All About Brittany Cartwright's 3-in-1 Wedding Dress: 'It's Fit for a Castle!'
The Vanderpump Rules star married boyfriend Jax Taylor in a one-of-a-kind convertible design
Brittany Cartwright’s been dreaming about her wedding since she was 5 years old. So when she went dress shopping for her June 29 Kentucky nuptials to Vanderpump Rules costar Jax Taylor, 39, she knew exactly what she was looking for.
In fact, she found the dress while filming an episode of the hit Bravo reality show, but made sure producers stopped filming the intimate moment.
“I didn’t want the dress to be on the show, because I didn’t want Jax to see it,” Cartwright told PEOPLE exclusively. “And for me, I was so nervous about even going dress shopping because I always thought I wanted to go to New York City, but I ended up finding the perfect dress the very first place that I went too.”
That place was Kinsley James Couture Bridal in West Hollywood, California, and Cartwright, 30, had her close friends, costars and bridesmaids Kristen Doute, Katie Maloney-Schwartz and Stassi Schroeder at her side when she found the gown.
“They had picked out a couple dresses, and the one that I actually went with Stassi had picked up first,” Cartwright told PEOPLE, adding, “Which does not mean that I wouldn’t have picked it out for myself, but it’s just funny that Stassi actually grabbed it before I got in for me to try-on.”
The dress that Cartwright said yes to was a strapless sweetheart style Netta BenShabu beaded gown, featuring a pearl-covered bodice. But with the help of the team of seamstresses at Kinsley James Couture, the gown was transformed into a 3-in-1 convertible wedding dress for her ceremony, reception and afterparty.
“This one dress turns into three looks for the night,” she told PEOPLE. “I’m going to wear the same dress all night long but it will turn into three different looks.”
For the ceremony, Cartwright walked down the aisle in the gown with an over-skirt attached that featured a four-foot train.
“The tulle skirt makes it more regal, and the train is super-long,” Cartwright said. “It looks really, really cool.”
The ceremony look also featured a drop princess detachable sleeve that has a cape-like effect that trails the length of the train. To finish off the look, Cartwright added a custom veil covered in tiny pearls.
“That one is definitely fit for a castle,” Cartwright said of her reception gown. “It’s so pretty. I couldn’t wait for everybody to finally see it. I couldn’t wait for Jax to finally see it.”
For the reception, Cartwright took off the overskirt, sleeves and veil to transform the look into the original strapless mermaid style gown, which was bustled at the bottom so she can dance. And then at the after party, tulle was removed from the bottom of the dress to turn it into a mini skirt.
“It’s super, super cool,” the bride said of the dress metamorphosis.
Cartwright said that all her bridesmaids came with her to the final fitting to learn how to “work” her dress so they could help with the quick changes.
“They were all in there learning and taking videos to show everybody how to take apart my dress so that they could all learn before we got there on the day of,” she shared.
As for her something old and borrowed, Cartwright’s garter belt is made from her mom’s wedding dress. And her something new is the wedding shoes she bought on her recent girls’ trip to Paris with the Vanderpump Rules gang.
Cartwright’s glam also matched her three different looks. For the ceremony, she wore her makeup natural and her hair in big, glamorous Old Hollywood waves. For her final look, she wore her hair in a ponytail.
Cartwright also worked with the same glam squad for the couple’s wedding rehearsal on June 27 also hosted at their wedding venue, the Kentucky Castle in Versailles, Kentucky.
Cartwright revealed at the Vanderpump Rules reunion last month that she’s had her heart set on their venue since she was a child.
“I started planning my engagement party and wedding [when] I was like, 5,” she said. “I knew no matter what I would get married in the castle, so all of the things have to go together.”
The Bravo stars announced their engagement in June 2018 after a rocky year, with Cartwright showing off her cushion-cut halo diamond engagement ring on Instagram.
“Omg omg!! We are ENGAGED! What a way to start our summer and season 7!! I am so happy, so in love, and so beyond excited for this next chapter of our lives!” she wrote. “I can’t wait for all of you to see how he proposed! I am the happiest girl ever right now.”