INTERVIEW // Christie from Christie Nicole Bridal
Name: Christie Nicole Trowbridge
Location: Sydney, Australia
Current Title / Company: Owner at Christie Nicole Bridal
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB OUT OF UNIVERSITY & HOW DID YOU LAND THAT POSITION?
When I turned 21 I finished my degree of a Bachelor of Design. I then moved to New Zealand and did a 3 month internship with Karen Walker. That then turned into a permanent position as Distribution Assistant & assisting their buying team. It sounds amazing but it was not what I thought it would be, so I left after a few months to come back home. I then started my handmade lingerie label in 2013 called Christie Nicole.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO CREATE YOUR BUSINESS?
From the start.. I always knew I wanted to be my own boss, and after graduating college I then put my mind to it. I started my handmade lingerie brand called Christie Nicole in 2013, hand making bralettes. It all started out of my grandmas granny flat, I started experimenting & putting my lingerie designs out there & I got such a massive response it was crazy. I still hand-make them to this day!
Not long ago towards the end of 2016 I had one lovely bride named Kym approach me and ask me if I would make her wedding dress, reception dress & veil. We knew each other through friends of friends. This totally took me by shock & I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go down the bridal path. I was living with my grandma at the time and had her help, grandma said ‘what have you got to lose, you might as well give it a go.’ Kym from the start had so much trust in me to create something magical for her & the end results were magical. I absolutely loved the process, I was able to finally show the world properly my creative side. I then shared Kym’s wedding images, set up my website & Christie Nicole Bridal was born.
TAKE US THROUGH A DAY IN THE LIFE OF YOUR BUSINESS?
I get to work around 8am every day, sometimes earlier if I can (I’m a morning person). Coffee. I get stuck straight into work, at the moment I am currently making everything myself from scratch, designing, pattern making, sampling, making of the actual pieces etc. I now have a lovely intern who helps me every Wednesday & any extra days she can come in and help, my grandma also comes in some odd days & helps me also. Throughout the day I am just full steam ahead getting everything I can done. 3 afternoons a week I also nanny for extra cash on the side. On my way home I then catch up on any emails, booking in fittings, talking to my brides etc. At the moment I don’t really finish work until about 9pm.
HAS ANYTHING SURPRISED YOU ABOUT THE JOURNEY TO CREATING YOUR BUSINESS?
Definitely! I knew it takes a long time to sometimes even get anywhere when owning your own business but since doing Bridal I feel like I have accomplished so much with in 2 years already, I’m seeing my dreams come true already. I feel so lucky to have fallen into this industry & be able to express my creativity.
YOUR BUSINESS HAS DEVELOPED QUITE A FOLLOWING. CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BUT ABOUT MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS? HOW DID YOU SPREAD THE WORD?
I do all the marketing myself at the moment through Instagram & Facebook. Amazingly pretty much a lot of my brides are word of mouth which makes me so happy!
WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE KEY TO THE SUCCESS OF THE BUSINESS?
Hard work, long hours & dedication! This is my life & what I am so passionate about, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST MILESTONE FOR YOU, AND YOUR BRAND?
Nearly a year ago I got my first little office space in Newtown, I feel so proud I have accomplished this. I have been working in my bedroom & grandmas dining room. This had been a big dream of mine.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE BRIDAL TREND AT THE MOMENT?
I couldn’t say, I don’t really follow the bridal trends.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR CURRENT BRIDAL COLLECTION
I don’t have a collection at the moment, all my pieces are custom made, one-of-a-kind for each individual bride. BUT… I have just started working on my first ever bridal collection. It will be released sometime next year. I’ve just started sourcing fabrics.
Best advice you ever received? Follow your dreams & never give up!
I wish I knew how to ….. Be a criminal phycologist..
What is your coffee order? Large Almond latte (sometimes with a splash of honey)
TV show do you wish was still on the air? Sex & The City, The Nanny
Next travel destination? My partner & I have discussed maybe going to Turkey for a friends 30th next year, but it will depend on my schedule and when I can squeeze something in. Next year is going to be my biggest year yet sitting at 16 custom made gowns.. (send help)
What advice would you give your 23 year old self? I was partying a lot when I was 23 and crying over boys. Grow up work hard, your dreams will slowly start to come true.