Wait, wait ... That's a lie. No I didn't. I didn't do that. I immediately booked an appointment.
There was a whole other application to be one of the featured brides on the show, which I did fill out, but had little expectation about hearing back...truthfully, I didn't need Randy to rescue me from anything!
I received a phone call confirming my appointment, and explaining a little bit how it would work - Randy would be circulating, but I would have my own separate consultant. They then asked me what my budget was, and I totally fibbed. I said $5K.
(In reality, I'd like to spend about half of that on all of my attire combined. If at all possible, I really wanted to find a used or sample dress. But if I try on a dress that full price, is around $5000, then used, I could probably find it for about half that.)
I couldn't wait! On the morning of, I carpooled with some friends and drove out to the middle of nowhere (the invite said 'Chicago' but that was a, ahem, "broad" term for our location.) We knew we were in the right place when we saw THIS!
It was weird - we could hear lots of cheering, and there were tables with check-in-type-looking clipboards, but no one was there to help navigate us. I double checked my e-mail that I was sent--yep, we were there at the right time and day! Were we supposed to have gotten there super early?
Finally, someone came out from behind some curtains and told us to come on in and check in. Apparently, the cheering we were hearing was them filming the opening sequence of the show - but the actual brides with appointments don't even go to that!
Mr. Llama - I advise that you stop reading here, unless you want to see me in dresses!
We went ahead and checked in and waited for the filming to end. Apparently that part of the show where all the brides look like they're 'shopping?' Totally staged as well. In the meantime, we took a pic to help commemorate the event:
Same with this one:
Also while I had this dress on, the producers came over and filmed a segment with me! They brought over Randy's hair and makeup gals, and they asked me what I wanted my hair/makeup to look like on the wedding day. They gave me some tips (I think I specifically asked about hair extensions and lashes, if I remember correctly), filmed a few different takes of it, and they were on their way. Unfortunately, it's on the cutting room floor somewhere. WAH WAH.
It was strange - I really wanted to just go browse around myself, but that's not really the way it worked. I mostly waited in my fitting room every time my consultant went to go pick up more options. Eventually though, I couldn't be contained and just started looking myself:
Then we had to wrap it up. I believe I tried on the Alvina Valenta 9161 one more time, as that had been the favorite, and then we said goodbye to Randy to the Rescue! I'm so glad I did it - what were the chances that the show was going to come to Chicago two weeks after I got engaged?? - so I made my inner "Say Yes to the Dress" superfan happy.
Hmmm...not sure there's anything "inner" about my Say Yes superfan-ness...