Blind Review: Tribal Tramp

by  Emily Fergusson   Katt Martin  

Aletche De Meyer has created a line of upcycled festival themed clothing for her brand Tribal Tramp. New base units (t-shirts, dresses, leggings) are then hand dyed/bleached and altered to create new designs.  We (ED.) ordered direct from their Facebook page and paid via PayPal. The dresses came within the time specified and communication with Aletche was exceptional. We are reviewing Tribal Tramp’s
Hooded Long Sleeve, Laced Open Back Body-Con Dress. rp: £60/£65 size dependant.

In a Blind Review, we remove all tags and makers marks (except care labels) so the Bloggers have no idea who made the item and Brand has no influence on their review. Reviewers are asked to cover; quality of fit, materials, manufacture, what they would change, and how much they would pay for the item. Only after they have sent in their review are they told the Brand and the retail price and are asked for their final reaction.

Katt (24/26): First thoughts of this dress were that it’s not my usual style, I wouldn’t normally wear something with such low lacing. The bodycon part is something I do love to wear and it does make me feel very sassy, especially with the large hood that has a constructed feel to it. I look like a little sassy fat wood elf!

            

Now onto the quality and construction of the dress, I found that most of the stitching is fine but there are some parts where it has pulled or came loose altogether, which was even more apparent after I put it in the wash on a cold delicate cycle. Which is a shame! The lacing itself is where most of the stitching has fallen apart or come loose and the actual lace is actually green knitting wool, which did get a little fuzzy on the edges after the wash. The material of the dress is stretchy thin cotton, which feels very cool and means that the sizing can be flexible.

The lacing section is something I have a little issue with. If I wanted to wear this dress without a pair of leggings, I couldn’t. the cutout section is so low on the back that my entire butt is on display and if I don’t want to flash a bit of arse crack, the leggings need to come out to play. I just wish it stopped at the waist because it’s a great little detail and makes the dress so cool to wear in summer, despite the hood and long sleeves!

All in all, I think that I would pay possible £20-£30 for the dress and possibly even more if the lacing was shorter on the back and made with different materials.

Emily (14/16): When first contacted to write a blind review of a ‘revitalised fashion’ piece, I didn’t quite know what to expect. I impatiently waited for it in the mail and bound into my sisters’ room to open it in her presence. She can very much verify that any onlooker would think I was opening my acceptance letter to Hogwarts instead of a dress by an anonymous designer. My initial reactions were somewhat mixed; I either loved it or hated it but at the time I wasn’t quite sure which.

Overall, the quality of manufacture for the dress is ok. The joining of the hood to the dress seems well stitched suggesting to me that it should last well over time. This dress is divided into two distinct parts – the thick hood and the thin dress – so I chose to look each part individually. I love the hood! When I took this dress out of the packaging the first thing I noticed was the softness of its lining. The lining of the hood and the hood itself are clearly made from different materials. Wearing the hood feels like you’re wrapping yourself in a mystical cloud. However, I was disappointed to see that the stitching at the top of the hood was loose and unlikely to survive more than a few wears before coming apart completely.

The colour choices give the hood an earthy aesthetic which I can fully get myself behind. My own fashion choices tend to border on the quirky side, i.e. cat dresses on the very dorkiest variety, yet I found myself looking at this piece with a sinking feeling in my stomach. Personally, the hexagon motif appealed most to me and I may have been more inclined towards the dress had this pattern been repeated throughout.

The open back was one of my favourite parts of this piece – aside from the hood of course – but I believe it could have been improved with a few adjustments. Most notably the use of yarn to tie the back is a bit not up to the task long term. Also, a single line of 3-stich zigzag attaches the loops and strengthens and stabilises the raw edges of the back cut out. The point at the bottom of the open section falls slightly below where the top of my underwear exposing whatever lingerie I happen to be wearing to the world. While some would consider this to be a plus to the design of the dress, I tend to believe that my undergarments should be a secret reserved for myself and my partner. I also happen to be a woman with enough cleavage to be subject to the forces of gravity; the only thing that can prevent the slow plummet of my chest to the earth on a daily basis is the wearing of a bra. My options available for fully taking advantage of the gorgeous back is purchase a pretty bra*. All in all the back of the dress could have been one of its best features; had different choices been made to strengthen it to allow it to be more long lasting.

Initially, I felt that the material was a little thin, I imagined myself attempted to wear this outside in the winter. I am a layers girl – I do not like to be cold. On the other hand, it is not designed for the winter; it is made to be worn at some indie festival in the blazing heat. As I sit here with a desk fan directed at my face, I can appreciate the advantages of a long sleeve, tightly fitted dress that won’t be the cause of heatstroke. While the dark colour is going to absorb the heat, the designer seems to account for this.

While this piece wasn’t for me, I have to admit that it has grown on me since I first tried it on. My initial mixed feelings have transitioned towards a warmer perspective. All things considered, however, I wouldn’t consider paying more than £20 for this dress as the fundamental issues with the stitching make me suspect that it will not be as long lasting as some of the more expensive dresses I own. That being said, I may be willing to pay more were these issues resolved.

I know many people who would love to wear this; namely my sister, who stole the dress from me within ten minutes of taking it off.

Reaction

Katt (24/26): I’ve not heard of them before but the wood elf feel makes sense now! It doesn’t change my opinion of the dress or brand, it being upcycled does make sense now with the stitching and style of dress. The original price doesn’t shock me too much, I know that type of fashion and upcycled clothing can run on the pricey side of things but then again, I don’t feel comfortable paying more than £30 for a dress on a good day!

Emily (14/16): I cannot help but be somewhat surprised at what the actual price of this dress is. In all honestly, it did not feel like a £60 dress and I have to stick to my instincts. There are definitely some aspects of it that would need to be changed before I would consider paying that much for a single item. That being said, there are definitely items in her collection that I would consider buying; such as her patterned leggings. I feel that these are much more in keeping with my day to day clothing choices.

As much as this specific piece let me down, I will not be disregarding her store next time I’m looking to freshen up my wardrobe.

 

Tribal Tramp can be found on their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TribalTramp/

*Blysse Bralette on loan from Abigail Tyrrell’s Luxury Lingerie

 

Authors:

Photographer, nursing student, LGBT activist

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I'm an unapologetic fat girl with a manic love for pugs, glitter and quirky clothing. I'm passionate about body positivity and mental health awareness and I will preach it to anyone that stands still long enough! Throw in a few random hobbies like crochet and making jewellery and you've got me! I've been a plus size blogger for nearly two years, I've enjoyed every minute of it and my main aim is to help women gain confidence in themselves, I'm proud of my body and I want every woman to feel the same pride.

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