When I saw this, I almost screamed! Rare Dirndl are ALWAYS made in the USA!
I guess I've really made it big because a Pakistani manufacturer is copying my designs. I was quite upset about the whole thing, not because they were copying my designs (it's bound to happen in this industry) but because they are so blatantly using my photograph! I had fire running through my veins! What if people start thinking that Rare Dirndls come from a sweatshop in Pakistan?! Debra also did a little investigating for me and asked for pricing on my designs, and at the price that they are offering, there is no way that the quality can be there! It's impossible… their wholesale cost of $18 is less than the cost of the fabric! (not to mention that fabric is sold out… so it must be a "similar fabric")
There are also lots of articles floating around Facebook recently warning people about buying "designer" clothing for low prices. They are horrific knock offs that come straight from China and it needs to stop. The dirndl business is not too different! Places like Amazon and Ebay are flooded with dirndls that ship straight from people like "Sports Forever" and the quality is (in my opinion) hot garbage. Anywooooo… before I get all riled up again about this, let's get to the good stuff! I want to show you some details that go into a Rare Dirndl that you can't see and I'm 100% sure that the Pakistani manufacturers are not including in their dirndls. The details that we put inside Rare Dirndls is just as important as what is on the outside. Without the inner structure: extra fusible, boning, and pressings… the dirndls wouldn't last very long, look as nice, or fit as well. All of the dirndls have an extra layer of fabric that is fused to the center front to make it more durable. This way, when we add the extra weight of the hardware, hooks, spikes, chain etc… the center of your dirndl doesn't start tearing, ripping, or buckling under the pressure!
Another SUPER important detail that we include in our dirndls is the boning (or stays) at the center front. Along the front zipper is a type of boning that is stitched to the inside and keeps the front from collapsing. This particular style of boning is expensive, (probably why you don't find it in cheaper dirndls) but this boning is my favorite. Sometimes after lots of wear and tear, small pieces of it may start to poke out the top, but a quick trim with scissors or filing with a nail file can fix the problem. Cheaper boning can poke out completely and once it breaks through the fabric, it creates a hole that is very difficult, if not impossible to fix.
Rare Dirndls are also pressed frequently throughout the sewing process. This is more time consuming, but really makes the final product look much more polished and more likely to stay looking fresh.
Another thing that is very important to me is that anyone who is working for Rare Dirndl, whether it be the seamstresses, the pattern makers or the window washer, is paid properly. Our dirndls,, blouses, accessories, etc are all created in ethical conditions, NOT in sweatshops! (I mean the studio does get hot in the summer, but that doesn't count ;-) haha!)
The details that are inside Rare Dirndls that you can't see are what make them really great. Also, they are sewn with care! If I don't sew them myself, they are made by a local Chicago manufacturer (5 miles from the Rare Dirndl Design Studio) and these ladies are awesome! They can sew circles around me and their attention to detail is beyond impressive… that's why they're the only people I trust to make Rare Dirndls!
So there you have it, what makes a Rare Dirndl… well… RARE! If you ever have any questions about Rare Dirndls, feel free to send an e-mail or give the studio a call and we'll answer your questions as best we can. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram to get an inside look at the daily goings on!
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As always, ideas and opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own. - Erika