This week I spoke with E-Ling Ballew of Ballew Bridal and Formal Salon located in Collierville, Tennessee.
E-Ling never expected to own her own bridal salon. However, after the passing of her husband she inherited the small bridal shop. Upon gaining ownership she traveled to learn all she could about wedding and formal gowns.
What sparked your love for the industry?
“My love for beautiful fabric and lace.
What characteristics make you good at your job?
“My attention to detail.”
Can you share a favorite wedding moment?
“When former brides visit our salon with their newly engaged daughters.”
What do your clients say that makes you proud?
“That we made their shopping experience pleasant and easy.”
Can you share a funny wedding story?
“It’s not funny but it is true. Over 11 years we sold three different gowns to the same customer every time she became newly engaged. On the fourth purchase she finally had her wedding.”
How do you know it’s a job well done?
“When the bride and her family tear up because she said yes to the dress.”
What is the best advice you’d like to give your couples?
“Your marriage is more important than your wedding.”
Get to Know E-Ling…
Favorite Starbucks Drink: Chai Tea
Favorite Food: Seafood
Favorite Holiday: Christmas
Favorite TV Show: Mysteries in the Museum
Fruits or Vegetables? “Both, but if I had to choose, vegetables.”
Do you have any children or grandchildren? “Yes, two sons and three granddaughters.”
What are you most grateful for? “My children. Family is the priority of my life.”
What was the last concert you went to? “Michael Buble.”
Do you have a weird quirk? “I can’t sing, but I love to sing. I even own a Karaoke machine.”
If you could live in a movie what would it be? “Sound of Music.”
What animal would you be and why? “A bird because of the freedom.”
If you could invite a famous person from any point in history to dinner, who would it be? “Marco Polo. I would like to hear the adventure of his journey.”
How would you spend a million dollars? “I would build a beautiful wedding venue.”
What is the best advice you’ve received? “If there is a will, there is a way.”
If you could only listen to one music artist for the rest of your life, who would it be? “Adele.”
Who is your role model and why? “Steve Jobs because of his vision. He knew what his customers wanted before they did.”
Can you speak another language? “Chinese is my mother’s tongue. I have a BA degree in French but it’s pretty rusty now. I would like to pick it back up because it’s a beautiful language.”
Do you volunteer for any charities? “Me and a dozen of my friends volunteer at Metro Carehome which is an assisted living facility.”
Thanks for taking the time to talk with me, E-Ling! It is truly evident you love what you do.