Picture this, you are a bride to-be, it’s three days to your wedding, you are all excited about your day and then bam! You receive the devastating news that your gown designer has just closed down their store without warning. Without letting you know how you will get your gown? What will you do? How will you react to it?
Well, this is what took place in Orleans as a trail of brides and bridesmaids were stuck in limbo after, one of the major supplier of bridal gowns, designer Alfred Angelo, closed down his stores abruptly and without prior notice due to bankruptcy. Independent bridal shops were also left wondering whether the gowns they had ordered will arrive on time for their clients who had weddings during summer and fall. In a message on it’s website, the company issued an apology stating: “We apologize for the inconvenience and hardship resulting from this event. We appreciate your patience. Thank you.” In addition, the company requested their clients to contact the company’s bankruptcy trustee to find out more on the status of their orders.
Founded by Alfredo Angelo and his wife, Edythe Piccone in the mid 1930’s, Alfred Angelo Bridal has grown globally to become one of the largest manufacturers and retailers of wedding gown. Besides being recognized for gown fashions, Alfred Angelo is also known for designing dresses for brides maids, mother of the bride, flower girl dresses as well as wedding accessories. Over 2,500 stores sell Alfredo Angelo designs, which are already in 30 countries and in the year 2014, the company celebrated 80 years of dressing brides. An additional achievement is that the company was featured on a 2013 episode of the television show undercover boss. Unfortunately in July, this year, Alfred Angelo abruptly closed all of its store locations and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation. The filing by Alfred Angelo Newco Inc. spans 1,044 pages and it comprises of all the names of bridal shops and other corporate creditors. Furthermore, the filing includes what appear to be the names as well as addresses of many women who the company owes bridal gowns.
We are not sure how many brides-to-be who prefer online wedding dresses in Kenya have been affected by the news. Globally, not just in Kenya, the bridal gown market has for a long time suffered from influx of cheap wedding gowns from China. Other major international brands like Pronovious have tried to gain access to the Kenyan market but have not been successful. But all is not lost as recently, a local retailer in Kenya has managed to launch Maggie Soterio designs.
Bride Nana wearing Alfred Angelo design
Photo courtesy of the bride