Buying a designer wedding dress for as much as 90% off the original retail price seems very tempting. Numerous online dealers are selling replicas of designer brands at ridiculously low prices and guaranteeing fast delivery. Too good to be true? Probably.
Many future brides try on their dream dress at a store and then end up purchasing it online for a much lower price, thinking that they will get the “real thing”, because those online dealers post the original picture taken from the designer’s website, which is a copyright violation. Apart from being cheaper, the delivery is also much faster (ordering a wedding dress through a retailer takes 12-16 weeks on average, these online dealers deliver the dress within 2-4 weeks). You might think that the reason for those low prices and fast delivery is that dress comes directly from the factory, without going through wholesaler, distributor or retailer. But this is not true. The dresses just happen to be cheap knockoffs of the original design.
What happens when the package with the wedding dress arrives? Maybe the bride is lucky and the dress might fulfill her expectations. Maybe she knew beforehand that she would get an imitation but doesn’t really mind as long as she saves some money. Fact is, that in many cases, the dress purchased online is a complete disaster. Apart from the risk of getting the wrong size (which could be altered by a seamstress), the quality and fit is often compromised. The fabric, lace and bead-work might be different and the dress will just look cheap.
Although some experiences might be positive, you can find testimonies from brides who share their horror stories. “I CRIED when I opened the package because it was nothing like the dress it was supposed to be a replica of. At the time, they did not have a return policy so I wasted several hundred dollars on a dress I ended up NOT wearing for the wedding…“ writes one girl on a wedding forum.
According to testimonies from bridal boutiques, many brides come in with their “disaster” wedding dress purchased online, hoping it can be fixed somehow. But most of those retailers don’t provide that service unless the dress was purchased through them. And finding good seamstresses these days is not so easy. Often the bride has no choice but to either pay a high price to fix her dress or to get a new one. If she has little time left before her wedding, she might have to pay even more for a rush or just take what’s in stock. So she ends up paying the same or even more than she would have paid if she had ordered the real dress through an authorized retailer beforehand.
If you really want to take the risk, just be aware of the common saying “you get what you pay for”. Think twice before you decide to order your dream wedding dress online. Your dreams might get shattered.