A Central Ohio student and Kleinfeld Bridal intern dishes on what happens before saying “yes” to the dress.

From the time I was a little girl, the wedding industry has been a passion of mine. Going into my senior year at Kent State University, I applied for a summer internship at Kleinfeld Bridal in New York City, home of TLC's show, Say Yes to the Dress. Landing the internship was a dream come true, both for my organizational communication major and for my love of fashion and weddings. Now, I'm here to share with you some of my insider tips and tricks when it comes to Kleinfeld Bridal and wedding dress shopping.

“When you are here, you are part of the Kleinfeld family,” Kleinfeld co-owner Ronnie Rothstein says of the store, and I've found that to be so true.

The family dynamic extends to brides too, of course, and scheduling an appointment is easy; you simply call the store at least a week before your desired appointment date. Dresses often take six to eight months to make after they're ordered, and Pnina Tornai (a Kleinfeld exclusive) takes 12 months, so keep that in mind when making your appointment.

The biggest question on many brides' minds at Kleinfeld is, “What are the chances I'll be on Say Yes to the Dress?” Brides must apply through the TLC website to be featured on the show, but filming takes place Tuesdays through Saturdays, so there's always a chance you could appear in the background of an episode. If you do not want to risk being seen in your gown, your consultant can and will make other arrangements to make you as comfortable as possible during your appointment.

Another big question brides have, whether they're shopping at Kleinfeld or elsewhere, is what they can do to make the shopping process easier. Mara Urshel, the other co-owner of the store, advises brides to set a budget and stick to it. This was the No. 1 problem I noticed with the brides I helped during their appointments. Nothing is more upsetting to watch than a bride who falls in love with a dress that is out of her price range.

“Don't stress the unimportant stuff,” Urshel adds. “Enjoy the preparation process. It's a great time to bond with your bridal party and family.” So many women overthink, overplan and micromanage the entire dress shopping process. Trying on too many dresses is just as harmful as not trying on enough. My advice mirrors Urshel's: Have faith that you'll find The One. Just like you found the right partner, you will find the right dress.

Being involved in a decision as important and personal as a wedding dress is something truly magical, and I am so thankful that I got to be a part of something as big as Kleinfeld Bridal. Saying “Yes” to this internship allowed me to chase my dreams, as well as help brides make their final look truly remarkable.

Photo: Courtesy Kleinfeld