ANYWAY! First of all, I used kurodatenshi as my shopping service for TaoBao, and she was wonderful. I think it may have cost a tad bit more than if I'd used TaoBao Spree or something like that, but the wonderful thing about her service is that she speaks fluent, completely coherent English. If I'm not mistaken, she actually serves as more of a translator between you and the people who handle your items (the sellers as well as someone shipping from China to you), and doesn't handle the actual items herself.
There were a few slight misunderstandings, but nothing that wasn't very easily fixed. I can't give an exact timeline, but here's the gist of what happened:
-I emailed with my original list of items, asking if they were available and if so, if they could be custom sized. I had the misfortune of sending in my order the day after my absolute favorite thing ever was taken off of Dear Celine's site. ;_; Also, one of my items could not be custom sized. The nice thing, though, was that all of this was said clearly in an excel sheet including prices, pictures, and estimated weights of the items! Very professional and organized. Angie (I believe that's kurodatenshi's name?) also offered to ask the sellers any questions I had.
-Somewhere around this time, I stopped getting emails from Angie. After about a week, I sent her a bit of a concerned inquiry about this. Turns out her mail had been going to my spam inbox, which I had skimmed before emailing her. Guess I just missed 'em! n_n; I added her to my contacts and the problem stopped.
-I reworked my order a bit and sent the new request to her. She spoke to the sellers, and warned me that R-Series tends to take its sweet time. She sent me a new excel sheet and, after a few more questions, an invoice.
-After some consideration, I decided to drop the R-Series skirt and look for something else in its place. I couldn't find what I was looking for on TaoBao, so Angie agreed that the extra money from the invoice would go toward shipping and any left over would be refunded to me.
-Fast forward a few weeks, and the order was ready to be shipped. She offered to reduce packaging and mark the package down to reduce shipping cost and the chance of getting hit by customs. I agreed to both.
-I panicked a little when she sent me an invoice for $50-something for shipping, and reminded her that the shipping probably would have been covered by the cost of the skirt I canceled. She remembered, apologized, canceled the invoice and sent me the refund. Very polite and fast to respond. :)
-The package arrived a while later, and my mother and I were a bit concerned at how light it was. To our relief, both of the items I ordered were there, packaged neatly and in pristine condition. And, despite reducing the packaging, the bag it all came in was like a fortress! O_O The items were also in individual plastic bags inside.
All in all, I give kurodatenshi a 9/10. I would highly recommend her services, especially if it's your first time ordering from TaoBao. She makes everything very easy and painless to understand!
Now, on to the actual items! I bought...
This skirt from Dear Celine: http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=7605574069&frm=
and this shirt from MoMo & Jia: http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?id=4449064367&frm=
1. Dear Celine Misty Morning Chiffon High Waist Skirt
Stock picture: http://img580.imageshack.us/f/mistymorning.jpg/
My picture (spots are just from my camera): http://img171.imageshack.us/f/hpim1596.jpg/
This skirt is beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. It's also very versatile! I can layer it over or under shirts and match it with almost anything. It's made of a lovely, soft chiffon fabric and is neatly constructed. The skirt portion is lined, it has shirring and corset lacing in the back, and a hidden zipper on the side. The only downside was that, while there only appeared to be a few loose threads at first, it turns out there was a cluster of them at the zipper, which made the skirt impossible to zip up the second time I tried to wear it. I've snipped them all off now and the zipper works fine though.
I give this skirt a 9.5/10, because the awesomeness nearly drowns out the momentary thread problem. <3
2. MoMo & Jia Spring Classical Blouse
Stock picture: http://img197.imageshack.us/f/springclassical.jpg/
My picture: http://img34.imageshack.us/f/hpim1598.jpg/
Lace detail: http://img638.imageshack.us/f/hpim1601.jpg/
This blouse is very nice too. The material is nice and not see-through at all, and the lace and pintucks are neat and cute! I was a bit worried at first because the lace looked delicate, but it hasn't fallen apart or anything. XD I doubt that it actually will. The two problems with this shirt are that 1) it gapes just a liiiittle teensy bit at the bust, but I may have given them a slightly small bust measurement, and B) the buttons were HELL to do and undo at first. D: The buttonholes seemed way too small for the buttons, and I actually ended up scratching a bit of the surface off the buttons trying to button them up. It's not that noticeable, though. They've become MUCH easier to do now, it was just a bit frustrating at first.
I give the blouse an 8/10.
All in all I had a great experience. ;) So, uh, I hope this helped someone!