GRETNA, LA (WVUE) - Many women dream of their wedding day their entire life. But one local bride says her special day was ruined by a west bank bridal store.
Tatiana Wheeler almost called off her wedding. "I haven't been smiling, I haven't been excited about the wedding," Wheeler said.
Wheeler plans to walk down the aisle Saturday. But, she says because of what happened at a Gretna bridal store, she had just days to find a dress. "It's not fair to be waiting for a wedding gown the week before their wedding," she said. "You told me if I pay you in advance my gown would be in three months before my wedding. He promised me my dress was going to be there, it's not fair, the stress, the headache."
Wheeler says she ordered two dresses from Elite Fashions on the west bank. One for the ceremony and one for the reception. But, she says she just found out this week, that the store didn't have either dress despite paying nearly $1,400 for both.
"I never felt so hurt before like many days and nights I just sat up crying," Wheeler said. "My fiance' tried to tell me it's going to be okay, don't worry about it, we're going to do something about it, it just hurt."
And, she's not the only one who has complaints. We checked with the New Orleans Better Business Bureau, and Elite Fashions has an F rating with multiple complaints on the BBB's website. One says, "Elite Fashions ruined the great memories of my wedding due to their unprofessional, untimely, and deceptive business practices." Another said, "I never received the dress I ordered."
The Better Business Bureau says buyer beware, "With any business dealing you need to check the business review and it's very easy. You can go online, you can give us a call, there's so many ways now and it only takes a second," said Cynthia Albert with the BBB.
We talked with the owner of the west bank store. He wouldn't go on-camera with us but says he plans to reimburse Wheeler for both of her dresses and even offered her a similar, more expensive wedding dress at half price. But, Wheeler says she had to fight to get her money back and the bottom line is she didn't get her dream dress that she paid for. That's why she filed a complaint with the BBB and is warning others.
"I don't want no other bride to go through it," Wheeler said. "Even if you are going there just to get a regular dress, don't deal with them because they are not professional and they are not on time with nothing they do."
Wheeler says she was able to find a wedding dress at the last minute at another bridal store. She's just hoping it will fit. As for that F rating and those complaints, the store owner says they've been in business for more than 20 years and are bound to get some complaints in that time.