Sunday, 25 August 2019

Tokyo 2019 Day 1: Settling in Shinjuku

Our first stop once we entered Haneda Airport was, naturally, a bathroom. James went first while I stood with our carry-on bags and admired the early morning sun streaming through the massive windows.

I also admired the fact that in front of the toilets was a little speaker that repeated in Japanese, English, and I think another language or two, a description of the facilities. “These are the washrooms. First on the left are the ladies washrooms…” I thought that was such a great accessibility feature!

And of course, once it was my turn, I had to press all the buttons on the fancy toilet! I really loved the Japanese toilets, though I will admit that it was nice to come home to my familiar Aussie throne at the end of the trip. You wouldn’t think the height and shape of a toilet seat has much impact, but it does.

Anyway, with business taken care of we followed signs towards immigration. And oh boy, was the queue there long. We probably spent half an hour going slowly shuffling through the immigration hall, but fortunately once we were through that customs was a lot quicker. James also got a big smile from one of the staff members, who pointed to his shirt and said; ”Vegeta!” In case I didn’t mention it before, James’s travel t-shirt was a really bright and cool Vegeta one, and it really made him popular every time he wore it!

Things took a bit of a turn for the worse after we passed customs. I had looked up the airport and knew what we had to do, but had found the map confusing so was depending on signage. With both of us being really tired, it wasn’t the best way to start off. Our first port of call was the shower rooms…which turned out to have an hour long wait. That was just too much time so we didn’t get to start the trip with a refreshing shower like we planned.

Then we went to pick up our mobile wifi, where I had a panic in the line because I thought I needed my confirmation email and naturally didn’t have internet access yet. But it turns out they just need your passport, phew. Then we had to figure out how to get tickets for the Limousine Bus, which turned out to be super easy, but again it was just a stressful hole in my planning. I knew we needed to get tickets but didn’t know how! I also picked up Pasmo cards for us and with that all our prepping was done.

After all that was sorted we both tried some vending machine drinks (we got some barley tea that was utterly gross and then tried something nicer) and visited another bathroom, but unfortunately I took too long finding one and made poor James have to rush. Like I say, not my finest start to a holiday and definitely not helped by both of us being really exhausted!

But then we went down to the bus terminal and were easily able to board our bright orange Limousine Bus. I loved the fact that it was super clean and had cute crocheted headrest covers!

We got settled and took some silly photos with our drinks.

And then the bus moved out! It was actually a really nice way to start the trip, we got to sightsee out the windows and even though we were so tired, it was still really exciting. And luckily for us, the stop announcements were in English as well as Japanese, so we had no trouble knowing when our stop was coming up.

My favourite part of the bus trip was seeing Tokyo Tower out the window! I really felt like I was in an anime then, it’s such an iconic building!

We drove on a little further, and I recognised the robot looking building not too far away – we were getting near Shinjuku where we’d be staying! Very soon we were turning into the Shinjuku bus terminal (which was a massive building) where we disembarked, collected our suitcases, and went on our way to our hotel.

For this trip we stayed at the Hotel Sunroute Plaza Shinjuku, which was super conveniently located and pretty easy to find. We got to the hotel, left our luggage, and decided to explore. It was around 9AM at this point, and a lot of stores don’t open until 10-11AM, and we also couldn’t check in until 2PM. So we just walked out of the hotel, visited the nearest vending machine, then took a right hand turn, and wandered.

The vending machine right in front of our hotel.

Our first stop on our little wander? A 7/11! I had been dying to experience my first conbini so naturally we had to stop for some food and drinks. Unfortunately, I found the shop a bit claustrophobic so we were in and out pretty quickly, but then we were able to stand on a street corner and have a snack. Tried my first onigiri and one of the famous Japanese egg sandwiches, which honestly didn’t impress me that much.

I enjoyed how different the suburban streets in Tokyo were to the ones in Australia.

We then decided to head towards some of the Shinjuku department stores – which weren’t open. So we ended up going into the Starbucks in one of the buildings to rest with a drink until we could start shopping! I tried ordering a tea, but it was horribly sweet  and I threw most of it out. We discovered a new Japanese awesome thing at Starbucks though – separated trash, including a place to pour out any remaining liquids. So smart!

At this point it was almost 11AM, so we went back outside to wait to Marui Annex to open. Soon enough some staff members pulled open the doors and we could go in – and James got another compliment! One of the door staff told him he had nice hair ^__^

I’ll give you one guess what our first goal was…

Even though I was tried and overwhelmed (Japan wasn’t quite what I expected and it threw me off for a while) walking into the lolita stores still gave me a massive rush of positive feelings. It was real! I was there! Everything was right there in front of my and it was beautiful.

Weirdly, I found the lolita stores both overwhelming and simultaneously a little disappointing. I’ve been spoiled by the vast variety available online, so seeing store stocked with only parts of current series (that I know weren’t fully sold out) was a bit of a letdown. On the other hand, being able to see everything, and browse everything, was amazing. I fell in love with one of Meta’s regimental stripe series which I hadn’t liked online, and Baby’s store made my heart sing because it was all just so typically lolita.

Surprisingly, I actually enjoyed browsing Kera Shop and the Ozz Croce  stores the best – probably having a lack of expectations let me enjoy them for what they were, and being unfamiliar gave me that thrill of discovery.

I didn’t end up buying anything and we left Marui Annex after a lot of browsing to go get some lunch. With the help of Google Maps I led us to Nabezo, a shabu shabu place that does all-you-can-eat that I had read about and was keen to try!

Lunch was very good, though we were both so tired we didn’t enjoy it as much as we could have. But it was great to be able to eat some meat and loads of vegetables at our own pace.

When we were finished eating it was still too early to check in to our hotel, but we were so tired we just went back there anyway. We booked in for a massage at the in-hotel spa for later in the evening, and just sat around for half an hour until we could finally check in a 2PM.

We got up to our (tiny!) room as quickly as possible, were finally able to take a shower, and by a bit after 3PM we were crashed out in bed together – we wanted to get through the day without a nap but after not sleeping on the plane we had to.

But poor James! I was out like a light, and apparently I snored, so the poor man didn’t get much of a nap at all. So when my alarm got us up at 5.15PM I’d had say around four hours sleep in the last thirty six hours and he’d be lucky if he’d had half an hour. I’ll tell you this now – we are not going to do overnight flights again!

We got dressed and wandered down to the spa for our massage, which was very restorative. I will say that I’m totally spoiled now – the spa had heated massage tables! I was in heaven. It turns out my masseuse had visited Cairns in Australia before, so we chatted about that a little, and after the massage the staff gave us some delightful berry tea to drink.

Tired but happy!

Then we went out into the chilly evening to shop some more – this time to Closet Child Shinjuku! Even more than going to the brand stores I had been really looking forward to going to as many Closet Child stores as we could manage, and this one, around fifteen minutes walk from our hotel, was just the start.

Once we found Closet Child (going up the stairs for it was a little…ominous) it was like stepping into a little piece of lolita heaven. Here was the variety I loved! But because I’m a sucker for delayed gratification first we browsed the gothic and punk section, where James found me a really cute Hello Kitty x Peace Now t-shirt which I just had to grab. Then I got gloriously distracted by all of the accessories! I wanted jewellery, particularly sweet stuff, and I got it in spades. I’d hoped to find some headbows and I found lots. And I grabbed a cute BTSSB capelet because why not? Impulse purchase for the win!

My Closset Child haul! The Hello Kitty t-shirt is now a staple in my everyday wardrobe ^__^

After browsing the store very thoroughly I went to pay, and the staff members encountered some kind of issue calculating my total. I have no idea what happened, but it took them a good five minutes to figure it out. Fortunately I know what “daijobu” means so when one of the shopgirls (who had the most amazing blue scene hair I’ve ever seen) said that to me mid-way through I knew it was, in fact, okay.

A sneaky photo while waiting at the register.

With shopping achieved and the two of us still being super tired, we headed back to our hotel via the Family Mart opposite to by some things for dinner. In the end, Family Mart dinner turned out to be a regular thing for us on this trip, it was just so cheap and convenient.

Back at the hotel we ate our food and relaxed. I also messaged an Aussie friend of ours, Jake, who we were going to meet up with at some undetermined point and figured that out, which involved shuffling our intended itinerary around a bit. And when that was sorted, we were able to go to bed for a proper night’s sleep.

In case I’ve never mentioned it on this blog before – I like sleep ^__^

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Tokyo 2019 Day 0: Flying high

It's been a little while now, but I've finally written up posts about James and my first trip to Japan earlier this year! It was an amazing experience, and we cannot wait to go again! So, without any further ado, let's go back in time...

Monday 8 April was an exciting day to wake up on - we were going to Tokyo! I honestly don't remember exactly how we spent the morning and early afternoon; we were already mostly packed except for a few last things and at around 2PM we were on our way!

Unlike our New Zealand trip, this time we decided to drive and pay for parking at the airport. We weren't too pleased with the shuttle service last time and besides, paying for parking worked out to be about the same cost anyway! I drove us to the airport, we entered the parking station, and managed to find a really convenient parking space. We made sure everything was in order with our car and our luggage, I triple checked that I locked the car, and then we crossed over to the international terminal.

Checking in and passing security was easier this time since we knew how to do everything, and in practically no time we were inside the airport proper. What is funny though is that James once again got selected for a full body check! Then once he came through, one of the security staff asked if his blue-and-pink hair was to match his personality, which was actually the first of many compliments James was going to get on our trip…and the first one from a random Australian man, because apparently the average Aussie guy does not like other men non-conforming!

Anyway, since we had decided to come to the airport early to avoid any chance of getting stuck in peak hour traffic, we’d booked ourselves a treat – time at an airport lounge called The House. The lounge was pretty easy to find, the lady at the front desk was delightful (especially because we arrived earlier than our booked time and ended up staying longer than the booked three hours), and when we went down from the entrance to the lounge itself we found the place practically deserted.

We barely had time to sit down and get out bearings before a really friendly waiter with a wonderful accent came over to give us an a la carte menu, tell us when the buffet would open, and take our drink orders. James got a mocha and a juice, I got a tea and a cider!

We relaxed with our drinks for a while and played games on our phones. James redid the lacing on his epic Adidas wing shoes, because those things have tricky lacing and he had figured out a better way to do it after he’d had to take them off for the security check. And of course, we took a selfie ^__^

I often tend to get really antsy while waiting, but it was really pleasant to spend time in the quiet lounge. After a little while we moved to a table in the dining area and I ordered us some food from the a la carte menu – asparagus gnocchi for me and pumpkin soup for James.

The lounge got busier as afternoon turned to evening and at around five or six the staff set up the buffet, which I really liked. It wasn’t a huge selection, but it was tasty and varied enough. Then, just as the lounge was starting to feel kind of crowded, it was time for us to head on out to our gate.

As we walked through the public section of the airport I did have to stop and take a photo of the flags above the central food court – I did it for New Zealand and now it’s a tradition!

Then it was up to the gate and shortly after on to the plane. Of course, we took a plane selfie together before we taxied down the runway and took to the sky.

Plane selfie!

It was a nine and a bit hour flight, and for the first couple of hours we relaxed – James with movies and me with a book since my airline headphones weren’t working properly. And of course, ate plane food.

I also filled out our arrival forms, which were pretty simple. There was one we had to each fill out, and one that I did as "head of the household"! I got way too much amusement over that title for the entire rest of the trip ^__^

Then it was time to sleep, but unfortunately neither of us had much luck with it. I got maybe a couple of restless hours of dozing and James didn’t even manage that. I’ll tell you now – it made for a rough start to the trip!

Breakfast helped perk our tired selves up – I actually found this fruit plate surprisingly delicious.

More reading, more movies, and then the plane started to descend while we gawked at the Tokyo cityscape spreading out beneath us. We landed, took a selfie as we waited for the plane to clear, and then exited into Japan.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Review #52: Lady Sloth Verrry Berry Picnic

Late last year, Lady Sloth teased a print that I was very excited about - Verrry Berry Picnic. Not only was it a berry print (that wasn't cherries or strawberries), it came in purple! I'll admit, in the months leading up to the actual reservation I did go back and forth between the purple and the lavender but when The reservation opened in May, after consulting with the husband, I got the "casual" OP in purple, along with the matching headbow, beret, and raspberry necklace.

For a moment after ordering I looked at my bank balance and was sad, but then I tried a little experiment. Did you know that if I were to buy equivalent items from Angelic Pretty, the total (both prices converted to AUD) would have been $506 instead of $319? That made me feel a lot better about making such a  big purchase - I got everything for less than the price of a new brand OP. And besides, when have any of the big brands released a purple berry print?

When I ordered it was estimated that the series would ship in June. However, towards the end of June on Instagram they announced there was a 2-3 week delay on shipping, so I was prepared to wait a bit longer. On 3 July I received a PayPal request for the remaining fees and shipping, which I promptly paid. Then finally, just as I was contemplating messaging because it had been a while, I received my tracking number on 25 July. And then, with my impatient self checking the tracking several times a day, I finally got the package on 8 August. Everything was all wrapped together in a plastic bag inside the padded postage satchel and I had fun pull it all out and trying it all on!

I didn't put the detachable red bow and sash on for the photo, but they were included, don't worry!

First up, the dress itself. It's perfect, well-made, gorgeous cotton fabric, has two big pockets, and fits like a dream. I ordered the XL and while I can't tell you what the advertised measurements were (since the page is gone from their website) by my measurements the bust is 98-120cm and the waist is 92-114cm. So there's a great amount of give with the full back shirring.

One thing that really impressed me with the dress beyond the fact that it was honestly a really phenomenal dress, is the pattern matching at the side seams. This picture below? That was the less well-matched side!

My only small complaint about the dress is that though it comes with a sash, it doesn't have belt loops or buttons or anything to help hold it in place. Which means I'm not likely to use it because I don't like things that aren't secured properly! AKA I'm clumsy and if it ain't pinned down it ain't gonna stay on ^__^

I'm glad I got several of the coordinating pieces and in particular the headbow is really well made, I love it. The beret is also done well, but it way too tight on me! I'm pretty sure I have a perfectly average head, so be wary of Lady Sloth berets if you have any other than a small head. So I'm a bit disappointed in that, because as you know I really love berets.

I may try taking it apart a little to make it bigger, but knowing me I also probably won't get around to that for a few years ^__^

The necklace, like the headbow, is pretty darn perfect. It feels sturdy and is really pretty! I think it's lovely, and I am loving how Lady Sloth is continuing to come out with complete series like this. I was honestly tempted to get some more brooches or necklaces from this series, but in the end just went with this one.

Last of all, here are the extras that came in my package! The postcards are duplicates of what I got with my bolero earlier this year, but the sticker set is gorgeous and I think it's a super cute idea to include, and I loved seeing a sample of their new bat lace.

Overall I'm very happy with this new wardrobe addition! Yes, I am bummed about the beret but other than that everything is really great quality in all aspects - design, the fabric, the construction. I've loved seeing Lady Sloth grow as a brand and it looks like they're only going to continue producing really unique and original prints, so I fully intend to continue supporting them when they make things like this that I love ^__^

Thursday, 8 August 2019

AYWI30C #18: An outfit you love but haven’t worn out yet

I don't tend to put together outfits in my head until I have a reason for it like and event or a shoot or a blog posts. So when I came to this topic I didn't have a mental snapshot of an outfit good to go. But I knew pretty quickly what it needed to be - my dream dress that I haven't worn yet, Dim Light.

I love Dim Light - always have, and always will. The only reason I haven't worn it to death is because I am very slow at making good on my resolutions to actually get fit and loose weight, so it's never actually fit me. So when I put this outfit together, I tried to just do what I'd actually most like to wear when that glorious day arrives.

Luckily for me, my Lyris Design bolero (that goes with my wedding dress) is a perfect match for the darker shade of red in the dress. The chiffon ruffles and vaguely military cut also go perfectly with the dress!

I also chose to use the same necklace I wore for my wedding...some things just go together, okay?

Ahem, and my wedding shoes. Honestly wine plays a surprisingly small role in my lolita wardrobe given that I own three wine JSKs and a wine coloured skirt as well. My only matching pieces (not including legwear and headwear) are these shoes, the bolero I used, and an Axes Femme blouse. In particular, putting this coord together made me realise I really want to get a wine coloured bag to round out my supporting pieces. Any excuse to shop!

But enough rambling about wine coloured clothes, more about this particular outfit. I kept all the accessories simple - this is me we're talking about!

And of course, that meant that my headwear consists of a beret, a bow, and some flowers. What else? I also love that the beret matches the brighter wine shade of the dress - this whole outfit is quite well balanced, colour-wise, which I'm pleased about.

I've also come to realised that wine is the classic lolita's answer to pink - matching shades is always going to be a headache! But still, I love it, and cannot wait until I can wear this outfit ^__^

Sunday, 4 August 2019

AYWI30C #17: Something you really like, but wouldn’t wear

Okay, so this prompt was really freaking hard! Every option I thought of was easily followed by thoughts of the kind scenario I would happily wear it for. Yes, a lot of those situations were photoshoots, but still! I was really wracking my brain to try and figure out something that I like but couldn't see myself wearing. Serious, I was stumped.

Inspiration finally struck when I got my July haul in...

See, I love Jurassic Party, but the colour is a rare one in my wardrobe so my options are limited. This new cutsew really opens up my options...but I don't see myself wearing this skirt in this way!

Which is kind of a pity. I really like this look and I think I managed to nail the colour balance pretty well despite not having much that matches the dark purple.

But overall, it's both a little too monochromatic and a little too lavender for my tastes. I'm really enjoying adding more lavender into my lolita wardrobe, and am planning to add more purple as well, but for now, it's a bit much all together.

Which is not to say that it won't change! Even seeing this outfit out made me fall a little bit in love. I just don't think it's enough love when there's so many other ways I could coordinate this skirt that feel more "me".

In a weird way I was both happy and sad to have finally come up with a coordinate for this prompt. I'm glad that the topic is ticked off the list and I can move forwards, but it's an odd, bittersweeet feeling to put together something pretty and still not get excited to wear it.

What about you? Would you wear this coordinate?

Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Lolita Blogpost Roundup: July 2019

We are now officially, properly into the the latter half of 2019. And of course, the lolita bloggers of the world still keep producing awesome content! Here are some of my faves from the last month ^__^

Removing shadows in Photoshop from RuffleCloud's Adventures
First up we have a handy little tutorial on how to fix sunny day photos up in PS. With photos being such a big thing in our subculture, it's always handy to know how to fix things manually. I love PS ^__^

Eternal Twilight (Hellocon 2018) Trip Report: Day 2 from Rose Sanctuary
I'm a broken record, I know, but I always get a kick out of reading other people's event reports!

The (Controversial) History Of “Bittersweet Lolita” from Crimson Reflections
Now this was an absolutely fascinating read! I'm not even going to attempt a summary except to say that the person who coined the term "bittersweet" meant something quite different than most of us do when we use the term today.

Is Angelic Pretty Just Copying Meta? Conspiracy Theory from Cupcakes and Unicorns
I got some chuckles out of this post, but it is also a very interesting look into how themes get re-used a lot in lolita, and how innovation doesn't necessarily come from where we think it does.

Angelic Pretty Tea Party 2019 Outfit from Lolita Wonderland
I love it when inactive bloggers come back to their blogs, especially when it's with pretty flatlays ^__^

Why gyaru died and lolita lives from Miss Filigree
This is a topic I've never given any thought to, but was nevertheless fascinated to read all about!

Kawaii Harajuku Crepes (Japanese Street Food Recipe) | Japanese Cooking Video from Create Eat Happy :)
Not a lolita specific post, but for me at least cute crepes are very strongly associated with the fashion, and it's cool to see how to make your own!

What was your favourite blog post this past month? Drop a link in the comments!

Saturday, 27 July 2019

July lolita haul

Recently I ordered a little haul of secondhand lolita items. I ordered a burgundy Angelic Pretty cutsew cardigan, finally got my hands on a brown Millefeuille bolero from Innocent World (it was only 3k yen!), a black and pink AP cutsew, and two pairs of strawberry patterned socks.

Then, of course, since I had an open order with Japonica I kept browsing. I soon added a white Bodyline blouse since my current white blouse is not a good fit. After that I found a cute Metamorphose cutsew cardigan in lavender and since I'd been wanting to get a lavender top I leapt on it immediately (I was at work at the time and did a sneaky).

So overall, my modest haul ended up becoming quite a decent sized one! Not that I'm complaining ^__^ Though I'm totally sad about the fact that I was this close to getting Country of Sweets in white but Japonica wasn't fast enough...

Everything arrived to Japonica by July 14, I paid for shipping on July 15 and it arrived July 18 - not bad at all!

I'm really happy with everything! While nothing except the lavender cutsew blouse is a new thing in my wardrobe, they are all welcome additions in their own ways.

First of all, I need to emphasise how over the moon I am to finally have a Millefeuille bolero! The lace is absolutely to die for and it's just a beautiful piece. However, it's actually a very dark and cool shade of brown (the left side of the picture if probably most accurate in colour) so I'm not actually sure how useful it's going to be in my wardrobe!

On the flip side of the usefulness coin, however, is this AP cutsew! It black and pink and cute, so obviously it's perfect for me ^__^

Strawberry socks are also an insta-win for my wardrobe. I mean, these were a pretty frivolous purchase given that I already have ample black and red berry socks, but hey, I like them! And actually, I super love the stripy Crown Label pair - it's such a unique design!

This AP cardigan is actually a new item type in my wardrobe - I didn't own any plain lolita cardigans! I had real trouble getting the colour right, and it's still not quite there, but it's a pretty piece. Possibly a bit too plain for my tastes after all but we'll see how much wear I get out of it.

On paper the most boring part of this haul is this Bodyline blouse - but I really love it! It's pretty, comfortable, and definitely one of the nicer Bodyline blouses I've ever owned. It has the buttons for detachable sleeve but the sleeve are nowhere to be found but that doesn't bother me one bit ^__^

And the final piece of my haul, and the bit I was actually most excited about - the lavender cutsew! Something that wasn't evident in the listing photos (and isn't all the obvious in mine either) is that the collar and sleeves and buttons are actually all a very fine gingham cotton! It's such a beautiful and unexpected detail and this top just makes me really happy. Is that weird to say about clothes?

Anyway, these are my newest wardrobe additions. I'm very happy with all of them and am keen to trot them all out in outfits soon ^__^

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Then and now - how my lolita style has evolved

Ages ago I missed participating in a Lolita Blog Carnival topic that was to share your oldest and most recent coordinates with the same main piece. I've had a folder sitting on my computer with some old coords saved, waiting for me to finally pull out recent comparison pieces. I finally did it this week and actually found it very interesting!

First of all - the biggest time gap I could find! What i loved about this comparison is the bones are the same - bream blouse, cream legwear, minimal accessories - but the vibe could not be more different. In 2014 I did try to do colour balance (the shoes match the hat!) but didn't really have a cohesive style - unless mismatch bohemian art wank is a vibe. In 2018, even though it's still a pretty simple coordinate, the piece I used are more intricate and therefore the whole thing looks less...bland.

I will say though, I really want to wear my bowler hat again now ^__^

My outfit from 2015 is something I'm a bit happier to look back on. It was very old-school, with this amazing weird romantic blouse I found in an op shop. My only issue? It's not very me! It wasn't at the time and it still isn't. My 2018 outfit, on the other hand, is one of my favourite colour schemes and was just something I felt cute and happy wearing.

This comparison with Jam Paradise was interesting because I've paired it with the exact same bolero and honestly the rest of the styling isn't that different either - to me that really shows that by the time I got to 2017 I had a handle on my own lolita style.

That being said, I like the 2018 version more!

Coming into 2019 finally, I enjoyed seeing this comparison. Though I'm really hoping I have some undocumented coordinates with this skirt - I made it in 2015 and it'd be kind of embarrassing if it sat, unworn, for two whole years given how much I wear it now! Lately I've really been coming into my own in terms of casual lolita and while both these outfits are certainly casual, the 2019 is more deliberately casual, if that makes sense? I need more casual tops (or at least, need to wear the ones I have more often) and want to make a better habit of wearing hats in casual outfits - I love hats!

Generally speaking what I found from look at my coords over the years is that I've definitely become far more comfortable wearing lolita. It's only natural that experience (and a greatly expanded wardrobe) means that my newer coordinates are better, but I'm also pleased to have found my feet and know what feels like me. I'll be interested to do this sort of comparison again in a few years and see what my style is like then!

Friday, 19 July 2019

Lolita Blog Carnival: Create a Capsule From Your Own Wardrobe

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. Am I ever happy this topic got picked this week! This was so much fun and, me being me, I am going to ramble to high heaven about how I put my capsule together.

See, I just had to make this harder for myself. There are a number of easy capsules I could do - sweet lolita in black and white with red (berry themed, of course), or black and white with pink sweet with more general themes, a classic collection (or several), a semi old-school black based sweet capsule. But I didn't want to do any of the obvious ones, I wanted to stretch myself and try something new.

Before I start telling you about what I specifically chose (which I will do in excruciating detail, trust me) I wanted to run over some of my principles regarding lolita capsule wardrobes. Broadly speaking, I have some core ideas in terms of number of pieces and types of pieces that I want to share.

Whenever I put one of these together in the hypothetical digital sense, I tend to base it off five main pieces. I feel like five is a good amount for a capsule - let's say you can make four or five unique outfits for each main piece (which may seem a little ambitious, but capsules are meant to yield a high amount of coordinating options) you've got 20-25 outfits, without factoring in things such a changing up small accessories and hair and makeup. If you wear lolita once a week, you're only wearing each coordinate twice each year. If you wear lolita once a month, you've got a couple of years worth of outfits! I also try to make sure I have at least two of each other item in an outfit to go with each main piece, so my capsules can appear to be a little light on main pieces compared to everything else. But I've always said I like more options rather than more dresses, and that's nowhere more evident than in a capsule wardrobe.

Then in terms of types of pieces, again I normally try for versatility. In particular I always try to have something more dressy in the wardrobe, and something more casual. Normally it's a matter of adding in an OTT main piece, and making sure there's a skirt and cutsew pairing available ^__^ I also really try to not depending too heavily on neutral colours, because in a small wardrobe too many neutrals is boring (at least to me), and to keep up some variety in fabric types and patterns in the supporting pieces. My usual set of main pieces includes three jumperskirts, one skirt and one onepiece, but that's not so much a rule but more of an attempt to keep things for getting too samey.

So I eventually decided on doing a sweet lolita capsule without any black, which really made me push outside of my usual styles. For my main pieces I immediately knew I would include Rococo Soul's Jam Paradise as well as Meta's Teddy Chocolatier and Flower Bottle. That gave me a brown/mint/pink colour palette, which I really liked, and was both cohesive and varied. I then thought that Dramatic Rose would be good to include, as it fits the colour scheme and also gives me something OTT and a tiny bit more classic leaning. Then I remembered that I now own Innocent World's Icing Cookie, which fits the wardrobe perfectly!

Also, how embarrassing is it that I'm at a point that I'm forgetting what main pieces I own?!?

Don't they make a pretty set? And I'm happy it's not a stereotypical me kind of collection!

I was a little bummed that none of my OPs would suit this wardrobe and that I didn't have a second skirt to include, but that's okay - I think I've still avoided being too samey. I did toy with the idea of including Jurassic Party, but the colours in that are just too far out. As it is, even though I'd ideally like a bit more variation in cuts I think I've still got good variety. I have one fancy JSK, three other JSKs in different cuts that are all thematically similar but visually quite different, and a fairly causal skirt. Overall, I also really enjoy the flowers and chocolate theme that's going on.

With the main pieces chosen, it was time to select blouses and outerwear. I decided to pick out two long sleeve tops, two short sleeve tops, one long sleeve and one short sleeve bolero or cardigan, one coat, and one set of fawn fur. It's my capsule, of course there's going to be fawn fur!

Blouses - a nice variety of chiffon and cotton.

A very diverse set of boleros!

A coat and some fawn fur ^__^

In the end, I found limiting my outerwear to one in each sleeve length just wasn't working for me so I ended up choosing two at each length.

After selecting those items, it was time for shoes and bags. It's my capsule, so I selected more pairs of shoes than is necessarily necessary. Same with bags - I could have just had by big offwhite bag, but that's just not interesting enough!

The shoes are arranged from tallest heels to flats!

Then it was time for what is one of my favourite aspects of lolita fashion - all the accessories! I started with headwear. Some items here were obvious, like the matching hairpiece for Dramatic Rose, but the rest were chosen to match well and give me lots of options. I tried to not go overboard, which was hard, but the idea of capsules is that they're small so I did my best to keep it that way! As well a big items I included some of my smaller bits, because it wouldn't be me without little bow clips.

For aesthetic reasons I decided to photograph socks and wristcuffs together - aren't they pretty? For once, however, my sock collection let me down a bit - I did not have a good sweet white x pink pair that suited the wardrobe. I also don't have any tights that go! But still, I think I chose some good and varied pairs to go with the wardrobe. In an ideal world I'd also have had something mint, but alas, I don't own them.

I did wuss out on photographing jewellery. I already had pulled out so much I was really not keen on having to put it all away after taking photos and didn't want to add a bunch of bracelets and necklaces and other tiny things. Just know that I do some have jewellery that matches as well ^__^

When I do photoshop capsules, I like to include example outfits. That was a bit daunting to do IRL to the extent that I normally do so instead I decided to put together the most interesting (your mileage may vary) outfit for each main piece that I could without repeating things between outfits. Since this post is already quite long, I'm going to not include commentary on each outfit for once in my life so please enjoy the pictures!

I also have one last outfit to share. James was hanging out with me for a bit while I was taking these photos so I asked if he'd want to put on together...and he did! So here's a flatlay picked from this capsule that he chose ^__^

I honest to goodness love this coord and fully intend to wear it sometime!

So there you have it, a capsule wardrobe made from my wider collection. I had a lot of fun putting this together, and I'm pleased that I chose not to run with any of the more obvious/easier capsules I could have done. It was a lot of work to actually photograph this all and I think I'll stick to digital hypothetical capsules in future but still, so much fun.

I need to end this post before I ramble more, so I'll leave you with a shot of the aftermath ^__^

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