Name of Commissioner:
Red Star Costumes
Website/C.com gallery: http://www.redstarcostumes.com/
Character commissioned and series/video game (please include if this was the entire costume, just a jacket, prop, accessory, wig, etc.):
Rikku from Final Fantasy 10-2 (entire costume)
Links to picture(s) of your commissioned item:
Can check out my profile for my Rikku costume section, should have more pictures uploaded soon.
Timeline (how long your order took to process):
I commissioned the costume about May 2009 and was hand delivered on Friday of Otakon 2009.
Describe your Experience. Pros, Cons, Comments.
: Rikku was the first costume I ever owned/commissioned, as Otakon 2009 was my first convention. I knew nothing of cosplay or what I was doing. I really wanted to go to an anime convention and heard dressing up made a convention. So I searched through commissioners and emailed around 20. I only had two responses. Redstar was one of them and seemed to be the best quality for example pictures. Very friendly, kept up with emails, updates, and even sent invoices. She was attending Otakon so even offered to hand deliver it to save on shipping - though since I used paypal payments, I had to pay extra for paypal fees as she requested that. The costume was delivered the morning of the Friday convention so I was able to wear my costume.
The cons are, the boots fell apart the moment I slipped them on. All the white paint on the boots just flew off and went all over the hotel room, it was like projectile. I called her on the phone and had her come up and look at them. She said she did not know what happened, she put some clear nail polish on the boots and said to give them back to her Sunday and she would fix them and mail me new boots. The problem was, my flight left at Sunday 5am and considering it was my first convention, by the time I was done with the Cosplay, it was like Sunday 2am when I got home/done partying, so was unable to deliver it. During the convention, wearing the boots proved very painful. The construction was made very poorly as more parts of the boots fell apart, including the inside lining. I wore socks, but the inside was so sharp from materials, it cut through my socks and gave me several wounds, still to this day I have many scars around my ankles that the boots have left me. They were also uncomfortable to wear. The boots looked OWFUL and had many people comment on how poorly they looked, asking me if I was in a fight or something. As for the costume itself, the skirt was too short and kept riding up when I walked, so I spent most of the time holding my skirt down. The bra top stretched just by wearing it for an hour by 3-4 inches and I had to safety pin it (not from being too small, it just stretched on it's own), their was a lot of empty space in the breast area so I had to use a lot of tape to prevent from popping out, which looked really bad. The sleeves were to large for my arm and kept falling down my arm and had to be constantly brought back up. The wig was well made, but heavy. In general the costume was very cute and I liked it, but the mishaps were too many. The worse part was the price, I felt at the time it was normal until I looked at more commisioners prices and the marketplace for costumes. I paid a total of $380.00 dollars!! Just for a wig, bra top, skirt, scarf, sleeves and boots. WAY overpriced and I will not commission from her again, because of her prices, I felt robbed, considering other comissioners were only asking around $180, used costumes were between $40 and $90, even Ebay was cheaper. I am even embarassed to tell others what I paid because the costume does not look worth over $60 dollars. I asked for a qoute on just a plain blue coat after she made my Rikku and she wanted over $200 dollars. When I asked many others, they asked for under $100 and gave a detailed breakdown on what each material cost them and what they charged per hour, Redstar does not do this, and they were just as good. After Otakon, a few weeks later, I did mail the boots back, costing about $13 dollars. I contemplated whether to or not, if it would be worth it, since I was out even more money
shipping it back. I asked for it to be done by NYAF 2009 but she did not make the deadline. I said it was fine, I would wear something else. As far as I know, she is still working on the boots.
On the final note, unless she lowers her prices and improves on making boots, I don't believe her costumes are worth the prices.