Enterprising Woman Tricia Wood Thomas
When Enterprising Woman Tricia Wood Thomas opened her specialty boutique in November of 2019, she knew her combination of life experience and professional training would mix beautifully to help empower women and make them shine on the most important days of their lives. What she couldn’t have known was how the world would change in 2020. Her budding enterprise faced challenges. But true to her faith in God and her whole-hearted determination, the business that reflects Tricia’s life and loves continues to grow and thrive.
Putting Her Best Foot Forward
Tricia Wood Thomas’ first love was the thrill of competing in pageants. She says being in the company of strong women and girls taught her to always put her best foot forward. This ultimately led her to create an outlet to help other women present the best versions of themselves. Of her first competition, Tricia recalls waiting breathlessly backstage to hear her name, anticipating the moment of her dreams. The sparkly, fuchsia gown she picked out with her mother gave her the confidence to stride out on stage. Although self-assured, she immediately sought the faces of supportive parents Sue and Hubert. “My parents also taught me humility,” she adds. “When we got home, I had to change out of that dress and help with chores in the yard.”
Today, Tricia holds the Mrs. Louisiana, United States title along with winning the People’s Choice Award at the nationwide pageant. And although she still loves competing and enjoying close ties with her parents, the years since those early competitions have been filled with many changes and diverse accomplishments.
Focus on Education, Career and Family
After studying runway and print modeling in New Orleans, Tricia went on to William Carey University earning a BS in Mass Communications with Minors in Public Relations and English. She then entered “the real world” and enjoyed a rewarding career and family. “Life just took over from there. I became a successful pharmaceutical rep, I had my son Tristin, founded a community charity and built a cabin on our family’s acreage in Franklinton so we could be near my parents.”
In her most recent turn of life events, Enterprising Woman Tricia Wood Thomas has earned her title by combining her array of talents and experience to embark on what she feels will be her most fulfilling endeavor yet. After gaining additional business experience working in her and her husband Lane’s company, she felt the need to express herself in a unique way. “I wanted to take all I’d learned and accomplished in my career and use it to encourage women to pursue their dreams as I’ve done. I got down on my knees and prayed, and I felt God telling me to pursue my passion — Tricia’s Bridal Boutique.”
Tricia’s Bridal Boutique
“This is what I was born to do, and I’m overjoyed to share my expertise. Most importantly, I’m connecting with and helping other women,” says Tricia of her venture. The boutique — which offers bridal fashions, pageant gowns, special occasion dresses and tuxedos — mirrors Tricia’s sense of Southern style and elegance. Roomy changing areas, cozy antique furniture, chandeliers and champagne are hallmarks of the inviting, Franklinton storefront.
Tricia offers the benefits of her unique experience to all, particularly enjoying the private appointments that allow her to bestow individual attention. “I offer different experiences for different tastes. We have private bridal areas so family and friends can participate where we offer mimosas and petits fours, we can provide snacks or light lunches to add to the celebration, or make after-hours appointments to accommodate the busy bride. When she says yes to the dress, we pop the bottle and the champagne flows along with the tears. It’s a very emotional and exciting event.”
Tricia provides a trained eye for fashion and a level of personal service customers say they don’t find elsewhere. “Once she makes a few selections at an appointment, I get to know her and see her style. Then I know just where to go in my extensive inventory to pull unique selections I know she’ll love. I especially like catering to plus size brides. They’re so appreciative of all their beautiful options. When working with pageant girls, I can help pick styles perfect for their age and personality. I even give them tips on how to walk and interview. It’s what I do!”
Finding Faith and Inspiring Others
Thrilled with the boutique’s early success, the consequences of COVID reached Tricia’s doors in March 2020. “When weddings were canceled and shopping discouraged, the store would be empty. I wondered if I’d lose this blessing God had given me, but I found faith.”
As her phone rings and customers enter repeatedly, she beams, “I’m so thankful it’s coming back to life. I have so much to look forward to this year — continuing to serve God at Church of the King, growing my boutique, representing Louisiana in the Mrs. America Pageant and supporting Alzheimer’s awareness in honor of my father. I’m also planning motivational speaking engagements for women’s and girls’ organizations. I want to deliver the message that, like me, their deepest dreams can also come true.
Tricia’s Bridal Boutique is located at 952 Washington Street in Franklinton. For more information or to schedule a consultation, call 985-322-2122 or visit triciasbridalboutique.com.