Oh my. Where do I start? I am amazed at the variety of different work situations that BAS (Bridal Alterations Specialists) have available to them. For this Mindset Monday I want to introduce you to the most common career for bridal seamstress.
This is the most obvious work situation, and one that most people think of when they ponder a career in bridal alterations. This is called an “in-house” seamstress. Some of the larger bridal shops have large rooms full of sewing machines, irons and steamers. Smaller shops may have an area in the back room for alterations to be done.
Most BAS who work in this environment have their fittings scheduled by the store and the store determines the prices charged for alterations. The store also handles the money and the associated credit card fees. Some of these BAS are paid on an hourly basis, some get to set their own hours and fees and give a flat percentage to the store. Twenty five percent is a reasonable percentage of the fee to give the shop.
This work situation is ideal if you don’t have the equipment or a studio at home. Maybe you have roommates or small children or pets and you worry about damage to the wedding dresses. Or perhaps you like your privacy and don’t want anyone in your home. And let’s not forget how cool it is to be surrounded by wedding dresses. Being in the back room as they opened boxes was one of my favorite parts of working in a shop. It was like Christmas every time the UPS man came in. One of my sweet students was sponsored by the bridal shop that she worked at as a salesperson. She did the alterations on site as I trained her. She loved it and the shop loved her.
We need to train new BAS. One of the skills I teach at the academy is how to have a professional and respectful relationship with the management in bridal shops. Another important part of my academy training is teaching students how to treat the brides with a professional and pleasant attitude. They learn how to be calm, confident, kind and how to not let brides or MOB get them frustrated. Mentoring is an important part of the training for this very reason. My students can email or text for help anytime they have questions or frustrations on a dress that is in a bridal shop needing alterations. There are many reasons why working in a bridal shop is a good fit for a BAS.