Dearly beloved, StyleList gathers here today for a sneak peek of "Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta."
A spin-off of the original New York-based TLC series, this edition is set in Atlanta's Bridals by Lori, where discerning atelier owner Lori B. Allen and her black-clad staff of fashion consultants outfit 10,000 Dixie brides-to-be a year.
Here's what StyleList learned about Georgia peach brides from our advance preview of the series, which premieres July 30.
It's not Georgia rules, it's Grandma rules! Two beautiful prospective brides won't zip their sample dresses without the approval from their grandmother, who controls the checkbook. Expect tears aplenty when the generations don't see eye-to-eye on what makes for "appropriate" bridal attire.
Southern girls seem conservative but want to look modern. The episode-one brides are all going strapless, but there are concerns that their dream dresses don't cover enough skin. Haley Lyman, a small-town Alabama bride, amused StyleList with the lengths she went to just to convince herself -- and her granny-- that her dress had a proper sleeve. Not!
The belle bride loves her shoes! One stylish bride brings not one, but three pairs of killer designer heels to her dress fitting and settles on a sky-high pair of royal "something-blue" showstoppers!
There's something old and new about Bridals by Lori. The showroom employs Monte Durham, a southern version of Kleinfeld's flamboyant fashion director Randy Fenoli. Durham may be more molasses in his delivery but he's a master at coaxing reticent brides into their "dream" dress. One sales trick we loved: Deliberately putting a bride in a dress her family will hate so she can dazzle in the gown she truly wants. Genius!
A nervous bride just needs a little southern comfort. But not necessarily the 80 proof kind. Durham, who also owns a beauty salon, is often called upon to "jack up" a bride who is about to run away from a big-ticket dress. He pulls out all the fashion stops, including hair, makeup, jewelry, veils, and shoes, to show how a dress will look on the big day.
Carrie Underwood could have shopped here! Instead of getting a custom Monique Lhuillier wedding dress, Mrs. Mike Fisher could have chosen something from the designer's more affordable Bliss line, which Bridals by Lori sells.
Do we take this southern "Say Yes" spin-off and vow to program it into our DVRs? (Hankie, please!) We do!
"Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta" premieres July 30 at 9:30 p.m. ET on TLC.
In related news, check out Carrie Underwood's wedding-day headband.