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What I’ve Learned From “Say Yes to the Dress”

I had a lot of tedious, repetitive work to do this past week. During such times, I like to put on a TV show that requires little attention. Say Yes to the Dress, a TLC show with five seasons on Neflix, is often discussed in my corner of the Internet and seemed like the perfect choice ““ light, fluffy, insubstantial like a meringue. It lived up to my expectations, and surprisingly, I found myself learning a thing or two.

How to Make the Hard Sell ““ If you’ve got a bride who is in a beautiful (maybe), expensive (definitely) wedding dress and she’s only about 85% sold, put a veil on her. Ladies go from, “Oh this is so nice, I look so good,” to, “I look like a bride” in two seconds and three gauzy yards of tulle. Well duh you look like a bride ““ not many other people wear tulle veils ““ but hey, the trick/technique (depending on where you come from) definitely works.

Family Members and Friends Can Be Real Assholes ““ I got into the show expecting the brides to be over the top Bridezillas, so I was completely unprepared for the over-the-top, absolutely hair-curling behavior of family members, friends, and even fiancés. Put a gal in a gown and all of a sudden, everyone feels entitled to tell her she has a gut and that her taste in clothes is gaudy. And it’s not just that people went overboard with their “We just want you to look good” good intentions ““ there’s a big difference between the supportive families/friends who offered suggestions and compliments and the big ol’ jerks that whipped out the personal insults and frowned the entire time.

There Are Wedding Dresses That Cost More Than I Make In A Year ““ This shouldn’t have come as a surprise to me, but it did. Wedding dresses in excess of $30K just blow my mind. I’m not going to tell you how to spend your money, but, well, I just had no idea you could make a dress that fancy.

There Are Different Colors of White ““ Yeah, I don’t know what they are, but they’re there. I know that there are all sorts of off-white colors, but even white, just white, has multiple shades. Who knew? (Answer to this rhetorical question: people who know fashion.)

You’re Not Selling A Dress; You’re Selling An Experience ““ At least at this bridal salon, Kleinfeld’s in New York City, the goods being sold extend way past the physical, tangible parts of the wedding day outfit. Women come in to be treated like royalty, to be catered to and glammed up and made to feel special. For a set amount of time, someone is working for you to make you feel gorgeous. They’re even dressing you! That’s like, medieval court style opulence (and something I’m actually not into because WHAT IF YOU HAVE TO PEE?).  And after all that experience, the dress is sometimes secondary.

7 replies on “What I’ve Learned From “Say Yes to the Dress””

I never expected the people I would hate most on that show would be the family members, but also, bringing along your parents and 12 cousins is just a bad idea. I told my mom that if I get married she will be the only one who accompanies to dress fittings because she will be the one to talk me into sense when I get distracted by glitter and smack me if I even think about spending more than the price of my car on a dress.

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