Just Say No to Counterfeit Fashion

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March 3, 2014
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March 4, 2014

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We urge you to take a stand against counterfeiting.

Our incredible interest in the matter began after we stumbled across bigtailordress.com using our own images from bridal market to sell impostor wedding gowns overseas.

Counterfeiting in the high fashion industry is not breaking news. The activity is thievery, and hurtful to businesses and therefore the economy. In fact, after some recent research we’re learning just how much it affects the wedding industry too.

In 2012 it was estimated that 600,000 knockoff dresses were purchased online in the United States. The repercussions of this number is rather immeasurable. The money that leaves the United Stats goes elsewhere, specifically to China where counterfeiting is rampant, leaving the pockets of both talented designers and the often small businesses (like Lovella Bridal) that sell their work. And the financial aspect is only one aspect of the impact; brand reputation is damaged and hard work unrewarded.

Companies have tried to take a stand in the counterfeit goods battle.

Brides magazine has taken a proactive approach to the issue with their Wedding Genius app, which includes a feature that can determine whether or not a gown is being sold through a legitimate website.

You may recall the Vera Wang $500 fee debacle. The label saw notoriety in the press last year after requiring a $500 fee to try on a wedding dress at their new Shanghai boutique. After backlash from the public, the fee, which was aimed at reducing counterfeiting and curtailing casual shoppers with no intention of buying, was revoked. Though the attempt was admirable, it was too big a pill for the public to swallow, and was arguably the wrong way to go about the problem.

Wedding gown designers have felt the brunt of these illicit activities first-hand, and are speaking out.

Designer Elizabeth Dye shared her own encounter in seeing her designs being replicated. In a genius move, she ordered an imitation of her gown. Upon inspection, Dye found a big difference: cheap fabric en lieu of the luxury fabrics used in the construction of her gowns. That same New York Times article went on to state that fashion designers should enjoy the same copyright protections as other artists.

Another wedding gown designer, Christina Wu, has also taken a public stand in battling piracy in the bridal industry.

If you’re intrigued, Confetti has an excellent article describing the act of purchasing counterfeit wedding gowns as being unethical, immoral and illegal.

Sadly, the Internet has exacerbated the issue. If we can’t solve the problem at the source, then we must at the consumer. If a consumer knowingly purchases a knock-off, they are participating in the counterfeiting industry; they are supporting it.

Take a stand: don’t buy imitation. Don’t support an industry that is based on deceit, that is robbing money from the workers and designers who work so hard to support it in the first place.

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