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Hamilton brides-to-be scramble after bridal retailer files for bankruptcy

Hamilton brides-to-be scramble after bridal retailer files for bankruptcy
From CBC - August 11, 2017

Margaret Perdue started bawling when she heard on the radio that the bridal retailer responsible for her wedding gown hadabruptly closed its doors.

"This is how bridezillas are hatched," said the 33-year-old Toronto resident."I was distraught. When you try to plan for your wedding inadvance and things come crashing down, it's a hit in the heart."

With her wedding in October, she had already put down a $1,056 deposit on an ivory floor-length number -- named after Princess Elsafrom Frozen -- back in May. Suddenly, Perdue found herself scramblingto find something else.

When you goshopping for a dress, you get emotional. You plan your whole wedding based on it. You develop a bondwith the dress. It's not that easy to get over. - Hamilton Best for Bride managerMarcella Lico

But she's not the only bride-to-be panicking.

Florida-based bridal retailer Alfred Angelo shuttered its 60 U.S. stores and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation in July,leaving brides-to-be around the world without the gowns they had already ordered.

Some women offer up their gowns

Many of them took to social media to complain. At the same time, some women have offered up their own gowns.

"Size 12/14 dress. Detachable straps," one tweeted on August 5. "I would love to donate my wedding dress to any bride who has beenshafted by Alfred's .AlfredAngelo."

This month, Alfred Angelo posted a statement on their website:

"The Chapter 7 Trustee greatly regrets the upset that Alfred Angelo's July 14 bankruptcy filing has caused its customers," itsaid.

"While we have been successful in obtaining customer records anddelivering many dresses and accessories for customers all over thecountry, even after the bankruptcy filing date, it has now becomeapparent that the logistical and financial strain of fulfilling eachand every open order makes continuing that course of action nolonger possible."

Alfred Angelo's bridal wear was sold at 1,400 locations, including many in Canada.

19 Hamilton brides affected

Marcella Lico, manager at Best for Bride in Hamilton, said herstore has 79 clients who were affected, 19 of whom are brides. Andthat's not even including the ones at the company's three otherlocations in Ontario.

She said she is "repulsed" by Alfred Angelo's treatment of the people buying and selling their dresses.

"For a company that's been around for as long as they have, it'sdisgusting," Lico said.

Luckily, most of the affected clients have time, she said. Her store has only issued five refunds so far, which amount to about$8,000 in lost business.

Lico said she was on vacation when the news broke and many clients started calling the store before her staff had a chance toreach out.

"In the first couple of weeks, we did not have much info to give them. We did not know if we would be getting the (dresses)," shesaid. "We still have not heard from Alfred Angelo at all."

'You develop a bond with the dress'

'You will need to find alternative dresses for your clients'

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