Wedding Dresses Online: Here Comes the Fakes

Mar 14, 2014 10:57am

Every year, more than 600,000 fake wedding dresses are bought online. Brides think they’re getting the real deal for the big day, but what they’re getting is a big fake.

It happened to Aiste Ray. In an ABC investigation in 2011, she said she found  the $1,300 dress of her dreams — for $320. She thought she was buying an exact replica.

Big mistake.

Ray said she couldn’t believe what came.  “I mean, it was beaded in black and pearls, it made no sense. It looked like a high school project,” she said.

But now the trade group representing the American Bridal and Prom Dress makers and retailers industry is fighting back. They’re suing websites that allegedly sell fake dresses. And they just had a victory: A judge ordered more than 1,000 sites to knock it off, freezing their online payment accounts and closing their sites.

“The end game here is to get some federal recognition of the damage it’s doing to our economy,” said Steve Lang, president of the American Bridal and Prom Industry Association.

But it’s not always easy to spot the fakes, as evidenced in this morning’s “Good Morning America” segment. And bridal shop owners and dress makers say they’re on the losing end of this cyber battle.

The takeaway for the bride-to-be? When it comes to the perfect dress, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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