A local bride-to-be will say “Yes” to the dress on TLC’s popular reality series Friday night.
After working with hundreds of blushing brides over the last three years, Mackenzie Hughes, owner of Mack's Stylist, a local, freelance hair and makeup bridal business, will finally make her own personal trek down the aisle this fall.
It was Hughes’ day-to-day job that actually sparked interest from show producers. The Cheltenham-raised Center City resident explains that she and her fiancé had originally planned to elope in Vegas and hold a party later for family and friends. The 29-year-old bride had two dresses plucked out already, “and then our plans suddenly changed,” she told me over the phone Thursday. The couple decided to have a formal wedding in Philadelphia.
“I attempted to customize alterations for a dress, and my makeup artist, Nick, pretty much told me I needed to get a new one.” In a panicked mode, Hughes had to start her search for a dress all over again.
She submitted her story to the show and a producer got in touch with her the following day.
What’s seemingly an asset in picking her aesthetic with the amount of exposure Hughes has daily to vision boards and themes, actually worked against the bride-to-be. “Since we work with brides, I’ve seen so many dresses and their individual styles,” she says.
“I got even more confused,” she continues with a laugh. “If anything, I decided to go to Kleinfeld because they have so many options.” Hughes chose to bring her hair and makeup team to the show. “They know me as a boss, as a person and as a bride,” she explains.
“I think the most stressful thing about picking a dress is brides don’t know what terms to use,” she says, when they’re conveying what they want or do not want for their big day. “There are so many variations of the color white, all of these added details,” the bride trails.
Dress shopping in general is “overwhelming,” she adds, since there are so many expectations attached to the item. “Plus the cost is expensive so you want to make sure you make a good decision.”
Luckily, Hughes worked with Brittany Davenport, a bridal consultant at Kleinfeld Bridal in Manhattan where the show is taped, who was “absolutely wonderful,” she says. “[Brittany] wanted my personality to match the dress, leading her to ask, ‘knowing this about yourself, which item would you pick?’” Hughes was then able to go with her gut and pick a dress, which she’s excited to wear down the aisle in October when she weds her fiancé – a consultant who lives in Los Angeles and hails from South Africa – on the roof of the Hotel Monaco before 125 guests.
Hughes also has words of advice for local brides:
1. “Trust the dress consultant,” she says. “They’re more familiar with your body type.”
2. “If your fiancé has an opinion, you want to consider what he has to say,” she says. Her man’s non-negotiables were “no ball gowns” and “no lace,” which eliminates 50 percent of options. “We found a happy medium,” she says.
3. Be open: “The more you try to control something, the more you limit yourself,” Mack says.
The episode airs Friday at 9:30 p.m. on TLC.