We caught up with Dara Adams to learn how and why she started a business in the bridal industry. Read her story to find how she’s creating looks, representation, and visibility for brides of color.
Aliwazas Mag: Hi, Dara. Can you tell us what your "thing" is?
Dara Adams: Hi! My name is Dara. I’m the owner of Veil by Dara Adams, a bridal styling agency dedicated to helping brides of color develop fashionable looks for their special day and surrounding events. As a fashion stylist working in the bridal industry, I noticed black women were consistently under represented and misrepresented.
I wanted to provide a service that could help women see themselves in their dress shopping process. We provide our brides with not only style guidance and professional insight but the resources to make the best decisions for themselves and their wedding. This is information that is not always made accessible to brides of color due to the lack of platforms that are speaking to who we are and our needs during such an exciting but emotional time.
AM: We know it is sometimes difficult to finally do "the thing." What pushed you to get out of your head and get started?
DA: “The Thing” was my inability to get this out of my head. So for every reason I could come up with why I shouldn’t, there was another three for why I should. I started to feel like I was doing a disservice to myself by not going after something I was passionate about and loved. As a former wardrobe stylist I just wasn’t fulfilled by working with celebrity and commercial clients. I wanted to work with real people and use my talents to make an impact.
Working with brides allowed me to do that with women. No one talks about how scary preparing for rites of passage of marriage and wifehood really is. How many women are faced with challenges from family dynamics, finances, self esteem, and living up to the expectations that society has set on “wives” Although a dress may be a small part of the bigger picture it has given me an opportunity to connect with women and be a line of support and positivity during this time.
AM: To what do you credit any success you've experienced once you got started?
DA: I credit anyone who has showed any type of support. It could be as simple as liking a post to actually patronizing my business. Feeling like my brand serves a purpose that people can support and feel and understand has been the difference between me giving up on entrepreneurship and deciding to go forward another day.
AM: At which point along your journey (if any) did you find ease? How do you create ease for yourself along the way?
DA: Ease? What’s that? LOL every day poses some sort of challenge but my determination to problem solve and ability push past these moments are rewarding enough to again keep moving forward. I don’t think things will ever become easy but I do think I will always find purpose in my work. I will continue to come out on top of whatever challenges I may face.
AM: Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
DA: I’m so excited to get to know more about this platform. I am so happy black women have the opportunity to digest information that is for and by them whether it be in business, beauty, health, or bridal. We see there is a void and are doing a tremendous job of filling it.
I want Brides of color to know that there are no limitations. There are no rules. We have the right to show up how we wish and celebrate every part of who we are. Although the industry may market to us and speak to us as if we are all the same, do not feel pressured to assimilate to any particular look or style. We are unmatched because of our vastness and uniqueness. It is ok to let the true you shine through…..especially on your day.