All the prep paid off as the choice was widely praised. During her acceptance speech for the Arthur Ashe Courage Award, Caitlyn sheepishly asked the fashion critics to "be kind," as she's "new at this." The 65-year-old Olympic gold medalist went on to joke that picking out her outfit was the most pressure she's ever felt.
"Even if she was really nervous, she was just enjoying it," Rade said. "I feel like she was really taking it all in, enjoying getting her hair done, enjoying the makeup, the process. She was super excited.”
Caitlyn echoed that giddiness in an Instagram she posted, showing how she prepped for the big moment. "Behind the scenes of the most incredible, unforgettable night," she wrote. "It takes a village... #GlamSquad"
Rade told ET that 10 swatches of custom-dyed ivory were considered before settling on the Atelier Versace creation, designed by Donatella Versace. The ruched V-neck was reminiscent of the gowns Caitlyn wore in her famous Vanity Fair photo shoot.
"Donatella was over the moon," Rade said. "That would be an understatement. She was so honored. She was so excited. It didn't even take a half of a second and they were like, 'Yes! Yes! Yes! We're in! Yes!'"
The final dress was the result of two separate looks sent from the designer -- the top of one gown and the bottom from another -- and once they made their choice, they were fully committed.
"There was no other option," Rade said. "No backup. No other gown. No other version of the gown. Just the gown."