Writer & Photographer / Stephanie Duncan
Warmer weather for mother-daughter duo, Young and Anne-Marie Colling, means wedding season. Young and Anne-Marie both own the recently opened Marie Gabriel Couture Bridal shop in Castleton.
Marie Gabriel is a couture bridal shop offering several exclusive designers and serves as a destination for Indy brides looking for the best of the best.
“We represent a few exclusive designers in the state of Indiana, that if you want these designers, you come to Marie Gabriel,” Young says.
Young, who already owns a bridal shop, Brides by Young (which is located next to Marie Gabriel, and her daughter decided to open another shop when they saw a need for a high-end bridal shop in Indiana.
“One of the reasons we opened Marie Gabriel, was when I was traveling for my former job, when I was in Chicago or even Ohio, I would see so many Indy brides there,” Young says. “Automatically I said, since I worked in bridal retail, ‘why did you come all the way here?’ They would say over and over, ‘I was looking for designers my city didn’t offer.’
“There’s a lot that goes on in this store from beginning to end,” Anne-Marie adds. “The fit, quality and the dress styles. When you’re working with your stylist, we take a very personal approach, and you know you’re in very good hands. This is why we have so many sisters and families who all buy their dresses here. There’s a strong level of trust that develops when you’re a Marie Gabriel bride.”
For Anne Marie, working in bridal is in her blood. Anne Marie doesn’t remember a time where she wasn’t working with her mom.
“Our working relationship began at a very young age,” she joked when her mom talked about the early days of traveling back in Hong Kong. Her mother, Young, has been working in clothing and retail for more than 30 years.
“I used to work in clothing manufacturing in China, Indonesia and Bangladesh,” Young says. “I would travel intensely for six weeks at a time, so I took her with me. I had stores in Hong Kong as well that I worked on weekends, and I didn’t want to leave my child at home, so she was always in the store, playing on the typewriter.”
The family, including Anne Marie’s younger brother, moved to Zionsville back in 2004 where Young said she wanted to plant her roots and worked in a bridal retail store before she eventually opened Brides by Young.
“I’m very grateful for Indiana and Zionsville,” she says. “We came here when my daughter was a teenager, and I’m thankful we deiced to settle here. Out of all the places we’ve traveled, this is where we’ve lived the longest.”
When asked about how they like working together, they both smiled.
“You have to find a balance between being a daughter and also an employee, which maybe we’re still figuring it out,” Anne-Marie says. “But, there’s no one better to learn from, for me that’s been one of the best experiences. I don’t think many daughters get to see that side of their parents as often as I do.”
For both of them, their favorite part of owning a business together is traveling with each other. “When we travel, we try and take some time to ourselves. Like eating together,” Anne Marie says.
“I feel really proud of my mom as a female business owner,” she adds. “We’ve become really engrained into this community since we’ve moved here. Seeing her overcome so much makes me proud.”
Both Young and Anne Marie love how supportive the Zionsville community has been since opening their shops.
“Shopping local is so important, we depend on the community,” Anne Marie says. “This is why we established this beautiful bridal store with all these amazing designers. So that our Zionsville and Indiana brides know they are getting the best of the best right here. They don’t have to go to Chicago, they don’t have to go to New York. They are honestly getting even better service and selection here.”
If you haven’t said yes to the dress yet, you can find the mother-daughter duo doing what they love most at Marie Gabriel Couture and Brides by Young in Castleton at 5252 E 82nd St. Suites #201 and #202.