Gretchen’s Bridal closes without warning, leaving brides scrambling

LaToiya Smith swung by Gretchen’s Bridal Gallery in the Castleton area Wednesday morning to check the status of her bridesmaid dress for an October wedding, but she stopped short at a sign tacked on the door that read, “No Trespassing.”

Smith, who lives in Indianapolis and works near Castleton, had heard rumblings of the store’s closure from her best friend who bought her wedding dress at Gretchen’s alongside the rest of the bridal party, but the locked doors and dark storefront confirmed their fears.

“I’m floored,” Smith said, standing outside the store at 5447 East 82nd Street. “And I’m out a boatload of money because I had to pay for the dress in full.”

Dozens of soon-to-be brides and bridal parties were left scrambling after the boutique store closed over the weekend without explanation, leaving customers without made-to-order dresses and potentially out hundreds to thousands of dollars.

The sign on the door said the landlord had taken over the property and changed the locks in the process. Any delivery drivers were directed to drop off shipments at the alterations store next door.

More coverage: A new Burlington store is coming to downtown Indianapolis

A spokesperson for the Broadbent Company, which manages the Castleton Point strip mall that houses Gretchen’s, said the property management discovered the store had permanently closed.

After several failed attempts to contact the owners, Broadbent changed the locks to protect the contents still in the store, where several racks full of dresses can be seen in plain sight through the windows.

“The Broadbent Company appreciates the burden that the closing has placed on brides-to-be and will work with them to help reunite them with their dresses,” the statement said.

A message on the store’s phone says that no one was available. The store’s website was also inactive as of Wednesday morning. Attempts by IndyStar to reach the store owners — Gretchen and Joe Reynolds — were unsuccessful.

For LeLe Jackson of Fishers, Gretchen’s offered something she couldn’t find at most other brick-and-mortar stores in Indianapolis: a selection of plus-sized dresses at a reasonable price.

She bought her wedding dress in March for $1,600, within her budget and a thousand dollars less than her other option at a bridal store in Carmel.

Jackson received multiple text messages saying her dress would be ready for pick-up in early July, well before her wedding in October, but this week her emails to the store started bouncing back.

“I’m in shock,” Jackson said. “They are a reputable business, and I’m disheartened that so many brides are going through this right now.”

More coverage: Looking to watch the fireworks this Fourth of July? Here’s where you should go in Indy

Melissa Personette had been in contact with a Gretchen’s employee a week ago to make plans to pick up her daughter Melody’s wedding dress, which the pair bought in February. But on Monday, her texts and phone calls to the store went unanswered. Personette eventually heard the store had closed from a reporter at a local news station.

With less than four months until Melody’s wedding, a made-to-order dress was out of the question, so Personette found an off-the-rack dress for her daughter at a different bridal store for a reasonable price. She disputed Gretchen’s $1,200 charge for the dress with her bank, who reimbursed the money.But the Personettes still want to know what happened.

“We want answers. We want to know what’s going on,” Melissa Personette said. “The experience was great while we were there, and they’ve been around for so long, so why wouldn’t they just get us the dress?”

Gretchen’s advertised its store as a boutique bridal shop offering more than 600 designer brands, according to an archived web page, selling bridesmaid, mother-of-the-bride and prom dresses. The brand had been in business for more than 30 years, according to its profile on The Knot..

Other stores in the strip mall include Trader Joe’s, Ross Dress for Less and Penzey’s Spices.

Broadbent encouraged affected customers to call 317-237-2900 with proof of purchase and said the management would try to reunite them with their dresses.

Alysa Guffey covers growth and development for IndyStar. Know a business opening or closing? Contact her at [email protected].

Source link

Gretchen’s Bridal closes without warning, leaving brides scrambling #Gretchens #Bridal #closes #warning #leaving #brides #scrambling

Source link Google News

Source Link:

Gretchen’s Bridal closes without warning, leaving brides scrambling:

Home Again exhibition brings ideas of home, shelter, displacementSee the new Home Again exhibition a…