Suzanne Neville dresses - a warning

Just wanted to warn all future brides about the pitfalls of Suzanne Neville sample dresses - I’m not necessarily advising against a purchase but just warning you to be very very careful.

I purchased a SN sample from Cheshire that was described as “perfect” to me on the phone. I was told repeatedly that I wasn’t compromising at all. I live over 200 miles away so went on staff description and a few photos of tiny marks on the dress which I was told had come out, save for one tiny one which had faded. I then had the dress posted to me, having tried it on in a local shop so I knew I liked the style.

When the dress arrived, it was COVERED in marks, stains, arm pit sweat marks, fake tan, a tear in the train, sharp bit pointing out of the bodice. I could go on. The colour overall is grey (from wear and slightly perishing silk fabric). And this is supposed to be one of their best sample dresses - I still paid £1600 for it! I reported it immediately and sent photos (long story short, I was basically later accused by the directors of the company of lying).

While the shop offered to clean the dress, not all of the marks came out and the dress still wasn’t wearable with permanent fake tan marks in obvious places. I was offered a refund but less the cost of cleaning so I would have lost £250! I complained because £250 down and no dress just weeks before the wedding is no position any bride should be in! The staff in the shops were generally helpful but when the marks didn’t come out, I was referred to the directors of the company. It was clear from their replies that they didn’t read my correspondence properly, accused me of lying and totally dismissed my claim as spurious (despite photographic evidence and a report of the condition to the shop 10 minutes after receiving the dress). I have never in my life received such disgraceful treatment. The PA to the directors sighed down the phone to me and told me that if I was stupid enough to purchase a sample without seeing it, I deserved everything I got. Her emails were rude and abrupt, with capitals and exclamation marks. The treatment I received was really disgusting. They even threatened to sue me, despite my emails always being polite and courteous. From everything I’ve heard, Suzanne is supposed to be lovely but her business partners have seriously let her down on this occasion. 

I’ve since learnt from an unnamed stockist of this designer that samples from this brand are often only fit for recycling. So be careful what you buy, check it carefully and go to see it. 


  • Ashley72Ashley72 Posts: 1,137 New bride

    Did you buy direct from Suzanne Neville? Or a bridal boutique? The designer isn’t at fault but the people who sold it to you have misled you which is incredibly frustrating. Unfortunately buying “sight unseen” runs risks such as these and unless you have it in writing that the dress was in a certain condition I think legally you’ll struggle to get anywhere. i hope you’re able to either get it cleaned to a satisfactory standard (nost of the remarks do sound like they’ll come out - sweat stains etc) or that you can find another dress. Sorry this happened to you.

  • Wed BeeWed Bee Posts: 3

    Thanks Ashley. I bought it from Suzanne Neville in Cheshire, which is partly what is so shocking. To be honest, I think they were probably quite busy at the time and just didn't check it very carefully.

    I have what's app messages of the photos they sent me to show the condition but overall I was way too trusting (just relying on the reputation of the name). I also have photos of the dress just after it arrived and proof of when they were taken (also my makeup artist was with me for my bridal trial when the dress arrived so I have a witness). I'm just not sure I have the energy to fight this, it's been exhausting and not helped with the directors being utterly vile.

    I just wanted to post something in the hope that others won't fall into the same trap. 

  • Sian91Sian91 Posts: 829 New bride

    Have you checked your consumer rights? (Consumer Rights Act 2015)


    Goods need to be as described or you can reject for a full refund. I think from your description of events you may be out of timescales but you may have some entitlement if in 6 months.

  • bella2015bella2015 Posts: 1,903 New bride

    Did you pay on a credit card? If so you may be able to contact them to get some money back. 

  • Wed BeeWed Bee Posts: 3

    Thanks guys. I've got my seamstress appointment soon so she's going to try to be my fairy godmother and save the day! Keep your fingers crossed for me! I need some luck sent my way... 

    I did pay by credit card but refund options just leave me without a dress (and no time to get one)! Argh! 

  • You could try the Small Claims Court for part compensation. Hope everything turns out well. If not, there are nice dresses in the high street (Debenhams, Monsoon etc)

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