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?


  1. That is a a d cent amount, especially since, as you said, your wardrobe is very cohesive and fairly sizeable. I kinda of don't dare to think how much I spent on mine and also want to know how much it all cost. I have a spreadsheet where I track the cost of my dresses: how much I paid for the print and cut, how much it's worth based on Lacemarket sales, what it cost when new and, if I sold something, then for how much. That's another interesting exercise because while most of our Lolita pieces will lose value, there are some that will go up. In my case, I know that while I may have gotten Crystal Dream Carnival Tiered JSK in navy for around £300, it's current retail value is closer to £500. And anyone owning something like Romantic Rose Letter, Lotta, Cat's Tea Party, Iron Gate, Puppet Cicus or that BtSSB & Princess Jellyfish collab gets so much more now than what they paid (I still can't get over how much that last one went for, the owner must be super happy!). So that's another thing to consider when thinking about the cost of your wardrobe - even if only for insurance purposes :P

    1. I'm quite satisfied, I have to say!

      That's an excellent idea! I may do that eventually, though I'd have to actually properly track down how much things cost which would take a while! It is really interesting how the secondhand market works though, especially because I'm someone who would not pay retail for secondhand, and definitely not more than!

    2. Yeah, it took me a while to do at first, but once you do it the rest is just a matter of updates. But what I wish I'd done was have the prices bought all in the same currency. The exchange rates have changed so much over the years that I can't really tell how much I spent on something.
      I know that I have paid over retail for some items, but that's because I'm more about getting a certain print rather than always getting it under retail price. Though now that I have all of my dream dresses and am not desperate for anything, I'm more willing to wait for an item to come up for the right price (as well as in my preferred cut and colourway).

    3. That's a good point about currency conversion - I know for me the Aussie dollar used to do quite well against the JPY, but now...not so much.

      That's completely understandable! I think I just tend to not love specific prints with such a passion that I spend too much on them, but I completely understand doing so...there are a lot of things I'd love to get my hands on!

  2. Replies
    1. That's fair enough, I wouldn't have if I hadn't sat down to rally think about it, and it's still not certain.

  3. I used to keep track of every item in my wardrobe with a spreadsheet listing how much I paid for it, with SS fees, shipping etc., and then comparing that to what the list price of the item was, but I lost it when I had to get a new laptop. That was when I had a much smaller wardrobe though, so now it's a little scary to think about haha! I am proud to say that I've never paid over list price for anything except for 1 necklace.

    1. I hate losing things when computers go haywire! The amount of things I've lsot of th years...

      Yeah, I'm torn between wanting to have a spreadsheet like that and being daunted by the amount of work it would take to do it now.

      Well done!

  4. I think that's a good amount, honestly. I have a rough idea of how much I've spent on mine as I used to keep track until the last couple years or so (and I've barely bought anything in that time anyway!) I don't think it's a lot given the amount of wear I have gotten out of my pieces over the years, so I'm pretty content!

    It's definitely a good exercise to carry out, and I think it's particularly interesting when you divide the total by the number of months you've been wearing the clothes. There are much more expensive hobbies out there and at least with this one, everything you invest in actually has a practical use (unless you're a hoarder or have spending issues but I'm not talking about those people right now haha!)

    1. Glad to hear you're content with the cost of your wardrobe (especially because yours is nice and cohesive and very wearable).

      I mean, some people spend that much on drinking - not dissing going out to bars (I do it occasionally, lol, and it is a good social activity) but everyone prioritises different hobbies and social activities and this is my main one!