The Rare Dress Quest

The Wedding Guru Judy Lewis fields this week’s wedding questions. Today: The Rare Dress Quest

Nanette asks: “I fell in love with a dress I saw in a magazine, and I know the name of the manufacturer and the item number. However, I’ve called as many bridal shops and boutiques as I could — and no one seems to carry it! There are some that will order it, but if I don’t like it on me (which I doubt) I’m stuck. It’s the store policy to order a “sample dress,” but I’m not sure about that. Any suggestions?”

Dear Nanette: Most bridal shops, deservedly, are hesitant about ordering a dress that the customer may not ultimately want to buy. It would seem to me that the larger the bridal shop, the more willing they may be to order a “sample.” Have you tried any of the big “chain” stores?

A more successful route I tried was to look for your dress on on-line. Frankly, I was very surprised to find two Web sites that both allow returns. Having located those two, I’m now sure that there are more. Their return policies are as follows: “Returns can be done within three days from the date of receipt. After three days there will be no refunds or exchanges. In case of refund, 15% restocking fees will be charged. We only accept returns if there is something wrong with the dress, like a manufacture damage. The buyer is responsible for all shipping costs, and they will not be refunded.”

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What I did notice is that the prices seem to be the same throughout, but some sites don’t charge shipping, which could save you a tidy sum. Good luck!

Have you ever gotten into a dress mess of your own? Write your thoughts in the comments box below, or submit your own question to “The Wedding Guru” by E-mailing


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