I (personally) would never wear a replica of a dress, because that is plain plagiarism, and people in the creative industry should not support that. The brands spend their time, money and "brains" thinking about new designs and prints, and someone just out of nowhere comes and sell a cheaper and poorly made version of their work! i would never want someone to make money for something i put so much effort in! besides all this brand greed is truly ruining lolita, people not longer make an effort, they just see a look in another person and copy it, then you are not trying to be lolita, you are trying to be a clone of someone else.
And to the people who spend lots of money in brand, being around someone with a replica and that someone comes and tell them "oh! you have the same dress", what would they reply "no it`s not!" and have to give an obnoxious explanation...
I support handmade for those who can`t afford brand, but nowadays there are a lot of indie designers offering great options, just think a little bit more.
I remember several years ago in the "Lolita Snap" era when almost all the girls had something handmade, including those who could afford brand, it was like truly love for lolita investing time into creating something unique for yourself, even the smallest piece.
But now there is a lot of people looking the same, a lot of fights and crap, that`s why a lot of the lolitas i knew and myself left lolita, because of the annoying people, it just became plain ridiculous.
This is just a personal opinion, if you disagree, that`s not my problem.