Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by tuxedosam, Aug 9, 2006.
You get what you pay for...
I can't help but wonder if the inconsistency in the quality of Rainbowshiu's items is due to however many people she has making the things. Surely with the amount of items she offers for sale they cannot all be made by the same person. I've had both well-made and needs-a-lot-of-work items from her. You just never know. But yeah, the bottom line is don't expect a Dore' gown at Rainbowshiu prices (unless you hit the jackpot on eBay , which I have been fortunate enough to do a few times.)
This is good advice no matter who you are asking to make the dress for you. A competitive dance dress and an evening gown are not the same thing even if the dance dress is supposed to resermble an evening gown.
It is a kind of and hit and miss with her. After a while you finally get what you want from her. Then, you stick to the one that's right for you. To be fair, however, She is no more inconstent than the top dance costume maker in NYC who charge five times more than she does. When the NYC tailor made my shirts and pants, my coach always did not like something and sent me (and her other students as well) back to him for redo. As I said, I sent the Hong Kong dressmaker a photo of a fairly complex latin shirt. It's not a tuck-in type, and needs satin belt, satin lapel, mesh arms and neck, and lycra front and back. In short, It looks like a Ninja/Zoro uniform and I was going to use it for a Paso showcase. Since I had so much problem in finding a good Paso costume, I was prepared for paying $600, easily. She sent me her own sketch of the shirt from the photo with a price tag of $60. I did not hesitate one second to say "YES."
There is a new seller on e-bay who appears to be making BEAUTIFUL GOWNS. Check out user swanstudioau. The dresses for the most part are very VERY nice. I'm waiting for the perfect dress to pounce on...
Rainbowshiu is alright. The only problem with her dresses is you can ALWAYS identify a smooth gown made by her. You glance around the comp floor and immediately spot them. They're all cut the same, they all hang lifelessly, and most of them have ill placed adornments. So, if you buy from rainbowshiu, just know that people will take one look at you and know, you bought that dress off e-bay.
I agree the "adornments" tend to leave a bit to be desired. Generally the first thing I do is remove them. A few years ago I bought a pink latin costume that had ghastly orange feathers and white sequins on it :shock: It's been completely re-worked, and it doesn't scream RAINBOWSHIU anymore -- just whispers a little (like you said, the style and fit tend to be common to her products). However, in terms of the collegiate circuit, I'd much rather see a newer Rainbowshiu gown than a few of the really scary antiques I've seen out on the floor. Some of those gowns are so massive and excessively adorned that they look like they're going to envelop and consume the person wearing it. All that will remain is a pile of chiffon, feathers, and sequins.
One lady in our studio bought several dresses from her. She was quite happy with the experience. She bought a couple of cheaper dresses for showcases and now she also bought 2 more dresses to compete in smooth and rhythm. The latter 2 she ordered with Swarovski stones and they look quite good. The smooth dress is a bit on the long side, I would have preferred mine shorter. I bought one dress through ebay from rainbow and the dress is a bit long for me. I don't know what I'll do with it yet. I might use it for a showcase or two. I probably won't compete in it. I myself have bought 4 dresses in the past from another ebay seller, appleuser. She is based in NY, but the dresses are made somewhere in HK, I think. I am happy with the dresses she sold me and I think when I have a better idea of what I want for my new standard dress I'll go to her.
I'll give Natalka a little plug here...she has an e-mail list and is constantly sending out "ads" for the dresses she has under consignment. I actually have my yellow dress with her now. It's an easy way to find dresses (all sorts of price ranges) without actually having to search them out. Unfortunately, I keep seeing ones I like! Anyway, if you want to be added to her mailing list, just send her a pm.
Just to share my experience. I've done business with raibow shiu. I'm not very satisfied with my latin dress. though it has a body suit it's lined... it does not fit well, the fabric looks cheap and the craftmanship is bad.
I agree with sayings like "you get what you paid". But given the cheap labor rate in China (and the fact that they directly copy good design without paying), you surely can get a lot more with less money than here in the US. I'd even say Rainbow's dress are a bit over-priced giving the quality. And please don't be misled by wal-mart or some dresses from raibow shiu, "Made in China" does not always mean poor quality. There are several high-quality costume-makers in China. Several Chinese couples wore their costumes in Blackpool. I assume they didn't look too shabby.
Since you are going to China, don't miss the opportunity to order custom made costume at a good price. The best in the north is "Romatic" in Beijing. The best in the south include "Shi Dai" (Times) in Shen Zhen. "Wan Fang" in Guanzhou is good too. They even have pictures from major world events to show costomers what they can copy. My partner ordered a latin shirt from Wan Fang, which is a direct copy of Slavic's last year blackpool shirt. The result is great. But my latin dress was not fit well. (He was there while I was not.) My partner also ordered a tail suit from Shi Dai. Only $200, but the fit was excellent. I myself has bought a ball gown from Romatic in Beijing. I'm very satisfied with it.
My suggestions for ordering are
- ask about the fabric. Europe made fabric is available at a higher price.
- ask about the stones. The venders I mentioned usually use Swarovski. But double check to make sure.
- if they let you choose from catalogue, ask for fabric samples to make sure the color is right.
- lastly, keep in mind, Hong Kong venders' costumes are made in southern China anyway. So there shouldn't be too much a difference in price and quality.
PM me if you need further info
Oh, I'll give another plug to a friend. This is the woman that made my magenta dress.
all latin ones look so nice.. not liking the standard ones at all.
She'll make whatever you want her to make. I sent her a picture of a (Katerina Venturini) dress which is what mine is based on. The material is different (and I picked that myself because I had to get the color I wanted....blah blah.....), but she did a great job...and very quickly, I might add.
And thanks to all the ladies who have PM'd me!
That's correct, I get in new & gently used dresses all the time...so contact me if you are looking for something to wear at your next comp!
Same for me.. I always know of many girls who try to sell dresses.. and I forward information to everyone I know.. so if you want to be on my list, pm me as well.. also you can ask me if I know of anything specific.
But that usually goes for standard, I usually never know of any latin dresses.. Sometimes smooth..
You can check out my personal web site... www.dancesportimage.com
Going to have to start a sticky for dress and shoe resources. This is great! (oh, and hands off that black Chrisanne that Natalka has...it has "MQ" written all over it )
I'm wondering if anyone know the address or contact number of a ballroom dress maker in Shenzhen (I saw Shi Dai on an earlier post but has no way to find out where it is). I am in Shenzhen for a few weeks and would like to get my Standard and Latin dresses made here. I contacted Rainbow in HK but she only takes online orders. I would prefer coming to a store, having the feel of the materials and getting the measurement done.
Wow I really like a lot of her stuff! What is her price range? She doesn't have prices listed.
I am having a new smooth gown made and having a horrible time picking colors... To the point of insane... I have an incredible design drawn and cant decide on the colors. Finally the fellow who is making the gown sent me to a fabric store to see for myself...
Anyway...MQ have you ever been to OSgood fabrics.... Think that is your area, West Springfield...The spandex and sheers are incredible.. Did not work for me however, I just could not make a decision. I was there for 2 hours and walked out fustrated and empty handed. I am going back this week-end to try again!
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