Wedding Dress SOS: How To Deal With a Last-Minute Gown Emergency

It takes months of deliberation to choose the right wedding dress—followed by several appointments to have it fitted just so—but only a split second to spill wine all over it. Or for the hem to catch on someone's heel and rip. Or for the a bead come loose and fall off. Or...well, you get the idea. It doesn't take much to damage a white (or light pink?) gown made of delicate fabric.

Still, despite the lengthy list of possible bridal SOS scenarios out there, there's no reason you should only serve clear beverages, avoid everyone wearing lipstick and skip the conga line at your reception. "It's your day," Terry Hall, the Fashion Director of Kleinfeld Bridal, told me. "You've got to live in the moment." Instead of trying to avoid every "what if" out there, he suggests being prepared for any possible mishap with the five key things in the slideshow below. Click through to prepare yourself for the worst. (Which won't stop that day from being the best anyways, I promise! So stop worrying!)

3. White Vinegar

Although Terry's preferred mode of stain defense is the aforementioned Tide To Go pen, he says that a formula of vinegar and water works just as well in a pinch—since caterers usually have a spare bottle of Heinz in the kitchen! If you want to be extra prepared, though, decant a few ounces ahead of time and stash it with some cotton balls for dabbing.