Here Comes the Bridesmaids | Jordan Whaley, Bella Bridesmaids

business lending business success customer stories Jul 01, 2024

Planning a wedding is exciting but can be stressful when it comes to the myriad of decisions that have to be made. Enter Bella Bridesmaids, a locally owned franchise that has been located in the Edgewood neighborhood of Homewood for the last 17 years, to make it easier. “My store is part of a super fun part of the wedding industry,” says new owner Jordan Whaley. “The bridesmaids’ dresses set the scene for the day through color, styles, and trends, so we work closely with brides to help them find their look.”

Jordan worked at other Bella Bridesmaids locations in South Louisiana before relocating to Birmingham with her husband, where she quickly found a home with the local franchise. “I’ve always been interested in owning my own business,” she says. “I began talking to the owners several years ago until I was able to purchase it from them.”

The process of purchasing the business was easier with the help of Sam Renta at Alliance Capital Corporation. “Sam explained the SBA process to me and made all the numbers and deadlines required super clear,” Jordan explains. “The process took longer than we anticipated, and it was a sprint to the finish, but I literally don’t know what we would have done without Sam’s help.”

Now that Bella Bridesmaids is her own, Jordan is looking forward to putting her own spin on the store. Even though it’s a franchise, owners are able to choose styles from approved designers and tailor their merchandise to fit their specific market. “Birmingham is an old Southern city, so it’s fun to see what brides are looking for and to freshen up our inventory,” she says. “My staff and I are all in the stage of life where we are getting married or are in weddings ourselves, so it’s fun to bring in dresses we like and wear.”

In addition to bridesmaids’ dresses, the store carries a variety of other dresses, from dresses for mothers of the bride to reception dresses, guest attire and accessories. Always a top selling store, Jordan’s goal is to make Bella Bridesmaids the number one store in the country. “We are always looking to fill a need in the community while improving our appointment process to make it enjoyable for our brides and other clients,” she says. “Our goals are definitely achievable and I’m looking forward to the future.”

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