What to Do if You’re a Bride-to-Be Who Got Screwed Over by Alfred Angelo

A window display is seen at Alfredo Angelo bridal store in West Covina, Calif.
A window display is seen at Alfredo Angelo bridal store in West Covina, Calif. Walt Mancini/AP Photo

Last week, bridal retailer Alfred Angelo filed bankruptcy and abruptly closed its corporate office and stores. Stores took orders for wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses as recently as Wednesday, July 12, so this move shocked brides nationwide.

Because the Alfred Angelo is in bankruptcy, it’s unclear whether it will fulfill its current orders or return deposits. Many people tried to contact the retailer about the status of their orders — but they couldn’t reach anyone.

If you ordered a gown from Alfred Angelo, don’t panic. There are things you can do to recoup your deposit and still have a beautiful wedding dress.

How to Get Your Money Back From Alfred Angelo

If you don’t want to wait and see how the situation plays out, you can stop your payment and buy a dress elsewhere.

1. Dispute the Charges

If you purchased your dress with a credit card, you might be able to dispute the charges and get a credit on your account. Most credit card companies offer certain protections on purchases, even if the company goes bankrupt.

To dispute the charge, gather any evidence you have regarding the purchase, like a receipt, and contact your credit card company as soon as possible. Oftentimes, the credit card company will refund the transaction in just a few days.

2. Cancel Your Check

Similarly, if you paid with a check, you can cancel it. There is often a fee, which can be as high as $25, but that’s a small price to pay to get a $1,000 wedding dress deposit back.

Contact your bank and tell the representative you want to stop payment on a check. The rep will ask for a few bits of information, including the bank account number, check total, check number and the date you wrote the check.

3. File a Claim

If you were not able to get a dispute the charge or stop payment on the check, you can file a claim with your state’s attorney general. When you file, you’ll be asked to enter the following:

  • Your name
  • Your contact information, including address, phone number and email
  • What store you bought your dress from
  • Payment method
  • When the dress was supposed to arrive
  • Amount paid
  • Details of what you ordered and a copy of your receipt

Where to Find Your Dream Gown at the Last Minute

Of course, getting your money back is only part of the problem. Picking a wedding dress is a tedious process, and the thousands of brides who thought they finally found the perfect dress may have to start over.

Whether you’re stranded by Alfred Angelo or have another dress crisis, here are ways you can find your dream gown.

1. Check Resale Sites and Consignment Shops

Alfred Angelo was one of the biggest bridal retailers out there. Thankfully, that means many of its dresses end up on resale sites or in consignment shops.

You should be able to find your gown’s style number on the receipt. Once you have the style number, search for it on sites like eBay, Tradesy and Poshmark.

For example, if you search for “Alfred Angelo Jasmine 215” on eBay, you’ll find several of this style of gown listed for sale.

You can also check local bridal consignment shops. The Knot has a searchable database of these shops.  

2. Take Photos to a Dressmaker

If you cannot find your gown but are determined to have that style, another option is to take photos to a dressmaker and have it replicated for you. This process can be time-consuming and expensive, but if you aren’t willing to compromise on the dress, this could be a good route to take.

3. Start Shopping (Again)

Other bridal retailers have offered steep discounts for brides and bridesmaids stranded by Alfred Angelo.

Right now, David’s Bridal is offering 30% off wedding dresses and 20% off bridesmaid gowns for anyone who purchased a dress from Alfred Angelo and hasn’t received it. To get this discount, you’ll have to present your Alfred Angelo receipt or a receipt from another bridal shop showing you ordered an Alfred Angelo gown.

If you have your Alfred Angelo gown but still need alterations, David’s Bridal will also offer its services to you and waive any rush fees.

By taking action now, you can ensure you have a beautiful wedding day — even without Alfred Angelo’s help.

Kat Tretina is a freelance writer located in Orlando, Florida, specializing in personal finance.

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