Hi I’m Heather, welcome to Alice Elizabeth!
My wedding dress obsession started at a very young age. Both my Grandmother and Mother were dressmakers and taught me to sew so young that I can’t actually remember, it’s like I was born being able to sew! I watched them create the most beautiful dresses from a piece of fabric and after making my first designs, for my Sindy dolls, I moved on to making outfits for myself as a teenager to go out in so that I always had something new and different to everyone else.
In 1982, aged 15, my Aunt took me to London to see Princess Diana’s wedding dress and that was a defining moment in my life. I can still remember staring into the glass cabinet at this amazing creation and thinking it was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. Love it, as I did, or hate it, nobody can deny that her dress was different and that’s what I loved about it. It wasn’t safe or boring, it stood out and made a statement which is what I look for when choosing the gowns for the boutique or when I design a bespoke gown.
From then I have designed, made and altered countless wedding dresses and these years of experience have given me so much joy. Being involved in the most wonderful time of a girl’s life is an honour I am so grateful for.
My beautiful boutique is my pride and joy, and having three sons and then a Daughter I named it after her and my own Alice Elizabeth is now our Saturday Girl. We pride ourselves on our amazing customer service which lasts way beyond your wedding day, we make lifelong friends who come back to show us there photographs, have their dresses cleaned and boxed and we often make heirloom christening gowns from their dresses too!
The Boutique is situated in Coxhoe, a busy little village on the outskirts of Durham City. There are lovely little shops, cafe’s and restaurants as well as free parking and we’re just a couple of miles off the A1 so really easy to get to.
An appointment with us starts with a warm welcome from your own Bridal Stylist, there really is no need to be nervous! You’ll have your own private dressing suite so nobody, other than your guests (and us) can see you in a wedding dress.
We’ll have a chat about your wedding and your ideas for your dream dress and then we’ll choose dresses from our beautiful collection for you to try. Your appointment lasts two hours and there’ll be refreshments and our much talked about cupcakes! Expect excitement, fun, laughter and (happy) tears whilst you try on stunning dresses to find “The One”.
Of course this place is not just about me, it wouldn’t be what it is today without my amazing team of girls…..
My right hand woman, she’s the organised one! Anne Marie will book your appointment, order your dress, organise your fitting appointments and make sure you know exactly what’s happening every step of the way. You and your dress are in very safe hands.
Mandy is our Bridal Seamstress, along with me! She will make sure your dress fits perfectly. We pride ourselves on our fittings and alteration process, your dress will be altered to flatter your own body shape. We’re especially good at shaping dresses to show off your bum!
Fiona recently joined us as our new Bridal Stylist. Her fifteen years experience of selling high end jewellery makes her perfect for working in luxury bridal and she’s settled in just fine, selling her first dress on her first day! Fiona was an Alice Elizabeth Bride herself and liked us so much that she talked me into giving her a job!
Our lovely Bridal Stylist Lauren is from South Africa and came to the UK with a degree in fashion. She loves our statement dresses with fashion forward elements and is usually the first to try them on, she also comes in really handy as a model too! Lauren, Emmie and myself are designing an exclusive collection for Alice Elizabeth so watch this space!
Emmie is our Saturday Stylist and if you follow us on Facebook or Instagram then you’ll recognise her from lots of photographs! She’s studying Costume Design at Uni and we’re going to lose her this summer as her course ends and she returns home to Sheffield. I will be very sad to see her go, she’s an amazing designer and I know her name is going to be well known in the world of Bridal Design over the next few years.
My mini me! Alice could use a sewing machine confidently by the age of 6 and I’m pretty sure she’s going to end up in the world of design in some shape or form, but for now you’ll find her helping us out on Saturdays and during school holidays ( if I’ve managed to drag her out of bed…….she is only 14 after all!)