The box came wrapped in heavy duty plastic and looked well-protected
Good morning all, M here again, this time with a review of eShakti, my solution for staying clothed at work. They have saved the world from countless diplomatic incidents. You're welcome ;) All joking aside, they offer a great solution for work-appropriate clothes when a) off-the-rack either doesn't exist, doesn't fit, or isn't appropriate and b) good local tailors are hard to find and take forever. Plus, all their dresses have pockets & bra-strap keepers. POCKETS!

Having discovered them over a year ago, thanks to a very awesome colleague who shared her dress secrets, I've become a bit of an eShakti addict. Honestly, if I ever end up back in the States, I'll still probably keep using them because it's so nice to have something that fits, and suits my style, which doesn't happen often Stateside, either. I'm a sucker for their 'fit and flare' dresses - not everyone was built for skinny jeans and shift dresses (though, they have those, too).

eShakti offers a "We design, you customize" approach. First, they have a wide range of dresses, and have started adding pants, skirts, and jackets (I stick with the dresses as they make my morning routine easier - the top always matches the bottom, and I can use that decision time for tea instead). Then, they give you design options - you can change the length, sleeve, and/or neckline, all for $7.50 per item. Finally there are sizing options, you can either chose the 'standard' sizes (S, M, L, etc), or customize them by putting in your own measurements - this is also $7.50 per item, but only one customization fee is charged per garment, so if you've customized the style you might as well customize the fit (you can also remove the pockets, but why?). I'm short-waisted and broad-shouldered, so I normally go for a custom fit.

There are a few tips to keep in mind while using eShakti:
  1. Have patience. There will be a sale. There will always be a sale.
  2. Use your coupons/gift codes. eShakti regularly sends these out to customers to encourage return visits. The checkout doesn't populate them automatically, so you could forget, but these can save you a bundle.
  3. Use the mobile! eShakti offers a 20% discount to purchases made either through the website on a mobile phone, or through their new app. This is in addition to any other goodies you may have picked up.
  4. Unfortunately, they DO NOT ship to DPO. I've already tried to fight this with them - no dice, though I'm hoping they'll eventually change their minds. They will ship to pouch though, so there is hope.
  5. If you like something, really like something, you should probably get it now, or stalk it until it goes on sale. Their items change fairly quickly and there have been a couple of dresses I've been sad about not getting. 
  6. Use their referral service. They have a 'refer a friend' set up, which gets your friend $40 off their first purchase of $70 or more, and gets you $40 when they do so. Unfortunately for the diplo community, the discount is tied to the shipping address not the email, so multiple people using the same pouch address won't be able to all enjoy the referral benefits. You'll still get your normal coupons though!

The photos below are from my most recent order. I chose three dresses - 2 for work and 1 for the Marine Ball (I'm hoping you can figure out which is which from the pictures). I put the order in on September 6th, they shipped September 18th, with a handy stalker tracking number, and the dresses arrived October 6th through the pouch. Again, they don't take DPO addresses, and that is one of my few peeves with these guys.

So, here's how they stack up. One vanity thing on the photos, please realize that they were taken from a bad angle on me and the camera adds at least 10 lbs. In all of them, I felt very pretty and comfortable. Much thanks to my lovely neighbor for coming over to take the photos for me.

eShakti Version
M's Modded Dress

This is the 'Galloping Horse Print Sweetheart Dress' - $34.95 on sale from $69.95. I thought the print was super cute, and a bit of whimsy (whinny!) never hurt anyone.

As you can see from the 'Modded' photo, I changed the neckline to a wide square, which is better for my build, and dropped the hemline down to mid-calf. I find that's a good idea as Mali's a somewhat-conservative work environment (also it's nice to be able to cross my legs without worrying about Sharon Stone).  I can't say enough about how light and breezy this fabric was - I love it! 

This is the 'Sash Waist Chambray Dress' - also $34.95 on sale from $69.95. I have another dress in their chambray, and it's a great weight for the climate here.

On this one, I also changed the neckline, this time to the standard square, and dropped the hemline again down to mid-calf. 

This is their 'One-shoulder Satin Gown,' and my intended dress for the Marine Ball. I didn't have any alterations done, deciding instead that if any hemming needed done I'd do it myself here, and leave myself the option to wear heels (the dress length says it's my height plus 3" heels). I did have it fit to my measurements.

At $99.95, I thought it was a fair price for a gown, given that I spent about twice that here last year on the combined purchase of local fabric and tailoring.

I was horribly paranoid when I first opened the box for this - it looked like the waist had changed to an empire and I was almost in tears. Thankfully when I got it home the dress fit like a champ - I will need to pin the bit under the arms, though, as I think they got the bust measurement off. Still, paired with heels and nice dangle-y earrings, I'm all set. And yes, even the ball gown has pockets. Mind. Blown.

All told, the dresses came to $192 with customization, plus shipping. HOWEVER, with a gift code (for being a return customer), a free-shipping sale, and the mobile app, I got the total down to $125. Yes, $125 for 3 dresses. With pockets. So, the next time that you look at your closet and wonder what the heck you're going to wear to work tomorrow, or to the Marine Ball!, have a peek at eShakti:) 

About Author
M is enamoured of puzzles, presents, and proper spelling. She resides in W. Africa with a spoiled house leopard and enjoys tea and video games when she's not single-handedly saving the world.


  1. That's great info about the discounts. This will make me look closer at their site. Thrre are so many options!!

  2. :) I love their dresses, and they're pretty much all I wear to work now. I'm not going to use the word 'addict', but others may have.... :) Enjoy!


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