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updated: 5/8/2013 8:53 AM

Barrington, Crystal Lake women launch online bridal gown business

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  • Bree DiMucci, left, and Eva Pristera, owners of Bellini Bridal.

    Bree DiMucci, left, and Eva Pristera, owners of Bellini Bridal.

  • Angelo Parhas

    Angelo Parhas

  • Lee Sacks

    Lee Sacks

  • Chip Miceli

    Chip Miceli

  • Vimal Patel

    Vimal Patel

  • Mohan Iyer

    Mohan Iyer

  • Terry Kurzynski

    Terry Kurzynski

  • Diane Poljak

    Diane Poljak


When Bree DiMucci of Barrington was getting married about two years ago, she had 12 weeks to find a dress before the ceremony. Yet many boutiques and bridal salons said she'd never have her dress delivered on time. Or they would charge her extra fees to get it quickly.

Her friend of 15 years, Eva Pristera of Crystal Lake, went through the wedding experience a few years earlier. Both women had a hard time understanding why wedding gowns were priced so high.

"When you'd see the price tag, you'd go, 'Really?' I'm only going to wear it for about 8 hours," DiMucci said.

The two friends decided to help other future brides avoid such an experience. They recently launched an online boutique that sells bridal gowns at a discount of 30 percent to 60 percent. Bellini Bridal at offers about 90 dresses and more are expected soon. But inventory is limited because most are in sizes 10 or 12, with just a few other sizes available in one-of-a-kind dresses.

"They're not cheap, but we do provide discounts," DiMucci said.

One unique aspect is called VIP Bride Service, where they will go directly to the future bride's home with up to 10 gowns so they can be tried on in private. The cost for VIP is $99, which can be applied toward the purchase price of a dress.

They offer samples, overstock and used gowns. They're sold as is with no special orders. Brides are on their own for alterations, she said.

"What you see is what you get," she said.

Returns can be made, but within a 10-day period and with specific requirements, like returning it unused and with tags still intact.

The website also may offer mother-of-the-bride dresses and some accessories down the road.

"These may be last year's fashions, but it's not like buying the newest car model," DiMucci said. "Wedding dresses have a classic feel to them and they're not that much different from year to year."

Top salesman earns trips to Europe

Angelo Parhas of Hoffman Estates, and his wife Kristy Parhas will be traveling to Italy and Greece this year, a gift from his employer, Bolingbrook-based Zepole Supply Co. Parhas earned the trip as a top sales performer and for his 25th anniversary with Zepole, a supplier of restaurant equipment, supplies and integrated kitchen design founded in 1982 by Nicholas Thiakos Sr. Parhas was 12 when he immigrated with his parents to Chicago in 1967 from Levidi, near Tripoli, in Greece.

Advocate exec goes to D.C.

Lee Sacks, Advocate Health Care's executive vice president and chief medical officer, traveled from the Oak Brook headquarters to Washington, D.C., last week to talk with White House officials about efficiency and quality health care. Sacks talked with Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Deputy Chief of Staff Mark Childress, Deputy Assistant to the President for Health Policy Jeanne Lambrew, and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Marilyn Tavenner.

Part of an international brand

David Brown is the local owner of the Forever Yogurt in St. Charles. The St. Charles location is part of the brand's plan to add 15 locations, including 10 in the Chicago region, so far this year. Also, the company has signed 32 deals with many being in international locations, such as Panama, Pakistan and China, the company said.


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• There's more to business than just the bottom line. We want to tell you about the people that make business work. Send news about people in business to Follow Anna Marie Kukec on LinkedIn and Facebook and as AMKukec on Twitter.

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