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Brides across the country are in a state of panic after dress brand Alfred Angelo — which has as many as 60 of its own stores in the US and is carried in some 1,400 others around the world — filed for bankruptcy and abruptly shut its doors, leaving many unsure if their purchased dresses will ever make it to them.
Yesterday, a store manager told San Antonio’s News4A that employees were notified on a conference call with corporate executives that the company would be filing for bankruptcy. The Palm Beach Post reported that employees at the company’s headquarters in Delray Beach, Florida, left the office en masse yesterday, carrying all their belongings.
Not unlike many stores struggling in today’s difficult retail climate, Alfred Angelo has been struggling. This news is particularly devastating, as many customers who’ve already paid for their wedding or bridesmaid dresses are now left in limbo. While employees told News4A they stayed up all night Thursday shipping out dresses to customers, plenty of women have taken to social media to express their concerns.
Bought the perfect custom wedding dress at #alfredangelo just weeks before it closed thank god I have plenty of time to find a new one!!— Christina (@T_isforTinaa) July 14, 2017
The wedding party I am in found out this morning Alfred Angelo, where we ordered our dresses from, went bankrupt. Sooo now what? pic.twitter.com/DNmkp6TCH1— Lauren Kirchmyer (@Dance716) July 14, 2017
I'm just sick to my stomach at the thought. So much money gone. Thanks #alfredangelo— Lindsey Nicole (@linglingluv) July 14, 2017
The brand’s website still appears to be up and running, offering a sale on bridal dresses. And amid all the chaos, there have been acts of camaraderie. In the Official Disbrides Facebook group, for those who are a part of the Disney Brides community, admin Lisa Marie Commander-Thomas offered up a solution. (The brand has a licensing agreement with The Walt Disney Company and releases a line of gowns inspired by Disney princesses each year.)
“I'm thinking if possible we should begin calling Bridal Salons that carried Alfred Angelo & see what style numbers & sizes they have available. Anyone have time to donate to this effort?” she wrote. “Go to the website of Alfred Angelo. Click find a store. Enter your zipcode. Let's start calling and seeing who has what and prices. USE THIS THREAD TO LIST any information obtained. Store name. Address. Phone. Styles available. ASK THEM FOR THEIR INVENTORY LIST TO INCLUDE STYLE SIZE AND DISCOUNT PRICE AND EMAIL IT TO YOU PLEASE. THEY CAN ALL DO IT.”
Women with previously worn dresses have also been posting on Twitter, offering their dresses to brides whose dress status is now uncertain.
Meanwhile, David’s Bridal is offering 30 percent off bridal gowns and 20 percent off bridesmaid dresses to anyone who presents a receipt from Alfred Angelo. There’s also a Facebook group, according to Buzzfeed, that’s just been set up for dresses to be swapped and to identify Alfred Angelo gown lookalikes.
On Monday, Alfred Angelo released a statement onto its site:
Alfred Angelo filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on July 14, 2017. As a result, all stores and wholesalers are closed. Margaret Smith was appointed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Trustee. If you wish to be contacted regarding your order status once information is available please send an email to: email@example.com. We will post additional information regarding the status of dresses on this web-site as it becomes available. We apologize for the inconvenience and hardship resulting from this event. We appreciate your patience. Thank you.
Update: July 17th, 2017, 1:50 p.m.
This post has been updated with a statement from Alfred Angelo.