Bee J Stanley’s fledgling business took off again this week, when one of the dresses she designed was worn by a competitor on NBC America has talent.
Blutterfly Baby Boutique owner Keller’s mother of four was elated when 9-year-old opera singer Victory Brinker wore her dress to Tuesday night’s finale.
Stanley, who makes vintage-inspired dresses by hand, custom dresses and wings for girls, reached out to Brinker’s mother on Instagram, hoping her daughter might be interested in wearing one of his designs in the emission.
Soon the AGT The wardrobe department reached out to Stanley to see if she could send dresses to Los Angeles, where the longtime million dollar talent show is taking place.
“They picked six dresses and said, ‘Would you be able to put them through the night? “” Stanley said.
But the designer was still not “100%” sure that Brinker would wear any of her dresses until the singer appeared on the live show.
But there she was, wearing Stanley’s personalized creation with pink and purple rainbow beads and sequins. Multiple layers of bridal tulle and crinoline as well as a horsehair braid completed the elaborate dress, which won the judges’ votes.
“When Sofia Vergara said, ‘You picked the perfect dress today, I love it!’ I literally screamed like Heidi Klum and then I started to cry. It was so unreal, “Stanley said.
Stanley’s dresses range from his Timeless Vintage collection (starting at around $ 100) to his Luxe Couture line ($ 925). She said a dress can take 20 to 40 hours of work and everything is done by hand.
While Stanley has a few outside contractors – and gets help from his stepmother who makes the petticoats – she has her hands on every design.
Brinker didn’t make it to the first five acts, but her looks helped raise the profile of the designer, and for that, Stanley says she’s grateful.
“She may not have won AGT, but it won my heart, ”Stanley said.