Jerks are Knocking Me Off

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Please Do Not Buy a Designer Knock-off from China

So . . . I’m sure a lot of you have marveled, at least for a second, at the possibility of getting a designer gown for a couple hundred bucks in China.  I never considered it for my own wedding gown, but I did do a double-take once or twice on Ebay at how a really gorgeous dress could be made for so little.  Then, while planning my own line of gowns, I started reading a lot about bridal manufacturing and selling and realized what a problem this has become for the industry.  It is NOT because everyone in the business is an a$$hole, trying to suck you dry, and can’t tolerate sharing a buck or two with anyone else, by the way.  I get so annoyed when I read a thread of comments about why ordering knock-offs from China is okay because the stuff is too expensive anyway, and that designer makes a ton of money and won’t notice a missing sale or two.  Oh yeah?  Well . . .

BOOO!  That’s ME!  That’s my design and my picture!  And that sh*t don’t cost $98 to make, by the way.  Not even close.  Don’t you think I would LOVE to be able to sell my stuff for $100?  It would be flying off of the racks!  I mean, I hope so anyway – geez.  I charge as little as I can while also making enough money to put back into the next collection and eat a sandwich every now and then.  And so does everyone else.  Because we want you to buy it.  Duh.  We know that you are more likely to buy when it costs as little as possible, so we are charging as little as possible.   Fabric is expensive, yo.  I couldn’t even buy the fabric and trimmings and zipper and boning and horsehair and all of the junk for $98 – let alone sew it, photograph it, market it, or even make a pattern for it in the first place.  These folks in China can, because they’re using grody fabric (and they’re obviously not paying to have it photographed – *ahem*).  They couldn’t even include the other designs from my collection, because Swiss Dot is too fancy for them.

So you see, I’m not mean for charging what I do – I’m trying to build a brand of well-made, gorgeous pieces, and so I have to put more of my own money into it than if I were to use polyester and didn’t care about quality.  They’re mean, because they’re stealing from me.

Amazingly enough this does not have me freaking out just yet.  I mean, at least my marketing efforts have been working, right?  And people must like the stuff.  *high five*  I just want everyone to know why ordering a knock-off is lame.  Designers are not necessarily big-shots, vacationing in St. Tropez and sh*t.  I work out of my dang dining room.  Those sales mean a whole lot to me, and I treat them as such.  I put a lot of love and attention into everything I do, and I hope the brides who come to me feel that.  These jerks in China don’t care about you obviously, because they’re willing to make this dress in Royal Blue.  And I would never, ever do that to you.

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “Jerks are Knocking Me Off

  1. Oh my goodness! I see these kinds of things from China often and have always been skeptical of them and their prices, as a fellow seamstress who knows what actually goes into making dresses. I didn’t know they would stoop so low as to steal someone else’s photography. How misleading – and what you get for $98 is probably so poorly made. Gosh. You have every right to stand your ground on this. Isn’t there some kind of offense for stealing creative work? There should be. You should nail them for it.

    Your work is gorgeous by the way! I’ve been following your blogs recently and am thoroughly enjoying your work and your writing style :•)

    • vsheaffer

      Hi Melissa! Thanks for your sweet comments! Yeah there’s not a whole lot I can do other than send them a letter insisting they remove the picture. We’ll see. *shrug* By the way, your website is AWESOME! Everyone, check out Melissa’s website: http://onelittlem.com/about.html

  2. RebeccaNYC

    wow, just wow. this was just in the New York Times:

    http://runway.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/07/15/designers-revisit-copyright-protection/?ref=fashion

    CANNOT believe they are so bold as to steal the photo. I guess it is a back-handed compliment, but seriously? to steal the photo? arrgh….

  3. Polegar

    I thought you could register your designs. Isn’t there any law that can stop them from doing this? I mean, for me the photo is the lesser problem… It’s your creation!

  4. Cat

    This makes me SO ANGRY on your behalf. I am even more determined to make my Veronica Sheaffer original wedding gown dream come true.

    I’m thrifty, myself. I always have been, but this is a once-in-a-lifetime event. The food will be eaten. The flowers will die. But I will have your handmade gown for the rest of my life, and I’m certain it will stand the test of time.

  5. I’m not sure there’s much you can do, but I think most people who would be your potential customers know that you get what you pay for.

  6. That is so wrong I don’t know where to begin! I hope you can at least make them take the picture down. We all have seen the blood, sweat. amd tears you have put into this line – makes me sick they can do that!

  7. vsheaffer

    Thank you so much, everyone, for being so supportive and awesome!! xoxo

  8. Ok, my wedding is three months away and I already have a gown (a Sarah Seven dress; beautiful, but a communications NIGHTMARE). Long story short, had I seen the Camelia gown from your Autumn collection, it wouldn’t have even been a question.

    This gown is AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL, but, the real point of this comment is: I never found you in my bridal search. And believe me, I scoured. I did not set one foot in a Davids Bridal, I scoured the internet for “indie” designers that weren’t charging an insane amount for gowns and never once found you. I JUST found you now by searching for DIY projects which led me to this blog, leading me to this post (eventually), and then to your ABOUT page.

    Just a note that perhaps you want to somehow optimize search results? Anyway, love the gowns, wish I saw them sooner!

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