Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Can you make .....?
A. Short answer is YES, with the right budget. We have a wide variety of skills, and a LOT of experience. If it exists in spandex, we can likely make it.
Q. Do you sell to the USA/Overseas?
A. We sure do! Contact us to make arrangements!
Q. Do you design all the outfits, or can I design my own?
A. We design the majority of the suits you will find in our galleries. Many of our costuming clients prefer to tell us the music / theme, and let us go crazy - historically, that has produced the best results. For orders I am designing, I require a $50 design fee, payable before the design work starts. This is a separate charge from your costume order. Click here to order.
If you have a specific design you'd like made, that's also no problem. Mail or Email us a sketch, with any fabric / colour descriptions that may be necessary.
Some people fall somewhere in between the last two options.. they know the theme, and a basic idea of what they'd like - a specific colour, or cut.. but not a whole idea. If this is the case, let us know what your ideas are so far, and we can run with it.
I allow for up to 30 minutes of complimentary design consultation/cleanup work with each order. For this, I require a $50 deposit paid before design work starts. In this case, the deposit is applied to your costume order.
Q. Do you offer Dye Sublimation / custom print spandex?
A. I don't, and I don't plan to in the foreseeable future. I have never seen a dye sub job that looked good, and the fabric I've seen used for them is terrible quality. It's too bad, as I do a LOT of design work in photoshop, and custom spandex would be a fun thing to offer - I'm just really not happy with the quality. Maybe some day the technology will improve, and I'll revisit it. In the meantime - even aside from the thickness/durability/quality issues, I really prefer the look of colour blocked or appliqued spandex. You just don't get the vibrance and variety of effects from dye sub spandex. Life is more fun with foils and holograms!
Q. I heard that you're anti-zipper?
A. I AM! I take great pride in selecting durable, high quality fabrics that stretch well and move with you. My seams are strong enough that they'll outlast even the fabric. Zippers? Zippers don't stretch. Not only do they not move along with you, they introduce a point of weakness in the garment. The more invisible a zipper is meant to be, the less durable it is. For some of my wrestling clients, I'll use a heavy duty zipper - where it doesn't need to blend in to the costume. I don't use anything other than the heavy duty weight of zippers, as I can't guarantee they will hold up.
Q. Do you make synchro headpieces and bun covers?
A. I do, but generally speaking, clubs and parents tend to prefer making them for themselves - so I include scrap fabric with every synchro order. They're easy to do and don't require skilled labour! If you'd like a quote for a headpiece, let me know what you're looking for - sketches, etc. If you'd like to make them yourself and don't know how, I have a tutorial up on Etsy - HERE.
I do make bun covers, they're $5 each when ordered together with a suit.
Q. Your wrestling gear is more expensive than _____, but I hear you're the best. What's the difference?
A. As far as I can see, the most common reason for the price difference is the fabric I use. A lot of gear out there uses low quality spandex, and doesn't line it. All of my gear is fully lined with a cottony swimwear lining. This gives it extra strength and durability, as well as makes the garment smooth everything out more.
Additionally, my gear is either made with heavyweight lycra (which only comes in limited colours), or - in cases where the desired colour isn't available in heavyweight - with a double layer of regular weight lycra. Again, there is also lining in addition to this. Either way, this adds both to my material cost over what others are paying (lining, the extra cost of heavyweight, and/or buying twice the regular weight lycra), and the extra labour involved with cutting and sewing the extra fabric.
... but it looks SO much better, and lasts SO much longer. The way I do gear, you will never end up with sheer gear, even with the lightest of colours. Between fabric, my layering, and being picky about zipper application, I build my stuff to last a long time. As I like to say, I'd rather my customers come back to me because they have a fun new idea, rather than because they wore out their costumes!
Another difference I've been told of: Waistbands. When I do trunks, shorts, and tights, I do an elastic waist with eyelets and a built in drawstring. It's a fair amount of extra work to do it this way, but it is much more secure than an elastic waistband alone. I'm told this isn't the norm, that most gear only involves an elastic waistband.
NB: I only do the eyelets and drawstring waist on tights, trunks, and shorts for professional wrestling, as it's definitely overkill for things like dance and fitness competitors. If you would like a drawstring added to such non-wrestling gear orders, please ask!
Q. How do I take care of my costume?
A. Click here for our guidelines to take care of your costume.
Q. When will my order be shipped? Does it take a long time to make them?
A. Generally speaking, spandex costumes don't take an obscene amount of time to make - it's just a matter of what is in line before your order. If you need your costume for a specific event, call us well in advance of it, to make sure we have time to get it to you. Generally speaking, orders should be shipped within 3 weeks. We will let you know, at the time of your order, how long it will take. All orders are shipped by Canada Post XpressPost mail, unless you want to make alternate arrangements.
Q. What if I need it faster?
A. I CAN rush an order, but you will pay a rush fee... so try and give me plenty of time to complete it. Also, I can send your order by express courier or whatever, but you will have to pick up the extra cost of that as well.
Q. Can you send me the prices for every style of costume?
A. Unfortunately, no. Because everything I do is custom, there really is an unlimited number of possibilities. Please be specific about what you are interested in. If you have a couple of ideas, describe them and I'll price those out for you.
Q. How much would it cost for a __________ with some sort of design on it?
A. It really does depend on the design. I can't give a quote without seeing what exactly I'm doing! If you have a photo, image file, or sketch, just pass that along to us. Please indicate what you'd be looking for in terms of colour, size, placement, and fabrics to be used.
Q. What if it doesn't fit?
A. When you order long distance, I will give you instructions on how to have your measurements taken for us. Many people take measurements differently, so I ask that you follow our guidelines carefully. If you do, your garment should fit perfectly, with no alterations. If, for some reason it doesn't, I can provide *minor* alterations - all you pay is the extra shipping. Major alterations would be billed depending on the time they take.
Customers who order in person - and are measured by me personally need not worry about fit. Your order is not complete until it fits properly (Unless there is a change in customer sizing - detailed in the contract).
Q. I changed my mind about the style I want... can you change my costume?
A. If you decide that you didn't like the style you ordered, after the fabric has been ordered, I will redo it - but there will be a redesign fee, and possibly additional fabric charges. Try to be sure of it before your order is confirmed!
Q. Do you have any payment plans?
A. I tried offering payment plans, and found that they don't always work. Rather than raising our prices to compensate for time lost hassling deliquent accounts, I just changed my payment policy. I now require payment in full before starting an order.
Q. What is your phone number? / Why don't you have a phone number on your website?
A. If you follow me on social media, you may have seen me talking about autism. Being autistic has been an absolute benefit to me across the varied careers I've had, but it's not without its downsides. For me personally, phones are an issue. With my sensory issues, trying to hear someone over the phone can be difficult, and - depending on the connection, and what's going on where the other person is - even painful at times. Additionally, I find the ringing of a phone to be incredibly disruptive to my day - it can really throw me off from what I'm doing.
So, I just don't use a phone unless it's an emergency. I have one - that I use almost solely as a portable computer - and the ringer is always off. As such, I don't use the phone function for business. There's also the matter of preferring to have everything in writing, so both sides can refer back as needed. All around, life is better for everyone if I don't have to talk on the phone!
Q. Do you do drag queen gowns / Pride costuming?
Q. How much is (_price, CAD_) in (_currency_)?
A. We recommend checking the Universal Currency Converter for an idea of pricing.
As for the non-costume sportswear, we can take custom orders for pretty much anything spandex. If in doubt, send us an email detailing what you are looking for!
Q. I have a really short torso, and my chest is disproportionately large.. can you work with this?
A. I draft the patterns for each of our custom swimwear orders ourselves, using the specific measurements of the client. Because of this, your proportions don't really matter! Your suit is made to fit you, right from the start.
Q. I don't live nearby... how do I place an order?
1. Contact us. I can design something for you, or make something from your sketches.Let us know what kind of colours you had in mind, and a little bit about your character, music, program, event, or any other information that may help in designing.
2. Email or mail us any sketches you may have about your ideas.
3. I'll figure out fabric and labor costs, and let you know. Also, I'll give you an approximate of how long it will take.
4. Send me your full legal name, mailing address, phone number, and measurements, if you're providing them. (Click here for full details on measuring.) Contact us if you have any questions about taking measurements. If you follow our instructions accurately, Your garment should fit perfectly, with no alterations needed.
5. I will draw up an invoice/contract and email it to you as a PDF file. You print, sign, scan (or sign on the computer), and email it back to me.
6. Payment must be received in full before order is started. We can issue an online invoice for credit card payment, or accept an e-transfer for canadian orders. Note: We no longer accept cheques.
7. I construct your garment, and mail it to you.
8. SEND US A PHOTO!
PLEASE NOTE! Due to the custom nature of our work, I DO NOT offer refunds for any reason. Please be as accurate as possible when describing what you want, and with taking your measurements!
Q. "QUEENOFSPANDEX.NET"? What's up with that? Ego trip?
A. Way back in my earlier costuming days, I decided to purchase radio advertising, and the domain back then - "marierouthier.com" - didn't translate well to radio ads - no one knows how to spell Routhier! "Queen of Spandex" was a term used by the Mississauga News in an interview with me shortly before that time. After the initial shock, I found it cute - and catchy. While my original .com domain is now considered a "premium" domain by resellers, I decided to honor my design roots by returning to a similar domain.