I would like to state that this review in no way reflects the quality of service from mashimaro_girl; they were quite helpful in my purchase and I have no complaints of their service. This review is strictly for the quality of the shoes.
Anyhow, I’m not sure if the quality of Secret Shop shoes have just diminished since 2007-08 or whenever they started making shoes. Who knows, my situation could be a one off and maybe the pair I received was skipped over by the QA people (if they have such a thing at all in their factory)? I have bought shoes from Payless Shoes made in China that were better quality than the two pairs I received. But who expects quality when you are paying $33 & $50 (now on sale for $38 – doh!) for replicas of shoes that normally retail for about $150 USD? Ummm, I do. Even if it’s not the same quality as AP or BTSSB, the shoes should still be decent and free of defects.
Firstly, there were three needle sized holes in the right shoe of the Tea Party pair. The holes looked like they were part of the back seam, but the holes go straight through and do not meet the inside seam at all!
Second, the Dolly Pearl shoes had a few similar holes where the scalloped edge design meets the rest of the shoe. There are actually more holes that my camera could not capture properly because of the color of the shoe and the lighting. Also, the shoe’s insole isn’t glued down completely. I apologize for the bad picture.
Below is a close up of the insole compared with a pair of my AP shoes which do not seem to have the same problem with the insole.
Third, the insole of the left Dolly Pearl shoe was too long and came up over the toe. It was a bit uncomfortable with each step (a bit like having your socks bunched up at the toe when you are walking). So, I took it upon myself to pull up the insole and trim the insole to the proper size.
I couldn’t capture a decent photo of the inside of the shoe, so here is a photo of the piece of insole I had to cut off.
Fourth, the construction of the detachable bows for the Dolly Pearll shoes do not appear to be the greatest either. They are glued on with a bit of vinyl that covers it, but has not been sewn down completely.
Here are some other photos of the shoes. The shoes came shipped via EMS. It was not packed in a separate shipping container or at the very least wrapped in brown paper. The people shipping it just taped the two shoe boxes together with packing tape and stuck a label on it. I apologize for not taking pictures of the package before I so hastily ripped all the tape off! But you can still see remnants of tape and the EMS/USPS label on the box.
Also, regarding the quality of the vinyl used to construct the shoes: it's crap. It is tacky to the touch and gives off a horrible chemical smell (which my husband has explained happens with new plastic and after starts to break down over years). Either way, my Angelic Pretty, Meta, BTSSB and Yousuke shoes that are made of synthetic materials are all smooth to the touch, not sticky feeling and don't smell like a defunct jar of tiger balm/ben gay/arthritic ointments. Maybe my nose is a bit too sensitive...
All in all, the shoes do not look horrible when worn. Don't know how long they will last or hold up in SF's unpredictable "summer" weather.
I had pre-ordered and paid for two more pairs of SS shoes (SS9817) before I received these two pairs (doh!) and I’m hoping that my next order won’t be as disappointing.
?s, comments, concerns… Does anyone else have any similar stories about SS shoes to share?
I hope this review was a bit helpful; if not, then I suppose I’m just complaining and sharing my buyers’ remorse.