“However, as the internet gains traction as a viable gown resource, the possibility of brides price-comparing and ‘buying the same dress somewhere else’ becomes even greater. There are discounters and consigners and Craigslist and you can even buy cheap knockoffs from China. So stores are freaked out – after all, they’re losing their competitive edge. Their response strategy? Limiting the amount of information that a bride can leave with. If she can’t look it up, she can’t find it cheaper. Hence, no photos.
“But surely you could write down its brand and style name, so you could look it up for future reference? Nope. Many stores literally rip the labels out of sample gowns, so that you cannot even tell which dress you are trying on.
“I read about this shocking tactic in a handy book, but found it hard to believe until I experienced it firsthand. I was in a pretty posh store, and I liked a dress by designer Melissa Sweet. But it was pricey, and I wasn’t ready to buy. I asked the owner, “Which dress is this again, so I can remember it?” She said, “It’s the Melissa Sweet.” I said, “I know, but which one? I know they all have style names, or numbers or something.” “Nope,” she said, looking down at her hands. “That’s all you need to know.”
“Wow! Wow. Well, all I need to know is that I won’t be making my purchase here!”
Shopping for The Dress, Curious Shopper, January 10, 2007
Heh, wedding industry, take that!