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If you have noticed I haven’t been talking much about wedding planning lately. That’s because things really haven’t been as magical as you expect them to be. Let’s just say Eric and I have learned a lot of life lessons planning this wedding and I don’t see that ending anytime soon.
It all started with… that time I was scammed. I’ll take you to the beginning.
In October, I started looking for some wedding invitations: Pinterest, Invitation websites, google, etc. I didn’t really find anything I liked so I went to Etsy. I’ve been a fan of the website for awhile, you can buy cute things you can’t find in stores and you get to support small businesses. Win, win! (I’ve bought things off of Etsy since this situation happened and didn’t have any problems).
I FINALLY found THE ONES! The invitations I’ve been dreaming about.
Take a look, aren’t they awesome? I emailed the ‘lady’ a couple of times to get the right print and to make sure everything was perfect and then she asked me to pay through a 3rd party company called Wepay.com. Red Flag #1: Why didn’t I pay through Etsy? Well, I think I was just caught up in the moment I didn’t even think about it. I really loved the invitations.
Now we are in November. I asked the invitation ‘lady’ to send me one in the mail because I wanted to make sure it was EXACTLY how I wanted it (I actually combined two of the invitations that were on the site). ‘She’ told me it would be here in a week. It never came. I sent her an email asking her what happened, she said it ‘got lost in the mail’. Okay, maybe but probably not, Red Flag #2.
‘She’ said she would send me another one, great, sent! Received. It had one minor problem but I told ‘her’ about it and we were good to go.
Then came Red Flag #3. I got an email from the ‘lady’ saying that Wepay.com wouldn’t release the money to her because it was saying she ‘wasn’t a real person’. That probably was one of my biggest red flags, but it gets better. I spent a couple of hours emailing her back and forth, she gave me her phone number, she showed me ‘files’ that were for her other clients, etc. To say I was now getting worried would be right. I asked Wepay.com to give the money back to me and she said I could pay her a couple of different ways: PayPal, Check, Money Order, She would fly to me. Red Flag #4.. wait did she say FLY TO ME? For $350? WEIRD! I’ve learned from my job in television news that you never send a money order as well.
I really wanted the invitations though and I mean HONESTLY, who would scam someone out of their wedding invitations… you know back to that magical time in your life thing. I decided I would pay through PayPal with my credit card (I’d be good to go just in case this really turns out to be a scam). Invitations paid for, on their way to my home.
A month went by, no invitations at my doorstep yet. Red Flag #5: these things weren’t being shipped from Japan they were being shipped from “Arizona” or something, they should be in my hands by now.
I emailed ‘her’ she said it probably got lost in the mail and that I could file a claim against the post office. I could pay for her to print new ones for me. At this point I was completely done with it (there were some other things she did that annoyed me: told me I would have to pay more for her to cut up the twine, told me I’d have to glue the invites together, she ignored my emails for awhile, etc.). I told Eric he had to take control at this point (PS: We are in December/January now).
Eric tried to call her a million times (with the number she gave me before) no one ever picked up. He tried emailing her, she said we would have to pay more money to get them ‘printed’ again. Needless to say it was all just a SCAM. Eric found out she was not listed under the BBB (something I obviously should’ve checked. I did however google her Etsy name and the word scam after it when I first saw the invites and nothing came up).
My awesome aunt took over at this point. She looked at the two invoices that I got and realized they were completely different (whoops!). Her paypal address wasn’t even a real address. She probably went under so many different names which is why when I googled her nothing came up. When my aunt went to look for her Etsy account, it was down.
I realize I wasn’t smart the whole time in this situation. I saw the red flags but I really wanted the invitations. I should’ve backed out when wepay.com said something and when she told me she would ‘fly’ to me to pick up the $350. I should’ve checked the invoices, the names, addresses, etc.
I did at least do one thing smart. I paid with my credit card through paypal and my aunt got us our money back.
I feel bad for all of those people this scammer ripped off. How much pain she put people through that are in the middle of planning the best day of their life. Ruining the whole wedding planning process. It’s sad, really!
Good news now though: I have new invitations. However, they aren’t the ones I wanted. I bought them off of David’s Bridal. The invites are the best thing I could find in a short amount of time, they aren’t even in our wedding colors. At one point I just wanted to send out Facebook event invites, and I would’ve if my family didn’t say I HAD to send out invites.
I do like them though. They are very modern, info-graphic like, tells OUR story and I hope it makes people laugh when they pick it up and read it. That’s Eric and I, goofy.
Well that’s my story and the reason I haven’t really been in the wedding spirit. I hope you learned something! Truth is there is something else I learned throughout this whole process: If I’m going to be in any type of fiasco in my life, and I know there will be more, I wouldn’t want to tackle it with anyone else. I’m a lucky gal to have such a great guy.
Now its your turn: What did you learn? Were you ever scammed?