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A Magic Place: Cherry Velvet Studio Shop

16 Aug

A Magic place where everything fits!Another Cherry Velvet Studio Shop has come and gone and we can all agree that it was a smashing success. How blessed we are to have the opportunity to spend time face to face with our wonderful customers. There’s nothing quite like zipping someone into a dress and seeing their eyes light up. We love sharing the excitement they feel when they realise they have so many darling dresses to choose from. Dresses that fit! In fact, most customers experience being so totally spoiled for choice, they have trouble deciding which one(s) to buy! Now isn’t that a change from a shopping experience where you end up having to buy the only dress that fits? (whether you like it or not)

It was lovely to see so many pairs of girlfriends come shopping together….

Girlfriends shopping together at our studio shop

Another that bought a ‘special occasion’ dress came back for one to wear every day. We loved what she had to say so much, it’s maybe our favourite quote so far…

“A magic place where everything fits!”

A Magic Place where everything fits; The Cherry Velvet Studio Shop!

We welcomed those who came to see our latest prints and those looking for a bargain. We loved how women brought their best friends, girlfriends, fiances, and husbands. We had some big belly laughs! We all welled up with tears when one special customer saw herself looking so beautiful in her dress that she choked up. (true story) It’s a real gift to be able to get to know our awesome customers better and to be able to offer them good old fashioned personal customer service. 

These two spent a fun day together that included our Studio Shop….

A Magic Place where everything fits; The Cherry Velvet Studio Shop!

Several others went home and took photos of their dresses:

A Magic Place where everything fits; The Cherry Velvet Studio Shop!

A Magic Place where everything fits; The Cherry Velvet Studio Shop!

We especially love the enthusiasm that often has our customers wearing their dresses right out the door!!!

A Magic Place where everything fits; The Cherry Velvet Studio Shop!

Love and heartfelt thanks to all of you! See you next time at our Studio Shop on September 8th & 9th!

Diane and Barb XOXO

 

Stroll Down Vintage Jewelry Lane

10 Aug

Cherry Velvet Modern Vintage JewelryAn essential part of finishing off any Cherry Velvet dress surely must be a pretty necklace (and shoes of course) Does your jewelry have to be fancy? No, it does not! But gosh, we do love to accessorise, don’t we? There’s no easier way to ramp up your modern vintage look than with a few classic beads. The right vintage bauble can take you from demure to glam just like that. (*snaps fingers)

While I was on a trip to Wales last year I discovered several antique shops. One that sold trinkets like compacts from the 50’s, Crocodile handbags, and perfume atomisers. Looking around, I said to a fellow, “Where is the jewelry?” And he said, “Why Miss, there’s a whole other store that’s full of jewelry!!”

Giddy with anticipation, I headed straight over. I was not disappointed! An entire jewelry store full of beautiful vintage jewelry pieces was on sale for 50% off. Crikey!! My new love for vintage pieces was born at that moment. These are a few of the necklaces that came home with me, all for a song. (You bet I was singing and dancing that night at the pub!)

Treasures found!

My favourite find? This beautiful Aurora Borealis clear cut glass beauty with three graduated tiers and a beautiful jeweled clasp. My other great find was what the proprietor called Night and Day glass. It’s black but the liberal Aurora Borealis finish on it sparkles with purples, magenta, turquoise, and chartreuse. Divine!

Vintage 1950's Jewelry

This past weekend I was at an antique show in Tsawwassen and hit the vintage jewelry jackpot, again. This time I scored a double string of candy pink graduated pearls from the fifties and two crystal necklaces, bracelet and earrings sets, one red and one ultramarine blue.  I was thrilled!!

Vintage 1950's Jewelry

The quality of my finds are amazing but one problem stands out with buying vintage jewelry and that’s the fit. Just like most true vintage dresses are tiny, so is the jewelry. Many of these finds will need to be restrung to fit my neck. While it’s a shame to undo the original handiwork, how wonderful to have pieces I’ll truly enjoy wearing. Earrings too, if you can find them. They all have those nasty, pinching clips.

Perhaps you’re not an antique shopper or maybe you can’t be bothered with restringing necklaces. Whatever the case (may be), I urge you to have a look at our growing selection of modern vintage pieces handmade with love and built especially to fit ALL SIZE necks here. 

Happy accessorizing!

Love Diane, Cherry Velvet XOX

Why our Vintage Inspired Dresses cost more

20 Jul

Occasionally we get comments and notes from our customers voicing the opinion that our prices are too high. Sometimes these people list other companies that sell cheaper vintage inspired and retro dresses, and wonder why ours cost more. We want to respond to these comments to hopefully give you a better understanding.

Here’s why our vintage inspired dresses cost a bit more…

At Cherry Velvet, we take pride in producing high-quality, great-fitting, regular and plus dresses. To make this happen, we employ Canadians in our office, on our design and pattern-making team, and in the local (we’re talking 10 minutes away) factories that sew our dresses. We make multiple patterns and samples and fit them on both regular and plus size women to make sure the fit is perfect. It does cost more to make 2 patterns and multiple samples for each style of dress.

In recent news, it’s been made common knowledge that human rights violations are rampant in developing countries where many other brands get their garments sewn. We employ local Canadian factories, visit our factories on a regular basis and work very closely with them. Canadian standards, labour laws and minimum wages are high compared to other countries including the US. We can see the working conditions in person, know how well their employees are treated and rest easy knowing that our factories aren’t collapsing or catching fire. Our dresses are not LITERALLY to die for, after all.

Another reason our regular and plus size dresses are a bit more pricey is our premium cotton prints. They do not shrink or fade. The prints are the CUTEST (you know it’s true), and we do limited runs of each fabric. These babies are not mass-produced! We usually only have several in each size.

Cherry Velvet uses the cutest high quality prints in their dresses

If we really want to get serious, there are 5 ways we can make our vintage inspired dresses cheaper:

1.   Use less fabric (shorter skirts, no room for a fluffy crinoline, no sleeves)

2.   Simpler styles and therefore cheaper labour (take the VA-VA away from the VOOM)

3.   Cheaper fabric (Boring prints that you’ve seen everywhere else, a million times before)

4.   Make tinier plus sizes that don’t fit bigger sizes (we’re not mentioning the names of other companies that do this but you might know who they are)

5.   Manufacture off shore. Take away more Canadian jobs, and send them over-seas to factories where we cannot make sure people are being treated well or paid fairly.

Since we are not willing to make these concessions, we’re just going to continue making the best quality, best fitting dresses that we can. Also, don’t forget that we have a lovely sale section, and a few more affordable styles so that EVERYONE can be a Cherry Velvet girl. Reg & Plus Sale section here

Thank you for your continuing support of our little Vancouver-based business.

We love our customers more than words can say!

XOX Cherry Velvet

#CanadianSass Contest Winners!

14 Jul

How’s it going, eh? Good? Beauty! So the contest is over and it’s time to announce the contest winners, eh! Pitter patter, let’s get at ‘er. You guys sure are keeners. We don’t know if you were fueled by Timmy’s or maybe it took a mickey or two to gather the courage, but when you heard the call, you got off your chesterfields and got to work. The hardest part for us was choosing our favourites. They were all totally skookum, so it was super tough, eh. It was just short of a donnybrook here at the studio trying to pick the top 3 entries, but here you go; these 3 were a hard yes. In no particular order…

Jonathan Snow and Brandi Snow

We went out to the Richmond Nature Park with a homemade quilt by Brandi’s mother celebrating Canada’s 150th, ate some Smarties (a delicious Canadian sweet), and played with Isobel’s stuffed Canadian Goose. We made sure that all participants in the photo were wearing Cherry Velvet dresses and eventually showed off my Canadians Ass…though my wife thought it was supposed to be Canadian Sass!!

 #Canadiansass Contest winners!

Farideh Olsen

“I thought long and hard about a deeply Canadian thing to do. Stand in an open field? Go through a Tim Horton’s drive-through? Hold a sign that says “I’m sorry”? And then, of course, there was maple syrup.
None of them would do.
In the end, I felt that an RCMP officer would make the PERFECT accessory for my beautiful dress.
I had to interrupt him on official business.
However, once he saw my ravishing apparel, he happily obliged.”

 

Canada Day Contest Winner eh!

Janice Kurylowich

[A] Couple of my favourite Canadian eats, Nanaimo bars and a Caesar… maybe not the best combo, but hey, it’s sweet and savoury! Here I am petting a beaver!! Lol, Canada’s national animal 🙂 My daughter thought that it would be great to go on down to the Made in Canada exhibit at Science World, so here I am, a keener for Cherry Velvet!

Canada Day Contest Winner eh!

 

Holy Cow, you guys really ran with this theme. We said “give ‘er” and you guys hurried hard!  Who would ever believe there could even be so many purely Canadian moments captured by you, our loyal customers?? Well, we sure do believe it now and we have the photos to prove it. To see all the contest entries, please check out our Facebook album here and show these girls some love (and likes) too!

There were so many wonderful contest entries, we want to reward ALL our beautiful customers with a little token of our appreciation! (check your inbox next week!)

And, before we forget, here’s one from our neighbours to the south….thanks, eh!

Jennifer R. Prichard: Here am I celebrating Canada’s Sesquicentennial in with three of my favorite Canadian exports: CC, #CherryVelvet & the incomparable Margaret Atwood.

Thank-you for entering our Canada Day Contest eh!

Thank-you truly from the bottom of our hearts for all these amazing entries, eh!

Love you guys!!!

Team Cherry Velvet XOX

Contest time! Show us your Canadian Sass!

28 Jun

Happy 150th Birthday Canada!

We’re so excited and thankful to be Canadian! Cherry Velvet is extremely proud of continuing to make our dresses 100% in Canada. To share our pride and excitement with YOU, our awesome customers, we’re having a CONTEST and we’re feeling very generous…! There’s going to be THREE GRAND PRIZES of a dress of your choice (shipping included) as well as random gift certificates just because we love ya! Let’s celebrate together Cherry Velvet style! Show us how much you love being Canadian by doing something uniquely Canadian in the photo. Show the world what being a Canadian really looks like!

Show us your Canadian Sass and win a free dress from Cherry Velvet

Eligibility:

  • You must be 19 years of age or older and live in Canada or the continental United States to enter. That’s right. If you’re a customer from the south we invite to join in our contest! This is your big chance to be a Canadian! (we know you want to) Go ahead and make fun, we love to laugh here!
  • All contestants must be wearing an official Cherry Velvet dress in each photo submitted (please make sure we can easily see the dress!)
  • Contest submission deadline: before noon on July 14, 2017. Winners will be announced at 4:00 on July 14th, 2017. All contest winners must claim their prize upon 21 days of official contest winner announcement, no later than August 8, 2017. Please contact us at info[at]cherryvelvetdresses.com with your dress choice and measurements before August 8, 2017.

Show us your Canadian Sass and win a free dress from Cherry Velvet

How to enter:

  • E-mail us your photo wearing a Cherry Velvet dress to cherryvelvetplus@gmail.com. Give us your name and who’s in the photo. Tell us the story in a few words too! (this is not part of the contest, but a good story may sway the judges)
  • Share it on at least one social media channel and tag us (Facebook (@cherryvelvetplus), Instagram (@cherry_velvety) or Twitter (@cherryvelvety) and use the hashtags #canadiansass and #cherryvelvet
  • You must be on our mailing list to win.
  • Please note: All photos submitted to the #CanadianSass Contest may be shared online (i.e., your entry to the contest will be considered as your consent).

#CanadianSass #CherryVelvet

Show us your Canadian Sass and win a free dress from Cherry Velvet

Tips on how to win

  • Reasonable photo quality will help you win. No dark or blurry photos, Please! See some posing tips here on our last blog!
  • Extra points if you make us laugh
  • This is not a beauty contest; Effort, creativity and originality count!
  • Tag us in your photo(s) on Instagram (@cherry_velvety), Facebook (@cherryvelvet) or Twittter (@cherryvelvety) and use the hashtags #canadiansass #cherryvelvet

Show us your Canadian Sass and win a free dress from Cherry Velvet

Don’t be a hoser—

Photos for submission may not contain any of the following:

  • The violence of any kind, or negative or abusive messaging (Let’s be nice and keep it family friendly, eh?)
  • Any extreme political views or leanings (Let’s save these for election day)
  • Images depicting the use of any banned or illegal substances (that wacky tobacky ain’t quite legal here yet)

Show us your Canadian Sass and win a free dress from Cherry Velvet

Show us your best Canadian spirit!

We love you guys! Thank you for supporting our little Canadian company! Please send in your awesome photos showing your fabulous Canadian spirit doing your best Canadian thing.
It’s a great time to reflect on how truly lucky we are, eh!

XOX Team CV

How to Care for your New Crinoline

1 Jun

You’ve chosen your colour and ordered your knee length crinoline from Cherry Velvet! With visions of puffy frills in your head, you might be a little surprised when you get your box in the mail. How the heck did they fit that much floof into such a small box? Your crinoline has been folded and rolled to fit in the box for shipping and it needs a little love from you when it comes out of the box. Don’t worry, it’s as easy as 1, 2, 3…

We’ve made a little video to show you how to care for your crinoline from the minute you open the box until you slip it on under your favourite frock.

A frilly crinoline is a great way to add a little something special to your Cherry Velvet dresses. A full skirt with a matching or contrasting colour peeking out from under it can turn a special dress into something spectacular. If you are thinking of adding a crinoline to your vintage inspired look, we have you covered. You’ll feel special, we promise!

Here’s our selection.

Colourful selection of crinolines at Cherry Velvet

If you’re wondering, we also carry other crinolines that are made of nylon chiffon. Our Lace Crinoline or our Vintage chiffon crinoline will not arrive quite as wrinkled as the Knee length version in the video. Just hang it up and in a few days whatever wrinkles there were, will be no more. Please do not try to steam or iron it as it may cause damage. (Nylon can melt with too much heat!)

Washing instructions: 

Hand wash in warm water then hang to dry. Please do not use bleach.

If you have any questions or need help choosing a crinoline to match your dress, please feel free to e-mail us @ cherryvelvetplus(dot)com. We’re happy to help anytime!

XOX Cherry Velvet

 

 

 

Welcome Barb to the Cherry Velvet Team!

22 Mar

When you’ve been in business for 14 years, you get to meet and work with people from all walks of life. Sometimes they come, sometimes they go, and sometimes you get lucky and they come back around again. Flashback five years ago to the very beginning of Cherry Velvet and enter: Barb Wilkins, a key member of our original team.  Barb’s ideas and contributions are what helped conceptualize the Cherry Velvet brand, so we’re very excited to announce that she’s coming back to work with us! Long time Cherry Velvet aficionados might remember that the second dress we ever made was named Barbara. It came in some amazing iconic prints like Good Luck Tattoo, Sugar Skulls, and Party Dots. Barb rocked that dress literally and figuratively! 

Band Wichita Trip's lead singer Barb Wilkins rockin' her Cherry Velvet dress

Photo by Marc L’Esperance

If you’re from Vancouver, you may also remember Barb was the owner of the original Bodacious store on Main Street. Having been a plus size retailer for so many years, she has a keen understanding of women’s bodies and issues around buying clothes. She’s a plus size fit expert! 

If none of this rings a bell, you might have met Barb at our Pucker Up party. She was the lead singer of our guest band. When we said Barb rocks we really meant it!

But if you’ve somehow never crossed paths with Barb, perhaps you will be lucky enough to experience her warm and enthusiastic energy when you come by to shop. Or, possibly, Barb will be the one to help you when you need customer service. She’ll be at our shopping night on Friday from 5-7, so come by to meet her and check out all the amazing new dresses

Barb Wilkins wearing the Cherry Velvet Barbara dress named after her

Welcome back to our team, Barb! 

Shopping dates this week:

Friday, March 24 from 2-7 pm

Saturday, March 25 from 11-5

1635 Powell Street, Vancouver BC. Parking available on the street our front (please check the parking signs) or in the lot off Woodland Dr. beside the Flag shop.

XOX Cherry Velvet

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

10 Mar

CherryVelvet_FAQ_1stEdition

We love how enthusiastic y’all are about our dresses and we love to hear from all our followers and fans. As social media persists, we find ourselves often fielding the same questions. While we endeavour to answer each and every inquiry we receive, we thought it would behoove us to put together a small list of frequently asked questions and answer them here for posterity:

Do you take custom orders?

Unfortunately, due to our design process and production schedule, we are unable to offer custom orders at this time.

That being said, we have a wealth of dresses in our collections and it could very well be you might not have seen the dress you were looking for! If you’re looking for something in particular, we encourage you to reach out to us at info [at] cherryvelvetdresses [dot] com and one of our helpful stylists will do their best to match you with the perfect dress.

How do I figure out what my Cherry Velvet dress size is?

Because of the unique fit of our dresses, we highly suggest taking your measurements and having a peek at our Fit Guide, in order ensure you’re getting the right size.

First thing’s first, measurements:

Then match to our handy sizing charts!

 

That being said, the most sure-fire way to find your perfect fit is to contact us with your measurements and the dress(es) you’re interested in and we’ll recommend your best fit.

Drop us a line at info [at] cherryvelvetdresses [dot] com before you order and one of our fit specialists would be happy to assist with finding your Cherry Velvet size.

Where can I try on your dresses in person?

If you are able to visit us, our Vancouver-based showroom is available by appointment, Monday-Friday between 10-4pm. We LOVE to see all shapes and sizes in our dresses and would be happy to help you find the perfect look. Drop us a line at info [at] cherryvelvetdresses [dot] com to book your appointment! We’re located at 1635 Powell Street, Vancouver. Parking is available in the lot by the Flag Shop off Woodland Drive or out front on the street during part of the day (please check the parking signs for times)

Periodically, we also hold open Studio Shops for the public! Generally once a month, we hold them on Fridays from 2-7pm & Saturdays from 11-5pm. Join our mailing list and/or follow us on Facebook to be the first one to know about our next one!

How do I care for my Cherry Velvet dress?

Our dresses are as easy to care for as they are to wear! Simply machine wash in cold water & hang to dry. Be sure to separate the colours! (no red socks with a white dress please!)

We don’t recommend the dryer, but you can fluff in the dryer for a few minutes before hanging if desired. Iron on a cotton setting if necessary, but taking a few minutes to smooth out the wrinkles after hanging it up will go a long way toward being iron free!

How do I care for my crinoline?

Once you receive your crinoline, give it a firm shake fresh from the bag, hang up and gently pull out the wrinkles & ruffles. Be careful, as the chiffon or netting is very delicate. Do not be alarmed if it takes about a week to relax out the wrinkles completely. Beauty takes patience 😉

Do not iron – the material may melt. Hand wash in warm water, no bleach. Hang to dry.

 

Do you have any other questions for us? Let us know! We’re always happy to answer your queries 🙂

XOX Cherry Velvet

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Shelly Styles Once More!

4 Mar

A little while back, we wrote a blog about having the pleasure of shooting with Shelly, a long-time Cherry Velvet Enthusiast and friend of our designer, Diane. She was such a jewel to shoot & speak with that we ended up with so much great material!

Between her fantastic styling of our dresses & her incredibly affirming ideas about body positivity, we couldn’t resist writing one more blog…

…And so we invite you to let us take you on another fashion journey with Shelly…!

As we mentioned previously, probably one of the best parts of shooting with Shelly was her arsenal of accessories at our disposal:

You didn’t hear it from us, but there was more than a little fawning over her sparkly baubles and eye catching heels! But more than her jewelry, we loved the little golden nuggets of positivity that Shelly had to share with us. When asked what body positivity means to her, she most eloquently said:

“Body Positivity is an act of self-love. It is appreciating who and where you are in the moment and not subscribing to society’s conditioning and expectations. We’ve been told for so long that only a certain age and size should get positive attention, but that’s not right at all. After all my own trials and tribulations, I’m very happy with who I am.”

And we’re very happy she is who she is, too! Just look at how much she glows in our Paige – Tiffany Swizzle:

As she slipped on the dress + crinoline, we asked her what she thought of crinolines and she smiled,

“I’ve been wearing crinolines since I was 2! I love them. Nothing makes you feel more instantly feminine.”

We definitely concur!

Shelly never likes looking the same and enjoys how a simple change like pairing different accessories and removing the crinoline freshens up the whole look. As She styled herself, she waxed saucy humour about the versatility of our dresses.

“Women never like repeating themselves, am I right? That goes for when we’re talking and dressing up!”

Take another few chic looks at this chick’s look!

In our last Shelly blog, we mentioned how her fun and whimsical fashion sense made her a perfect choice for these style spotlights. But on top of that, we think she deserves the world…Plus!

Our collective hearts sank when we heard her poignantly talk about her struggles with image issues and eventually overcoming an eating disorder. But ever the optimist, she stands by what she endured and is proud of prevailing through these challenges. These days, she happily embraces her body and confidently loves herself.

It definitely showed as soon as she shimmied into our Kate – Ticker Tape:

“This is fat chick FABULOUS!” she cheekily exclaimed.

She beamed as she told us that her coworkers would often place friendly bets on what kind of Cherry Velvet dress she would come into the office with; our dresses were such a treat for everyone to lay their eyes on!

With the lovely neckline details, a full skirt + crinoline, it’s hard not to agree!

We hope you enjoyed Shelly’s inspiring words and gorgeous styling as much as we did. It is always such a pleasure to learn more about the beautiful souls that make our dresses even more stunning.

XOX Cherry Velvet

Missed our first blog about Shelly? Read it here!

Find our Paige in Tiffany Swizzle, Kate in Ticker Tape + many other unique prints in our New Arrivals at Cherry Velvet!

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The Pucker Up Party Recap!

15 Feb

Happy Valentine’s Day! We thought today would be a perfect day to post a recap for the fun little party we held at the beginning of this month! So Pucker Up and have a peek at how Cherry Velvet celebrates a shindig!

The day of the party it looked like we were fixin’ for a storm but we decided to go on with the show, anyway! How could we let all our careful baking & decorating go to waste? We’re cray, that way.

That being said, we were sad to hear so many were unable to make it out in such inclement weather. Someone even ended in a ditch on the way here! Even some of our guests who made it in didn’t escape unscathed; Our dear friend, Danielle, got soaked by a rude car. Thankfully, we had a showroom of dresses for her to wear. 😉

Despite the record-breaking cold weather, we kept it hot in our studio with a Love-themed Munch ‘n Mingle night featuring a photoshoot for anyone who showed up in a Cherry Velvet dress! We were a little worried that the epic snow storm we were in the midst of would put the kibosh on our fun night, but thankfully, one by one, 5 years worth of Cherry Velvet dresses came sashaying through the snow and in front of our photographer.

From live music that had everyone bumpin’, to impromptu complementary hair curlin’ & victory rollin’, there were tons of antics and adorable pics.

We thank all the guests who braved the blizzard and we’re so excited to share these photos with you! If you want to see more photoshoot shots+, head over to our Facebook Page!

We had so many charming and delightful ladies come in, we don’t want to exclude anyone! But we simply couldn’t get over how much energy party girls, Cynara & Dina, are! East Van beauties, through and through.

We even had esteemed Editor-In-Chief, Shannon Svingen-Jones, of FabUplus Magazine come out for a snap or 2. Also a Vancouver girl, we’re so proud of how far FabUplus Magazine has come in such a short time and it’s such a thrill to see Shannon’s hard work being recognized as an amazing new magazine, by the likes of publications like Elle & People Magazine.

What’s a party without music? We are so blessed to know so many talent artists to collaborate with and were lucky enough to have Wichita Trip, fronted by Diane’s good friend & long time Cherry Velvet girl, Barb Wilkins. Any shoppers from Vancouver will recognize her from Bodacious, a lovely shop which used to be on Main Street and was one of the forerunners of the Plus Size community in Vancouver. Wichita Trip provided some peachy keen Rockabilly tunes backed by Barb’s husband, Rupert, with Back up vocals & keyboards by Mike Van Eyes from The Revel Room’s famous Duelling Pianos Night.


The entire night went off without a hitch and a great time was had by all. Again, we wish to thank all our amazing guests for coming out. It is always such a great pleasure for us to see our dresses making girls feel stunning at any size. This party was a small gesture of our appreciation for everyone who’s supported us all these years and we’re excited to share so much positivity & pretty dresses for many more years to come!

For anyone who never wants to miss out on amazing events like this, sign up for our newsletter & follow us on Social Media (Twitter | Instagram | Facebook)

Wishing everyone a very Happy Valentine’s Day!

XOX Cherry Velvet