Admit it, we've all watched at least one episode of Say Yes To The Dress. It's so fun watching brides try on different dresses and finally find the one that brings out so many emotions.
Of course, it's also fun to watch the drama unfold when none of the bride's guests can agree on anything...but maybe it's just me who likes that.
Even if you've seen every single episode of the show, there are probably a few things you didn't know about Kleinfeld and Say Yes To The Dress!
You don't just walk into Kleinfeld and expect to be on camera! Brides have to go through an audition process, just like anyone on any other show would. There are applications to fill out, interviews to conduct, and decisions to be made.
As the show has gone on, the casting process has gotten a little more intense. TLC wants people who will bring big drama and big personalities. If you don't stand out in some way, you can basically kiss your screen time goodbye.
Your wedding is pretty stressful, but imagine getting sent the wrong dress. Nightmare, right? That's what happened to Randi Siegel-Friedman.
She claimed that Kleinfeld sent her the wrong size dress in 2016, and that it was even made of the wrong material. Her dress she had purchased originally was $12,000. The iconic bridal store denied her a refund.
Siegel-Friedman was forced to wear a sample dress from another store to her wedding, and she ended up suing Kleinfeld for the cost of her dress. It's unclear how that whole situation ended, but just make sure you're double checking everything after you choose a dress!
3. Long Process
Even if each bride really only gets five or six minutes of air time, don't be fooled. Filming can spend between four and eight hours at the store trying on dresses, getting reactions, and re-shooting certain scenes.
Of course, spending time picking out your wedding dress is important, but I would think after five hours I'd be ready for a snack and a glass of wine.
Sometimes I watch people spend $10,000 on a dress and it makes me sick to my stomach. Other times, I see brides show up with a $300 budget and wonder what they think they're going to get for that price!
But the average price of a dress at Kleinfeld is $4,500 and that doesn't include alterations. The average cost of that is $695 PER CHANGE. Sounds like you better pick the perfect dress, or learn to love what you get.
One bride chose to get her alterations done somewhere else, where it was cheaper, but she regrets it.
"If you decide you’re going to do your tailoring outside of Kleinfeld, once you open the box, they’re no longer responsible for what happens,” Carly Sposato said. “I will always be conscious of the fact that I was unhappy and not comfortable in my skin because of what I was wearing."
The most expensive dress Kleinfeld has ever sold? $70,000.
It gives me anxiety sometimes looking at all those dresses in the warehouse, but the system of organization is actually pretty legit!
Everything is sectioned off based on shape, price, and designer, which is why consultants can walk right in and know exactly where to head.
There are so many dresses on hand, that they even have to store them in the ceiling! They go around on a motorized rack, similar to a dry cleaner.
6. "Big Bliss"
In an attempt to show body inclusivity, and also to make a few bucks, Say Yes To The Dress decided to make a program revolving solely around plus-sized women, called Say Yes to the Dress: Big Bliss. It lasted two full seasons before it was finally taken off the air.
The issue a lot of people had was that the only thing different about these brides was that they weren't the same weight. TLC argued that it was to "showcase how Kleinfeld handles all the non-standard sized gowns," but it seemed like more of an unwillingness to include plus-sized brides on the original program.
The show doesn't have lines written out, but former guests have alluded to the fact that the production team wants things done (and said) a certain way.
"They would ask us things, like 'What kind of dress are you looking for?'" former guest Courtney Wright said interview with 417 Magazine. "Then we'd all put our two cents worth in, and they'd stop us and say, 'Say what you said again, but say it like this.'"
Wright also said that "they want you to act as natural as possible, but you can tell that they want to stir up some drama. If someone says something that could potentially cause a disagreement, the director asks you questions about it."
8. Dirty Dresses
It's not something you'd think about when looking at the stunning gowns on TV, but a lot of visitors have commented on the state of the floor sample dresses.
Several women complained that the dresses are filthy, with sweat and dirt stains all over. Some of the dresses even have ruined hems from being tried on and stepped on.
Obviously the one on the floor isn't the exact dress you'll be taking home, but the thought of getting into a dress that is covered in someone else's sweat is hardly appealing.
It's almost like a tradition at this point for the bride to have guests with her that either hate her style or have strong opinions about everything. If we're being honest, it's gotten a little old to watch them all put down the bride like that.
But according to a former guest, producers choose who comes to the shopping outing based on how much drama they think they'll cause.
"Only the girls who were able to go to the filming were on the show," the former bride said. "Before the show, [the bride] had to write out descriptions of who she was bringing, what their personalities were like, if they got along with everyone else, what upsets them, what they would disagree with and things like that. Then, they chose the bridesmaids they wanted to interview from that."
In addition to the woman who claims to have received the wrong dress, Alexandra "Ali" Godino sued the show for airing her episode before the wedding. Godino said producers approached her after their feature bride backed out of filming.
The bride claimed that she had a verbal agreement with producers to push her episode until after her actual wedding.
It didn't happen, and her episode was shown on TV one month before the big day.
“If I for one second, for one second, thought they would air this before my wedding I would never have done it — ever, ever, ever,” Godino said about her Manhattan Supreme Court case. “Not showing the world my gown before the wedding is very important, and in particular, I do not want my fiancée to see the gown before the wedding."
Godino was suing for "damages," and her lawyer said that despite spending $20,000 (!!!) on her wedding dress, the show did not compensate her.
Manhattan Judge Nancy Bannon wasn't buying it, saying Godino signed her rights away when she signed on to the show.
“Things could be worse than being on a television show with a beautiful dress on,” Bannon said.