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others into thinking you intend to buy from them] as well as bound to miscarry. A) This plan is dishonest with respect to both your guests – who think you really have the gift in mind rather than a plan to bilk them out of their money -- and the store that is spending the time on putting together your registry in the hope of generating sales – not returns. B) Odds are that this plan will backfire, either because your guests will see that the prices are outrageous and forego shopping there or because the store will allow only store credit, so that your overpriced dishes will simply have to be exchanged for overpriced other stuff. Honesty, of course, works both way, and you should be wary of the “bait and switch” tactic. It’s designed to lure you into the store with an advertised special that sounds like an amazing deal and then to talk you into buying a more expensive version of that item. For example, a store could advertise “sets starting at just $39.” Then when you come in search of those $39 sets, the salespeople insist on first showing you the “better” options that are priced far and above $39. If you still insist on seeing the $39 sets, they may say they are currently out of stock, which should raise a red flag of false advertising. Alternatively, they may grudgingly pull one or two of those sets just to point out that the more expensive one is really the better choice for you. Now it may, in fact, be true that the $90 sets are far and above better than the $39. But you are the one who knows your budget, and you should not be pressured by sales tactics into breaking it. As the store shows itself to engage in dubious tactics, you should take your business to a place that represents its price ranges more honestly. Another thing not to do is to limit your store options. You do not only have to shop in stores that offer “kallah sets.” You can put together your own “set” based on your own preferences and budget. While some neighborhood shops actually do offer discounts off list prices of names you could recognize and compare elsewhere, some carry only “exclusive” lines, at exclusive prices and deal with you in a way that could make you feel very excluded indeed. If the saleslady gives you condescending attention after you indicate you are not looking for the luxury line and responds to

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your price query by saying she has to “look it up” with a sigh that indicates you are not worthy of her time or the effort it would take her to take a few steps in her high heels, you probably should bring your business elsewhere. High prices and attitude are not a good shopping combination. While it is a commendable thing to support people in your community, that only holds if the neighborhood shop’s pricing is in line with what regular stores charge and offers comparable service and selection. If it doesn’t, go elsewhere. For example, one woman recounted that she went into one of these stores to buy a tablecloth, and found the plainest, most unimpressive one there was priced at $100, while the nice ones were upwards of $200. Though the saleswoman tried to talk her into spending more than she knew she should on the grounds that it was “for Shabbos,” this was one smart consumer. She went to Bed Bath and Beyond and bought on just as nice as the tablecloth priced $100 in the neighborhood store for just $30. If she had one of those ubiquitous 20% coupons with her, then she would have saved an additional $6 on that tablecloth. At $24, that tablecloth would have been just ¼ the price of the cheapest option at the neighborhood store and even without the coupon, it would have been less than 1/3. That’s a very significant difference. But imagine if she had bought a table that could not be accommodated by any tablecloth other than the type carried by the higher priced specialty shops; she would have had to spend the $100, right? But why would anyone buy such a size? They do, though, not for their tables but for their beds. It is popular among frum young couples to order the 48” mattress that is not quite full but too large for twin. That means that the standard sheets will not fit. So where can they buy their bedding? They can have the bedding custom made, have a full size altered to the 48” size, or buy in the small shops that carry these sizes. As these small shops face absolutely no mainstream store competition for the 48” size, they can set the prices much higher. Any of those options comes at a premium cost with limited choice. You will

Kallah Magazine

Summer 2010 / 5770

Profile for Ariella Brown

Kallah Magazine Summer 2010  

Wedding planning and more! The significance of the chuppah Vocabulary for the bridal bound - wedding gown terms. Delicious dairy recipes....

Kallah Magazine Summer 2010  

Wedding planning and more! The significance of the chuppah Vocabulary for the bridal bound - wedding gown terms. Delicious dairy recipes....

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