The Bride: Patricia F. Klier, a 25-year-old public relations manager
Her Gown: Marisa, style 590
Her Story: "I knew my dress search was going to be difficult because I'm picky and petite, and I was on a budget. I began looking for my gown just three weeks after I got engaged. I started by scouring the offerings at the low-end stores, but I eventually looked at high-end salons all over the Orlando area. It felt like a fruitless search. I had tried on dozens of dresses, some of which I liked, but nothing that stood out as 'Me!'
Three months into my search, I decided to revisit one of the upscale stores. I dragged my mom with me to the appointment. And there it was—the Marisa gown of my dreams. It was style 590, a strapless A-line dress with panels of Alençon lace. The most beautiful details were the satin-covered buttons that went all the way down the back. The dress had a modest train, perfect for my petite frame, and the only alteration necessary would be the hem. I fell in love! When I came out of the dressing room to show my mom the dress, a saleswoman asked if I was there for my fitting. It was obvious to her that I was wearing 'the one.' But my mother, an accountant, was an absolute stickler about the budget, and, since this gown was out of my price range, I sadly resigned myself to finding another dress.
I went home and looked up Marisa online, because I had not heard of that designer before. The first site that came up was for RK Bridal in New York City. I found my dress on their site for about $1,500, nearly half the price! They offered the gown for sale online, and even though I know I shouldn't have been worried about ordering my gown online, I was. Frantically, I called my best friend Leena, who lives in New York, and asked her if she knew about RK Bridal. She did, and she offered to go to the store to place the order for me in person. RK Bridal shipped the gown to my office. I didn't think it was possible, but I was even more thrilled with my dress when it arrived than when I first tried it on. The color, the fabric, the design and the details were all more beautiful than I remembered." —Meredith Bodgas