One of the most common complaints I hear (and feel) as a plus size woman is that options are limited, and even when we do find things we like, they might not fit our curves just right. Some etailers like eShakti have been offering plus size made-to-measure options for a while. Recently, NUMARI, a made-to-measure company, approached me to ask to look at their options. I was curious, but a little hesitant.
My concerns with ordering something made-to-measure:
- Cost: The thought of a custom made garment probably makes your eyes flash dollar signs. I looked at NUMARI's designs, which were smartly-made day-to-night dresses that looked high quality. At $160, the price for the dress I tried seemed super reasonable considering I pay that for things of standard sizes. Plus, free shipping!
- Time to receive: I'm an immediate gratification type of person. Amazon Prime has spoiled me. But when I thought about the time to prepare a custom piece just for me, 3 weeks didn't seem bad.
- Extra charges: While eShakti actively markets plus size, NUMARI didn't say anything about plus sizes. Extra fabric means more money, and usually designers mark up plus size wear in direct proportion to that. Not only did NUMARI assure me that their made-to-measure meant ANY size, the cost wasn't any different!
- Quality: Last but not least, sometimes you need to feel the fabric to feel the quality. What if this dress didn't meet my quality expectations? I've had that problem with eShakti before, where things just felt inexpensive (though I've had items I love from there as well).
- Returns: What happens if you buy a made-to-measure item and you realize it doesn't look good? You'd think you would be stuck with it, considering they made it just for you. This isn't the case with NUMARI. They take returns, and if there are things that need tweaking, they'll do them for you. Kind of amazing.
I love the classic combo of camel and black, and also have always loved sheath dresses, although they never fit me right. I just think they have a sleek, modern, yet timeless look that is super profesh. Thus I went with this dress:
This is from their preview collection, which was designed by Bert Keeter from Project Runway 9. I loved him on that season. Always classy styles, and just a sweet man.
Looking at it in the photo and on such a slender model, I couldn't envision how it would look on me. Would it have the same shape on me, or would it just be an oversized potato sack (a common problem with sheaths or things that are scaled up to accommodate a larger size.) When you choose the dress, you can also choose the length. So this one could be above the 1 or 2″ above the knee, at the knee, or 1 or 2″ below the knee.
Next step was to enter 15 measurements. 15!!! Each one had a super short video telling you what to do. The process took me about 10 minutes, and was easy.
Shoes: Isaac Mizrahi for Target (super old – similar)
Kendra Phillip Rose Gold Tara Cuff c/o Kendra Phillip at LuckyFabb
Baublebar Necklace, no longer available – similar
Old Navy Belt (leopard no longer available, similar)
As soon as I took it out of the box, I noticed the fabric. It is a gorgeous, heavier weight ponte knit which has just a little bit of stretch but holds its shape gorgeously. It feels really expensive and luxe.
Next thing I noticed was how well it was constructed. Every seam was perfect.
You know when you put an item on and you instantly feel smarter? This was one of those garments. When we were shooting these photos in a pedway, random passers-by commented on how great the dress looked on me. Talk about a confidence boost!
When I put the dress on the first time, I was stunned at how much it hugged my curves without being clingy. I am much more used to wearing A-line skirts and dresses because that's the majority of what's out there for plus gals, so at first I was a little uneasy about actually having something that fits me like a glove, but not stuffed like a sausage. After wearing it a few minutes though, I realized it wasn't fitting closely because it was tight, it was because it was made just for me. I did add my own belt just because I think it adds some more definition to my waist, but it certainly would look good without it. Adding a blazer over it would really be slick.
All-in-all, this was a huge winner. The process was easy and the outcome was a perfect fitting luxe dress.
Color and lace, my 2 favorite things! I'm so excited.
I am so excited more of these options are coming to women of all sizes. The thought of getting rid of dress sizes and going by exact measurements is exhilarating.
Would you try something made-to-measure?
Disclosure: The dress from NUMARI was provided to me at no charge, but this post was not a condition of receiving the garment, and is not sponsored. All opinions are my own.