Everyone loves a good bargain, but at what cost? The formals industry has quickly become the next luxury good to be the victim of Chinese knock-offs and the internet has made it extremely easy for buyers to be lured into a great deal.
We were doing some research of our own and came across this gem of a website, maxinebridal.com. Now, at first glance you might be thinking “OMG my favorite Pronovias dress is only $379!” and it most certainly is priced that way on their site. But I encourage you to look at the fine print (enlarged below for your reading enjoyment):
“we can offer our customers the similar designer collections they find at more expensive boutique bridal shops for an immensely lower cost”
“We ensure our dress will be 90-95% similar to the original, but if you insist on 100%, please forgive us and pass“
“The dresses will be hand made and no two hand paintings are 100% similar in this world unless you print them by the printers.”
In other words, “Oh you like this pretty, well-made dress in the picture? Let me try to make you one just like it in 3 days by using completely different fabric and swan beads*. Then if you don’t like it, I’m sorry, but you will never hear from me again.”
We can’t stress enough that this is happening ALL OVER the internet. Even if it sounds like they have a return policy, it’s normally pretty bogus or costs just as much in shipping and re-stocking fees as your fabulous $89 dress.
Make it easy on yourself, visit a real store. Talk with real bridal consultants. We don’t want you to wear something ugly on your wedding day either! If you’ve been a victim of a scam, our designers would love to know so they can put a stop to counterfeit sites. Feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and remember to always check the designer’s website for lists of authorized retailers.
*true story – a bride showed our friends a counterfeit gown she had bought and they used BEADS SHAPED LIKE SWANS. not okay!
photo courtesy of Brides-Aware