Vera Wang vs. Equality?
How do I love thee Vera Wang? Let me count the ways. WWP was never 'that girl' who used to make a wedding gown out of tissue paper at the age of 5 and have every detail of the clearly predestined nuptials planned before pubity. Yet if there is one thing I do know, it is that if I am ever to get married and I am in a financially stable position (read: rich beyond my wildest dreams), I want to own a Vera Wang wedding gown. It doesn't have to be couture, hell, it doesn't even need to be new, but being the slave to the fashion world that I am, it has to be Wang.
This level of worship from the fash-pack isn't, unsurprisingly, due to the fact that Wang designed Kim Kardashian's wedding dress, but because her designs are ultimately very, very good. Hence, there is a very high demand. So in China, the boutique implemented a 'try-on charge' of around £317, to discourage those "crazy, random chicks!" who try on wedding dresses for fun. Fun because (a) they either cannot afford them, and/or (b) aren't even engaged (And if their answer is (b), I think we can all work out why they are yet to find a husband.) In the past week, the power of Twitter has meant a campaign of anti-discrimination has been zipping its way to Vera Wang PR, on the grounds that charging to try on wedding dresses is unfair. In the words of the ever-thoughtful and charmingly eloquent Daily Mail Online readers: "Beautiful dresses, but what a greedy woman!" (cornishpixie) and "Money makes people do crazy things" (HP18).
'Vera Wang' is not one 'greedy', 63 year-old woman who makes dresses on a Brother sewing machine in her garden shed. It is a global company, which, just like any business, aims to make a profit by eliminating unnecessary costs. If you're trying on a multi-thousand pound dress - that you have no intention of buying - for free (and as a side-note, this will not be the Topshop changing room, there will be champagne involved), you are an unnecessary cost. Moreover, the fee was redeemable if you bought a dress, and let's face it, if you're serious about buying Wang, you've got £317 to spare. Anyone's need to transform this into a debate about egalitarianism will stem from an underlying problem with capitalism. There really is no such thing as a free lunch, and there is certainly no such thing as a free 90-minute dress fitting with afternoon tea.