How this coal miner became a bridal shop owner
A FORMER underground coal miner has made a dramatic career change and decided to open a bridal shop in Ipswich.
Owner Chris Stuart was quick to snap up the space left behind by Underfashion World on Brisbane St and has spent the last three weeks renovating.
Mr Stuart, a Sadliers Crossing resident, estimated he and wife Noi have already invested more than $120,000 in their new business.
The shop, Brides Two Be, opened for its first day of trading on Monday.
"We did some research and it showed there wasn't a lot of choice for brides in Ipswich," Mr Stuart said.
"We're hoping it will give this area a bit of a lift. Most bridal shops are in Brisbane and Ipswich women shouldn't have to go to another city to shop for their wedding."
Before moving back to Australia, Mr Stuart had been living in Thailand with his partner Noi, the stylist behind the venture.
The dresses at Brides Two Be include a wide range of choices for bridesmaids and wedding gowns with beading ranging in price from $399 to $1699.
"I'm a little bit nervous. I'm sure people will wonder how I went from working in an underground coal mine to owning a bridal shop, but it's good to be doing something different," Mr Stuart said.