A Hand in Remarriage

These entrepreneurs help make it easier for couples to walk down the aisle as many times as they like.

What: A bridal planning and consulting service for second-time brides
Who: Bill and Cheryl Brown of Twice Is Nice Encore Bridal Creations LLC
Where: Charlotte, North Carolina
When: Started in 2001

When Bill and Cheryl Brown decided to get married, they looked forward to planning a big, fancy wedding--even though it was the second time down the aisle for both.

But almost immediately, the pair discovered that the wedding industry doesn't tend to look kindly on second marriages. "When we were planning our wedding, we couldn't find wedding professionals to give us what we wanted," explains Cheryl. For example, the Browns wanted an expensive type of invitation, but they were almost reprimanded by the salesperson for wanting to spend so much money. "She was very insulting," recalls Cheryl.

Inspired to provide other couples with the kind of wedding-planning service they couldn't find anywhere else, Cheryl, 39, and Bill, 46, decided to start their own company, Twice Is Nice Encore Bridal Creations LLC. The company deals with all the issues associated with a second, third or fourth marriage-everything from the wedding dress and reception food to advice and referrals on blending families, constructing prenuptial agreements and more.

The Browns started their business part time at first, both keeping their airline industry jobs. But in early 2003, business became so busy that Bill began running the business full time. Now that they plan three weddings a month and put on wedding shows twice a year, it's no wonder company sales for 2003 are projected to reach $70,000 to $75,000.

For Cheryl and Bill, knowing their market intimately helped build their success. They knew, for example, that people entering second marriages generally have more money to spend and consider their second weddings as a way to celebrate an increase in their quality of life. Having been through it herself, says Cheryl, "[I] know what second-time brides want."

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This article was originally published in the September 2003 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: A Hand in Remarriage.

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