The frozen wedding dresses were left standing on their own after employees outside poured buckets of water on them while they were putting on mannequins. The staff then removed the mannequin pieces from the clothes.

Michelle McFarland and Shawn Vilk pose for a picture of one of The Wedding Shoppe’s frozen wedding dresses on the outside of the store on Coolidge Highway in Berkley.

Photo by Deb Jacques

A look inside one of the frozen clothes shows that it has collected some snow since it was first displayed outside.

Photo by Deb Jacques

BERKLEY – A wedding dress store in downtown Berkley has been getting a lot of buzz lately for a very cool reason.

In the midst of the frigid weather and freezing temperatures, several wedding dresses sit frozen on the sidewalk outside The Wedding Shoppe, 2186 Coolidge Highway, south of Catalpa Drive.

This particular artistic display of wedding dresses comes from an idea created by a bridal stylist in the store, Shawn Vilk. She said she saw a picture on Facebook of houses in Minnesota with jeans frozen on the front, which inspired her to go to her boss, Michelle McFarland, to do the same, but with her wedding dresses.

Although it was originally intended as a joke, McFarland was excited to move on with the idea.

“I really just thought she would (laugh) … but she said,” Oh my god, we have to do this, “said Vilk.

The Wedding Shoppe staff began to wonder how they would accomplish the feat. After several workshops, they decided to freeze the clothes over mannequins and remove the mannequins after the clothes were frozen.

Vilk said it also took them a few hours to figure out what clothes they would use and how they would portray them when they got up.

“We started from scratch because we know the materials, how they work under normal conditions, but (now) we’ve frozen them,” she said. “That was really fun. It was a very fun process. I went back and forth a bit about how we would do it.”

To actually freeze the clothes, they kept pouring buckets of water on the clothes while they were outside to freeze the fabric. McFarland said the weather needs to be below 30 degrees outside for them to stay frozen. Whenever the temperature rises above it, the clothes fall off.

At the state of the clothes, McFarland said with a laugh that they are now ruined.

“We knew this would be the case and we were okay with it,” she said. “We have many clothes that have outlived their usefulness. One of them was just an older style too damaged because it had been tried on so many times that we had it in stock and the others we believed would look good out there and we could sacrifice them . “

Vilk said the whole process was worth it because the attention they got after putting on the clothes made people call the store to see if they were still outside.

“It was a challenge and we loved the attention,” she said. “It was just a celebration of winter, just having fun with it and having fun with some clothes.”

While it is now unknown if the new attention will help boost business for The Wedding Shoppe, McFarland said it is possible for those who stopped by to remember them and, when engaged, come back to buy a dress.

“We just thought it was a cool idea to really make fun of people driving past something,” she said. “At the moment everyone always needs a little more encouragement. So we thought it would be just a fun thing for the community to see. “


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