The most popular thing on my blog, by far is my review of eShakti’s products and service. Every day, I get a large number of visitors here just looking for information on eShakti, the blogger-courting custom clothing company in India. I had a not-amazing experience with them almost two years ago, and this seemed to be in line with with what most other regular people (i.e. not fashion bloggers with many people reading their thoughts on the company) experienced.
Somehow, I guess because my name is on their mailing list, I’m part of their “customer panel.” Periodically I’ll be invited to take an online survey about some of their upcoming styles. A few months ago, I was surprised to receive a $100 credit to thank me for my participation! I checked out the site a couple times, but nothing really appealed to me. Finally, over the 4th of July holiday, I found the On the Dotted Line dress, which I figured I could customize to the point where I’d like it, so I went ahead and made the purchase. Thanks to the credit, I only owed tax and shipping, which meant I paid less than $20 for a fully custom dress.
Pleasant surprise #1: eShakti now accepts PayPal! This means they don’t see my credit card information, which alleviates my concern over the number getting into the wrong hands, which happened last time. I placed my order and settled in for a long wait for delivery. They are still promising two week delivery times, but my previous orders (and everyone else’s, it seems), had taken so much longer.
Pleasant surprise #2: I got a shipping notification on 7/16, ten days after I placed the order. This is still kind of a long time, compared to most online shopping sites, but considering that they are making something for you from scratch, I think it’s pretty reasonable. They still ship via DHL, and I tracked the progress of my package online from India to Germany… Then there was something about a delay… I didn’t have very high hopes.
Pleasant surprise #3: DHL called, texted, and I think also e-mailed me on Thursday night, the night before it was delivered, to let me know that the package was coming and a signature would be required. It turned out that I was actually working from home on Friday, so I could have just signed for it, but they also indicated that a signed note could be left at the door and they would deliver the package without a signature, so just to be safe, I left the note. That DHL delivery driver must have been very quiet, because I didn’t hear a thing, but when I looked outside that afternoon, there was a small, flat box – about a 1-foot by 1-foot square – waiting for me!
Pleasant surprise #4: I’m sure that was due to the material used for this dress, but it came out of its tiny box looking perfect, no ironing needed! The others I’ve ordered have been cotton, and had fuller skirts, and required a lot of steam magic to look reasonable after unpacking from eShakti’s notoriously tight shipping boxes. I also received (another) tape measure, this time in a little gray jersey pouch, as well as a form to use for returns. I immediately tried the dress on.
Don’t mind my hair, I’ve been rocking the “Flaccid Ponytail” this summer. Also… pockets!!
Pleasant surprise #5: I really like this dress! It fits perfectly, which I expected, since I gave them all my measurements. But I’ve ordered other eShakti dresses that fit great, but you can’t really move your arms. I’m sure it’s because I went with the sleeveless option, but I can move and bend and raise my arms, all with no problem. I love the pattern, it’s more unique than the standard black dresses that I have in my closet. The only thing I’m not really happy about with the fit is the length. In the customization options, I specified “knee length,” but how do they know where my knees are? My knees are obviously higher than they should be, as this is not the first time this has happened. I wish they would let you specify length of the skirt, from the waist.
In conclusion, I am pretty happy with the eShakti experience this time around. Will I continue shopping there? Sure… if they keep tossing those gift certificates my way.