Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Themed lolita meets

I apologise if I have appeared a little quiet or distant recently. There is a very good reason why- I am hosting the July Oxfordshire Lolita meet! Originally I was meant to be doing a scavenger hunt around Oxford but it turns out that the date we settled on was the same day Alice Day is being held. Yes, it is that time of year again! Last years Alice Day was one of the first events I reported about on this blog.

So all the scavenger hunt plans were put aside and I started planning a meet based around all things Alice. There is going to be a picnic, we are watching a few of the performances and we may even make some Mad Hatter hats! Of course, the dress theme is going to be Alice in Wonderland. As a result, I have been spending a lot of time trying to plan the picnic and some Alice themed games to play.

Planning a meet around a theme has been very interesting. For some reason, I feel themed meets are different from the usual lolita meets. Here are a few of the many things I have had to consider-

Getting to know my theme- I have a confession to make- I have NEVER read Alice in Wonderland! Of course, I have heard the story and I know the characters which has been a huge help. The better you know the theme, the more confident you will feel when you are making plans.

Working out the key characters and themes- Usually with themed meets, especially those based around books, there are a few stand out moments in the story or certain characters that people remember more than others. These are the parts that people remember fondly. To take an example from my own upcoming meet- I have already based a game around the Cheshire Cat. I am also trying to think of ideas based around the tea party scene and we will be attending an event where you make Mad Hatter hats. I want people to take one look at my ideas and instantly recognise it from Alice in Wonderland. If I can include the main themes, I can always add some more subtle themes in afterwards.

Little details- As well as focusing on the main themes, I will be paying attention to little details. For my picnic I have been thinking about how I can turn it from a normal picnic and in to a themed picnic. So items such as the plates, napkins and cups will hopefully be themed too. Given the choice between plain napkins and Alice printed napkins, I know which one I would choose! I am also making Drink Me and Eat Me tags. It doesn't even have to be too expensive. Think about colours and shapes etc. Is there a specific colour that sticks out with your theme? Are there little pieces you can make yourself?

Dress code- Something that worries me about a themed lolita meet is making sure it still fits lolita. I have suggested an Alice dress code but for my own outfit, I have still tried to keep the usual lolita "rules" in place. When does an outfit stop being a themed lolita outfit and become a costume? It is up to you how far you go with the theme. It could be that you wear lolita and just wear a few themed accessories. Or you could go completely crazy about the theme and not worry about how it fits with lolita. To be honest, I want my fellow lolitas to be as creative as they want. The most important part of the entire meet is to have fun!

Don't overload yourself- There have been a few times where I have gotten a little stressed with all the planning. Break up all the planning in to manageable chunks, make lists and leave plenty of time. Never leave stuff to the last minute!

Problem solving- I am a bit worried that it will rain and the events will be cancelled. So I have been thinking of alternative ideas to do inside as well. I have also had to make sure that there is somebody on hand to carry all the games and stuff I intend to bring! (I feel sorry for my husband who is bound to end up carrying loads of stuff!). There will always be things you can't control or predict so try not to too upset if there are a few hitches.

Online inspiration- We are very lucky to live in a time where we can type something in to a search engine and come up with lots of search results. There are loads of party suggestions available and I have bookmarked a few websites that have been especially useful. Also, try asking your friends. They may come up with an idea that you hadn't thought of.

As the date of the meet slowly creeps up on me, I am hoping that we all have a good time. I also want to thank everybody who has been helping me come up with ideas and have offered to help. I have tried not to reveal too many details because I am hoping some of the meet will be full of lovely mini surprises. After the meet, expect a full blog post about it!

Monday, 27 June 2011

Waffle skirt for sale

I am trying to sell a few bits because I have lots of events going on this Summer and my Meta pre-order hopefully going through late July.

This week I am selling my Bodyline skirt with the waffle print and the matching head bow (that is sold with the dress).

The listing says that it is for UK buyers only but if you send me a question, I will consider posting to other countries too. If you are interested, please take a look! Thank you!

Friday, 24 June 2011

Men friendly house decorating

August 2008 will always be remembered as a momentous time of my life. I was 20, planning my wedding and after a few years of research, I was starting to think about making the jump between just admiring lolita to actually wearing it. But by far, the biggest event of that Summer was leaving home. Feeling a mixture of excitement and panic, I moved out of my mother's house and moved in with my fiance (now my husband!).

Although I had my own bedroom at my mum's house, I always felt that I never properly 'owned' that room. I chose the colour on the walls but usually, I had to ask permission to do anything and my mum did not always agree to my demands (I used to have these hideous floral curtains. My mum has no taste!). So all of a sudden, I had this entire house that I could decorate however I wanted.

If I had my own way and money was no issue, my house would probably look like the inside of an Angelic Pretty store.

I have never been overly keen on having lots of pink but I wanted loads of lace, flowers and it probably would have looked like this picture!

Back in the present, and somebody casually asks me online how James copes with "all that frilly stuff" I am in to. They go to say "But Luna, surely your lolita stuff takes over the entire house! Do you let James decide on your house decorating at all?". So I looked around my living room. Sure, a lot of my stuff was stuffed on the shelves but amongst my duck plushies and gothic lolita bibles, I could also see James' dragon lamp, his video games and the LARP dagger a friend gave him for his birthday.

You know what? I don't think James has ever argued with me about the decorating because we have always talked every decision through together. I don't have super kawaii decorations that make Angelic Pretty look bland but I still have my little girly bits here and there. The reason our living arrangement works, is because we are happy to compromise.

The walls- Most of the walls in our house have been kept fairly natural, which were the colours that were there when we moved in. We used to have this hideous pale yellow in the bedroom so we decided we would paint this room. In the end, we picked a pale lilac colour. Although lilac can look sugary and cute, James was happy with the colour. The only colour James refused to get was pink. Pink is a colour usually associated with girls and we thought purple was a bit more unisex. To help break up the delicate lilac, we also painted one wall a deep dark berry colour. The berry wall is strong and bold and therefore, does not look too feminine. We are both very happy with how the room looks.

Personal space- I think the most important thing is that we have our own little personal spaces. I consider my personal space to be my little corner by the sofa. I have my Kera magazines, notebooks, and personal bits right beside me within easy reach. It is crucial to have an area where you are comfortable and can relax and be yourself. I start feeling insecure when people sit on my spot on the sofa! Although we are a couple, we are also separate people and it is vital to respect this.

Storage- We have a very small place so space is always limited. We have attempted to utilise the space as best as we possibly can and use storage which saves space. I think part of the reason that James copes with my lolita, is because it is stored away so he is not tripping over my head bows in our house.

A few little pieces- Instead of decorating the place to look all princessy, I have a few smaller bits. So instead of completely covering the place with decoration, I have chosen a few choice bits. I chose all the fruit themed equipment in the kitchen because I love strawberries! It helps to liven up the kitchen but it does not look OTT at all.

Common interests- Instead of using lolita as a theme, we used our common interests to decorate. Both James and I love Japan so we got some Japanese themed art work for the living room!

Shopping- We always go shopping together so we can see each other's purchases. Every decision is shared, we assembled the furniture together and we decide together on the best way to divide the budget.

Our house may not look how I originally intended it to, but I still feel at home here. In fact, I am proud because the way our house looks shows that James and I have worked together and have not been selfish. In actual fact, our house probably looks better this way because I don't have to spend ages dusting thousands of ornaments and trinkets. Our house is a lot more practical and if we sell this place, it will sell better because it will appeal to a wider range of people.

If you want to move in with somebody who is not in to lolita, then meet each other halfway. You don't have to ditch the things you love. Everybody has their passions. One word- COMPROMISE!!!!

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Bodyline expand their wig designs

Today I decided to check the international Bodyline website and there are loads of new wigs! These featured in this post, and more will be available soon but have already been listed on the international site. Some are just restocks of older designs but there are loads of new ones too.

I thought I would have a look at a couple of the new designs.

This wig is a longer version of a split colour wig that was already available. Bodyline have started to experiment with split wigs recently but before now there was only one shorter split wig available which only came in 1 colour. But that has all changed! Bodyline have given us different lengths like the one above.

A similar design, this time with curls. I thought that this wig looked a bit thin towards the bottom and could do with more thickness to it. In some places, the curls look flatter than other parts.

Bodyline clearly think that natural colours are fashionable right now. For me, this is a huge relief! Some lolitas shy away from the bright pastel coloured wigs. A lot of the colours have brown hues so they could do with adding a bit more variety. However, I think they have made a good start! I thought this wig could look very natural. The wig is multi-toned so the colour does not look as solid as it did before. Out of the new wigs, I thought this one looked the thickest. This is my favourite out of the new designs.

Bodyline have also attempted a hime princess style pouf design. I think it could have used a bit more pouf but it is a good first attempt. It might have been a good idea if Bodyline did this wig in 2 parts so users have more control over the styling.

I have been considering getting a wig so that I have something to throw on when I don't want to spend hours styling my own hair. After seeing Gothic Lolita Wigs and Bodyline wig designs in person, I am now leaning towards getting a Bodyline wig. I think that Bodyline's wigs have improved. Although their designs may be a little behind when it comes to following trends, the designs still look wearable. The prices appear reasonable with most costing $31-$37. Please keep this up Bodyline! (and please bring back DHL shipping too)

Monday, 20 June 2011

Baby's Unico in Bloomland

Today I shall be discussing the latest Baby print. It is called Unico in Bloomland. This is a fairly small series with 2 JSK dresses, a skirt, socks, a head bow and a matching blouse. As several other lolita bloggers have pointed out, unicorn prints have been surprisingly rare in lolita. Meta's Twinkle Journey with the unicorns was a hit last year and I am happy that unicorns have been used again by another big brand.

This is the first JSK of this series. The bodice looks reasonably well fitted. One of my main concerns with Baby/Alice and the Pirates recently has been the baggy loose fitting bodice areas so it is a relief that both the JSKs in this series have a better shape. The most interesting part of the bodice has got to be the inclusion of the scallop part. I don't think I have ever seen scalloping used this way before. It is sort of a fluffy cloud shape but it is very peculiar. It helps to make the bodice more 3D and layered but the design is so different, I am not sure that everybody will like it. Layered on top of the scallop area, is a line of pretty lace and this is finished with a double layered ribbon bow. I think the ribbon looks like one of the ribbons you find on a box of chocolates, but it has a nice structure to it and it adds a bit of extra interest. The bodice is then finished off with 2 thin vertical lines of lace which helps to break up a large area of the bodice. The straps are a little thin and despite a little lace, they look a bit plain. The waist part is finished with a simple bow which is a bit big.

Once again, the back part looks very low down compared to the front which makes it look a little uneven. The shirring panel looks like it is hanging off the dummy and I doubt tightening the corset ribbon will do very much. It looks messy compared to the front.

The skirt part has an average shape to it but looks as though it has the potential to puff out well. I would use a large petticoat for this dress to help show off the print better because the skirt has a lot of gathering, which obscures the print. I also think a large petticoat would help to display the scalloped part better. The skirt bottom is finished with a scalloped edge. I don't the scallops look too bad but I have seen better. In some of the close-up photos there is also a visible crease along the bottom hem (you can just about see it in the first photo). The bottom hem is then finished off with some lace which looks like it is good quality and helps to soften the scalloping.

This is the 2nd JSK. Again, the bodice looks like it fits well and this dress looks more fitted than the 1st dress. The waist straps also don't appear to alter the overall shape too much. The bodice part is very simple apart from the rose detail. The bodice has 2 lines of beautiful pearls and the rose corsage looks very pretty. If there were 2 rose corsage parts then that would probably be too OTT, but it does leave the end of the pearls a little exposed on the plain side. The neckline looks smart and is finished off with pretty lace. The straps are a decent width too and look more interesting than the straps on the first dress. Thankfully, the back part of the bodice is not as low down on this dress and looks more balanced. The shirring is hidden well by some ribbon corset detail. There is a large waist bow which has some lace running along its edges. It is definitely large enough to use as a head bow and I think the dress would look pretty with or without the bow being there. The skirt part has a good shape and I prefer this one to the first dress. The skirt is a lot simpler and is finished off with a gentle ruffle at the bottom. Overall, this dress looks more mature in an understated, but beautiful way. This is perfect to help balance out the very sweet print.

And here is the print close up. The colours available are ivory, pink, navy and black. This is the very purple looking navy x navy one! As expected, it is incredibly cute and sweet. My favourite in the unico with the butterfly tickling its nose (CUTE!!!!). It reminds me of Bambi but with unicorns instead of deer. The print has lots of pretty little details. The bows next to the flowers are very detailed. I especially like the crown shape used around the Baby the Stars Shine Bright text (top right of picture). The logo blends in so well. The flying dandelions at the top of the print are a nice touch too. My main concern is the colours occasionally look a little washed out and pale. But I like how Baby have used colours which are less bold when compared to Angelic Pretty colours. It is more dreamy.

For comparison, here is the Meta Twinkle Journey print. The Baby unicorns are more doe-eyed and, to use an anime/manga term, are chibi looking. Whilst Meta's print has a more fantasy theme, Baby has focused on the cute. Baby's colours are more dream like. Meta's print is more suited who those who like sweet but who don't like to over-do the cutesy theme whilst the Baby print will appeal to those who like the sweeter style. All we need now is for somebody to make a more gothic looking unicorn print (maybe a black unicorn contrasting against a white background) and a classic looking print. Then there will be a unicorn print for everybody!

These are the socks. I am pleased to say they feature my favourite unico from the print! I like the floral arrangement too. There are little gold coloured details too which is lovely.

So overall, I think this is going to be a strong and popular series! I think the 2nd JSK looks better, especially with the rose corsage and pearl details. As far as the colours go, I think the navy and black colours work best with this print because the bold colours contrast with the delicate print. Would I buy this? I would be a little concerned that the print is too sweet for me, but I probably would! This print has gotten me very excited because I hope it will spur on more brands to consider making unicorn prints! I am still championing the gothic unicorn print idea (hint hint).

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Love you Ox Lolis!!!

The Oxfordshire Lolitas have 5 Lolita Valentines this week! (and I know who made them, you awesome people!). Thank you for making the time to make the Valentines. I feel all warm and fuzzy inside! I am so lucky to have friends like you.

To see what I am going on about visit here-

The group is featured in 15,17,18,55 and 61. And Sammi got an individual one too (I am guessing from Beau!). I loved Sammi's outfit and I think that was well deserved!


Thursday, 16 June 2011

AatP's Melty Mermaid Princess

Today I will be discussing the latest series by Alice and the Pirates. This print is called Melty Mermaid Princess. The name is an interesting mix of Angelic Pretty print titles! This series has 2 dresses, a skirt, socks a round headdress and a necklace.

This is the print close-up shown in Bianca (off-white and blue). The other colours are ivory x brown (Ecru), navy x navy (Madonna) and black x purple (Noir). Whilst the print is beautiful, I can't help but think that the art work looks similar to that on the wall of my local fish and chip shop. Next time I am craving battered cod, I shall be looking around the shop for co-ordination inspiration for this print! Despite reminding me of a fast food joint (and a shower curtain too), the oval design is pretty and I especially like the oval with the ship in it. I love the little bubbles rising upwards. My main dislike is the use of text. I think it would look better without the writing that says Mermaid.

This is the OP. I thought the bodice was a little baggy and has loose material. The only way to make this dress smaller is by using the waist ties. This could make the dress appear a little shapeless and the material may hang off smaller girls. The bodice has a small bib design with some very ruffly lace. Usually I would dislike this use of lace but I think that on this dress it works. It looks frothy and bubbly which works well with the ocean theme. The neckline has a nice shape to it and has some pretty neck ties too. I thought the sleeves looked a little deflated and are a little too long. If I owned this, I would try to remove the lace finishing the sleeves. It looks too pointy and harsh. Maybe they should have used the same lace that they used on the bib. The sleeves are finished off with brightly coloured bows. They look tidy and well done. The waist bow is a little big but looks good on this dress. Or you could detach this to wear in your hair if you dislike round headdresses. The beads hanging from the bow are in 2 colours, which is a nice touch. There is no shirring, just a zip, but the zip is very well concealed. The skirt part looks like it creates a pretty shape and looks very spacious. I love the way the skirt has been constructed. There is a front bustle which only has 2 tiers so it does not look too fussy or attention grabbing. Then we have the print part which has more of the frothy looking lace running down the front. The lace helps to make the edge of the print look less harsh. The bottom hem is finished with another different type of lace. Thankfully, it looks better than the sleeve lace. The balance of frilly lace and simpler lace works well apart from the bits on the sleeve.

This is the JSK. The first thing I noticed was the overall shape of the dress. In my opinion, it looks dreadful. It is too harsh and it looks very straight. The way the skirt starts from the waist looks strange, resulting in a bulky and awkward look. It is not the typical lolita shape. I also think the tier at the bottom of the skirt looks flat and lifeless. The skirt also has lots of gathering which leaves the print bunched up. The bottom hem is finished with the same lace used on the OP. It is the only part of the skirt I like! At least the bodice on this dress looks more fitted than the OP. The top of the skirt is hidden by a ruffle on the bodice. I dislike the OTT lace. The bodice would benefit from a simpler design, so I think it would be better if it had the ruffle or the lace, but not both together. The corset part looks pretty and nicely spaced. The ribbon looks like it is good quality and wont fray. The straps look like they have a lot of stretch in them which is a good thing because...

... the back part looks very short. There is hardly any material on the back. This will not provide a great deal of support. If you have a large chest area, then invest in a good bra for this dress! The shirring has been left exposed but considering how narrow the area is, there is not a lot to hide anyway.

This series also has a round headdress. I think it would have been a good idea to include more than one head option. The rose looks pretty and the material in the background are like a continuation of the rose. The lace is maybe just a little too spiky against the softer edges.

This is the necklace. I can't decide if this looks classic or sweet. The gold outside rim is very classic but the glitter looks sweet. It would still be a nice addition to an outfit. I think the star fish looks cute!

So overall, the series is very hit and miss. I personally, would avoid the JSK. Thankfully the OP redeems AatP's reputation. Despite my bizarre comparisons to a fish joint, the print is lovely. I think the off-white and blue colour looks the prettiest. Would I buy from this series? Probably not. There have been a few other prints released which are similar to this one and I don't think this print stands out. However, I do think there needs to be more sailor lolita!

Monday, 13 June 2011

June Ox Loli meet- London!

Last Saturday was the latest Oxfordshire Lolita meet. It is now Monday and I STILL feel tired and achy. However, there is a good reason why I feel so worn out. This time the Oxford Lolis went to London! I have always been passionate about London. No matter how often I go, I still get the same buzz of excitement. I think it is impossible to get bored in London. Also, it was nice to move away from Oxford this time.

I did not get very many photos this time. We were joined by a photographer because the group is contributing to a documentary being filmed by this lovely man called Francesco. Initially, we were just meant to be doing a photoshoot with Fleur (Who I absolutely adore. She made me feel pretty!). The group went to Green Park. We found some lovely flowers to pose with. Fleur got a lot of photos of us so I did not manage to get very many on my camera. I can't wait to see the pictures Fleur took.

Here I am standing among the flowers! I would call this outfit casual classic. Fleur was also snapping me here, so I have my serious face on! I wore Old Emblem by Meta. I was amazed when I realised I had never worn this skirt to a Ox Loli meet. It is one of my most worn pieces! The rest of the outfit is off-brand but I was wearing some Angelic Pretty rings. I did not give myself enough time to do a more elaborate outfit. I promise you, I did have plans.

I loved posing with the flowers!

Sammi and Beau both wore Angelic Pretty. Sammi looked incredible in her Lyrical Bunny salopette. Salopettes are so hard to pull off well, but Sammi is petite and she looked brilliant. Of course, Beau looks pretty too in Jewelry Jelly! I think Beau made a brilliant choice.

Michelle was also in Angelic Pretty. She was wearing Candy Treat. I know Michelle really wanted Candy Treat so I am so happy that she got it. Michelle wanted an action shot and I simply love this photo. Raine was wearing off-brand. Her brown dress looked amazing on her. I think Raine needs to do classic more often.

I am very very VERY sorry Jenni! This was the only shot I got of you and it is blurry. I thought I had got some shots of you. Jenni was wearing a gorgeous Moitie dress. Jenni pulls off gothic really well.

As you can see from this photo, Francesco managed to come to Green Park. Here he is interviewing Michelle and Jenni. I got paired up with Raine. Sammi and Beau missed out on being interviewed so we are hoping Francesco can come and film us in July. I am organising the July meet so I want to make sure everybody who comes is happy and comfortable. We were a little unprepared for the filming but I was glad we met Francesco. I hope he got some good footage. I really want this documentary to succeed because I think Francesco understands the fashion well and will represent lolitas in a positive way.

We were very busy but I managed to buy this Chocomint necklace in Chinatown. I am so happy I got this despite the high price! I think this necklace is very "me". One day I will make an outfit completely co-ordinated around my blog name!

Although I was tired, I think Saturday went rather well. I am now desperate to go back to London again. I think everybody in our group looked lovely. I have to admit, I felt a little under-dressed next to my friends. Overall, I think this meet was a success!

Friday, 10 June 2011

Expanding my horizons and trying new things

I am very excited right now! I just pre-ordered Meta's Fairy Tale series and have already had the 2nd confirmation email to say my pre-order has been completed! So all I need to do is wait for it to come in stock and pay. I fell in love with the print as soon as I saw it.

But by placing this pre-order I am also expanding my horizons.

This will be my very first bonnet. I have got to admit, I have been a little scared to try bonnets in the past. I was worried they would look too age-play on me (especially OTT sweet styles). When I saw the Fairy Tale series for the first time I was hoping there would be a head bow but I was confronted by a bonnet and a rectangle headdress. Although rectangle headdresses have been out of fashion for a while, I think I am more confident wearing these than bonnets. However, for some reason I was really attracted to the Fairy Tale bonnet. The pattern on the Fairy Tale bonnet is not too OTT. The size is fairly big but it is by no means the biggest lolita bonnet I have seen.

So I found myself adding the bonnet to the cart. I am totally blaming Nicola from the Oxfordshire Lolitas! She makes her own bonnets and looks so wonderful in them. I am curious to see how I will look with a bonnet. I don't regret making my choice at all but it is very unlike me to move away from my comfort zone.

I also ordered the fully shirred skirt. I have been really busy recently so I did not have enough money for a dress this time. I find skirts easier to wear anyway. There is nothing particularly strange about this but... I have ordered both the bonnet and skirt in lavender. These will be my very first lavender items in my lolita wardrobe! I have wanted to add lavender items to my wardrobe for a very long time. I feel it will flatter my pale skin very well without making me look washed out. Plus, lavender goes very well with pink. I will probably wear this with my new pink blouse and possibly my pink shoes too if they match well enough.

I decided against ordering the matching socks. I figured that the socks were not as vital anyway. I noticed after I placed the order that Meta have released this necklace which fits the Fairy Tale print very well-

It comes in gold, silver, antique gold and antique silver. The antique ones have a rose and the other 2 have a bird.

I definitely like the antique ones the most. I love the whole antique look when it comes to necklaces. I also think the rose and bird cage look nicer on the 2 antique coloured necklaces.

I have high hopes for this series. The print reminds me of my wedding day and I am hoping this arrives before our 2nd anniversary on August the 6th.

I have had a few ideas on how to co-ordinate this already. I have an idea for a straight-forward co-ordinate. I am also planning something a little more creative and different. I wont go in to too many details right now but I am planning an OTT classic co-ordinate. It could go horribly wrong and I may get slated for it but I have been thinking about OTT classic for a while. Can OTT work outside of sweet lolita? Is OTT classic going too far? I might just make it a OTT sweet outfit instead. That is the beauty of this print- I firmly believe this print will work well with both sweet and classic.

I intend to wear this skirt a lot and will work hard to do different co-ordinates with it. Wearing a bonnet and choosing lavender is already new ground for me, but I want to experiment even more. Let's hope I don't take the experimenting too far!

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Strawberry nails- 2nd attempt

I was intending to wear my new Bodyline skirt with the strawberry print over the weekend but sadly, the meet I was attending got cancelled. For part of my planned outfit I decided to paint my nails to look like strawberries.

I should point out that I am not doing any more 3D nails with the deco clay right now. The reason is, I was getting annoyed with the clay. I spent ages making stuff but I was not happy with the end results. So it seemed pointless wasting my time. I am focusing on painting, stickers and jewels now.

For these nails I used a nail art kit which I found brand new in a charity shop for £3. I was very pleased with myself when I found it! These kits can cost 10 times what I paid. It has all the colours of the rainbow and black and white too. The bottles have a thin brush and a nib for the more detailed parts.

These are the results-

Bear in mind this was my first attempt at using the kit! The green dried a bit darker than I was expecting and I think the green part is a little wide on a few of the nails.

To do the yellow polka dots I used the thin nib part. I did the dots in rows so they looked neater. I thought doing the yellow bits would be the hardest part but it was surprisingly simple!

This is how they looked yesterday-

I did the nail art last Thursday so they don't look as good as they did.

Solo nail shot! I think I needed to make the green lines sharper. I should have done it with the nib but I used the thin brush. At least I know that for next time. The top coat I used was very shiny so it took me ages to get these photographs!

These took me about an hour to do. I could have spent a bit longer and maybe they would have looked better. I will be doing my nails like this in the future too.

The trouble is... I can't bear to get rid of the strawberries now! I am going to a meet on Saturday and I wont be wearing my strawberry skirt. By Saturday my nails will probably look chipped. You can already see in the last 2 photos that my nail has started growing at the bottom.

These nails may be going soon but they will be back...

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Mystery dress- solved!

I am trying to find out where this dress has come from-

I had a quick search but nothing came up. Somebody blogged about this around a week ago so it could be new. If anybody knows any more information about this dress then please let me know.

UPDATE- Apparently it is Shirley Temple. I would love to see more photos!

Monday, 6 June 2011

Meta's Fairy Tale series

Today I thought I would discuss Meta's latest print. It is simply called Fairy Tale. The series has 3 dresses, 2 skirts, a bonnet, a rectangle headdress and a pair of socks.

I am going to break with my usual print discussion traditions and start with the print close-up. Why? Because I simply LOVE this print and I feel it should be at the top of the post! I got a little sentimental when I first saw this print because when I got married we had a bird and butterfly theme. The tables had bird cages decorated with flowers and mini butterflies. So this print means a lot to me because it reminds me of my wedding every time I look at it. I love the bird cage part with the fairy (sadly, there were no fairies at my wedding), the delicate flowers and the dark butterflies. It is stunning. The print is available in black, off-white and lavender. I have chosen to show the lavender because I think the print works best in this colour.

So, I really adore the print but what about the dresses?

This is the OP. To show the details better I am also using the draft picture.

My initial thought about this dress was that it had that "fake bow" detail on the bust. This design appears to be fashionable amongst the big brands right now. I am still unconvinced about fake bows because I feel they can sit awkwardly on the chest area. Judging by the draft picture, the fake bow does not look too severe so hopefully it will fit well. The shape of the bodice looks well fitted and realistic to the average girl's body shape. Considering the size of the sleeves, I think the sleeve puffiness looks about right. The bodice part is quite plain but thankfully there are 2 bows with a line of pearls to stop the dress looking too boring. The neck tie looks very long, which is good because it means you can tie it in lots of different ways. The skirt part looks nicely rounded. The skirt part has been kept very plain but with a print this beautiful, I think this is a bonus.

My main issue with the OP is the back.

As we can see from the draft picture, the shirring part is very exposed. But the thing I really dislike is the tulle bustle on the back the bottom hem trim. I think the tulle parts look a bit rough and messy. I know some people like tulle but personally, I don't think it works on this dress.

And so, on to the first JSK. The bodice part looks well fitted on this dress too. The waist ties look well hidden so they don't affect the dress outline. The front of the bodice has corset detail. The corset part looks well spaced but I would have liked to see darker ribbon used. The ribbon is a bit too light compared to the main part of the print. There is a detachable bow at the waist with a line of pearls. I think it is a nice size. The dress may look a little plain without the waist bow but I also think it might make a nice hair accessory. The straps are a decent width and the lace has been kept small and simple. The shirring panel on the back of this dress is also very open and exposed. In the pictures the back part looked like it was being overstretched so the neckline was being pulled down south. Maybe it could have done with a bit more material so it will sit better on larger girls. The skirt part looks very rounded and spacious and will probably hold a lot of petticoat underneath. I also love how the skirt has been kept relatively plain again so the focus is on the print. The bottom is finished with a simple ruffle, which looks a lot better than the tulle on the OP.

This is the second JSK. Unlike the other 2 dresses, this JSK is loaded with frills and details. The bodice is covered with large ruffles. The ruffles look like they have been constructed well. Usually I dislike loads of ruffles but I think the bodice part looks pretty. The bodice looks like it will fit well and the waist ties are again well hidden. I think the neckline is a little too low. The straps are a good size but they point outwards a bit which may encourage them to fall off the shoulders. There is shirring on the back but this time it is covered by a tidy looking corset. The waist bow is big but has been kept simple. Thankfully you can remove it if you want to. This dress has a very strange detail to it- the front part has a line of rose shaped buttons running all the way down it. Does this mean the front of the dress can be completely undone? I think this dress would look a lot better without the button part. The buttons also interrupt the print on the skirt part so there is a harsh break in the print. The skirt part is incredibly rounded. Although lolitas like some pouf, I think the skirt shape may be too exaggerated. Whilst the ruffle on this skirt looks pretty, I think the simpler skirts on the other 2 dresses work better than this one. The bows on the ruffle are bit on the big side too. The bottom of the skirt is finished with a ruffle and there is a layer of dot lace on top. I think the tulle lace looks better than the OP. Meta could have used something a bit more elaborate than the dot lace (the fully shirred skirt not shown in this post uses crown shaped lace).

This is the bonnet. I have never worn a bonnet but I like the size of this bonnet. The bonnet is not too big and the design is simple. The good thing about this bonnet is that Meta have added a small comb to it so hopefully the bonnet wont move about too much. There is also a bow on this bonnet but it is not that obvious. The rectangle headdress (not pictured here) looks like any standard rectangle headdress. I am not a bonnet fan but this time I think the bonnet is better than the headdress.

These are the socks from this series. The roses and the bow look beautiful. It is interesting that Meta have chosen to put the details on the back part of the sock so you can't see it from the front.

So would I buy from this series? YES!!! As I type this entry, I am working out how to get some extra money together. I want to buy the fully shirred skirt and possibly the bonnet (it will be my first ever bonnet!). As far as the dresses go, I think the 2nd dress is the best one. The 3rd dress is too OTT and I think the 1st dress is spoiled by the back part. As fas as the colours go, I think lavender looks the nicest (these would also be my first lavender items if I get what I want!). The print really appeals to me. It is stunning. Of course, if I go ahead and order these items I will be happy to review them when they arrive!

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Happy International Lolita day and a thank you

Happy International Lolita Day! Sadly, this time I didn't leave myself enough time to make a greetings card for this blog. I was meant to be seeing a few friends today but that got cancelled :(

I am also sending out a thank you to the person who made me a lolita valentine this week! I am number 15-

Considering some of the lolitas that attended MCM, I felt incredibly honoured that this person called me their favourite MCM lolita. I felt that some girls looked a lot better than me but this valentine has given me motivation to co-ordinate better in the future.

Also, a huge thank you to those who have voted for my entry on the MAF Facebook page. I temporarily took the lead but my entry is now being obliterated by a girl wearing gothic lolita. I am about 55 votes behind now! If you would like to vote for me, please read the entry below this one. I could really do with your help!

Friday, 3 June 2011

Please vote for me!

I have entered another contest on Facebook! At the time of posting this, I am in 2nd place and slowly catching up with the leader! I am about 15 votes behind so I could do with a boost. I would really appreciate it if you guys could vote for me.

Here is what you need to do (it will only take a minute, I promise)-

2. Scroll down the wall to find my entry. You are looking for this photo-

3. Press the 'like' button underneath my photo. Do NOT click on the actual photo or you will be taken away from the MAF page and your vote wont count!

And that is it!

P.S- If I forget to say tomorrow- Happy International Lolita Day!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

MCM Expo and Camden buys- May 2011

For my full expo post, please scroll down to my next entry. Today I am focusing on the items I purchased during this MCM Expo. Needless to say, my purse was very empty afterwards!

I could not justify spending out £30 for an art book with my budget for the day. I still wanted some pretty anime and manga artwork and I found a stall selling laminated prints. I usually go for typical "pretty" shoujo artwork! My favourite is the one of Shinku and Suigintou from Rozen Maiden (top left).

I also got some back issues of Neo magazine. It was a shame that Popi who does the fashion page was unable to attend. She was really lovely when I met her at Hyper Japan last October. I also got a free manga preview book.

Fluffy hair pom poms! These remind me of the soot sprites from the Studio Ghibli films. In fact, they probably are meant to be the soot sprites!

I am a massive Pokemon nerd so I had to get a Celebi keychain. I was going to get a Celebi plushie instead but I decided to get a friend a birthday present instead (so they had better like their present or I will be devastated I missed out!).

Cardcaptor Sakura is one of my favourite animes EVER. I felt this was the cutest Sakura figure in the series. It was fairly cheap and I am not sure if it is legit merchandise or not. I am hopeless with fake spotting but I still love this figure! I also got a Hangry and Angry keychain. I believe this is Angry but if it is Hangry, please correct me. The bow at the bottom was from the Cherry Abuku stall

I also got this cute little rain drop from the Cherry Abuku stall. It was very difficult to photograph. It has a cute little face on it.

I got this pudding ring from a stall called Tanabata. It was also available in purple but I thought the yellow version looked more realistic. As you can see, I am still wearing my nail polish to match my Wonder Cookie dress! I painted my nails pink, blue, green and white to match all the stripes.

Alpaca! You may have seen some alpacas lurking about on the online lolita community. I think they are so cute. I want to get a rainbow of alpacas!

Thankfully I got around almost all of the stalls before I started feeling ill. After getting some food I decided I may as well do a little shopping whilst I was still in London.

I went to the Japan Centre and got the July 2011 issue of Kera magazine. I don't buy Kera religiously but if I am in London I like to pick up a copy. I found this issue very inspiring and I have some great new ideas. It is also great to see the latest lolita prints in more detail. I noticed a lot of pretty Innocent World stuff coming soon and Lumiebre is doing a parasol collaboration with Metamorphose.

In Camden I found this K-Star blouse in Angel Pretty. I currently have a real shortage of blouses in my wardrobe and I have been looking for a pink blouse for ages. This blouse is a little more frilly than my usual tastes but for some reason I just love it. This blouse is surprisingly good for Angel Pretty which is usually known for over-priced poorly made goods. Yes, it is not the best made blouse out there but for what I paid I was really pleased with this blouse.

I am debating removing the ribbon bows just to tone it down a little.

I want to remove the ribbon bows on the collar here...

... and also the ones on the sleeves. If anybody has any further suggestions or just want to share their opinions on this blouse (good or bad) then let me know what you think.

I also got some light pink shoes from Sai Sai.

Nowadays, I choose to ignore the dresses and skirts because I dislike the lace on most of the dresses and the material feels cheap. I still think that Sai Sai is worth visiting for their blouses, socks and shoes.

The straps on these shoes are a little confusing but they have poppers to make putting the shoes on easier. The colour is a delicate milky pink so I will probably be using these for classic lolita and maybe sweet on some occasions. I have not worn these shoes yet but they feel relatively sturdy.

My main pet hate about both Sai Sai and their sister shop GLP is that they don't take good care of their shop and their stock. A lot of their items are dirty and look as though they have not been stored well. My shoes do have a few scuff marks but they look very superficial. If I give them a quick clean before I wear them then most of the marks will come off and they will be like new. Do double check any items from these stores before you buy them. I was lucky because there is no serious or lasting damage on my shoes.

After all this I was feeling very broke. I don't feel as though I will regret any of my purchases. I will have to wait and see how the shoes turn out and they are my most riskiest purchase of the day. The blouse was a very pleasant surprise considering I dislike a lot of Angel Pretty's stock. Their dresses still look awful though...
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