The latest and greatest in online shopping for South Asian clothes?!
This is gonna be a long one, grab a cup of chai or coffee and get comfy.
Check out the video if you don’t feel like reading:
If you haven’t heard of Lashkaraa, you probably will, very soon. Why? They’re doing a great job marketing their clothes – they’ve got some big named bloggers rocking their chic outfits. If you’ve read my most recent blog about my stash of Indian clothes, you already know that I’m hesitant to order clothes online because 1) the material is usually hit or miss. 2) The customer service is lacking. 3) The fit isn’t the best. And if you’ve read Mindy Kaling’s novel “Why Not Me?” you already know… FIT. IS. EVERYTHING.
I decided to order a couple of things from Lashkaraa to see if the hype was real. Their outfits looked amazing on all of the bloggers and though I know things always look better on models/YouTube stars – I wanted to provide an honest, unbiased, unaffiliated, unsponsored review of the site that provides some of the most stylish South Asian clothes on the market! Read on to see what I found!
The first thing I noticed was that Lashkaraa’s website is very user friendly. If you’ve perused any other South Asian clothing site you’ll know that they’re often hard to navigate and things aren’t sorted in the most logical fashion. Lashkaraa’s site is well organized and it’s easy to find an outfit by type/event. Lashkaraa: +1.
Before jumping the gun and buying a bunch of cute outfits I wanted to do a decent amount of research. I looked for reviews online and I saw that site jabber had mixed reviews. That’s when I saw something odd – there were two 5 star reviews, by two different users, on two different days with the same exact review. If you don’t know what this implies – it just means that a bot may have, at some point (in early 2016), left fake reviews to boost their overall rating. RED FLAG. Lashkaraa: -1.
I tried to find YouTube reviews that weren’t sponsored/affiliated with Lashkaraa because I actually love the idea of seeing how the material looks and moves on real people… plus it’s really easy to read how the person feels about the outfits when they’re talking about them – there weren’t many videos. This is part of the reason I decided to do this post. Sure, beauty bloggers and instagrammers with large followings may receive this stuff in exchange for an honest review but it’s hard to hate something you may or may not have gotten for free, ya feel me? I found KeepingUpWithAnisa’s video where she showed some of the outfits she got from Lashkaraa, including a customized replica of the Roshini Daswani Kewalram “Princess Jasmine” lengha. (She was DYF’s Dubai bride that had 9 different looks). Anisa disclosed she wasn’t sponsored by Lashkaraa, she came across as genuine, and her outfits came out GORGEOUS. (If you haven’t heard of her, do yourself a favor and check her out on YouTube. Her makeup always be on pointtttt.) The best part about it? She mentioned that the Lashkaraa team was always in touch with her/consulting her about the progress of her dress. Good customer service? Sold. I have since noticed that Lashkaraa has been posting more pics of their real-life customers wearing their clothes rather than models… LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT IT. Lashkaraa: +1.
MY ORDER AND THE COST
I ended up ordering two outfits from Lashkaraa. I didn’t order stitching for the blouse pieces as my in-laws were going to India and my tailor in India is THE BEST. Seriously, my husband didn’t have my measurements and simply showed him a pic of me… I kid you not the dude sewed a blouse based on a pic and it fit PERFECTLY. Anyway, I digress, see below:
Cream satin saree with the stitching for the fall.
Fall Stitching: $2.00
Light pink and white embroidered lehenga – unstitched.
There are constantly sales, so keep an eye out for discount codes! I found a Black Friday discount code and saved $50.00.
Total: $167.00 …about $80.00 for each outfit. NOT BAD. Lashkaraa: +1
The average cost of my outfits in India: $125-$190 with stitching, so that’s saving up to $90/outfit once factoring in stitching costs!
Here’s where things get a little messy. My order was placed 11/22/2017. I received the shipment on 01/20/2018. Most people that reviewed Lashkaraa mentioned that they got their order within 2-3 weeks. Long story short: I was told that my items weren’t ready or there was an issue, week after week. If you want the detailed account read on, otherwise feel free to skip this section:
Emailed Lashkaraa 12/18/2017 – about 4 weeks after I placed my order, they responded 12/19/2017 and explained that couture products take 3-4 weeks. (but it had already been almost four weeks at this point so like, …whut?)
Emailed Lashkaraa, again 12/28/2017 – about 5 weeks after my order. I got a response 12/29/2017 informing me that the items will be dispatched next week.
Next week came and went and I didn’t receive notification of shipment so, again, I emailed them on 1/8/2018 – it had been 6 weeks since the initial order. I got a response 1/9/2018 explaining there was an error in the embroidery. And the items would dispatch over the weekend. Theoretically, this would have been 01/13/2018.
The weekend passed and I still had not received confirmation of shipment. So yet again, I found myself emailing Lashkaraa on 01/15/2018 – it had now been 7 weeks since my original order. I kindly asked them to cancel my order and provide a
refund as my in-laws were leaving for India in a couple of weeks and I would not be able to get the items to them in time for them to be stitched, thus, deeming this whole experiment fruitless… Like clockwork I got a response on 01/16/2018 saying my items had dispatched. I also received shipment information on that day.
I received my items on 01/20/2018. Almost 8 weeks after order. This contrasts greatly with Anisa’s experience and the reviews I read online. Lashkaraa: -1.
So I guess this is the most important part and what everyone is most interested in- the actual outfits.
The saree: The satin saree is BEAUTIFUL. The reason I was immediately drawn to it was it’s simplicity. It’s just an all-white, satin saree. If you know me, you know I LOVE Sonam Kapoor’s style and this outfit just screamed Sonam Kapoor. The simplistic saree paired with the net/beaded blouse wonderfully contrasts old-bollywood style with new-bollywood style. I’m all about it. The beading on the blouse was beautiful, as well. The only real issue (I wouldn’t even call it an issue) is that the blouse lining was more of an ivory whereas the saree was more of a bright white. Honestly, this really doesn’t bother me much. I’m 5’7 and I’d probably have to wear conservative heels or flats with this saree after tucking, so if you’re taller than me, keep that in mind.
The lehenga: My biggest fear ordering this lehenga was whether or not Lashkaraa would provide a liner for the white lehenga. They did. The skirt wasn’t see through! HALLELUJAH. The embroidery featured on the skirt isn’t embroidered directly on the skirt but rather is patchwork. It’s done really tastefully and given the price, I don’t mind. The net (this is usually a big point of contention for me) on the blouse and dupatta is a little stiff but nowhere near as bad as some of the stuff I’ve received in the past.
Would I recommend that you order from Lashkaraa? Reemskii rating: 4/6 stars.
I know, I know, out of 6 is a weird rating but that’s just how the cookie crumbled.
ABSOLUTELY! …just not for a specific event, unless you’re ordering at least a few months in advance. Keep in mind that I didn’t even get my outfits custom-stitched. I just ordered the material and it still took 2 months for me to get it. My in-laws will now get that material stitched in India. I believe Anisa’s custom-made Princess Jasmine outfit took 3 months from order to delivery (I may be wrong). I would be mindful of the order times and discrepancies in customer experiences before ordering.
While I really want to believe that everything that was corresponded to me via email is the truth and that this was just an isolated event I, unfortunately, can’t vouch for that. I will say, however, that Lashkaraa’s customer service team never ghosted me. Every week that I emailed them I had a response within 24 hours. I was never left unanswered for whatever that’s worth.
The clothes were decently priced, they were beautifully made and as long as you’re not in a rush, I don’t see why you wouldn’t order from Lashkaraa!
PS: If you’re part of Lashkaraa’s team, I’d love to discuss this review with you further to help improve the customer experience. If you’re a viewer or reader who found this helpful and would like to see more content like this, leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you.