Swingy stripes + Chicwish shopping experience

striped a line full skirt2

Chicwish skirt (cut shorter) sz XS, Modcloth cropped sweater (runs small)
DIY scarf (very similar), MAC “charismatic” lipcolor

These photos were clearly taken before blizzard “Juno” hit – it’s a whole different scene out on Boston streets right now! I wore this skirt out on NYE and wanted to share my first-time experience shopping at this company. I’m always looking for new brands and stores that are petite-friendly…oftentimes this search lands me on the websites of Asian retailers with whom I have a love-hate relationship. On one hand the styles are interesting, plus Asian sizing in general tends to run smaller. On the other hand, more often than not these companies seem to be notorious for long shipping times, poor customer service, and costly returns (from having to mail items halfway around the world) which pretty much trumps the positives!
striped a line full skirt
Such was was the case with Asian retailer Sheinside – I got two coats as gifts from there which I really love and wear often, but was bummed to hear from several readers that their customer service is very poor and that they might treat bloggers differently. As a result I’ve since stopped working with them until they can hopefully make strides in that department. Chicwish is another Asian-based company that reached out last year to work together, but I wanted to test the company out first as a regular customer…

Quality
Quality can vary from style-to-style based on my limited experience, so my best suggestion is the look closely and zoom into the images and look at the material content. I tried two skirts – this striped one which was average in quality for the price and a plaid one which I thought was really nice quality. The striped skirt is unlined, made of a neoprene “scuba”-like material with an unfinished hem, and has a thin little strip of a waistband. The plaid one was made of a nice and thick material and fully lined with a sturdy waistband. Despite the average quality, the striped one for me was the keeper as I thought the swingy silhouette was super fun and even Nick was generous with compliments on it. 
striped skirt yellow scarf rainy day
Sizing
Items that are offered in XS may fit someone my size without alterations. Not all items come in this size (here’s all the ones that do) – hope they will do it for more items in the future! The striped skirt I’m wearing here is XS and the waist measures 24″ around, similar to a US 00 or smaller. The plaid skirt was a sz S and measured about 26″ around, perhaps equivalent to a US 0-2. The striped skirt is intended to be midi-length but because of the fullness and the horizontal stripes, I cut it to knee length. No real hemming was needed since the edges were unfinished, but I did reinforce the stitching on the bottom of each panel so that they wouldn’t unravel.
chicwish skirt

trying on Chicwish plaid skirt in sz S (sold out, 2″ pinned back), Converse shirt (similar)

Shipping
Standard shipping is free but takes a while (~3 weeks for me) coming from Asia so please be prepared for that. Tracking #s are provided, however I didn’t get mine for over a week and had to email their customer service to follow-up. I paid for expedited shipping (supposedly 5-8 business days) and my package was not expedited, so they refunded the expediting costs at my request. Their explanation was that they were inundated with orders during the holiday season, and I provided feedback to disclose shipment delays upfront on the site and during the ordering process so that there’s no surprises.
 
Returns
Done through the process of requesting a RMA (return authorization #) which you need to print out and package in your return. A U.S. return address IS available which is an awesome feature for an Asian retailer. PLEASE NOTE: I tested out this process and got my RMA the same day, however was instructed to return items to an Asian address which would’ve been quite pricey to mail items back to. I remembered seeing somewhere that a U.S. return address is available, so after writing to customer service again, I got a California-based address. I thought the process was a little misleading and their explanation was that sometimes the system doesn’t recognize where the return requester is based. They also offer a merchandise credit equal to the amount of your return shipping costs up to $15.00, but I have not sent back any returns yet.
striped a line full skirt1
In Summary
Longer shipping times but there’s potential to find cute, more unique items that fit on the smaller side. Customer service from my “fieldwork” seems to be pretty responsive and helpful so I would shop there again.


Please share any other petite-friendly international retailers that you’d recommend!
 

72 thoughts on “Swingy stripes + Chicwish shopping experience

  • Dressed with soul January 30, 2015 at 12:57 am

    Oh, they offer wonderful pieces in petite and you look again adorable! My favourite is the striped skirt, because I have a wear for stripes πŸ™‚
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena http://www.dressedwithsoul.com

  • Julia January 30, 2015 at 12:58 am

    Gorgeous flare! Make me dream about summer already… I have tried purchasing a few products from different online retailers in this asian version of eBay called TaoBao in the past, but found their sizing to be not very accurate… Thanks for sharing this and I will probably give it a try this time!

    Julia || Closet de Jules
    Recent Post: Valentine's Day Cozy Outfit Idea

  • Dressed with soul January 30, 2015 at 12:58 am

    … weakness for stripes πŸ™‚ xx Rena

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 1:00 am

    Loved the detective work!!

  • Diana January 30, 2015 at 1:36 am

    Lovely skirt, you look great!!
    ~~ Diana~~
    http://www.TheNeonFactor.com

  • prudence yeo January 30, 2015 at 5:18 am

    Love the flare design of the stripe skirt, it looks very pretty and fun! Great that you have an overall good experience with online shopping from an Asian-based company too as asian designs does fit petite size very well!

    Prudence
    http://www.prudencepetitestyle.wordpress.com

  • Katy January 30, 2015 at 6:05 am

    Ahh I wish I had read this a few weeks ago! I just had to return 2 skirts to Chicwish and didn't realize there was a U.S. address for returns. $25 in shipping & nearly two weeks later, I'm still waiting for my return to be processed.. Thanks for the honest review! I love that striped skirt on you!

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 7:44 am

    Simple, fresh and beautiful πŸ™‚
    says — Anu from Finland.

  • Paola January 30, 2015 at 8:12 am

    Very nice skirt, I love stripes!

  • Sasa Zoe January 30, 2015 at 8:50 am

    The skirt is beautiful<3

    Shall We Sasa

  • Lara Rose January 30, 2015 at 9:04 am

    Love this outfit and the skirt is amazing! Nice blog you have!

    X

  • Kristie Glenn January 30, 2015 at 9:40 am
  • Jean January 30, 2015 at 9:42 am

    Hi Katy – I was hoping that my experience would be an isolated incident! That is unfortunate, and I will definitely pass along feedback to them to make the US return address more clear and accessible.

  • Easy, Frugal Style January 30, 2015 at 10:24 am

    I love the striped skirt! And it's sad to hear that Sheinside treats bloggers differently from their other customers. πŸ™

    Easy, Frugal Style

  • Millie Scimia January 30, 2015 at 11:08 am

    I ordered from Sheinside for the first time in December, after falling in love with a scarf from another blogger's site. I was really disappointed at the length of time it took for me to receive it! About two weeks in, I thought maybe it had been delivered to a neighbor or gotten lost. Finally about 3 1/2 weeks after I ordered it, it arrived. I have to say, the scarf is beautiful and so soft but if I'd had needed it for something I'd be out of luck. Not sure if I'll order from them again!

  • annika.benitz January 30, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Thank you for the honest review. It's sometimes hard to trust big name bloggers because they get better shopping experiences than the average joe due to their clout. I really appreciate you taking the time to vet this company from a non-blogger standpoint and sharing your findings. Maybe I will try out chicwish after all…

    http://www.marriedandbright.com

  • jaime January 30, 2015 at 11:35 am

    I always wonder if there are any US clothing stores in areas that there is a higher than average population of Asians (NYC, SF, areas of California, etc) that either import Asian clothing brands or have clothing that is sized more towards petites? I would love a shopping guide to either of those areas..

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 11:44 am

    Hi Jean,

    I've been following your blog for a while now and am always impressed by your outfits! You've certainly inspired me to make more of an effort. Might I ask where you got your shoes? It's so hard to find nice navy heels and yours are adorable. I love the bows!

  • Eden Mint January 30, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    Beautiful look, love the stripe skirt!

    http://www.mintnotion.com

  • Trou Vang January 30, 2015 at 12:19 pm

    Gorgeous look! I'm a petite myself and some of the regular sizes don't fit too bad as well. πŸ™‚

    http://www.thepeculiartrouth.com

  • Petite-ish January 30, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    This look is so lovely on you! I just picked up swingy skirt from asos on super sale here: http://us.asos.com//ASOS/ASOS-Full-Midi-Skirt/Prod/pgeproduct.aspx?iid=4420081.

  • Karen Chung January 30, 2015 at 12:49 pm

    Hi Jean! I love this outfit! Thanks for always posting honest reviews. I've been following your blog for a while now and it's helped me tons as I am very petite like yourself! I've just recently moved to London and looking for petite friendly stores, would you happen to know of any?

    Xoxo,
    Karen
    Kensingtonwest.me.uk

  • Michelle Lynn January 30, 2015 at 1:17 pm

    I live in the Bay Area of California and I find there are many more small sizes here than other areas. And they are often sold out. The same goes for shoes. I am a petite but not an extra extra petite so "regular" small person sizing works fine for me. But, I do think if one might have good luck shopping here and in SF since they buyers so realize many customers are of small frame in these areas.

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 1:37 pm

    Thank you so much for the information, it is very thorough, I was actually interested in ordering on Sheinside, but I am not sure about it. This is very helpful!!
    Have a great weekend πŸ™‚

    echo

  • Shira January 30, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    I seriously appreciate your thorough and honest reviews! I love that you are choosy with the companies you work with- a lot of people are not like that!

    http://asequinloveaffair.com

  • daydream girl January 30, 2015 at 3:30 pm

    Hi Jean,

    If you know sheinside.com, maybe you've heard of another similiar one called romwe.com? They share much of the same inventory and stock photos (ripped from elsewhere, e.g. asos, zara, etc.). They also share similar customer reviews, unsurprisingly πŸ™ Chicwish, while smaller, definitely comes across as more personable and better managed. I'm your height and ~90 lbs and have ordered from Chicwish in XS. Long ship time is always a given from Asian stores, but my gripe is (for any of these asian shops) is that what you see is not necessarily what you get (boo), and consequently more returns if it's even worth it. It's a major detterent to pulling the trigger for me. And it also makes the measurement transparency bonus a moot point.

    ~datagirl

    PS. New J crew catalogue started to feature XXXS(both regular and petites)! Please post any good fits!

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    Hi Jen, can you share how you cut the skirt? Thanks!

  • Anonymous January 30, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    Thanks for the honest review Jean!! I always get so disappointed when I notice my favorite bloggers change when they grow a following πŸ™ This is why you have consistently been one of my fav bloggers throughout the years!! <3

  • Suzie Q January 30, 2015 at 7:17 pm

    You are so awesome and amazing for doing "fieldwork" and testing out a company as a true customer to give honest review to be able to truly recommend it to your readers. Love the dress and the movement of it with the neoprene material. You look darling in the outfit!

    xo, Suzie Q
    StyleCueBySuzieQ.com

  • tellmeyblog.com January 30, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    Both skirts are very cute! I've been eyeing on Chicwish for a while but hesitated to order from them. Thanks for sharing your experience, and now I am more willing to give them a go. πŸ˜‰

    xx
    Yvonne
    http://tellmeyblog.com

  • Bao January 30, 2015 at 11:22 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Bao January 30, 2015 at 11:31 pm

    I usually like your style, but lately feel that the outfits put together look cheap and low quality. Why not invest in versatile quality pieces.

  • Anonymous January 31, 2015 at 1:19 am

    I sometimes check out clothes by SheInside/Romwe on Amazon that way I can guarantee my money back if the products don't arrive.

  • Anonymous January 31, 2015 at 3:18 am

    Thank you for the extremely helpful review, Jean! I've been hearing a lot about Chicwish and have been considering purchasing a few items from there. Your review was very thorough. I do want to ask where you got those navy blue shoes with bows you're wearing?

  • Anonymous January 31, 2015 at 11:43 am

    Thanks for the review Jean. Never heard of ChicWish … so I went to their site and I just bought 2 dresses! "My Fair Lady Baroque Embroidery in Blue" and "Dreaming of Hana Printed" … Can't wait to get them!

  • Eunice Yeh January 31, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Eunice Yeh January 31, 2015 at 2:15 pm

    Wow…I should've waited for your review before purchasing from Chic Wish!! I bought 4 skirts from them over the holidays as well and 2 of them were similar to the 2 you bought. I also paid for the expedited shipping and I can testify that it indeed did not come within 5-8 business days. I wasn't sure who to contact or if my complaint would've made any difference so I didn't do anything about it. I'll definitely follow up like you did next time! Also, I had to return 2 skirts and spent $25 on the shipping fee (already the lowest possible rate I could find)…wish I had known about the U.S. address! I'm really afraid that they're not going to receive it and I won't ever get my refund πŸ™ so one of the skirts I returned was actually very similar to your striped skirt except mine was plain black! I was really disappointed with the neoprene scuba-like material and the thin uncomfortable waist band, otherwise it could've easily been a closet staple for me! The skirts I did keep are much much better in quality – one is a white faux leather midi full circle skirt (with pockets!) and the other one is very similar to your plaid one (based on your description of the material) but with gold Royal pattern on navy background. The latter one is a bit loose on me as well because it's a size small (they didn't have XS for this one either). So I was wondering if you could elaborate on how exactly you pinned yours back because the material feels a little too thick to be using a safety pin and I'm not sure how to pin it so that it's not obvious from the back. It's also pretty long on me (hits halfway between my knee and ankle) so would you be able to provide any step by step instructions if possible on how I could hem it nicely on a skirt like your plaid one? Thanks!

  • Eunice Yeh January 31, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    For reference, here are the two skirts I ended up keeping:

    Faux leather white skirt: http://www.chicwish.com/faux-leather-full-midi-skirt-in-white.html

    Gold Royal pattern on navy background: http://www.chicwish.com/glorious-baroque-midi-skirt.html

  • Jean January 31, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    I guess 3 weeks-ish is normal coming from Asia, since my relatives mail me things from China and it can take almost a month! I do think they have nice items there (and it makes me sad as I really like my coats) as long as shoppers are well-informed of the long ship times and customer service issues.

  • Jean January 31, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    Hi there – thank you for your kind comment! My shoes are from Zara and are old and the bows are clip ons.

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