It's been less than six months since Kaitlin Monte joined Fox 26 as a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor, so Houstonians may not know her by name yet. You might not know, for example, that she is a proud pug owner, or that she won Miss New York in 2011 and she placed in the top three of the Miss America competition in 2012.
But apparently her time on the Miss America stage is famous enough to make it to other corners of the world, namely China, where images of the sparkly white off-the-shoulder dress she wore during the competition are being used to sell a knockoff version of her gown, priced at a tiny fraction of the cost of the real designer dress. Monte was not amused—but as she details in a Facebook post, curiosity got the better of her mother, so they ordered the dress to see what customers really get from these bargain-basement websites.
The result is hilariously bad. Or as Monte described it, "Not...even...close."
First things first: it's easy to see how an unscrupulous manufacturer would want to steal Monte's image to sell dresses, because she looks super bananas phenomenal. But as she notes, "While they use the designer and celeb photos to sell to you, that's not what you get. Did we get our money's worth? Arguably. Some tweaks and maybe it'd be alright. But it wasn't what the picture sold."
Monte ended with advice to shoppers to seek out reviews and be careful before falling for too-good-to-be-true deals. Maybe the silver lining is that the manufacturer hasn't turned the stolen images of Monte into too many sales—the site says only three of the knockoff dresses have been sold.
Monte's entire post about the dress fiasco is below:
My warning tale for Cyber Monday shoppers:
Some of you know where the picture on the left is from. It's a designer gown I wore to an event. One day, I found my picture being used to sell the same gown online, but for 95% off what it's worth.
My mom got curious. She owns a bridal shop. Wanted to find out what you get from these too-good deals. So, we ordered it...
On the right is what came in the mail. Not...even...close. Cost of the four-ply silk alone used in the original gown is enough to make it expensive. Polyester? Couldn't compare. The manufacturing, the fit...nope.
But alas, what's that? The tiny print on top of the website? Aye, there's the rub...you might miss the small print that says "celebrity inspired evening gowns." While they use the designer and celeb photos to sell to you, that's not what you get.
Did we get our money's worth? Arguably. Some tweaks and maybe it'd be alright. But it wasn't what the picture sold.
The moral: be skeptical, seek out reviews, and research before taking a deal that's too-good-to-be-true.