Thursday, 17 January 2019

Things to sew

Now that I have quit my job, and suddenly find myself in possession of both more time (because I'm taking a few weeks fully off before diving into writing!) and a clearer head, I want to tackle my pile of "things to sew". I have two main categories of things that I want to make for my lolita wardrobe, or at least, they are divided into things I want to get done in time for my wardrobe post next January and things that are a little more “it’ll happen when it happens”. So in the interests of blogging I thought I’d briefly share the lolita things that are on my sewing horizon (there's cosplay in there too, but that'll go on my Facebook page instead) in those two categories.

Things to Sew Now

The biggest thing that I want to get done in the near future is turning my handmade chocolate JSK into a skirt. I've got two main reasons for this. The first is that almost immediately after making it I felt bad for ripping off the pattern from my underbust Lyris JSK. I mean, no dress cut in lolita is particularly unique, but still in retrospect I wish I hadn't done that. Secondly, it was also a poor choice of cut for this dress, and I somehow botched the front panel. I have not worn it, and haven't ever really wanted to (only once that I remember), so I want to turn it into something I may actually wear, like, and feel proud of. As the skirt portion is quite simple, I may add some lace or braid trim to it somewhere, but I'll see how I feel once I complete the modification. I don't think this should be too hard to do, and here's hoping it turns out!

Still love this fabric so much!

While I'm working with the chocolate fabric, I also want to make myself some matching chocolate hair accessories. I'm currently thinking of making a headbow, a pair of two way clips, and a beret. The beret will probably be the first thing I do, as it will be the most unique and also will be totally awesome!

On the topic of hair accessories, I also want to whip up a pair of two-way clips to match my handmade green floral skirt since I don't really have much that matches it aside from the headbow I've already made.

I also need to replace the elastic in the sleeves of my Berry Stripe OP - it's been sitting in my mending box for like half a year (or more!) and I miss it. I may have other mending that I've forgotten about, but if I do I'll find it when I open the box to get to that dress!

Keen to wear this pretty thing again...

Those are the more "urgent" things that I want to sew, and I'm confident I can get them done in pretty good time.

Things to Sew Later

There are a lot of things I want to sew. Whether or not I ever do is a different matter, but hey, by publicising them here it may make me a little more likely to actually do them!

Starting simple, I want to make myself some more headbows and berets (provided I can figure out a good pattern for the berets). I don't have any fabric I want to use in particular for these but I'd love to get a few simple pieces in less common colours, and maybe some dramatic layered bows as well. Basically, stuff that would be good to have but that I don't want to spend any money on!

I would also love to decorate some berets, and in fact I've already bought myself a few more blanks. I definitely want to attached loads of flowers to one, and love the idea of doing a few with contrasting braid trim in colours that work with my wardrobe (black x pink, anyone?). If I ever feel up for it I'd also be interested in learning ribbon embroidery, because I think it's beautiful and would make for  gorgeous beret decoration!

In bigger projects, I really want to make a sweet black or black and white skirt. Just something simple, comfortable and casual that I can easily wear in simple coords, or super casually with t-shirts. I have some black and white tartan that I'll probably use for this, or I may pick up a striped or dotted fabric or do it in just plain black. Mostly leaning towards the tartan though!

Dots are super cute though!

On a similar note, I also want to make a simple brown skirt - either solid brown, a floral, or in a neutral pattern like stripes or plaid. Once again this is just to give me some more easy to wear options and there's not much more to say about it.

A while ago I also bought some black classical painting fabric to make an opulent classic dress. It probably won't surprise you to know that said fabric has been sitting in my stash for a few years now. My main problem with this, I think, is that I want to make something truly OTT and sumptuous, and I honestly don't think my sewing skills are at that level yet!

Beyond these projects, I have a lot of other ideas floating around. I always have ideas! But these are the ones that have metamorphosed from tenuous concepts to actual plans and therefore warranted blogging about. Hopefully I can make some headway in my newfound free time...and if I do, I promise I'll blog about it!

Saturday, 12 January 2019

Seagull Secret Santa

Last year I did something I've thought about doing for several years now - I signed up for the CGL Seagull Secret Santa! I signed up to give (and receive) one gift in the $30-40 USD bracket and had a lot of fun being involved so I wanted to blog about what I got and also what I gave ^__^

First of all I wanted to show what I received. I stated in my form that I was only really interesting in receiving wearable items, and listed off the main colours and themes of my wardrobe, as well as listing some specific items I'd like to receive and linking to some Etsy stores with items I liked.

My Santa identified themselves only as MM, and were from Australia (or at least posted their gift from within this country). They sent me a unicorn card and two Disney themed gifts - a pair of pouches from Typo and an Alice in Wonderland figurine.

This is my blog, so I'm allowed to be honest - I was quite bummed about my gift. When we submitted information for our matches there was a field for "what don't you want" and I put in one thing - no figurines. I also made sure to list some basic things I would have liked to get - floral hair clips and pastel bead bracelets, for example - and I know several mainstream Aussie shops where you can easily grab those kinds of things.

But oh well, it's how these things work. It was still fun to be involved and the pouches may be useful for makeup or something, and the figure is cute.

Even though I was a bit disappointed with my gift, I still had a lot of fun shopping for my match and I really hope she was happy with everything. I tried to get her a mix of things so even if I missed the mark with some I'd get it right with the rest!

I'm not sure if it's considered in bad taste to blog about gifts you bought for someone but I had heaps of fun assembling my gift so I'm doing in anyway ^__^

My match said she was into lolita fashion (sweet and classic, looking at gothic and military too), larme kei, idols (real, games, and anime), Digimon, and Korean make-up. In the end I focused only on the two fashion subsets of her interests. Since I'm no good at telling bootleg from real merchandise, and the stuff that seemed to be real was expensive (up to half the budget for one little keychain!), the idol and Digimon stuff was not something I wanted to pursue, and likewise I know nothing at all about Korean makeup! So fashion it was.

She mentioned that she was in need of wristcuffs, legwear and hair accessories for her lolita wardrobe (main colours black, navy, wine and gold) and tops for larme (main colours black, pink and white) as well as outerwear for either. So armed with that information I went shopping!

In the end, my gift included a few items I'd bought for myself at various points but that had since migrated to my sales pile, as well as some items I bought specifically for her. I'll admit, I felt a bit bad including some items that I already but I squished that feeling because hey, they were good items for her! Ultimately I went a bit over budget as well so I feel like I did a good job and according to her post on the SS thread I did well, so yay!

Sorry for the photo quality!

Her gift consisted of two big items - a BTSSB cutsew for lolita (and maybe larme) and a chiffon bolero for larme. Then I included some AP OTKS and Bodyline UTKS; some wristcuffs, a velvet bow, and a little dusty pink barette from Taobao; a couple of usamimi style headbands and a pair of flower clips from eBay (say what you like, I love getting little accessories from eBay); and a Liz Lisa hair accessory.

All in all I really enjoyed participating in this gift exchange and I think I will take part in the next one! Possibly at a higher gift tier, even...

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

A casual Christmas meet with the Newcastle Community

After disappearing into a hole for the latter half of this year, I decided to crawl out and organise a casual Christmas meet for the Newcastle community to cap off what turned out to be a really busy December. If I’m to be honest, this mostly came about because I discovered some of my Newcastle-based friends (who I’ve really only gotten to properly know this year) are into lolita! So of course, I added them to the Facebook group and decided that I really should organise something, especially since I could guarantee there’d be more attendees than just me and Rosie this time ^__^ And then I discovered that one of the girls in my Love Live group (who also lives kind of in the area) is into lolita! And then at the Sydney Christmas meet James and I met one girl who lives partway between us and Newcastle as well as a couple who live literally the next suburb over to me and James!

So in the course of a month or two, we added a half dozen new members to the Facebook group, and when I put the event up it was very gratifying to have people RSVP as coming. And, most gratifying of all, James wanted to come along as well! Cue even more excitement!

Now that I was actually going to be hosting a meet for more than just a couple of people, I got my butt into gear and started organising things a little better. I booked us a table at Coco Monde for the afternoon, with the intention of going to Civic Park afterwards for outfit photos or perhaps to some other place with aesthetic Christmas décor. Then I started thinking of some Christmas games we could play, just to give a bit of structure to the day, and prizes I could give – because what good are games if you can’t win anything?

On the day I got dressed, James packed up his outfit, and we drove to our friend Andii's apartment to get ready with her. James got into his outfit, I helped Andii with her coordinate (and we loaned her some items) and James took a quick photo of us girls for his Instagram.

And then we went on our way! Thanks to Andii we got a convenient park in Newcastle and wandered down the street to Coco Monde. James tapped me on the shoulder - Rosie was approaching from the opposite direction! We said made the appropriate introductions and went inside.

Unfortunately Della, who was meant to be our fifth attendee, couldn't make it, but it was still so awesome having four entire people at the meet! Double our usual numbers! We ordered food and drinks just chatted. James and I shared a big breakfast, and all of us shared a desert platter. So much good food! I took no photos for once because I just wanted to enjoy it all ^__^

Then it was time to head to the park for activities and photos. I had prepared two incredibly cheesy games and we found a couple of shady picnic tables that were perfect for them. First up was Christmas pictionary! Since there was so few of us, I did all the drawing while the others guessed, and the first person to guess three got to choose a prize and so on.

For the record...I am not good at drawing!

I am honestly amazed they managed to guess everything ^__^

The next game was what I was calling in my head "candy cane hooking", lol. I gave everyone a candy cane and dumped another twenty-ish on the next table over. The aim was to be the person to ferry the most from that table to our table using only your own candy cane as an implement. It was intense!

I forget who won this one, but what is great is I came prepared with six prizes so everyone got two in the end. I had some accessories and brand novelties and the like...turns out I had amassed quite a few of that sort of thing over the years and it was good to send them to new homes! I was really happy that the others seemed to enjoy themselves and liked prizes too ^__^

Then it was photo time! Not only was it fun to take group photos, it was great to have James bring along a proper camera and take some really cute ones of us three girls together in front of the Christmas decorations.

We also spent some time taking solo photos, of course, and again it was so fun having James and a proper camera around for this. He took photos of all of us, and I took photos of him. You'll have already seen our solo shots in my latest coordinate round up post!

James and I also took some selfies, because of course we did, and we took two rounds of shoe shots - one on the proper camera and one on my phone.

Then it was over! Not a very long meet, but fun. Rosie made a call to get picked up, and the rest of us headed back to our car, where we promptly stripped off most of our layer for the drive. Then it was back to Andii's where James got dressed back to normal and then it was home time.

I am absolutely loving having more people interested and active in the Newcastle community. I am so glad Rosie got things started up again in 2017 and I'm even more glad that it looks like from here there will be more people than just the two of us getting involved! In fact, I'm already planning a (bigger) meet for sometime in the first half of this year and I'm overall just very excited and happy.

And, in case it wasn't obvious, I'm also excited that my cute husband is getting into ouji with me. I have an ouji accessory now, I'm a real lolita! Being able to do this together is great and here's to all the meets in 2019 being as much fun as this was!

Friday, 4 January 2019

Coordinates from November - December 2018

I didn't think I'd wear lolita much as the weather grew warmer, but it turns out 2018 ended with a bang! In the lolita sense, that is ^__^

My first lolita outfit in November came about because I wanted to wear my Sailor Moon/Steven Universe shirt to go with James to get his Sailor Moon finger tattoos done! I love my man so much...Sailor Moon finger tattoos!

Ahem. On the lolita front I just wanted to run with something comfy and cute to match the t-shirt, and this is what I ended up with.

Skirt: Metamorphose temps de fille Patisserie Dream
Shirt: TeePublic
Everything else: Bodyline/taobao/offbrand

Also, he really rocks having finger tats and now I am 95% committed to getting a Sailor Moon tattoo myself now... (and the staff at the tattoo parlour kept asking me where I wanted these ones...and I'd just reply "on him!")

The next time I wore lolita was with James, and by with I mean with because he wore ouji! We went together to the Sydney Lolita Christmas meet, and I already blogged a lot about the whole thing here. Here's a rundown of both our outfits! Unfortunately I don't have solo photos because the card from the camera has gone AWOL, so have a shot of us together for my rundown then one of James on his own for his! And because he's cute, so I want to share it anyway ^__^

JSK & Flower Crown: Lyris Design
Blouse: Bodyline
Shoes: Taobao
Socks: Innocent World
Wristcuffs: Angelic Pretty
Everything else: Offbrand

Shorts, vest, and shirt: Lyris Design
Hat: Modified vintage
Everything else: Offbrand

Also, just need to put it out cute is he?! He even replaced the laces in his boots to match his hat. Which he modified wonderfully. And I should also mention that, despite what you may expect, I had no real hand in putting his coord together - it was all him!

I next wore lolita to my work Christmas party, purely because our dress code mandated we wear a hat and I'd only recently received my straw boater. So I decided to wear it with my Metamorphose Rose Stripe Shirring Pinafore JSK which is basically the main dress I'd bought the hat to match! For the rest of my outfit, I pulled out a few of my trusty staple pieces to go with it.

JSK: Metamorphose temps de fille
Bolero: Handmade
Shoes: Bodyline
Hat: Taobao
Socks: Offbrand

However, we need to have a moment of silence. My shoes, that I have worn so long and so well, gave up the ghost on this day. The left sole started coming detached at the toe and, combined with getting some sand in there that just won't come out, means that these shoes are pretty much goners. James is going to attempt repairing and cleaning them for me, but their time may have finally come.

Then I wore lolita for work again, this time for my last day. It was a really bittersweet day but I'm glad I wore lolita for it. One co-worker had said I should wear the socks I'd been gifted at the Christmas party the week before, then another had said I should come in full, proper I did both! And I liked the result quite a bit, especially because trying to tie the socks in pushed me a bit out of my usual comfort zone.

Skirt: Handmade
Cutsew: Angelic Pretty
Shoes: Bodyline
Everything else: Offbrand/taobao

I also wore lolita briefly for this years Christmas photoshoot, because my tartan BTSSB dress is just perfect for Christmas-y looks. If you want to see the rest of the photos, check out James's Facebook page or my Facebook page ^__^

OP: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright Tartan Check Mini Sleeves JSK
Socks: Angelic Pretty
Shoes: Metamorphose temps de fille
Everything else: Offbrand

Last of all, I organised a Christmas meet for the Newcastle community. I haven't had a chance to blog about this yet but spoiler alert; James came too! Two meets in one month! So here's a rundown of both our coordinates, me in a general Christmas theme and him as a reindeer.

OP & Bag: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright Tartan Check Mini Sleeves JSK
Bolero: Maxicimam
Socks & Shoes: Bodyline
Everything else: Offbrand

And have a group shoe shot since my feet aren't in the really pretty photo James took for me and I wanted to use the pretty one  ^__^

I also need to mention...December was not my month for shoes because these ones broke completely on me! James had noticed it looked like the sole was coming loose, so he did some pre-emptive gluing but it was still not enough and by the end of the meet the soles were barely hanging on to the shoe. But oh well. They're one of my least-worn shoes anyway so I don't mind too much.

Anyway, onto James's coordinate!

Pants: FanPlusFriend
Shirt: Lyris Design
Jabot: Peacockalorum
Socks: Innocent World
Boots: Doc Martens
Ears & boot covers: Taobao
Berry clips: Handmade

Ahhhh again I can't get over how damn cute he is! Squee! I had more influence in this outfit, and the main concept and shirt/pants combo was my suggestion, but once again James took the styling in his own way (including making the clips on his braces) and came out looking amazing.

In the end, December was quite an active lolita month for me (and James, hehehe)! I had a lot of fun with lolita this year and was glad to keep up the habit of wearing it regularly. Since I enjoyed doing it last year I will probably put up a wardrobe analysis post in a little bit but for now, that's all folks!

Monday, 31 December 2018

Lolita Blogpost Roundup: December 2018

2018 was a whirl. For me I honestly felt like couldn't catch my breath since June right up until after I stopped working my old job in mid-December (and even after that I had dance rehearsal and a lolita meet and other social things). But the blogging world just keeps on going, and here are some of the lolita-focused posts I enjoyed reading this last month.

The Grand Embassy in Madrid from Cupcakes and Unicorns
Do I need to mention again that I love reading all about events that I could never go to? Because I do, so this was great (and also her outfit is fabulous!).

In which she is a sweet shop witch… from Make Lovely
I always really, really enjoy when people take a theme and twist it in an unexpected direction - who else thinks "Honeydukes" when going to a Harry Potter themed meet? I love the creativity and the super cute outfit!

ILD coordinate – Julian from Sanakanin
First things first. I have severe, severe, coat envy right now. I want a dozen please. And second things next - I really love how this post

Review: St. Peter's Cross Lace OTKs (Re-release Version) and M+CROIX Lace Hair Clip from Rose Sanctuary
I really love reading detailed reviews, even when they're about products I don't care for ^__^

Living green! from Miss Filigree
This was a very interesting read about whether or not lolita could be considered "green" in terms of fashion. I'll admit, environmental impact is not something I like to think about because it makes me depressed but I still enjoyed this post.

Angelic Pretty Paris' Christmas Tea Party 2018 with Maki & Asüka and Mme Honda from Marinette in Wonderland
Another event report! I swear, every time I read something like this the more determined I am that I will eventually go to an official Angelic Pretty event. Some day!

So that's some of what I read this month and here's to more great lolita blogging in 2019!

Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! Or happy Tuesday, if you're not celebrating ^__^

I've had a great holiday season so far...doing nothing! I actually have spent a lot of today cleaning, playing games, and getting in some dance practise. Best way to spend Christmas, in my opinion.

But of course, James and I celebrated in our own way with a festive photoshoot! The entire shoot can be viewed on either his Facebook page or my Facebook page, but I wanted to share my absolute favourite shot here as well.

I hope you have a very happy Christmas day and generally an excellent holiday season ^__^

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Sydney Lolita Christmas Meet: Fairytales and Fantasy

On Sunday the 2nd of December, the Sydney Lolita Community held a Christmas meet with the theme “Fairytales and Fantasy”.

Event illustration by Yumiyumyum Illustration

The Sydney Community is actually in a weird place at the moment; we now have two Facebook groups (with a lot of overlap in members) and there’s a lot of controversy around the mods of the original community. This event was hosted by one of the mods of the new community. I don’t really know what went down and I’m not taking any sides, but I fully intend to stay part of both communities online (and attend the occasional meet organised by either) unless something happens to make me distance myself from one half.

But drama aside, basically as soon as this meet was announced I bought a ticket, because I totally wanted to go to another big meet after the RinRin High Tea earlier this year! The organisers kept announcing more and more good things – raffle prizes, comm members acting as photographers, activities, a vending corner, and finally the fact that the two designers of Peppermint Fox would be attending. And I thought I was excited when the meet was first announced!

My excitement peaked, however, when I was discussing my transport options with James, and mentioned somewhat offhandedly that one option was him coming with me and we stay at the hotel the event was at the night before. And he said he wanted to come! After making sure he was definitely sure I booked his ticket immediately and instantly became at least twice a excited for the whole thing.

As the meet came closer, outfit planning intensified. I decided to go with a Sugarplum Fairy theme with my wedding dress and my Fancy Fairy wings. I though it was a perfect idea, being both Christmas-y and literally a fairy so it fit right into the fairytale theme. In the end, after going through a few different ideas, James decided he wanted to go as my accompanying military bugle boy. He ended up wearing his wedding vest and matching shorts, with a new shirt from Lyris Design and a heavily modified hat. He also grew a beard! In the almost eight years we've been together, he'd never had facial hair and I was surprised how much I loved it. It has gone now, leaving the smooth, kissable face I'm used to, but still...I now know that I actually kinda like beards ^__^

Ahem. Enough rambling about my husband, on to the meet!

On December 1st we packed up our things and in the evening we drove to the Stamford Hotel Sydney Airport. We checked in to our room and rode the elevator to the 10th floor. On opening our door the first thing I said is "I didn't book this!" because we had been upgraded to a suite! We'd booked the cheapest room type and instead got a two room suite! Needless to say, we were pretty pleased about that ^__^

So we settled in, changing into the provided robes and immediately ordering room service. We also checked to see what movies were on and were way too amused about the "All Day Adult" offerings...

Once our room service arrived (and was promptly devoured) we were in full relax mode. James took a bath while I had a shower - simultaneously because the bathroom was massive and had them as two separate things - and then it was sleep time.

Unfortunately neither of us slept too well, so waking up in the morning was a bit of a slog. King beds are just really uncomfortably huge! But the siren call of the breakfast buffet was enough to get me going! If I've never mentioned it before, I will now - hotel breakfast buffets are literally one of my favourite things. And the one at the Stamford was really quite nice! I didn't have room to try their pancakes though #sad.

After breakfast we headed back up to our room to get ready. James had decided the night before that he wanted his nails done if possible, so I made some calls but there was no way we could book a manicure in that late. So we had a bit of time to relax before we had to get ready.

It was really fun getting ready together! I did my make-up while James ironed his outfit (I didn't bother with mine!), then I did his make-up as well. We got dressed and tried to take some selfies together, but the light in the room was pretty bad. I did, however, take this artsy shot of James's accessories!

Then we made sure we had everything packed and left our gorgeous suite behind. We went to the reception desk and checked out, and requested to store our luggage until the meet was over. While we were doing this several lolitas entered the lobby and went upstairs to the event room including Nikarra who I'd met at the RinRin meet and was able to introduce to James. Then it was time to go up and enjoy the meet!

Serra, the organiser, met us at the door and explained a bit of what was going to happen. Four tables had been set up, each with differently themed decorations, and as we knew from posts in the Facebook event there was going to be a range of activities in the day. We went to the least occupied table and claimed some seats. We barely had time to settle before someone (who after introductions later turned out to be Yumi, the wonderful illustrator of the event banner) bustled over to James and gave him a wooden "ask me for photos" badge, which I attached to his lapel.

The room filled up, we started talking to some people (including Ashy, who sat with us and it turns out she was the best-dressed from the RinRin meet!) and then the meet officially started. Our first activity was designed to encourage mingling and creativity - at each place setting there was an angel to colour in and add to the photo corner, but each table only had a few pencils so in order to finish everything you had to go and talk to people on other tables. I had a lot of fun with this, and was very impressed with James's angel - it's his first meet and he's already showing me up, lol!

Once the angels where complete you had to roll them up, staple on a ribbon bow, and add them to the photo corner.

The photo corner was quite cute, but unfortunately as with nearly all indoor locations the light was poor, and it was also a bit small. But still, it was so nice to have it set up and a lovely idea to decorate it with something all the attendees did. We could also take our angels home at the end but James and I didn't - we'd only throw them away but I wanted someone else to do that or I'd feel bad!

Photo by Mai or Yumi

After decorating time, it was the half hour for the coordinate photographers, Mai and Yumi, to do their thing. James and I took the opportunity to get a couple of photos together ^__^

Photo by Mai or Yumi

James was there in the capacity as "volunteer ad hoc photographer" so throughout the day he snapped shots here and there. He also took some coord photos for me...though in return I forgot to grab any of him until we got home! I'll share coord rundowns for both of us (so exciting to write that!) in my usual coordinate post at the end of the month. But I'm very glad the other girls were taking photos so we could easily get one together.

Also, since you've now seen them in a picture I wanted to mention that I was really chuffed because I got a lot of compliments on my wings ^__^ I hadn't actually worn them before and found they were really easy to wear just tucked into the back of my JSK, and despite the fact that I bumped into a lot of doorways with them they didn't take a bit of damage. Go wings!

With the photo time officially over (though of course cameras stayed in action all meet) it was time for the next activity - Divinity Treasureboxes. This was a typical Lolita Valentines kind of activity - we each got a jar containing two names. We made and added a name tag to our jars, and put them back on the display. Then we wrote notes for the two people whose names were in there - I thought this was a great twist on the typical Valentines idea as not only did it make sure no-one was left out, it was another opportunity to get to know people.

What's hilarious though is that I managed to pick a jar with my own name in I switched names with James! I ended up writing him a note anyway as well so yeah ^__^

After the official note writing time was over (though people kept going - including me! - for the rest of the meet) it was lunchtime! James and I were some of the last people to the buffet but there was still plenty of good food out there. I got a big plateful and when I was done eating I made James say "where's my wife?" by deciding not to go and try the desert buffet! In my defence, though things looked nice nothing appealed to me all that much so I preferred to stay seated rather than wrangling my wings through the room.

While people were finishing up eating, the raffle was drawn! Always possibly the most exciting part of a large meet. I won a gift card in the end, which was for a greater value than the money James and I had spent on tickets, but there were some really great prizes I would have loved to have won instead...oh well!

My gift card came with this cute illustration.

And then the second most exciting thing happened...the shopping hour! We had five sellers; Serra with The Decora Factory (of course) who was also remote vending for Japanese accessory brand Mystic. Yumi was debuting a new line of brooches with accompanying art prints and stickers, which James and I both loved. Of course, Peppermint Fox were there with their lovely brooches. The last vendor was Taiwanese brand Figlia, and she had so much cute stuff that I had to resist buying!

A shot of the Figlia corner, since I didn't buy anything from her...

Having James there was both good and bad. He stopped me from making purchases I probably would have regretted...but we did end up going to Yumi and saying "we want (nearly) one of everything!" First of all though, I barrelled straight to PepFox, because they had a brooch I wanted and they only had one of it. I even got James to take off my wings so I could manoeuvre better! But I got my brooch, and then bought both prints and all but one brooch from Yumi (some for James, some for me) and sat back down, satisfied.

The rest of the meet passed in the usual fashion; chatting, drifting, drinking tea. Serra also distributed gift baggies! It was nice. I feel like there was a pretty good balance between activities and free time. And it was so nice to have James with me! He's better at socialising than I am ^__^

Well, I drank tea. James on the other hand...
Photo by Mai or Yumi

Now, I'm not sure of when specifically in the meet we spoke with certain people but I just wanted to mention that we met some really lovely girls and guys this day. New friends include Ashy (who carried a, hell yeah!), Tiana (who was cute in sweet lolita and gave us Tokyo travel tips), Yumi (who reads my blog! Guys! Someone I admire reads my blog!) and her boyfriend Sam, Ashlee (who lives between me and Newcastle...whoo for semi-locals), and Veronica and Sam (who are a gorgeous couple from literally the next suburb over from us! Super locals!). It really was great for me to have James there as it made socialising a lot less terrifying, and it was so good to get to know some people in the community better or meet them for the first time.

Then, in what felt like just the right amount of time, the meet came to an end. I was driving us home, so I ducked into the ladies to change...and was shortly followed by a lot of other lolitas removing some or all of their outfits! Then it was downstairs to pick up our luggage, then into the car park. We got a bit lost getting out of the immediate area due to the hotel exit forcing us to go the wrong way, but resolved that pretty quickly. We grabbed some drinks and snack for the drive on the way and made it home in good time.

At home, I grabbed some cute photos of James in our backyard to show off his outfit then it was time for a well deserved shower and cup of tea. We sat on the couch and looked through our gift bags, purchases, and jarfuls of notes.

One lovely thing is that Serra customised the gift bags for people with dietary requirements, like James, so they included snacks they could eat. It was the usual assortment of postcards, business cards and vouchers, which is always nice.

But what was most lovely was getting to finish off the day by reading the notes we had been left! Funnily enough, we both ended up with seven notes each! Some people had obviously put in the effort to prepare a note for literally everyone, which was sweet, but we also both got some nice personalised notes - in particular James got one from Yumi addressed to both of us, and I got one from Ashy to both of us! It was really nice ^__^

So all in all this was a nice meet. My favourite part of it (in case it wasn't obvious) was that James was with me but it was also great to meet new people and get to know others better, and as always it's fun to frill up and go out!

As a final thing to finish on, here's a quick photo of our haul. Technically the prints and the brooches except for the lute and the PepFox one are James's, but hey, we're married! James also bought some perfect frames for the prints - we just need to decided where to put them!

Have you celebrated the holiday season in any lolita ways this year?