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Wedding dress ruined by cleaner - WWYD?

(18 Posts)
weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:13:08

My mum sent her wedding dress to a professional wedding dress cleaner. The dress has been returned shrunk, with the boning poking out, and with a deep crease ironed into it where the fabric should just hang.

The lining is now 2-3 inches longer than the dress in places where the dress has shrunk, the waistband is hanging loose where it hasn't shrunk and the dress has.

The company offers assurances on its website that the dresses will be returned as good as new, and that they're insured up to £2k.

The dress cost £3k and we've asked them to claim on their insurance but the company just doesn't want to know and have effectively said tough luck, wedding dresses are a one time use item?!

Does anyone know what we could do? My lovely mum is distraught. She was hoping to be able to sell it on to recoup some of her cost of buying it but that's impossible now as it's ruined.

SleepingStandingUp Wed 14-Aug-19 16:15:44

Is it a private company or one of a chain? Has she spoken to the absolute boss not someone behind the counter? Sounds like she needs proper legal advice

PonderingPanda Wed 14-Aug-19 16:17:59

I think considering the amount spent on it, then you need a solicitor to take them to court

WhereDoesThisToiletGo Wed 14-Aug-19 16:22:23

Screenshot the relevant pages of their website in case they take them down

weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:38:26

She sent it away to this specific company as their reviews on Google are all five star so perhaps she's been really unlucky but their response has been so careless, they just don't give a flying...

It's hard to tell if it's the boss she's speaking to but it's the same man she's dealt with each and every time.

Ornery Wed 14-Aug-19 16:42:41

We did small claims after sending the dress off to a fabric specialist for evaluation and report (they recorded the specific damage and how it was caused through the cleaning process - I think this has to be done for a claim to be entered - it had a cost but can’t remember how much.)
I got half the value of the dress but obviously had to pay for the specialist report and claims filing.

weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:43:26

These are the replies she's had.

She's obviously reluctant to take them up on the offer of making good the damage given they've butchered it in the first place and tried to blame it on the manufacturer 🙈

weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:44:19

@Ornery that's really helpful to know, thank you. Do you happen to know the name of the specialist company you used to do the report?

Time40 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:45:45

As a first step, find out who is the overall boss of the entire company, and write a letter of complaint to him or her. Write an on-paper letter, and post it. Over the years, I have found that's the very best way of getting somewhere with complaints. If that doesn't work, then yes, I would take legal action.

Good luck.

Time40 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:47:44

She's obviously reluctant to take them up on the offer of making good the damage

That's ridiculous! You can't unshrink a dress once it's shrunk. What do they think they're going to do - use their magic "dress grow" powder?

LIZS Wed 14-Aug-19 16:55:46

Does the UK Fashion and Textile Association have a complaints or mediation process?

weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:57:25

"What do they think they're going to do - use their magic "dress grow" powder?"

gringrin

weddingdress11 Wed 14-Aug-19 16:59:28

@LIZS not as far as I can see! The other trade association does, the TSA, but they're not a member of that one.

Ornery Thu 15-Aug-19 06:34:23

www.drycleaningcomplaints.co.uk/drycleaner.html

Maybe try these guys?

Ornery Thu 15-Aug-19 06:36:08

www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/somethings-gone-wrong-with-a-purchase/dry-cleaner/

CAB has a good page too.

Ornery Thu 15-Aug-19 06:37:48

They did do some rectification work on mine - it depends what the damage is - sometimes a different treatment can relax the fibres. Never the same though.

financialworrier Thu 15-Aug-19 08:20:11

@Ornery thanks, I did find the dry cleaning complaints company but it says their reports aren't suitable to be used in court so I thought they might not be the right company to use.

MrsMoastyToasty Thu 15-Aug-19 08:27:14

They're spouting total BS about wedding dresses being for one off occasions. She no longer has the option to sell it or have it made into something else like an evening dress or christening gown.

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