“Say Yes to the Dress”, “Four Weddings”, and “Bridezillas” are just a tap into the bridal reality show market. The journey down the aisle in 2020 is far from putting on a white dress, getting handed a bouquet of flowers, and saying a few vows. The reality television industry has influenced this special day from the locations of bridal dress shops, industrial sized kitchens perfecting a wedding cake, and even the magical Walt Disney World weddings.
A Walk Down the Dress Aisle Through the Years
The most important dress of a newly engaged person’s life is their wedding dress. This simple white dress that gets worn for approximately five hours is the one of the most crucial parts of a wedding. It is so important there is a fourteen year running television show featuring the trials and tribulations of obtaining such dress. Wedding dresses can attribute their customary feel from Queen Victoria in 1840 – she established the famous white wedding dress. Throughout the early 1900s modesty within wedding dresses was key. Presumably because, getting married in some sort of religious fashion accompanied with the insensitive view of women as property to men led to head to toe coverage being essential.The 1950s saw a spin in bridal gowns with tighter bodices, sweetheart necklines, and ball gowns. Continuing into the mid-late 1900s weddings dresses kept most of their modesty by playing with sleeves, fabrics, and bodices. However, most recently “barely there” dresses in which designers tested the limits of how far they can experiment within a conservative wedding dress. While the wedding dress is still a key player in traditionalism within fashion, designers push barriers to keep up with the trends and cycles of the industry.
Bridal Wear Market Share
Wedding dresses are now being compared to as pieces of luxury art because of the intricacies they showcase, and the wedding dress market share is something that should be showcased too. By 2025 Grand View Research, Inc. has estimated that the bridal wear market will be valued at $87.9 billion dollars – with wedding gowns attributing to 50% of this value. A wedding dress is certainly the most important dress an individual will wear in one’s life. However, I think the infiltration of other people’s bridal dress shopping experience from hit programs such as “Say Yes to the Dress” have brought much value to this industry. Taking a peek into someone else’s private moment, and being exposed to new dresses along the way has added a new sense of fame to the bridal dress shopping phenomenon.
Kleinfield Proposes New Designers
The bridal boutique Kleinfeld’s where “Say Yes to the Dress” is filmed has been known to put bridal designers on the map. One designer in particular is Pnina Tornai who is an Israeli wedding dress designer making over the top wedding dresses leaving her clients confident on the show. The cyclical nature of fashion (in particular wedding dresses) has helped Tornai’s designs tremendously. Prior to getting the call to design for Kleinfield’s, Tornai designed dresses for a bridal shop in Tel Aviv, Israel. However, they deemed her wedding dresses as “too sexy” and were rejected by the bridal shop. This led to a life changing moment as she contacted Kleinfield and asked them to sell her designs; immediately they sold out and were a hit. Pnina Tornai now sees approximately 100 brides per day at Kleinfeld’s helping them to perfect their look for their big day. Her designs feature tight bodices, see through mesh, and extravagant detailing. Without the influence of “Say Yes to the Dress” Tornai’s designs wouldn’t be where they are today. While some elements of her designs may have seemed startling for traditional brides, Pnina Tornai is now a household name in the bridal community.
The most important union of someone’s life is the day they get married. With the most important union comes the need for an important, historic, and monumental dress. In 2020 we see the voyage brides have to go through from the first wedding dress they try on to the one they stand with at the altar. Reality television has influenced society in ways unimaginable; including influencing our marriage to the bridal and wedding industry.