Alyssa McElheny loves an eclectically, boldly dressed woman. That’s probably because she is one. She started wedding photography six years ago and now outfits the betrothed, because she likes “to push brides outside of that normal idea of what a wedding should be.”
Tell us what happens at your shop.
I have open hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The rest is by appointment only. I’m excited about the curation of our space. We’ve been renting it out to various wedding planners, artists, musicians, designers and photographers, and for pop-up shops and photo shoots. … Bridal salons can be intimidating. You feel weird looking (around) without a ring on your finger. I want people to come in the door without feeling pressure.
What’s cool in bridal right now?
I really like the idea of wedding dresses that aren’t just white. I’ve seen blush, pale pink and pale blue colors. I’m into antique lace and long-sleeved dresses.
Have you fallen madly in love with anything in the shop?
I’ve got this heavily fully embroidered, icy white, flowy skirt by Needle and Thread London. That’s the skirt right now for any season.
Any projects you’re excited about?
The Michigan Elopement Collective. We’re looking for brides willing to elope. Our group of photographers, makeup and hair artists will offer discounted services to the couples.
How would you describe your personal style?
When I get a weird look on the street or a second glance, I aim for that. I wear things that aren’t quite the norm yet. I like kimonos and dusters right now. I love flowing Free People dresses.
When it comes to jewelry…
I have a pair of solid gold necklaces that I never take off. The same goes for my two nose piercings, nine constellation ear piercings and set of tiny gold rings. I’ve gotten all my jewelry from Kitten Flower Boutique and Honest to Goodness in Grand Rapids. I love what I’ve got in but I never switch anything out.
Last super-stylish thing you bought?
I just snagged a super simple, black silk shift dress from The Reformation. I’ll wear it to almost every wedding I photograph this spring.
Have any favorite local style hot spots?
The stretch of Wealthy (Street) I’m in. I love my neighbors Mercy Supply for beautiful leather goods and backpacks. I also love the stuff at Iconoclasp — the owner made me high-waisted bell bottoms that fit like a glove.