VENICE, FL (WWSB) - Some local brides may soon find themselves in downtown Sarasota to find their dress because one retailer closed its doors for good.
"Finding a dress, finding someone to marry us, and decorations which we're doing ourselves," said bride-to-be Gina Pucci of her to-do list for her upcoming wedding.
Just weeks after Pucci found her perfect gown, she received a shocking phone call from her mom about the dress designer.
"They're literally filing for bankruptcy," said Pucci. "Every store has closed doors and people are not getting their dresses."
Retailer Alfred Angelo filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy and closed all 60 retail stores Thursday night. Brides across the country learned those wedding or bridesmaid dresses they ordered and paid for might never come.
"We already put out $1,850 with a check and now we have no money and possibly no dress," said Pucci.
At some Alfred Angelo locations, customers are allowed to pick up their dresses. Others are offering to ship to customers, but there are no guarantees.
"I was freaking out and I called my mother," said lifetime Venice resident and bride-to-be Corinne Woods. "I was like, I can't get hold of the office, I can't get hold of the Fort Myers place."
Woods also learned she may not get her dress ahead of a March wedding to her fiance Timothy, but received an unexpected package at her door step on Saturday. Inside: the dress ordered from Alfred Angelo in June.
"It was relief, happiness, joy, anything positive you could think of. I was just over the moon," said Woods.
The box also included note from the boutique employee who helped Woods, along with the floor sample dress, veil and preservation kit. Woods wants other brides to remain optimistic, but use this as a lesson.
"Don't want until the last minute because things like this can definitely happen."
Any bride or bridesmaid who purchased a dress from an Alfred Angelo retail store and did not receive it can take their original receipt to any David's Bridal location to receive a discount on a new dress. All brides unable to receive their dresses are encouraged to contact the bankruptcy trustee.