Bridal designer shares her secrets to success

IN CHATTING to Upper Highway bridal designer Lauren Judith-Anne Straker, Fever reporter Phindile Shozi, found out what it takes to be a popular bridal designer.

  • Who is Lauren Judith-Anne Straker?
  • I am a South African, dachshund obsessed, tea drinking “sew-a-holic” with an unwavering infatuation with the luxury lace aisle.

I have a serious love for lingerie, bridal gowns and generally anything created with delicate textiles.

PS: What do you do for a living?

LS: I am a self-employed bridal designer focussing on custom bridal gowns and luxury lingerie.

PS: What made you want to be a fashion designer?

LS: After years of creating my own dance costumes as a teen, I chose to follow the journey of clothing design as I am very detail orientated as well as being analytical.

PS: What are your aspirations in life?

LS: I have many aspirations in life that revolve around personal and business goals.

On a personal level, I aspire to always be happy as well as to be kind to myself (as a self-employed person, I always aim to put my clients on a pedestal and I often need to remember to treat myself with the same amount of love). I also aspire to being able to travel at every opportunity available.

From a business perspective, I aspire to keep my business growing and to be able to invest more in my bridal studio dreams.

PS: What goals did you set for yourself to help grow your business?

LS: When I started in the bridal industry, I found that work starts slowly (it takes a lot for someone to trust you with the most important dress of their life). So, my first business goal was to always have something to work on. My second business goal was to be creating a custom bridal gown every month of the year. This year I have already achieved that.

PS: When you are not working, what do you do in your free time?

LS: I am very much a home body.

I love my home and my garden, which is ever-evolving.

I love to surround myself with my dogs and I am very happy to not have a hectic social life.

PS: Who inspires you?

LS: I have so many people in my life that inspire me.

All the people that I surround myself with are so hard working, I am always inspired to live up to their standards.

PS: When you are down, what helps you get through your day?

LS: I am part of a few social communities that bring together creative, self-employed individuals to help inspire and motivate.

Often, when I have felt down, I will spend some time reading through what other entrepreneurs have been going through and that helps to remind me that there are many people that have been in the same position.

They can also help guide you based on their experiences.

PS: What is it that you can’t get through the day without?

LS: Tea. My work is fuelled on Rooibos tea.

PS: Those who want to embark on a journey like yours, what can you say to them?

LS: Step one — Love what you do.

Step two — Study your trade well.

Step three — Stay focused on your goals and get strong (mentally).

Step four — Don’t compare yourself to others (it sound like a cliché but comparing yourself to others is the best way to waste time while getting nowhere).

Step five — Believe in what you have to offer your clients.