Friday, 26 May 2017

What would my wardrobe look like if I was an everyday lolita?

Or, more to the point, how would I change my existing wardrobe if I was going to try to wear lolita every day? As I’ve said in some previous recent posts, I feel my wardrobe is pretty perfect as-is. Of course, I’ll tweak it forever but currently it is versatile, cohesive and gives me a lot of options. If I were to guess how many fairly unique outfits I could get out of it I’d say I could get 5 looks that aren’t repetitive for each main piece on average, so with 24 main pieces that means I’ve got 120 outfits there. Then of course there’s little variations on each of those so really, with exactly what I have now I could easily (if my workplace allowed it and I actually lost enough weight to fit every single thing again) wear lolita every day for a year and not wear the same thing.

I find my wardrobe sort of spans three main categories as it is:
- Sweet lolita in black x pink and black x red with white in berry and candy themes
- Sweet lolita food themes in brown
- Floral classic primarily focusing on brown, ivory and beige, black, and shades of wine.

I do have a few outliers in colour and style but most of my wardrobe fits into those categories. However, not every piece I own is suitable for the simpler days of life. So, if the stars aligned and I were really to be an everyday lolita I would add the following to my wardrobe:

Five simple OPs
Probably three short sleeved and two long sleeved, these would either be solids, basic patterns (stripes, dots, etc.) or perhaps a couple of prints. These would probably mostly be very distinctly classic, maybe with one being sweet in black. The main key to these pieces is that they would be easy to wear (and launder!) for the time when I’d just want to throw something on and be done with it. Maybe one or two may even be cutsew dresses for bonus easy points. I think five is the minimum number of these that I would want – it means there are options and if I’m having a string of lazy days, or I’m sick, I’d  have enough options to get me through. Because OPs are the least versatile main piece option in lolita I wouldn’t really want to get any more than this though.

Simple, easy to wear, but still distinctly lolita.

Comfortable shoes
If I were to wear lolita all the time I would need some go-to comfy shoes. On top of what I already have I think these would need to be some adorable pink sneakers (for my beloved black x pink sweet lolita looks), a pair of brown flat oxfords for classic and some flat black boots, possibly a bit Victorian in style. I find that as I am now I tend to just stick to a few favourite pairs of shoes, despite owning many pairs, so I think these would cover all my bases quite well.

More cutsews
The textbook definition of casual lolita is a skirt and a cutsew, and I do like me some casual lolita, so I would definitely need to get my paws on more cutsews! Ultimately I’d probably want both a short and a long sleeved one in each white, ivory, and black, as well as a few other options – probably a brown one, something with a cute print for sweet looks, maybe a couple of unusual but still comfortable ones – on top of the ones I already own. I would have a lot of cutsews but hey, I wouldn’t be expanding my blouse collection much I don’t think because it’s pretty well rounded as is! These cutsew additions would be more to give me easy and comfortable options that I don’t currently have, but also don’t currently need.

I really have a thing for cutsews. The comfort of a t-shirt with the adorableness of lolita!

More full shirred skirts
Definitely a basic black one! I’m actually thinking of making or buying one anyway, because with trying to wear lolita more often I’m realising how much I like doing casual and I could do casual a lot more easily if I had a plain black skirt. But probably just a few more ones in simple prints – a brown tartan perhaps, a nice granny floral or two, something stripy, and maybe a border print or two just for variety. Not too many, because I still tend to prefer dresses to skirts, but some.

A gorgeous (but comfy!) skirt from indie brand Elegy Clothing.

Things for warmth and weather
Given that I don’t really wear lolita all that often I don’t have much in the way of cold weather gear. I have a black coat, a cream and a brown and cream fur trimmed hoodie jacket, a black and beige trim military jacket, and that’s all the really warm stuff I have that’s lolita appropriate. And my boleros (and Innocent World cape!) aren’t really warm – I’d say they are more autumn appropriate but not really up for winter. So I would need to stock up on another coat in brown for classic, as well as some warmer boleros and definitely some cardigans for casual cosiness. I would also need to get a waterproof parasol (or three, probably three) because no-one wants to be a wet lolita. Then I’d also need some things to layer underneath, like some fleecy bloomers, as well. This whole practicality section would probably be the biggest addition to my wardrobe, except perhaps the cutsews.

Lots of underthings
I’d need to up my petticoat collection to at least five (though probably more!), and make sure they are ones that fit me comfortably – if it’s going to be worn all day, every day, it had better have a comfortable waistband! Similarly, I’d want to up the bloomer collection to at least seven pairs, and as mentioned above perhaps some colder-weather specific ones as well. Lumping it under the underthings category I would also buy loads more basic legwear options – more ankle socks, plain OTKS, and coloured tights.

Though I don't think I'd get a petti quite as big as this MeLikesTea one...

Bigass bags
A big, practical (but still cute!) bag would be a must have. I’d want to get three in the end; white, black (though my new one is probably big enough to satisfy this) and brown. Quirky bags are great, but basics are necessary.

Some oddballs
Wearing lolita every day would get a bit repetitive, especially since I do have such a fairly distinct colour palette going on, so I would probably also want to get a few more unusual pieces just for when I feel like changing it up dramatically. I mean, as it is I would actually love to get a fresh spring green main piece and a lavender one (preferably both floral, because that’s just who I am) with a few accessory options to match. But much as I like what my wardrobe is and wouldn’t really change it, I feel that variety is important and I know I’d want to have a few more things that felt different.

A new release from Angelic Pretty that I adore...

I’d still go to the gym and do active things occasionally, what’s a lolita to do then? There’s not really any such thing as lolita active wear but I think a short, loose dress with leggings or a cute t-shirt with bloomers would be some adorable options there. Or just conventional active wear in cute colours – I’d probably go pink and purple. Cute loungwear is easy enough to come by, so I could lounge around the home in lolita inspired glory…or maybe I’d just buy more kigurumis! Lastly, I would need at least one "fuck it" outfit – something cheap and comfortable that could get ruined and I wouldn’t care. Probably a Bodyline OP, or a handmade skirt and offbrand blouse, something like that. And I think, with that, I’ve covered all my bases!

In finishing I do want to be clear that this is all just a hypothetical.  I will confess, my dream lifestyle is where I am a successful author and I wear lolita every work day for that while I write away in a pretty home office with lots of sunshine, tea, and cats. But even if that lifestyle comes to pass, I’d never get rid of my normal wardrobe. Firstly, I like variety (and pants!) and second I wouldn’t want to force myself into lolita, which is exactly what trying to wear it literally every day would be for me. However, it’s still fun to think about it and hey, if in a little while my dream lifestyle comes to fruition I would love to wear lolita as I work and when I do, I’ll definitely be implementing some of the things from this post.

What do you think of wearing lolita every day?

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Lolita 52: The ways in which I fit the cliché & The ways in which I do not fit the cliché

Once again I am answering two Lolita 52 topics in a single post, because I don’t think there’s really enough content there for two separate posts. Before answering I want to clarify that I think there are two real clichés of lolita. The first is the “lifestyle lolita” stereotype of the elegant, dainty maiden. The second is the more modern cliché of the Japanophile who shops and spend her time online or at meets, who embodies the perhaps more realistic but no less inaccurate lolita lifestyle.

For both those clichés, I fit them in very limited ways:

  • I drink a lot of tea
  • I like books and reading
  • I sew
  • I keep a lolita blog
  • I am interested in  Japanese culture

A lovely stock photo of tea. Don't let this fool you tough, I drink my tea out of an Octoberfest stein.

Aaaand that’s it. Not really much of a thing there is it? I'm not even a huge anime fan, though I certainly like some.

Regarding not fitting the cliché, I really want to be pedantic and say that all of me does not fit the cliché, end of story but a few noteworthy (kind of) points are:

  • I’m very practical, and basically nothing in my life is lady-like or decorative 
  • I’m your stereotypical nerd (Computer games! Star Wars! Fantasy novels!)
  • I’m not particularly sociable
  • I'm rather filthy minded, as my boyfriend knows well

Most of my free time is spent in Tamriel lately.

So there you have a bit of me in a nutshell, and how I relate to the lolita cliché. Having said that though, I think basically anyone involved in this glorious subculture of ours could come up with a similar list of “I’m lolita in this way, and not in this way” and in the end, the only bit that really matters is that we wear and admire and enjoy these fabulous clothes.

Monday, 15 May 2017

May 2017 auctions haul

Last week I got in another haul of cheap Yahoo Japan auction finds from Buyee. I’ll admit, most of this is a bit frivolous and most things were not on my goal list for this year, but hey, what is disposable income for if not disposing, am I right? To be honest though I am going to try and hold off on buy much more lolita for a while…though I’ve already pre-ordered something and if Metamorphose does mid-year special sets I may just have to get one.

Anyhow, enough talking about what I’m not going to buy, let’s take a look at what I did! Mostly I got a lot of black things…it was unintentional but kind of cool!

It started with socks - is anyone surprised? I saw this lot and given that I felt three out of five pairs (the brown, white, and floral ones) would be valuable wardrobe additions I just had to go for it. Even though they’re really the least versatile item and don’t really actually match any prints, I love the floral Innocent World ones the most. There’s just something about this style that I love and I really want/don’t want IW to release this style again – want because, well, I want them, but I really don’t need to drop big bucks on several more pairs of OTKS and that is exactly what would happen if these were rereleased in more colours I liked. Surprisingly, in the end I actually really like the BTSSB ribbon socks and the Crown Label ones as well, but am not a huge fan of the white ones! So some may end up in the for sale pile but I’m not quite sure yet which ones!

The second item I bought was another pair of OTKS. Don’t judge me! I thought these would be really useful with the subtle floral pattern; they’re simple but not too plain and give me another legwear option for my black floral pieces. And they’re Meta, so they’re comfortable and fit me well, though they're a tad short on me right now. There’s not too much more to say about these but I’m glad I got them.

Then I got this oldschool long sleeved Baby, the Stars Shine Bright blouse. I had wanted a new long sleeved white blouse, and though I didn’t really want something so oldschool it was fairly cheap, it’s fully shirred and I thought why not? I do have to say, I really adore the lace on old school pieces and when I think about it more, it is nice to have an oldschool blouse that fits (my other Baby one is an under-JSKs-only kind of fit right now) because it means that I can pull together properly oldschool looks if I want to. It is conformable and adorable and a good fit...except for the length! It's meant to be shirred around the bosom in a babydoll sort of style but for me the shirring ends awkwardly at the top of my boobs - not a good look! However, it will still be lovely under JSKs, which I tend to wear more of anyway, so it's good enough for now and my hunt for the perfect long sleeved white blouse will continue at a more leisurely pace.

But oh my goodness this stank so bad when I pulled it out. I’m exaggerating a little but I’m 99% sure it came from a smoker because it smelled pretty rank. And that’s noteworthy because that’s the first time this has happened to me with a secondhand purchase from Japan. Normally there is no smell, or a lovely smell, but here for once I got a bad one. Oh well, that’s what a laundry is for!

Next up I bought another pair of OTKS, ones that were actually on my 2016 wardrobe goals list – black with a neutral white pattern. To be honest I wasn’t overly excited about them though I did like the lacy pattern, which turned out to be good because when I got them it turned out there is pale blue/lavender in the print which does not go with my wardrobe at all. So these are definitely destined for the sale pile! I feel a bit silly too, because the colours did seem a bit bluish in the listing photos, but I didn’t think much of it because you can never really tell, so in a sense this one’s on me.

Then there was a cheap BTSSB cutsew in black with adorable polka dot ribbon details. I like how adorable this is and I have to say I am really developing a love of cutsews, as you may have noticed from posts of my purchases over the last year. Once I discovered they can sometimes fit, even at my current size, there has been no turning back! But what makes me sad is that though this fits around it is waaaaay to short for me - it fits like a crop top! And I don't want to hang onto this as an under-JSKs-only thing, because I have other tops that work well under JSKs, so since this can't be versatile it has no place in my wardrobe. Which is such a bummer, but oh well. My loss will be a shorter persons gain!

Speaking of cutsews my next item, the long sleeve Metamorphose Candy House cutsew, fits me like charm. I mean, it is a little too tight on the arms but overall it fits and it’s cute and I can wear it without having to lose any weight first! And it will only fit better as I get healthier. I may be developing a cutsew addiction… The only downside of this top is that the print is decidedly ivory. The colourway was black x ivory (or unbleached, I forget) but in photos it appeared a lot more like an offwhite, so I’m not sure how much use I’ll be able to get out of this after all. I’d definitely going to hang onto it for a while though, because I really want to try pairing it with my Patisserie Dream skirt and seeing what other outfits I can come up with using it.

The last item in my haul was this Angelic Pretty bag. It is exactly what I like in a bag (except for when I like frivolous bags) – it’s pretty but neutral and is a good size but not overly large. It is in very good condition as well, which I’m happy about.

So that’s my most recent haul! As I said, lots of black things, but I wear a lot of black. Have you received anything exciting in the mail recently?

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Shades of green; Handmade floral skirt outfits

I really get a kick out of doing these outfit posts with pieces I've made myself - it's a good feeling! This time around the outfits are with the green floral skirt I made in 2016. I also made a matching headbow for this skirt, which was a first for me, and I'm contemplating making some two ways bow clips to go with it as well and while I was putting these outfits together I found my headwear options quite limited, and other than the headbow I made and another one I own nothing matches!

And it's such a pretty, comfortable skirt that I want to give myself a few more coordinating options so I can wear it more!

I wasn't too excited about the outfits I came up with for this skirt last time I did flat lays for it (they're fine, just a little dull) so I wanted to try coordinating it with a new colour, and soft peach pink seemed a good choice. This would be worn with pink ankle socks as well, and I really like it. It's super casual, and super wearable, just how I like it!

Next I tried something a bit more typically lolita. This is where making a few little bows to match the skirt would be great, as having one of those on the fur collar would really help ti this look together. Or a forest green brooch of some kind, I suppose. I liked doing another lighter coloured look with this skirt.

For my last coordinate I tried going a bit cuter but I think I missed the mark a little, the socks are too bright. I think an ivory blouse and brown bolero would have made the OTKS work better, or alternatively I could have run with darker socks. Ah well, these flatlays are always a learning experience! And I learned that I can coordinate this skirt in a few more ways than I had initially thought ^__^

Friday, 5 May 2017

Lolita 52: Fondest meet-up memory

Yet again this is going to be a short post because I have been to one meet-up ever, and that only recently; you can read my post about it here. My fondest memory of that day is just how nice everyone was! I’m not the best with names so I don’t quite remember who everyone was but I got random compliments (and gave a few!), one girl was super sweet in making sure I ate something at the lunch spread, and I spent a good portion of the event on a couch with a revolving collection of lolitas just getting to know everyone a bit. I know that’s a bit of a vague “fondest memory” but overall the community was quite friendly and that’s what really stood out to me at that meet.

To keep this post from being too ridiculously short, here’s another couple of photos of some of the bounty of clothes that were brought along by everyone that I didn’t put in my meet-up post.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Lolita Blogpost Roundup: April 2017

I really, really enjoy reading other lolita blogs, so I thought I'd introduce a new post type here - a monthly roundup of some of my favourite posts from other bloggers! Also, feel free to use these posts to show me a link to your lolita blog if you have one, I'm always keen to have a look at new content.

Drill Weekend Means a Lolita Weekend from Vanilla Bear 
A cute refreshing post about the blogger wearing lolita for the weekend to see friends and just be herself. Bonus; includes a great coordinate and some fabulous derp photos.

Innocent World's Bouquet Doll OP from RuffleCloud's Adventures
I keep thinking I follow all the active lolita blogs that I like, and then occasionally I find something new. I found a link to this blogpost on tumblr, and now have a new adorable blog to follow! Double win ^__^

A shopping day in Harajuku! from Ruban Rose
Have I ever mentioned that shopping for lolita in Japan is one of my dreams? So I get a lot out of living vicariously through other people's travel and shopping posts.

Fabric scraps and the art of omiyage from Life's Sweet Essentials
A muse on gift giving and some cute crafts - a really sweet post and one that makes me want to start hand-sewing. I won't, because I hate hand-sewing, but you know you've reading something nice when it makes you want to engage in activities you know you don't enjoy!

The New Ouji Overview Part 1: Terminology from Buttcape
Buttcape is re-starting the Ouji Overview series...I will never use the term "kodona" again.

Barcelona day 2: Omnia Vanitas event from A Season in the Sky
I followed the photos people posted from Omnia Vanitas eagerly on instagram, and then this gorgeous posts popped up with even more lovely photos. Like lolita shopping in Japan, attending a big event like this is something I daydream about so I really enjoy seeing other people's posts.

Easter Coordinate with Angelic Pretty's Cotton Candy Shop from Pastel Peggy
This post is just a really gorgeously adorable sweet lolita outfit. Sweet lolita just makes me so happy to look at!

Recent Outfits- Late Winter/Early Spring Comeback Edition from Luna Rain
And more outfits! And in the last outfit, she uses the same straberry headband as I own. Now I'm inspired to do my own "berry maid" look. I do own an apron so maybe I will!

Red Riding Hood lolita from Frillycakes
I love lolita photoshoots - both seeing them and doing them - so it was cool to see the professional photos in this post, as well as the more casual snaps. The outfits are adorable too!

Of course, there are a lot of other posts that have crossed my dashboard in the last month, but these are just a few that really stuck out! To be honest, I was sort of thinking I'd be only featuring four or five posts, because it feels like there aren't that many active lolita blogs but that's obviously not true! I'll post another roundup at the end of next month as well, I think I will be continuing this roundup series for the foreseeable future ^__^

As a last note, if I've featured your post here and you don't want it to be, please drop me a comment and I'll take it down.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

A garden of pink; Flower Bottle outfits

I love this skirt. It’s cute, simple and adorable. And, with the full shirred waist it’s also pretty comfortable!

It is also very pink! Much as I love pink, I don’t actually tend to wear it much (except pink x black combos, because pink x black is amazing). So even though I wouldn’t call it a challenging piece to coordinate, it’s certainly one of the most distinctly sweet lolita pieces that I own and therefore a bit of an oddball.

Given how typically sweet it is, for my first outfit I simply ran with that and pulled together a very traditionally sweet lolita outfit…and a very Metamorphose one, with the blouse being from them as well! Their lucky packs have truly served me well over the years. This would be worn with white ankle socks as well.

The second look also features a Metamorphose blouse… what can I say, it’s just how these turned out! For this coordinate I wanted to go over the top with pink. All the pink! I will honestly say that I don’t think I would ever wear this, but at the same time I think it’s pretty adorable. pink...

For the third and final look I came up with something I absolutely adore. It’s quirky, bright and so very, very me. Unlike the last outfit I would 100% wear this. I think it’s unusual, but not in a way that’s too weird or jarring.

I have to say, I love simple skirts like this. They are easy to wear, give lots of coordinating options and are quintessentially lolita. And, in this case, they are also pink, sweet and adorable ^__^

Saturday, 22 April 2017

How much have I spent on lolita?

There was a thread recently on CGL about how much you’ve spent on lolita, including most expensive item, best deal and the cost of your wardrobe overall. I don’t have much of note to say on the first, have already covered the second but the third point caught my interested so I sat down to do the maths. As a note, prices are inclusive of fees and shipping and are in AUD. And as another note, though I say “I’ve spent” there are gifts included in this: I didn’t personally spend every penny that was spent on my collection, in fact quite a few pieces were bought for me by my lovely boyfriend. Anyhow, with those two points covered…

I don’t tend to track prices, but I know I tend to buy cheaply. Therefore I’m assuming each dress, skirt, blouse and piece of outerwear cost an average of $60. I have 11 pieces of outerwear, 19 blouses and cutsews and 24 main pieces for a total of $3240. Then I would add an extra $250 each for Anniversary Rose and my Lyris Design JSK as those were the two most expensive items, so we are now up to $3740.

My two priciest lolita dresses.

I would count shoes, petticoats and my fawn fur collection as costing $50 per item and respectively I have 18, 3 and 6 which brings the total here to $1350.

Brand OTKS I would average out to being $20 a pair and I have 22, so add $440. Offbrand legwear I’ll factor in at $5 a pop and I have somewhere around 33 pairs (though I’m not 100% sure how many pairs of ankle socks I own, since I wear them pretty regularly) so that adds another $165. So my legwear total is $605.

I love pretty socks!

Headwear I’m going to count as $5 a piece so 83 pieces brings that total to $425, and then the bulk bows were around $50, so the final count here is $475.

In miscellaneous items I have 6 pairs of wristcuffs at $10 each for a total of $60, 2 pairs of bloomers that probably cost $30 combined, as well as $20 worth of each AP and Rouge Aerie jewellery. All my other jewellery is not lolita-specific, though a lot can be used for it, so I’m not counting any of it. Then I also have 10 bags which had massively varying price points but let’s say an average of $30 each for a total of $300. So in miscellaneous items I have probably spent $430 overall.

A few of my accessories in a favourite colour scheme.

Combined, that brings my current lolita wardrobe to a nice, round, total cost of $6600, based off some perhaps slightly sketchy maths. For the sake of my “better safe than sorry” mind, let’s even round that up to $7000 to account for anything I may have forgotten to include and for things like shipping and fees that I may not have factored in correctly. For my international readers, that’s around $5400USD,  €5000 or ¥608,000 at the current exchange rate.

This was an interesting thing to do, because it really makes me think about the value of my wardrobe. I love it – I think I have a great, versatile collection which can suit a range of styles and occasions. Lolita has also brought me a lot of joy over the years, and will continue to do so. It’s given me a new creative outlet in the form of this blog, and has improved my grasp of fashion overall. I love lolita as a fashion, and I feel like having a 7K wardrobe after 5 years is pretty good. Yes, my wardrobe isn’t very impressive by brand standards but it is well curated and above all it’s exactly what I want.

Thinking of the value of my wardrobe makes me want to go a little further – I feel like I’ve probably bought and sold almost as many main pieces and blouses as I currently own, so let’s say I spent another $3000 over time and sold things for $2000 (or have them sitting in my to-sell pile, but let’s count that a sold). That’s another $1000 I’ve spent that isn’t present in my current wardrobe, so in 5 years I’ve spent $8000 on Lolita or an average of $1600 per year. That’s almost $135 per month which really, with the maths of my wardrobe, isn’t that much – it’s a blouse and a skirt, or a pair of shoes, two pairs of brand OTKS and a few offbrand accessories. Yes, that is still a lot of disposable income channelled into a fashion, but it’s not an excessive amount.

I was surprised by how much I've spent because on the one hand that's a lot of money, and on the other its not what I expected...though I'm honestly not too sure what I expected! But this was a good exercise to do, even though it is based on guesstimate maths so I could be out by quite a bit,. However, it seems pretty much right and I'm comfortable with having spent that amount on my wardrobe over the years.

Do you know how much you have spent on lolita in the time you've been in the fashion? Do you look at that amount and think it's big or not so much?

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Lolita 52: 5 inspirational fictional characters

To be honest, I’m not much of a one for “inspirational characters”. I don’t get inspired from fiction, really. I enjoy things, and do find certain qualities endearing or insightful in particular characters, but this is a surprisingly challenging question for me, especially when trying to answer in something of a lolita sense.

However, I can answer with these characters:

Adora Belle Dearheart (Terry Pratchett’s Discworld). She is severe, smart, well-put together and all in all a wonderful, vaguely intimidating, stylish woman. Hashtag goals.

Lirael (Garth Nix’s Old Kingdom). A shy, quiet, misfit of a bookworm (sound familiar? Except I’ve never really been quiet…) does what she must to make things right in the world. Also she has a Librarian’s waistcoat and a somewhat mysterious sword.

Sara Crewe (Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess). The book, not the movie. Though this is a kids book, I love Sara’s determination to “be a princess” when a princess is someone who is good and brave and just regardless of what life throws at her.

Pamde Amidalla (Star Wars). Especially in the novelisations, where you get a little less Lucas and a little more depth than the movies, Padme is a powerhouse. And her outfits are some pretty amazing eye-candy.

Captain Janeway (Star Trek Voyager). Voyager is the only Star Trek series I’ve watched to completion, and I actually do admire Janeway something fierce. I also enjoy her change of hairstyle each season.

It may not read like it but I really struggled putting that list together. Like I say “inspirational” isn’t really a word I apply to characters. “Enjoyable”, certainly and they all are. “I found the overall message of this book/movie/show inspiring”, also yes. I feel like this list is wrong, incomplete, but also like it’s too long and also kind of fake.

I know that’s a bit of a downer to end a blog post, but regardless of the empirical goodness of my list, I hope it gives my readers a little insight into my taste in books, TV, and movies!

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Dots and berries; Chocoberry outfits

The really fun thing about these flatlays is I get to try new things with pieces that I honestly tend to wear in the same way over and over. Bodyline's Chocoberry skirt is just one such piece - black top and red beret is my go to look. I mean, it's a good look, but it's nice to try something new!

So I decided to steer clear of my standard coordination and try a few more interesting things.

First of all I decided to go with pattern mixing and I love the result! One the one hand, this is kind of a simple look, but on the other the stripes with the dots makes it quite loud...and I like that!

For the second look I decided to tone down the black as much as possible and instead highlighted the pink. In retrospect, I feel like I should have included some black up the top to balance it out, but all in all I rather like this look.

Lastly, I went in the other obvious direction that isn't! I have to say, I really love this cutsew, it is so good for casual looks! Our of the three outfits, this is probably the one I'd be most likely to wear, it's just very me!

Do you have any pieces in your lolita wardrobe that you tend to wear in the same way?

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Closetchild mini haul

It’s funny to think that in all the time I’ve been a lolita – which is coming onto five years now – I have not once ordered from Closetchild. Until now, that is.

Two items that were on my list of wardrobe goals came up for sale at the same time, and I decided to go for it. I also eyed off a number of other things (cutsews and OTKS, mostly) but in the end kept my purchases to a minimum and got only what I needed. So, which items where these from my list? An ivory short sleeved bolero and a pair of black wristcuffs.

I’ll be honest, after shipping costs kicked in I had a moment of regret for buying these. But even though it’s harder to get excited about basics they are things I needed for my wardrobe, and I am pretty proud of myself for not buying additional items to make myself feel better about the cost of shipping.

Overall I found Closetchild pretty straightforward to order from – their how-to guide for international customers was handy and everything was simple enough. I ordered and paid on 19 March, received an email that the order was received on the 20th, it shipped on the 22nd and arrived on the 27th. And yes, I am aware this review is a bit late but hey, better late than never. All in all Closetchild provided a good service and I will happily buy from them again.

Onto the items! First of all I got Innocent World's Ribbon and Pearl Short Bolero in beige, which is super pretty.

It is unfortunately too small on me - it fits, but it looks too small. I am going to hang onto it to see if it gets better as I lose weight or if it's just a problem with my big Western shoulders. It's a really lovely bolero though, the details are just gorgeous. And it is NWT!

Then I also got some AatP "wristcuffs". Why the quote marks? Because they're actually sock toppers...

And it's entirely my fault! The listing said sock toppers, but I wasn't really aware they were a thing, and given how Closetchild listings have been a bit haphazard lately I assumed it was a case of mislabelling or bad translation. But it wasn't, and so now I own some sock toppers and don't really know what to do with them...

So all in all, despite the experience of ordering being fine I'm not all that excited about my actual purchases. But ah well, you win some, you lose some. And at least now I have ordered from Closetchild so I'll be more comfortable doing so in future if something I want pops up.

Monday, 3 April 2017

Coordinates from January - March 2017

In keeping with my 2017 goal of wearing lolita more often, I've decided to post an outfit round up post every few months. Sometimes, like for the first quarter of this year, I may not be posting too many outfits, but I'd still rather for a regular, smaller round up than waiting for ages or even than posting each outfit individually.

So, in the first three months of 2017 I wore lolita twice. Which isn't a lot, but given that 2016 saw me wearing it only four times it is definitely an improvement!

In January James and I went out to buy eggs and I decided to dress up a bit for it. We also ended up hanging out in a local park for a little bit playing Pokemon Go. It was a short outing, but I was pleased to wear lolita for it.

JSK & Shoes: Bodyline
Bolero: Handmade
Bag (not pictured): Taobao
Everything else: Offbrand

The other time I wore lolita was when I went to the Sydney swap meet in February! You may notice, seeing these two outfits in the one post, that I like casual brown outfits ^__^ What can I say, brown or black tend to be my go-to colours...

JSK & bow clips: Rococo Soul
Bolero: Handmade
Shoes: Bodyline
Bag: Taobao
Everything else: Offbrand

So yeah, not too much lolita for the first part of the year but still off to a good start!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Lolita 52: Favourite hair style

This one is an easy one! Plaits and braids are my number one go-to hairstyle. I mean, aesthetically I love half updos with loose curls, victory rolls, hime bumps, and all of that but as far as a hair style I actually like to use it is plaits and braids all the way. I have very fly-away hair and things tend to get messy very quickly if I don’t keep the main restrained! Of course, just natural loose hair with lolita is something that I really enjoy as well and what's great is I recently go my hip-length hair chopped to shoulder blade level so I can do this again without becoming Cousin It!

My most common lolita hairstyle is simply two plaits, generally with bows at the end. It’s simple, looks nice and most of all – it’s easy to do. I don’t have a lot of patience with my hair! Plaits like this were especially good when I the purple balayage because it showcased the colour nicely...and now that it's shorter their cute because they frame my face nicely!

Me with my purple glory.

Another variation I enjoy is a crown braid, though for this I used to cheat and just wrap two plaits around my head. It’s only in the last couple of years that I had long enough hair to do this easily and I loved it... but I'll be going back to actually braiding now!The only downside is that having the hair up, given that I don’t tend to go for very large hair accessories, my head can sometimes look a little small compared to my petticoat inflated skirt with this style!

Lastly, a style I’ve only worn out once but that I intend to again if my newly shorn hair can manage it is looped braids. Unsurprisingly, this also starts with two plaits but looping them up is super cute and a bit doll-like. It’s certainly an old-fashioned kind of hairstyle and I really like how it look with classic outfits. And hey, if I can't do it with my natural hair I can do it with a wig!

Do you have a favourite, go-to hairstyle for lolita?

Friday, 24 March 2017

When in doubt, wear red; Tartan Check outfits

I will admit that over time I've come to appreciate Baby, the Stars Shine Bright as a brand more and more. The pieces I have from them are just so very lolita, if that makes any sense at all!

Recently I put together three new coordinates with my delightful Tartan Check "Mini Sleeves" JSK from BTSSB. I completely forgot to take a close shot of the fabric, which is how I typically start these kind of posts, so let's get straight into the outfits!

The first direction I took it is in a bit eye-hurting, I'll admit, especially because I would wear pink tights with this too! I enjoy the combination of pink and red quite a bit, and I think this particular look turned out really cute. In your face, to be sure, but cute.

This next look is also very bright, but I feel not adding pink keeps it a bit more restrained despite the excessive amount of red. I would so totally wear this outfit though - I love how vibrant and casual it is, while still being very lolita.

Lastly I tried to tone it down rather than embrace the colour, and though this coordinate is nice (and uses some new wardrobe additions!) I'm a bit ambivalent towards it. I feel like this JSK needs to be worn in either an oldschool or a gloriously quirky way to really shine - in this outfit it's jsut coming across as a little bland. Still nice though, don't get me wrong, just not exciting and I'm at a point where I like these flat-lays I come up with the be at least moderately exciting!

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Project 333 Take 3

Believe it or not, I've been working on this hypothetical Project 333 inspired lolita capsule wardrobe since I posted the last one. Speaking of that last one, I wasn't so pleased with how versatile it turned out - yes, it was thematically diverse but not in terms of colour or even really style overall. So this wardrobe was a long time in the works as I tweaked and tweaked and tried to come up with something that was varied in theme, colour and style...and in the end, I think I did a pretty good job!

For this wardrobe I really made myself relax and picked things that worked together on colours while not focusing on theme so much. Buuuut...I ended up going fairly floral again, though it wasn't really intentional! Mostly I just tried to have thing be cohesive rather than matching, and tried to work in some quirkier pieces to make the wardrobe feel like it could go in unexpected directions and wasn't just same old, same old. Things like having the pair of ouji shorts and that epic Axes Femme gobelin jacket really helped lift this wardrobe up, I think.

And naturally, I had to put together some outfits for each main piece to show everything in action and honestly I think this is my best attempt at a capsule wardrobe yet!

See, I can do non-florals! Both the print and underbust cut made this JSK a bit of an outlier in the wardrobe, which I thought was pretty good. And these outfits provide both colour and seasonal variety.

This JSK allowed for even more variance in the coords. I really loved using the bowler hat - it gives a bit of otome-style quirk to some of the outfits! But as you can see in the two right-most coordinates, you can really vary what you do with this JSK in this particular wardrobe.

Style-wise, this wardrobe is on the sweeter end of classic for he most part, and this is definitely the sweetest main piece of all! So mostly I ran with sweet looks overall here. I actually really love the wintery look on the bottom left - so cosy!

This Innocent World OP I chose because, even though it's not OTT, it is a bit out there with it's very Victorian sleeves. This gives me such strong Anne of Green Gables vibe to be honest - puffed sleeves! But still, it can be worn in a few ways, from otome quirk to full blown lolita to fairly simple.

For this wardrobe I also tried to not depend so heavily on JSKs, though I still think they are the best and most versatile style of main piece, so here we have a second OP - this time plain and short sleeved. It can be dressed up or down, and the colour makes it both simple and noteworthy. I know, I know, cream is not really the most wearable colour but I think that's what makes this dress a really valuable inclusion to the wardrobe - it's a non-obvious statement piece that relies on colour, rather than cut or print.

Next, we have something that is really a stretch for me - ouji (or kodona, whatever...let's perhaps just call it boystyle). I figured if I really wanted to make this wardrobe as diverse as possible, they warranted an inclusion. Boystyle is pretty freaking cool, and the simple inclusion of this one pair of pants gives the hypothetical wearer something casual and comfortable and different to wear.

And then last of all some outfits featuring the lone skirt. This skirt is simple, but still quite elegant, and it certainly lends itself to a good range of outfits from super toned down to very lolita.

I think where I managed to succeed in this wardrobe is that though it is very versatile and you can get a range of looks from it, there aren't really any statement pieces (except, perhaps, the gobelin jacket). You can pull statement looks, to be sure, but even the cream OP that I called a "statement piece" doesn't make you go "wow", though some of the outfits might! Of course, to some this may make this wardrobe seem boring but to me it makes it really exciting. There's no "this is the OTT dress that can be worn to be super fancy" or "this is the casual skirt for relaxed outfits" - to differing extents each piece can be worn in dressier or more causal ways by virtue of the accompanying pieces rather than the main pieces themselves. And that's what I love in a lolita wardrobe!