Priscilla of Boston, the now-defunct bridal chain owned by David's Bridal, just defiled a bunch of expensive wedding gowns, including a $6,000 frock by Vera Wang. Employees of the chain, which went out of business over the holidays, were videotaped at a shop in Minnesota spray painting red X's on bridal gowns, some of which were in the $4,000 to $6,000 range. (Watch the TODAY show's report on the story here.) A lot of people are pissed off about it (see: the women in the TODAY show report who said it physically hurt her to see the wedding dresses marred) and David's Bridal has responded with conflicting rationales and apologies for its actions.
Priscilla's of Boston released a statement that they "always donated quality bridal gowns to a variety of causes," but that they "do not, however, donate unsaleable dresses that are damaged, soiled or in otherwise poor condition," Jezebel is reporting. Except that according to witnesses present, the dresses were in perfect condition. So what gives?
According to an article in the Star Tribune, Priscilla of Boston said that they are "under contractual obligation with suppliers to destroy unsold merchandise." This probably isn't all that uncommon--designers don't want their pieces to end up for sale online or in resale shops when they might still be selling for full price elsewhere. But, as Jezebel pointed out, retailers can cut the tags out and still donate the dresses to charities (and we loved the idea of one commenter on the Star Tribune article to donate them to military wives.)
After an outpouring of outrage from TODAY viewers who saw the pricey gowns strewn all over dumpsters, David's Bridal issued the following statement, which makes no mention of the supposed "obligation":
While it has been Priscilla of Boston’s policy not to make donations of sample dresses that are in poor condition, we recognize that some of these dresses could possibly have gone to worthy causes. David’s Bridal has already begun bringing together all of the remaining Priscilla of Boston gowns to evaluate them and ensure that they are donated to our charitable partners wherever possible. From all of us at David’s Bridal, we truly appreciate hearing your sentiments. We believe that every bride deserves a beautiful gown, and we will continue to honor that commitment.
What do you think about this?