Sunday, 22 April 2018

Mercari (and more) haul

As I mentioned I'm planning to wear lolita for my wedding day and I happened to find my intended dress (AP's Dramatice Rose JSK in ivory) really quickly on Mercari. You all know me, I never just buy one thing, so I ended up getting quite a haul in from Mercari (and Angelic Pretty directly).

Given that I found Dramatic Rose on Mercari, I had to use Japonica as my shopping service and they were fine. I still find their emails a bit confusing, but they get the job done! They also handled the consolidation of four orders with nary a hiccup. For reference, because I hadn't seen this information online before, if you place multiple orders under one email address via their site, they will automatically consolidate them for you and send you an updated order email that contains everything. Very handy! The only downside is that I had been avoiding sites like Mercari and Fril as they were new to me, and thus terrifying, but now they are familiar…and filled with so many wonderful bargains…

Anyway, onto the haul! Obviously, the first item is the Dramatic Rose JSK in ivory, which came with the matching canotier. The dress is in perfect condition, apparently there were meant to be some small stains but I haven’t found them yet, and it is so beautiful in real life! A little more ivory than the stock photos indicate, which is exactly what I wanted. I don’t like the canotier at all, I find it aesthetically awkward, difficult to wear as there are no combs or clips, and the flowers seem very cheap. But I didn’t buy this for the canotier, so I don’t really mind. And besides, the dress really is gorgeous and so very detailed.

But, in sad news, I think I’m still too tall for this dress. As I have to lose weight to fit it I haven’t been able to try it on properly, but holding it up to my body it’s just not right. It’s not just that the skirt is too short (because underskirts exist) but the bodice is too short for my torso. I’ll admit, I’m pretty bummed about that because I loved the idea of this as my wedding dress but I just don’t think it’s going to happen. I’ll have a think about it but currently it’s looking like a no. I’ll still hang on to it though, because a slightly too short bodice is something I don’t mind too much regularly in lolita even though it is something I don’t want for my wedding day.

Moving back into a happier mood, I also stumbled on a full back shirred Innocent World onepiece. Innocent World that will fit me? Sign me up! This is the Angel Tiered OP in brown and while it's not a print I'd ever really been aware of before it felt like it would be a good addition to the "easy to wear" side of my wardrobe. Much as I love JSKs I'm finding myself reaching for skirts or OPs more often when wearing lolita casually. It’s a very pretty dress but to my surprise it doesn’t fit…and you know why? The arms! Memo to any larger girls wanting to try full back shirred IW; it may fit around your body but it mightn’t fit around the arms! Oh well, it’s only a bit too tight so I’ll be able to wear it soon and I think I’ll wear it a lot.

Then I saw this cute little AP cutsew (the Berry Garden Print T-Shirt) and again it was a no brainer. Black with berries for just 999 yen - how am I supposed to resist that? To my great surprise and joy this actually fits me! It’s tight and a bit short but wow, I can’t believe the stretch this thing has. It’s so great! My only concern is the length, it may just be a bit too short on my torso (are you sensing a pattern here? I am!) but I’ll try cording it soon and see how we go. I hope it works out because I think printed cutsews are my new favourite thing and given that this matches my number one casual wardrobe theme I see it being very useful.

While browsing the AP section I also came across the Polka Dot Short Sleeve Parka for just a single yen more than the cutsew. Again, when temptation is perfect and cheap I just go for it! Like the cutsew, it fits, and I think it’s the cutest thing in my whole haul! I don’t have anything like it and I am so glad I bought it. Short sleeved hoodies are something I love in casual wear, so I’m really chuffed to it and who knows, I may end up wearing it outside of lolita as well.

I also bought another pair of ivory lace topped OTKS from Angelic Pretty because I made the mistake of putting my last pair through the wash instead of hand-washing and they came out kind of grey. Not going to lie, I was so disappointed I almost cried. Thank goodness I'm an adult with a good job so I can easily afford a replacement but man, that was way more soul crushing than it ought to have been. But on James's suggestion I'm going to try dying the damaged pair so who knows, it may end up being a blessing in disguise, depending on how the dye job turns out.

I then found this super cute brown with ivory lace Metamorphose cardigan, I think it's the Double Frill Lace Cardigan from 2005. I didn't really need another piece of brown outerwear, but it was cute and still different enough from anything else I have that I thought it was a good buy. Unfortunately though it’s a bit short on the sleeves for me and I’m in the process of deciding if that’s a deal breaker for me. I think it is, which is a bummer, but oh well. That’s what you get buying online and there’s a swap meet next month anyway so no big deal!

I also took a dive into the world of burando shoes! Again from Meta, these are currently unidentified but that doesn't matter. I didn't necessarily need these shoes, but I don't own an ivory flat so they're not an entirely frivolous purchase! And they turned out to be my unexpected favourite purchase of this haul. They fit perfectly and are comfortable, but more than that they are just such a typically lolita shoe. The little wooden sole, the scalloped edges, the ankle straps - they’re just perfect and I love them way, way more than I was expecting too. Do you ever come across an item that just make you feel like a proper lolita, some weird nix of nostalgia and excitement? These shoes did it for me.

Now, I thought I was done then, and I was for a little, but I can't keep myself from browsing when I have an open order and I stumbled upon this Maxicimam bolero which I couldn't resist. It fills a wardrobe gap! As a note, Japonica once again confirmed with me that the item description indicated wear and checked if I wanted to go ahead with the order, which is a good bit of customer service (and honestly, the bolero is fine, like seriously, what wear?). The bolero is a perfect fit and while a bit unexciting on its own I’m very glad to have it.

Overall I’m very happy with my new set of wardrobe additions, though I am a bit down about Dramatic Rose. But I got some great new pieces so it’s all good! I do feel a bit bad for not sticking more firmly to my “limited spending” goal for the year though, so I’m going to try very hard not to indulge any further for a while. I also want to focus on wardrobe diversity a bit more and get some items in a broader colour palette. We’ll see how it goes!

Have you added anything to your lolita wardrobe lately?

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Review #50: My Lolita Dress (aka mostly just more fawn fur)

Two things made this order happen, and it wasn't that I was look for more fawn fur! For an Easter photoshoot I wanted to be a cute lolita bunny. Egg Art was the perfect dress, and I was spending time on the internet searching for the right bunny ears to buy. At the same time, I was browsing Taobao for a blog post about coordinate pricing (coming soon, I promise!) and found the most perfect ears on the Sweet Dreamer/Cutie Creator store!

I wanted to get the ears as soon as possible, given that it was already March at this time and Easter was fast approaching, so I decided to use a re-seller rather than a shopping service, and went with My Lolita Dress. I put my order in on the 4th of March and in the additional requests box asked for it to be processed ASAP. I have no idea if that made any difference whatsoever, and I also have no idea if buying from them was quicker than using a shopping service would have been. It was easier, at least. However, I won't use them again since my package shipped out from Singapore (so the items getting to them from the original seller was probably slower than if I'd used a Chinese SS) and there was nothing to set their service apart from any other shopping service I've used. To be clear, there was nothing bad about buying from them, just nothing good enough to bring me back unless it was necessary or advantageous for some reason.

Anyhow...while I was ordering I thought I'd just have a tiny little browse of what they else was available, since I was already going to be paying shipping...

And I found fawn fur. Specifically, I found a gorgeous reversible cape and some earmuffs from Sweet Dreamer's "Shepherd's Glen" series and I just had to buy them. Had to. No choice. The cape was kinda expensive (though not really for the size of it) so I felt a bit bad, but I also felt very happy!

Anyhow, my order arrived on 26 March, which was in time for Easter, though not as early as I would have liked. However, it still enabled me to do my Easter photoshoot on Good Friday so all's well that ends well! It actually came on the same day as my Madillustration brooches, which gave me a dilemma about which review to post first, but I ordered the brooches way earlier than these things so it was only a very temporary dilemma.

First of all, the ears. Oh my goodness, the ears. They are so cute! And they're a perfect match for Egg Art. You can see the photos of me wearing them for my Easter shoot here and here's a quick photo as well. They're just great. The only downside is that it connects to the hair with a single, large snap clip, which is not really enough to hold it securely. There was also some loose fur when they arrived, but that just brushed off so not a problem.

The earmuffs look a bit scrappy at the moment with the fur all mussed from postage, but they're nice. In retrospect, they were a bit too much of a silly purchase and I don't think I'm going to get much use out of them. So I'm a bit disappointed in myself for buying them, but they are cute so it's not so bad.

However, what I am actually kind of disappointed in is the cape. See, here's the stock photo.

Looks pretty nice, doesn't it? But what it doesn't show is how blocky the final product is. The cape is a big rectangle, with a rectangular hood...and it just didn't look like that was going to be it from the stock photos.

I was expecting something a bit drape-y, a bit softer in shape, a bit more lolita appropriate, but it's not. This is no real fault of either the maker or the reseller, just my expectations, but it's a bummer when your expectations are not met. Though, having said that, there was not a single stock photo was not on the mannequin with its arms up, so they are a little misleading.

I mean, it is nice enough and there is a lot of fur in there, but I didn't want this style of fawn fur cape, so I'm really bummed to have spent so much money on it, especially when I was trying to watch my spending this year! There are also a few flaws in the fur. I noticed what looks like a orange highlighter mark on the front, and there are sections where the fur is a bit matted. Only tiny bits, but still. Not what I wanted and also slightly damaged.

I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do. It is very warm and cuddly, so I may end up using it after all, and if I don't I may take matters into my own hands an turn it into a more typically lolita style capelet.

So overall I'm feeling kind of negative towards this order. The ears are adorable, but the earmuffs were probably a bit of a mistake and the cape is disappointing. Oh well. I guess having a bit of a negative purchasing experience will just help me stick to my "minimal spending" goals a little better for the rest of the year.

Friday, 13 April 2018

Lolita Blog Carnival: Spring Meet-Up Ideas

When I think of Spring, I think of nature and flowers and all those lovely things. It's a great time to be outdoors since it's finally warm, but not yet hot. Basically, I love Spring and it was really fun to try and think of some meet up ideas for the season. Some are simple, and familiar, but I hope a couple are a bit unexpected.

1. Visit a garden
The first thing that comes to mind for a Spring meetup is to go visit a garden. If you're in a city, chances are there's a Botanic Garden. If you're in a smaller town it's quite possible there will be some kind of public garden, or there may be a private one open at certain times. Just take the chance to go out amongst someone's vision of natural beauty and enjoy the landscaping. And bring you camera, both for coord shots and flower photos!

An artsy flower photo of mine from years and years ago.

2. Go for a walk
Less typically lolita, and requiring different footwear than usual, but I think it would be nice to go for a nature walk. Nothing too long, and perhaps with a picnic at the end, but rambling though nature in good company sounds wonderful.

3. Nature bingo
You'd need someone who knows your area to organise this (or perhaps there are resources online) but run a Spring themed bingo! Find flowers, spot birds, even identify cloud formations...anything goes. If you can hold this in a garden, focus it on discovering certain plants in the grounds. If it's out in a park, or just around town, tailor the things you need to find accordingly. I am actually really tempted to do this myself!

4. Crafternoon with hats and corsages
I am ripping this idea off a meet the Sydney community had recently - but get together and make hats or floral corsages! Generally this would be more "decorating" than "making" but hey, if someone has the know how to actually teach hat making from scratch that would be amazing.

Hats from Sweet Dreamer on Taobao,

5. Watercolour painting
I have watercolours on the brain because last weekend James and I accidentally walked into a watercolour exhibition and walked out with a gorgeous painting ^__^ But I do thing a watercolour (or any kind of painting or drawing, but watercolours are just so delicate and lovely) meet would be lovely. Set up somewhere with a nice outlook and everyone do their best to record whatever landscape that is. Like the nature bingo, I am actually kind of tempted to organise this kind of meet now!

Read more from other bloggers:

Monday, 9 April 2018

Review #49: Madillustration

Brooches are most definitely a thing in lolita style these days. I think the trend has actually reached its peak now, and will possibly go into decline soon. Typically, I'm only now getting into it myself. I have, admittedly, long admired the brooches that brand like Peppermint Fox put out, but have never been able to justify the cost. But when MadIllustration put up their latest pre-order I decided that now was the time.

Side note: I think this ties in with my recent realisation that I'm kind of more into sweet lolita than classic. The PepFox items, while gorgeous, are definitely more classic leaning, but when MadIllustration put up these sweet things it was just love.

Anyhow, onto the brooches! I pre-ordered the Rose Water and Macaron Box brooches, and also grabbed a Fairytale Forest Deer Badge, because deer. I placed my order on February 11 and received a notification that it has shipping on March 14, which I think is a decent time for a pre-order. I received the package itself on March 26 and happily opened it after coming home from work. The postage satchel had my name on the top in lovely calligraphy, and was decorated with a Madillustration sticker. Inside the satchel, the individually packaged brooches and a thank you note were all in a pretty pink-and-white striped paper bag sealed shut with a croissant sticker. All in all, an adorable package.

The brooch that I wanted most was the macaron one. It’s colourful macarons! In a pink box! Shaped like a book! How much win is that? It's so cute IRL as well, just exactly what you want. I was a wee bit frivolous with the flower bottle brooch, but I thought it might make for a good match with my Metamorphose Flower Bottle skirt, and it is. And lastly, as I mentioned, I grabbed the deer badge because it was cheap and had a deer on it. In case you haven’t noticed I have a bit of a thing for deer stuff in lolita! Though admittedly, this is my first deer item that is not simply fawn fur. I hope I’m not expanding my addiction…

It's a match!

All in all everything was really nice - exactly accurate to the stock pictures and feeling very sturdy to the touch. I imagine I'll get a lot of wear out of these without having to worry about damages, which is nice.

A shot of the backs, because I can.

The only thing I'm worried about is that I may have to buy more brooches now... ^__^

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Coffee and Frills

I feel like I have reached a lolita milestone - I organised a meet! Just a very casual one, mind you, but still, it's an achievement ^__^

Unintentionally matching!

After putting it to vote I set the meet for April 2nd, Easter Monday. Due to difficulty securing a table at a cafe for a public holiday, I ended up making it a super flexible meet - we set a meeting place and from there the plan was to wander Newcastle's main foodie street and settle ourselves in a cafe that took our fancy. Not a very noteworthy meet, but still an opportunity to catch up and frill up.

It ended up just being Rosie and I again, but it was still fun. We got ice cream and "coffee" (tea from me and lemon, lime and bitters for her) from two different places and a few compliments from strangers. One guy even said our dresses were kawaii - I did not expect to ever get that level of correct identification! Because we were, indeed, kawaii.

My coord shot, thanks Rosie!

After our the tasty portion of our afternoon we headed into Civic Park for photos. And thanks to Rosie realising that smartphones should have camera timers (newsflash, they do!) and volunteering her handbag as a tripod, we were able to get a photo together without having to rely on the kindness of a stranger. Though I am thinking of getting a small phone tripod no, it would be really handy!

Last of all we checked out the new university building to get out of the heat. Because it was hot, and humid, and icky. Australia just doesn't want to let summer go just yet...

And that was it! A very simple meet, but nice nevertheless. I was lucky in that James drove me there and back, so instead of spending over an hour each way on a train I spent that time in the car with him, which was much nicer. Even if we forgot public holiday traffic existed and getting home took at least half an hour longer than it should have!

I love how lolita my Easter break ended up being, between my bunny photoshoot and this meet up. Did you get up to anything lolita over Easter?

Sunday, 1 April 2018

Happy Easter!

As the title says, happy Easter. Whether you're religious and celebrating, or secular and just enjoying chocolate and a four day weekend (like I am!) I hope you're having a good time.

I celebrated, in part, by doing a lolita bunny photoshoot on Good Friday with my wonderful fiancé! Just sharing one picture here, but you can see the rest on my Facebook page! Other than that, I have relaxed by reading books and playing games...and there's a lolita meet tomorrow. Pretty damn good four day weekend if you ask me ^__^

Saturday, 31 March 2018

Lolita Blogpost Roundup: March 2018

Can you believe that we're a quarter of the way through the year already? is going so fast! And interestingly enough, this post marks exactly one year's worth of roundups. It does not feel like that long!

It’s Time for a Change (Goodbye Rufflecon, Thank You for the Lovely Memories!) from Rosie Darling
I was really sad to hear that Rufflecon is no longer a thing. I mean, I was probably never going to be in a position to go overseas for an alternative fashion convention, but still! This post was an interesting retrospective about the reasons contributing the to demise of this event, and the role that the lolita community (or at least part of it) played. Sigh. Why can't people just play nice?

Bodyline vs Taobao Which is Better for Beginners? from Cupcake Kamisama
Oh I love me some analysis! Ratings in categories make my heart flutter, and I also happen to agree with the thoughts and results! Things are changing and I wouldn't really recommend Bodyline much for beginners anymore, and that's something I didn't think I'd ever say!

How The Western Lolita Community Is Failing Chinese Brands from Crimson Reflections
If you're in any of the big online lolita communities no doubt you already saw this post. but I'm sharing it here just in case because it's an important read, to my mind. 

Retrospecting Last Year's Resolutions from RuffleCloud's Adventures
Just a simple little post reviewing the author's goals. For some reason it just made me really happy to read!

How to Identify Lolita Clothing from Buttcape
You have to have your head in the sand to not recognise certain lolita items, but a lot of information gets lost to time. So this guide is super helpful for tracking down what, exactly, something is!

Deluxe Wrist Cuffs Opening! from In Love With a Dream
This is a very brief post but I wanted to share because indie brand reviews always warrant sharing! Also, the wristcuffs are very cute ^__^

First of all, is her outfit not decora lolita perfection? I love that someone is still wearing this style, it is so cute and fun and all round amazing to see! And I love the haul as well, it makes me almost wish my style was this colourful!

As a final note, since this does mark a full year of these you like these? Do you not? Give me your opinions!