Wedding Clickers bridal show features 'Yes to the Dress' star Fenoli
The wedding dress is more than a beautiful gown.
“It is the single most important garment a woman will buy in her lifetime,” says Randy Fenoli, star of TLC's “Say Yes to the Dress.”
”It's a garment that transitions her into becoming a woman,” he says. “She wears it to walk down the aisle to be with the man she loves more than anyone else on the planet. She wants to look and feel beautiful.”
Fenoli's mission on the television show is to help women find this once-in-a-lifetime dress. He will bring his style expertise to Pittsburgh for the Wedding Clickers bridal show July 27 at Consol Energy Center, Uptown. Runway shows will compete with 150 vendors showcasing wedding options from entertainment to food.
With so many choices, it's best to have a plan before you show up.
A good place to start is with the morning fashion show, where Fenoli will be giving a presentation, says Kimberly Mentecki, co-owner of Babe's Broadway Bridal & Tuxedo in New Kensington with her mother, Karen Fassinger. Babe's and Sorelle Bridal Salon in Washington, Pa. will have pop-up boutiques with dresses for brides to try on.
“That way, you can see a lot of the dresses on models in the fashion show and, then, come to our booth to try them on,” Mentecki says. “Having Randy at this show is wonderful. You feel like you know Randy, because he is so personable, and he just knows how to communicate with the bride and her family and friends. When brides say ‘yes to the dress' you know it. You can just see it in their faces.”
Fenoli will discuss body type and offer guidelines on finding the correct dress, along with advice on accessories, shoes and flowers.
“Finding the perfect dress is all about loving who you are and feeling beautiful in it,” says Fenoli, of Kleinfeld Bridal in Manhattan, who taught himself to sew at age 9. “I will never work on commission because my job is to dress brides and make sure they are happy. I will not leave this bridal show until the last bride is gone. I love meeting them and taking photos with them.”
This season, he says, the trend is toward fewer strapless dresses. Trains are much shorter than they used to be, and he is seeing a lot more sleeves and attention to detail on the back of the gown.
“Dresses are sexier and more sophisticated,” says Fenoli. “The average age for a bride has gone up, and they don't all want the Cinderella dress. They want a gown they are comfortable in and can dance in at the reception and enjoy their special night.”
Fenoli is “big time” says Chaz Hurlbut, director of operations for 2nd II None Productions out of Monroeville, which handles entertainment for the fashion show, provides the music to get the guests pumped up and is one of the vendors.
“The space is massive, and it's a great atmosphere,” Hurlbut says. “There is plenty of room to talk to vendors and not get pushed out of the way. It's a really big show. They do it right.”
Having dresses on site to try on is one of the things that make this show different, says Dottie Miller, co-owner of Wedding Clickers with her husband, Bob.
“This show is a great opportunity to interview the vendors who will be working for you that day and to get advice,” Dottie Miller says. “It gives you a chance to taste cake or touch a limousine or talk with a photographer. ... A show like this just saves a lot of time from going to see each vendor individually. You can taste four different cakes in one visit. Who has time to visit all four of those bakeries?”
The Millers, who have been doing wedding shows since 2002, expect 2,000-plus attendees,
“Randy is a huge draw because these brides watch him on TV,” Dottie Miller says. “They feel like they know him. It is so exciting for the brides. They come to this show, and they want to learn everything. And there are people who come who just want to see and meet Randy because they watch the show. He is fabulous and so energetic. He is so enjoyable to be around.”
JoAnne Klimovich Harrop is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-320-7889.
Wedding show tips
Randy Fenoli, star of TLC's “Say Yes to the Dress,” offers this advice for navigating a wedding show:
• Bring a folder so after you talk with a certain vendor you can make a note about them and file a business card or other pertinent information so you will have it later.
• Use a rating system of how much you like or dislike a vendor, so at the end of the day you have narrowed your choices.
• Bring someone with you to help navigate the space and help carry all the goodies, so you are free to move around the show.
• Know your budget, breaking it down to how much you are willing to spend on each detail of the wedding, from the dress to the entertainment to the food.
• When considering a dress, there are no hard and fast rules for which gown fits which body type. It's all about finding the right proportion.