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Sweet e mailed the retailer with a complaint. It turns out the company sells replica dresses, which are knock offs of brand name dresses mass produced in China.

´╗┐grad and wedding dress season

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Now, instead of saving money Sweet is fighting to get her money back. So far she is trying to negotiate through e mail but her husband would rather go straight to lawyers.

The woman gained Sweet's trust, and she paid for the dress through Paypal. She thought the dress would look just as beautiful as the picture when the shipment came in.

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She does, however, feel that her business is getting undercut by many legitimate websites. Canadian retailers are charged 18 per cent duty on top of their purchase price when they buy from the United States.

The two exchanged e mails discussing dress details, and providing the brand name and style of Womens Black Converse High Tops Cheap

What online dress selling mean for local business

"It literally is buyer beware. Order at your own risk.

"What they don't realize though, is what they're ordering from is a factory in China that is producing a knock off dress. Some sites have disclaimers in fine print you won't understand that it's what they call a 'replica dress.' Other sites are just outright lying by saying 'yup, you order the picture you see and we'll get the dress to you.'"

American retailers can sell at lower prices, and the overhead of selling online includes less staff.

"There is also that whole customer service thing. You want to know how that dress is going to fit. Once they sort of encounter us and come into the store the moms will usually decide to buy from us instead of taking the chance of ordering online. Because they like having someone to hold accountable if something goes wrong. If you order online good luck."

web address to a legitimate online retailer. Yet, the dresses people pay for online are not at all brand name.

People using her store as a 'try on' store often come in to get alterations done.

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Online retailers may be a pain for local businesses like Caderma's, but she says it's Converse Ballet Lace Grey

For example, a website will sometimes mimic its Womens Converse Sneakers

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A woman claiming to be based out of Toronto with an online retailer sent her e mails saying she could offer the same dress for a little over half the price.

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However, websites such as The Black List and others can help those who are trying to weed out the good sellers from the bad ones.

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To ensure the dress you're buying is the correct brand, you can check the manufacturer's website.

not make or break.

Caderma says online sellers are very smart something she found out on a recent buying trip to the United States.

"So you times that by two, and that's how we get Converse Low Cut Maroon our mark up in our store. It's just enough to pay overhead, pay our staff, and run our business as opposed to making a ton of profit. Unfortunately in the fashion world a lot of people think there's a lot of money to be made there. But it's the manufacturers, distributers and all those people that are making the money."

Buyers don't necessarily realize that they are buying knock offs.

Sweet was disappointed, and ended up returning to the store to buy the dress for her daughter.

But when the dress arrived in a simple plastic bag, Sweet grew suspicious. When Steffensen tried the dress on they knew it wasn't the brand name dress they thought they'd paid for.

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the dream dress.

Pins left over from alterations were still stuck in the dress, it was falling apart, it didn't fit properly, the train was too long, beading was sloppy, and the colours didn't match the style they had discussed.

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