Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Whimsy and Woe

This is [one of] the outfit[s] I wore today. I think I changed about 3 times and still ending up hating it. Okay, maybe "hate" is a strong word, but I just wasn't feeling the owl-tastic whimsy today. I probably didn't execute said whimsy as best I could have, but - meh.

Brown trapeze jacket - Lane Bryant / Owl tee - Old Navy / Gold cami - LOFT / Denim - Lane Bryant /
Necklace - Banana Republic / Purple heels - Nine West

What I'm really here to post about are my eShakti woes. After hearing so many fabulous things about them from all sorts of people, I thought I'd give them a try. I contacted them to see if they would be willing to send me an item gratis to review, and they graciously agreed. However, said item is still on its way to me since I needed to exchange for a different size. What I will say is that garment, albeit too small, is so far pretty nice. Once I get a size that fits, I think it'll be a great addition to my wardrobe, and I hope to share a favorable review when I do. But I'll have to save that review until then, eh?

What I'd like to present today are two items I purchased after I had received the first garment; I got the idea of size, fit, and possible customizations, was at least somewhat encouraged, and so I thought I'd purchase some others. I mean, they seem to have so many highly coveted pieces, and more than a handful quickly made my wishlist, so I wanted to get on that as soon as possible, yaknowwhadaimean? So here is what I purchased:

This dress caught my attention the minute it appeared. I loved the colors, the color blocking, the lines, and I thought the asymmetrical hem was a really neat feature that could be flattering and fun. I had it customized to a cap sleeve since I'd probably find a way to cover the arms up anyway. I was pretty darn excited about this dress and couldn't wait to get it.

When it finally arrived during my lunch break yesterday, I hastily opened the package and checked everything out. I wasn't planning to try everything right then and there, but I couldn't wait any longer! Well, the dress is, in a word, a mess. Yes, the colors are great; yes, the lines and blocking are REALLY flattering - the way they move and flow around the body keeps the eye moving and emphasizes a fantastic curve. The dress definitely requires the black belt to help break up the colors (though I thought it could have been bigger/longer), and it does so perfectly without taking away from the overall effect of the lines.

But that black section. Uff-da. I thought it would lay flat and form this nice little side drape. Nope, it is puckered at the hem and protrudes grotesquely from my hip. I couldn't think of a worse feature for this increasingly pear-shaped body of mine, and frankly I don't know how it would work on anyone with hips at all. (But someone please prove me wrong!) The side view is even worse, if possible - the lines point downward calling all sorts of attention to the stomach/butt area. Yikes. The hem itself is also unfinished, and the material is a flimsy, cheap cotton blend - it looks very sloppy and even disjointed from the rest of the otherwise clean lines of the look. It just think this unique feature was not designed and executed as well as it could have been. And that alone negates any other desirable features of the dress.

Bob's reaction to the dress pretty accurately captures my feelings about it as well. When he first saw me in it (he always goes to the boobs first), he ooohed; as his eyes traveled downward, his face started to contort. Exactly.

Blech. I think I blame myself for not knowing my body shape better to talk myself out if it beforehand. Had I found it at a brick and mortar store, it would have certainly been one of the pieces I eagerly took to the fitting room, but I would have immediately vetoed it as soon as I got it on. But therein lies the problem with online shopping. This dress is, needless to say, going back.

This skirt is just too darn cute and I had to have it. I love the precious little red bows and couldn't wait to wear it with a crisp white shirt, tights and ballet flats. Coming from a girl who almost exclusively wears pencil skirts and heels, I should have seen the red flag right then and there.

I requested a customization to extend the length past the knee and to add pockets. (Yes! Pocketsssss!) It wasn't an option listed on the website, but I included it as a note with the order, so I was thrilled to see that they accommodated my request! The wide, contoured waistband is a nice touch, the material is thick and fully lined - even a little luxe - and the hand embroidery really is darling. However, it became clear to me that full skirts like this are, in my opinion, not meant to be any longer than above-knee. Any longer than that and you just create a marmish, frumpy frock. And so it was.

As you can see, too, the side seams of the skirt are poorly sewn, creating this weird exaggeration of an a-line shape, which is not what I wanted either. It looks like the corners are pinched in, or something. Just bad construction, I think. I briefly thought that maybe I could salvage it by taking in those seams and reworking it into a straight/pencil skirt. (And by "I" I mean a tailor.) See? Better for my shape already.

However, I’m just going return it. Forcing a cutesy pattern like this into a pencil skirt makes it seem even more frumptacular to me, and it doesn't seem at all my style.

I think I’m going to choose for the gift certification option with the return, which gets me 20% more back. This will cover the return shipping fee (a flat $6.50) and will encourage me to give them one more try with something that better suits my shape and style. Like I said, my first garment, full review forthcoming, has quite a bit of promise!

I have learned my lesson.


  1. Oh man.  What disappointment!  That 'Crafty Drape dress'?  Yowza. :( I can't wait to see the outfit that actually works!

  2. I got a really awesome item to review with eShakti, but my previous experiences with them had been mixed as well.  I got one really strange jacket from them that just HAD to be returned.  That doesn't stop me from coveting their stuff though.

  3. likewise! i don't think i'll give up on them completely - in fact, i've got a few things in my cart as we speak!


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