segments of the wedding industry, such as flowers, veils, and catering. I remember when one of my friends was getting married, she slyly called potential caterers twice:  once to pretend to book a non-wedding formal reception, and once to book a wedding reception. She gave them the same exact details, numbers, and menu for both, and then compared the results. The wedding booking was always quoted for a higher price! It's a racket, a monopoly, and - LOOK OUT! It's The Bridal Mafia!!!!!

So I'll be inside with my doors locked for the rest of the week. And, I'll also be hoping that more companies will join J.Crew in making the bridal industry a better place. Parting plea:  Kate Spade, could you please hop on this bandwagon too? Bridesmaids everywhere would love and adore you!
Until all our dreams come true:  a few brides and maids possibilities from Kate Spade's standard stock. Who doesn't want to be a Kate Spade bridesmaid?!!!
Images:  Racked blog (J.Crew store), Ann Taylor, Chadwicks, J.Crew, Fanpop, Kate Spade. 


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