Say Yes To The Dress' Randy Fenoli: Bridal guru who wants to be US president

Say Yes To The Dress star Randy Fenoli would do it simply because he wants to make life better for people

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It can sound a little improbable, but Randy Fenoli, star of hit reality show Say Yes To The Dress, says it with aplomb anyway: He would love to be the president of the United States.

"I know it's probably the most difficult and challenging job on the planet, but I would try to make the best decisions for the country... and make the world a better place," he tells The Straits Times during a telephone interview from Florida.

This desire to make life better for people has propelled the exuberant 52-year-old to rockstar status in the US.

The bachelor steals the spotlight each time he appears on his reality show to help brides-to-be pick their ideal wedding dress at the upscale bridal salon Kleinfeld in New York.

The show will be premiering its 14th season next month.

Fenoli also stars in other bridal- themed reality TV programmes including Randy Knows Best and Randy To The Rescue.

Dressing brides since 1993, he is obsessed with the wedding dress and working with brides to pick the perfect one.

"It's the single most important garment that a woman will ever wear and most brides have never done this before, so they need a little help," he says.

Keeping a cool head, he turns into a bride therapist during the show.

Many women on the show have an entourage of relatives who freely offer their suggestions for the choice of gown.

But all is never fine and dandy, which makes for riveting television for fans. Some family groups butt heads as one person may prefer one dress design while another does not, leaving the bride confused.

This is where Fenoli enters to save the day as he swiftly puts out any fires and refocuses attention on the ultimate goal: for the bride to find that one show-stopping dress.

He says: "That's my favourite part of the job - when I see a bride and she's in the perfect dress that looks like it was made for her."

That one moment is what keeps him hooked: "That feeling never goes away and I never tire of it."

1 What are your top tips for a woman on the hunt for a wedding dress?

You would want to order your dress six to eight months beforehand, or you may not be able to get the style you like.

And after you say yes to the dress, you have to stop shopping. It's just like when you find the perfect guy, you shouldn't go to the singles bar after that.


A wedding gown should be classically sexy and timeless, says Randy Fenoli, who helps brides-to-be pick their ideal wedding dress on reality show Say Yes To The Dress. PHOTO: TLC

2 What is the trend for wedding dresses this year?

Sexy, sexy, sexy dresses with too much skin showing. I've seen sheer wedding dresses, slits that head all the way up to the waist. I've seen it all and I'm not a huge fan.

I think that a wedding dress should be a little more conservative and reserved.

Brides need to realise it's a religious ceremony taking place and the family will be there. They don't want to see the bride walking half-naked down the aisle.

3 Is there one particular style that is a hot favourite among brides?

Yeah, there are certain dresses in the salon that every bride wants.

One really popular style is the sweetheart cut. It's got beading under the bust and a corset back and it makes every bride look taller, skinnier and sexier.

Also, lace is still very, very popular.

4 White has been the No. 1 colour for wedding dresses for ages, but what do you think of coloured gowns?

I'm not a fan. What makes a dress a wedding dress is that it's white.

Once bridal designers start making coloured wedding dresses, they are putting themselves out of a job because if a girl can wear that, then she's just going to look for an evening dress designer.

5 Do you subscribe to the "bridezilla" idea?

I do not believe in bridezillas, but rather, that I have a woman in front of me who just wants to look beautiful on her wedding day and is very anxious and nervous because she doesn't think she is going to find the dress.

It's a new experience and I can understand why she wants everything to be perfect... I mean, how much money is she spending from the photographer to the cake to the music and dress? So everything should be perfect.

6 You've seen countless bridal gowns, so what would be your ideal dress?

Definitely something classically sexy and timeless. A dress that actresses Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn would wear. And when I look back at photos in the years to come, it's going to look timeless.

Every human being on the planet wants to look sexy and what it means to each individual is different, but you can be sexy and still covered and elegant at the same time.

7 The focus has always been on the bride, but what about the groom?  Are they stepping up their game to look just as good too?

The grooms are venturing out a little more and getting better in picking the perfect suit.

American men still have a lot to learn and they think that the suit is supposed to be comfortable. It's not. It's supposed to fit your body and look sexy.

I tell grooms that if you're going to be standing next to your bride, you have to look just as hot and sexy as she does because you're going to be in every photo with her. So you better kick it up a notch.

8 How would you like to be remembered?

I would like to be remembered as a good person with a generous heart who always tried to do the right thing.

When we leave this life, we leave with only one thing, the memories of ourselves. So I want to be able to put my head down on my pillow and feel like I have done the right thing and been a good person doing it.

•Say Yes To The Dress Season 14 premieres on March 11 at 9pm on TLC (StarHub Channel 427 and Singtel Mio Channel 254).

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 15, 2016, with the headline 'Bridal guru who wants to be US president'. Print Edition | Subscribe