Beckett isn't thrilled with the girly gowns Martha showcases in the glorious world of wedding magazines. Castle thumbs through one issue to find a venue that interests both him and his bride-to-be called the Cordova House. Woo hoo! They actually agree on a place! The celebration of this nuptials news gets put on hold when two fashion students find the body of Ella Hayes in a dumpster. The victim worked for Modern Fashion magazine which is run by a dragon lady named Matilda King. Beckett knows this woman well. She was a model for her back in the day. That's right. NYPD Homicide Detective Kate Beckett was once a fashion model!
Matilda says Beckett is the only person who ever told her "no" when asked to do a photo spread. She further reveals that she had recently fired the murder victim. Matilda's right-hand man, Julian, says Ella had an incident involving Matilda's other recently-fired assistant, Grace. The two ladies got into a brawl after their dismissal that spilled into a photo shoot. The photographer caught the brawl on film. The scarf Grace was wearing matches fibers that was found on the victim. Castle says she was obviously dressed to kill.
Grace was ticked at Ella, but says a lot of people have that blue scarf, as it was a company Christmas present. The victim's roommate said her friend had hoped being at the publication would help open doors for her as a designer. Grace says Ella was threatened by someone. She is able to describe the man to a sketch artist. Another witness leads Castle to believe that the suspect was a member of the swanky Carlton Club. The guy's name is Marcus Conway, a lawyer for a firm representing Modern Fashion's top competitor, Couture Chic.
Castle and Beckett meet Couture Chic's Editor-In-Chief, Gloria Robbins, as Marcus Conway explains that Ella told him she had info that would destroy Modern Fashion. He has a voicemail message to prove this. Gloria Robbins adds that they were looking for info on how their competition was headed into the digital age. A bug was planted in Ella's apartment, but Gloria and Marcus claim it wasn't done by them. Whoever was listening in would have heard where Ella was headed. As it turns out, the victim was being spied on by her own magazine.
The magazine's head of security admits planting the bug upon Matilda King's order. The audio was fed directly to the dragon lady's computer. Beckett believes her former boss is the killer. She hears Matilda screaming at the magazine's new owner, Glenn Carter, about changes being made to the publication. The fashion lady has a temper, but she alibis out. In other news, Ella made a call to someone inside the magazine to an IT tech who told her that someone set her up by making changes to her boss's calendar.
Matilda believes attempts were being made to make her look bad. Sharks are circling for her job. That's why she needs help from Beckett when a model cancels for an upcoming photo shoot. She said no once before, but not this time. Beckett is dazzling in a beautiful wedding dress. She stares at herself in a mirror with an uneasy look on her face. Her troubled demeanor is amplified when Castle calls to say the Cordova House has just become available for them in the spring. This spring! Beckett tells Castle that she doesn't want to rush things. They'll just find another venue.
Esposito learns that Matilda's calendar may have been changed by a designer named Yumi. Black corral was found on the bottom of the victim's shoe just like that found at his studio for a current design line. Yumi says he would never mess with Matilda, but Castle knows that this guy stole her design because his weren't good enough. Only two people knew that. Yumi is one of them, but he's not the killer. He did, however, make many phone calls to Modern Fashion. The person on the other end of the line was Julian. He was in cahoots with Yumi in an attempt to get Matilda's job. Case closed.
When Beckett arrives home, she finds the gift of the wedding dress she wore earlier waiting for her compliments of Matilda. She heads over to Castle's place to reveal what's been bugging her. It's about her mother. She always thought she'd be there to help plan her big day. She worried she couldn't do it on her own. She's not worried anymore. Beckett wants to marry Castle as soon as possible. They still need a place, but the good news is that she already has a dress!