Sewly Yours Bridal was a fixture on Church Street in downtown Burlington for over 20 years, delighting and enchanting brides (and every little girl that walked by the windows) with their exquisite selection of vintage and modern-day gowns and accessories. This past year owner, Debbie Wells, decided to close up the shop on Church Street and open a more intimate studio on her property in Milton. Tucked away among her colorful gardens, Debbie's new space gives her the peace and creative flow she yearned for during the many years on a bustling downtown marketplace. We spoke with Debbie about the transition, what it has meant for her business, and what the new studio space is like.
How long has Sewly Yours been in business? I helped my first bride 34 years ago - in 1981. Officially became "Sewly Yours" in 1992
What is the story of how you became a seamstress and bridal gown boutique owner? I grew up a "Navy-brat" and moved very often growing up. When we were close enough to visit Vermont, spend my school vacations visiting my grandmother and great-grandmother here. I was obsessed with their crafting and sewing, and they were endlessly patient with me. I made all my own clothes through school and very early started sewing for friends. A very dear, and still a best friend, refused to "let" me continue sewing for free and insisted on paying me! Through shopping in a local fabric store, became well acquainted with the owners and staff, and started making display dresses for the store and gained referrals for work, including local bridal salons that need seamstresses for alterations. In the early 90's opened my first retail boutique, featuring my own designs, restored vintage gowns from my collection and a small selection of designer gowns. In 2001 had the opportunity to move downstairs into my former location on the corner of Church and Pearl Street.
Robby and Stephanie dreamed of a rustic style wedding full of sentiment and designed to pull the heartstrings. They met in Kindergarten and both have a special place in their heart for animals, especially since Stephanie's father is part owner of Safari Wilderness Ranch. Stephanie and Robby decided that the barn at the ranch was the perfect backdrop for their nuptials and celebration. Stephanie's vision of a romantic, simple, rustic, yet elegant wedding was filled with vintage details such as authentic butter churns, mason jars, mini cobbler favors made on site, custom made beer bar, and customized mason jar placecards. The day included the most perfect weather for an outdoor intimate ceremony, breathtaking flowers and gorgeous dresses. Stephanie and Robby were wed surrounded by their loved ones and wild African and Asian animals.