Picture this: Your ceremony is hours away, and you just discovered a tear in the fabric of your dress. Do you panic? Not if your stylist is right there. A day-of bridal stylist or clothing specialist is a pro you can hire to work exclusively on your wedding day to be sure your clothing—and your party's—is as perfect as possible. "We're like an insurance policy," says Heidi Johnson, founder of the Wedding DeTailor, in Napa, California. "We take care of the superficial clothing details so you can relax." But are they really better than having Mom standing by with needle and thread? We asked the experts to break down the what-ifs and benefits of this increasingly popular service.
Travel is rough on formalwear.
"The dress and veil almost always need to be touched up after traveling in a garment bag," says Julie Sabatino (shown, above right), founder of New York City-based the Stylish Bride. And a pro will do so safely, even with fine fabrics like silk. She can do the same for your 'maids' dresses.
You might need on-the-spot fixes.
Maybe a zipper is stuck, or the hem of your dress got caught in the limo door. A creative stylist can solve these problems on the fly. "At every wedding, I think, Thank goodness we were here!" says Maradee Wahl of Dear Maradee, in Los Angeles. Whether it's removing stains or helping a groom who forgot his pants (yes, it's happened!), stylists are ready for any scenario. They can also make last-minute additions. "One of my brides didn't have something blue to wear, so I sewed some blue thread inside her gown," says Cacky Rivers of Cacky's Bride + Aid, in Charleston, South Carolina.
Your whole party needs primping.
A stylist will not only straighten bows and fluff your dress, but he or she will also make sure everyone else's clothes look pristine for photos, says Johnson. That includes the guys. "Surprisingly few men know how to tie bow ties," Sabatino points out.
Your dress needs post-wedding attention.
You're ready to jet off on your honeymoon—but what are you supposed to do with your gown? Some bridal stylists might even pick it up from your hotel and deliver it to the cleaner/preservationist for you. That's one thing you can check off your post-wedding to-do list!