Fashion Dresses Online

Tech skills help dress up formal hire service

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A PASSION for fashion and innovation set Pakinee Banchuin on the path to offering Thailand’s first online dress rental service.

formalThe venture, Formal Affair, also allowed Pakinee to apply her business skills and knowledge in an entrepreneurial setting.

“We first started Formal Affair to address a pain point that we could relate to – for a working professional in her 20s or 30s who finds herself wanting to look beautiful and confident on every special occasion but is not always willing to spare the time, budget or closet space to buy new dresses or have them tailored,” she said. “We believed there was a supply gap in the special occasion rental market. We struggled to find a shop that offers a combination of high-quality and flattering dresses, convenient service and a mid-range price point between Bt2,000 and Bt5,000.”

Alongside the online store, which Pakinee opened several years ago, she has a shop in the heart of Bangkok in Chidlom Road, behind Central Chidlom. Customers can avail themselves of the bridal gowns or evening dresses via either channel.

The online shop enables customers to browse through a selection of gowns and dresses, and then view them in detail, including with a zoom function. They can check the availability of an item and proceed to book and pay online. Automated responses are sent to the customer at key stages of the process.

She said the business not only used technology to provide the online channel but also applied it to harness data analytics. This helps the company to better learn the preferences of customers, in terms of size, colour, style preference, timing and price sensitivity. The statistics that are generated help guide decisions on sourcing, pricing, inventory management and logistics.

“This ultimately allows the business to serve customers better. For example, sometimes the shop may pay more to expedite the dry cleaning so that it can turn around a sought-after dress faster,” Pakinee said. “All of our dresses are high quality as we source from leading international and local brands. Most of our dresses are from the US and UK, thus giving our customers a fresh alternative to what is available locally. With more than 250 dresses and counting, we cater to ladies of various sizes, styles and budget. We ensure our customers get the best value for their money, when considering the combination of quality, branding, fit and price.”

Pakinee said integration of the online and offline platforms allowed customers to touch, feel and try on the items. Delivery is available for anywhere in Thailand, and a home try-on service is also offered.

“We believe this is the right time for our business model to take off, driven by our keeping up with the trends that now see Thais increasingly more familiar with the concept of sharing and the use of social media among consumers,” Pakinee said. “We believe these trends will help Thai customers to be more and more familiar with a seamless, do-it-yourself buying and returning e-commerce experience.”

The shop counts more than 500 customers, with repeat customers accounting for 30 per cent of them.

Pakinee said that, over the next year or two, the shop will deepen its business focus on customers in Bangkok as it believes the urban market has significant room for growth. It aims to become a one-stop shop for special occasion dress rental, catering to event goers, wedding guests, bridesmaids and mothers of the brides.

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3 Ways To Find Cheap Wedding Dresses

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Many brides would think that if they buy an inexpensive dress for their wedding, then they are opting for a low quality and non-branded piece of clothing for the most important day of their lives. This isn’t however true. Just because a dress comes cheap doesn’t necessarily imply that it has to look second grade. Today in fact there are many brides, who are opting for discount dresses.

A-Line V-neck Sweep/Brush Train Beading Tulle Wedding Dresses

Every woman dreams of an ideal wedding and would love to splurge and buy a luxurious and pricey wedding dress for the special day; however, most women don’t have a huge wedding budget. All the more, spending thousands of dollars on just one dress, that too for one day, does not seem logical for a lot of us, so buying dresses is an intelligent and the safest option in such cases. Buying inexpensive gowns is a perfect option for all those brides that wish to keep the wedding cost down to an achievable amount.

Now let’s see a few stores where we can buy some lovely yet cheap wedding dresses:

Rentals – There are dresses rental stores out there that will allow you to rent these dresses for inexpensive prices. Although most of the gowns here are used wedding gowns, but that does not mean that it’s below your dignity to buy and wear them. Most of the dresses here are in a perfect condition. Nonetheless, this is a cheap and right way of buying a wedding gown only if you don’t wish to treasure and keep your dress forever, after your wedding.

Outlet Shops – You’ll find many outlet shops selling wedding gowns and dresses from the previous year’s collection that has been exhibited for selling at reduced prices. As and when the new wedding dresses arrive at a shop, the dresses which are leftover are then moved on to these outlet stores.

An outlet store is where you can fetch a wedding dress priced at as high as $1,000 for almost half the original price. Only because these dresses are from last year’s fashion trend, doesn’t necessarily make them less fashionable. It only means that the shop needs more room for the latest wedding dresses and so are offering affordable dresses to people.

Thrift Shops – If you don’t have a deluxe budget for a grand wedding, then don’t let disappointment take the toll on you, as thrift shops are excellent to buy beautiful wedding gowns. Many people in today’s times don’t wish to preserve their special wedding gowns for future memories so they donate these to the thrift shops for other people to buy.

These are nearly as lovely to look at as the other wedding dresses that you would otherwise buy from a regular branded store. Moreover, wedding dresses are meant to be worn only once, so they don’t get dirty or ruined in any way, hence are almost new when you shop for these from a thrift shop.

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