Friday, 30 September 2011

A LUSH Ode to the Macaron

Yes, today I am posting about macaron related stuff again! My obsession has gotten so bad that this blog will now have a macaron tag!

Lush has always been one of my favourite shops. They sell bath products, but these are not your typical bath products. They come up with fun and exciting fragrances which make bath time very fun!

So I was very delighted to see that Lush have decided to make 3 products dedicated to macarons. Lush were inspired by Laduree, who are famous for their lovely macarons (and next month when I go to London, I will finally get to try some of their macarons for myself). So Lush came up with 3 new bubble bars called... Bubbleroons! I don't have the heart to tell Lush that they have one 'O' too many and it should technically be Bubbleron...

First up is the green bubbleroon. As you can see, these products are not quite a macaron shape but it does have the 2 shells. I imagine it would be very hard to sculpt bubble bars in to a flatter and rounder shape. This one apparently smells like grass.

This one, called the Rose Jam bubbleroon, is the one I am most excited about trying. I have recently become obsessed with rose scented stuff (I even made up some rose flavoured jelly on Tuesday, which tasted amazing). This bubbleroon has a rose scent mixed with the scent of jam. It sounds like my fantasy scent!

Finally, this is the Yuzu and Cocoa one. Yuzu is a Japanese mandarin. I imagine this one has a very lovely fruity fragrance to it.

I am very excited to try these new products. They might even make a nice gift for somebody!

In other news, Metamorphose is having a sock sale for this weekend only. I was tempted, but I can't risk getting a ridiculous customs fee for a few pairs of socks! I hate the UK customs so much! I noticed the Fairy Tale rose socks were discounted and so were a couple of other recent designs. If you would like to get some cheap socks, do go and have a look. Remember, this sale is just for this weekend so if you are reading this post after Sunday I am sorry to say you missed out!

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Clockwork Tea Party by BABY

It is time to discuss another brand print! Today I will be looking at Clockwork Tea Party by BABY. This series has 2 dresses, a skirt, a shirt, a bonnet, a headbow, socks and several bits of jewellery.

This is the pearl JSK. The bodice looks like it will fit nicely. I absolutely love the neckline on this dress. Baby have paid attention to the shaping of the lace along the sleeves, which then blends in with the lace on the edge of the bow which is on the front. The bow on the front is huge and the dress description suggests it is not removable. However, I do think the bow looks pretty. The bow material has a check pattern, which matches the check part of the print. The bow is also a pretty shape and looks well structured compared to some bows on other recent Baby releases, which have looked a bit floppy. The bow also has a string of detachable pearls which look pretty. There is a thin line of the check print ribbon running along the waist line. Whilst I don't dislike this, I think it might have been better without this detail. The straps are a good width and the lace softens the inner edge nicely. The back has some shirring which is concealed well with a ribbon corset. The skirt shape is pretty. Personally, I would have liked it if the shape was a little rounder. It looks like the skirt will flare outwards very well so will probably hold a decent petticoat. The skirt has been kept fairly plain, but the print is quite busy so it looks better with simpler details. The bottom hem is finished with a ruffle, topped with pretty lace.

This is the Lumiere JSK. The bodice on this dress looks very well fitted and figure hugging. I think the design on this bodice is very interesting. The bodice has layering. The top layer has a scalloped edge. I really like this use of scalloping because it is a bit different. The edges of the scalloping has ruffles and rose lace. It is all very heavily detailed but somehow, it works! Hidden underneath the scallop layer, the main part of the bodice has a ribbon corset lined with wide lace. The lace is pretty but maybe thinner lace would have worked better here. There is another ruffle along the neckline. These ruffles have very small gold stitches running along the edges. The straps are a bit on the thin side but is finished with pretty lace. The back has shirring covered by a ribbon corset. The skirt is a really pretty shape and the skirt flares outwards quite a bit. The skirt on this dress has also been kept plain, which again, I feel works best with this print. The bottom hem is finished with pretty lace.

This is one of the print close-ups. I love the hints of gold. The colours are very deep and rich. I also really like the use of check, which reminds me of a chess board. The only thing I am unsure about is the teddy bear. There are 5 colours available which are ivory (which confusingly, is actually light pink. See the picture of the 1st JSK above), Strawberry Tea (which is a raspberry pink shade), rose (deep red), blue and black. Although I like all the shades, I think the deep rose red is especially beautiful.

This is my pick of the jewellery. It is a cage necklace but if you look inside, you will see one of the cakes with a butterfly perched on top, just like in the print. It comes in gold and antique silver but I think the gold would work best with the gold in the print.

Overall, I think this is a very beautiful series. I think both JSK designs are good but I prefer the Lumiere JSK. Would I buy from this series? Definitely! I think either dress would be a good addition to a lolita wardrobe and the matching jewellery is beautiful. I am hoping that this series is a bit hit.

Monday, 26 September 2011

The Frustrated Artist

I used to really love art. I wouldn't say I was any good, but it felt like such a release. But I was disheartened many years ago when I was still in school. I was studying for my Art GCSE and I was doing a project of Japan. I came up with this idea of doing a massive origami display. I made a huge origami phoenix and the phoenix would be followed by loads of smaller birds. It was going to go throughout the ENTIRE building, taking up loads of the ceiling space. But then my art teacher made me move my display, so the area got a lot smaller. Then, my display was taken down without warning after I had spent hours just on the first part of the display. I screamed at my art teacher "But you told me to move it here!" and all he did was shrug his shoulders. To add insult to injury, my phoenix was carelessly tossed aside and got damaged.

Afterwards I felt really depressed. I had put in all that work for nothing. And I felt anger, because I had, what I thought, a great idea but I was unable to finish my project up to my standards.

Sometimes I feel this way about lolita. I come up with this big (and sometimes crazy) idea but when it comes to actually carrying out the idea, I simply can't do it the way I want to. Maybe I am being too harsh on myself but sometimes deep down, I KNOW I could have done it better.

I think the problem is that I have a really vivid imagination and my ideas don't sometimes translate well in to reality.

I keep a secret book filled with all my ideas for lolita outfits (even my husband James doesn't see it). That scrapbook of ideas is my outlet for the artist inside me. And after I have finished an outfit idea, I then start to think about how I can put my plan in to action. I read fashion magazines, save images I find on the internet and look at blogs to see if anybody has done anything similar. If you ever see me slating my outfit, it is probably because secretly, I have made a page for the outfit in my scrapbook.

The outfits I plan may look interesting but they would be difficult to wear. That rules out wearing these outfits to a lot of meets. I have to think about transport and how well I can relax. I guess doing a special photo shoot could be an option. It may cost a bit of money but maybe I would be happier with the results. There is one particular outfit I have planned for my Meta Fairy Tale skirt which would definitely not be suitable for wearing outside the house, partly because sitting down would be impossible.

I also wonder if maybe I am too strict with myself. I feel sorry for my husband because he has to watch me go in to many clothes shops looking for a specific item and leaving empty handed. I reject clothes for the most stupid of reasons. It could be something like the way the sleeves on a blouse look, a specific detail or I could reject something for being slightly the wrong shade of a certain colour. It occurred to me that I could have settled on some of those items I discarded before. I need to try clothes on in the changing rooms more because clothes can look so different worn. Or I could try and alter the clothes myself. I could teach myself to sew properly. Yes, it would take time but eventually, I would be able to do alterations. Or I could try adding something on. A plain item could look different if I just add clips or bows or wear the item in a new way.

I could work harder to source rarer items and different materials. One of my biggest inspirations is because of the variety you get on there. Chances are, that the items I want are out there. If I learn to search for stuff better, then who knows how far I can go?

But despite all this, I still hold on to my hopes and dreams. My head may be stuck in the clouds but I do believe that having a dream is not a bad thing. Just because an outfit doesn't live up to my idea, it does not automatically mean that the outfit I am wearing is bad.

And with a little more time and patience, I feel I could become a much better lolita.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Thursday, 22 September 2011

AP's Petite Patisserie

I thought I would discuss the latest AP print today. It is called Petite Patisserie and includes 3 dresses, a short skirt, socks, a headbow and a top.

This is the tiered JSK. From the front the bodice looks like it will fit nicely but I did notice that from the side, there was a bulge of material on the front. So it didn't look too flattering. Hopefully this dress wont create "boob loaf". The bodice part is relatively plain. The main detail is the ruffle around the neck. I thought the ruffle looked very pretty. It is a lovely shape. The neckline is lined with satin and there is a small satin bow along the neckline. Considering what the print looks like, simplicity is probably a good idea. The straps are slightly thin but look strong enough. The back part of the bodice does not look as nice. The satin from the neckline carries on and runs vertically on each side of a very exposed shirring panel. It looks a little untidy. The skirt part has a good shape to it. It appears that it can flare outwards a lot, so it will probably hold a lot of petticoat underneath. The skirt part is very gathered but because of the style of print, the print is not too obscured. The skirt is quite plain. As the name suggests, this skirt does have a tier. I felt that the tier looked a little flat and it breaks up the print so the print doesn't line up that well. The bottom hem is finished with some pretty lace.

This is the High Waist JSK. the bodice on this dress looks like it will fit well. There is a large waist bow which has good shape to it and looks firm. The good thing is that the waist bow blends in nicely with the print. The waist also has a thin line of satin with cotton lines over it to give it a stripy appearance. It looks interesting and continues the stripe theme in the print. The same technique is used on the neckline, which is then finished off with a thin satin bow. The neckline also has cute polka dot lace, which also appears along the sleeves. The straps are too thin for my personal taste but continue the stripe pattern well. The back of the bodice is taken up by a large panel of shirring. The shirring on this dress is also exposed and maybe could have been concealed better. The skirt part flares out well. The skirt shape looks good. My main problem is the way the print looks on this skirt. The lines on the other JSK flare outwards but on this JSK they appear to start going outwards and then the lines on the print go inwards again. It creates the illusion that the wearer is a little bulky and has a stomach bulge. The print doesn't flow as nicely. The bottom hem is finished off with pretty lace. Overall, the skirt part is not as flattering. Usually, vertical stripes are meant to be slimming!

And here is the OP. I have got to be honest... I think it looks like a sack. Here is a worn photo just to demonstrate how it looks worn.

I can see this OP being very difficult to wear. I am undecided about whether a belt would help or not. It is hard to say what sort of body type would look best in this dress. It probably wont suit larger girls but petite girls may look swamped under all that material. I will be very interested to see how lolitas choose to wear this.

Aside from the shape, the collar is very cute and I like the way the lace has been used. I also like the cuffs. At the moment, it is very hard to judge this OP. I think I need to see some more worn pictures!

Here is the print. I absolutely adore it. I love the pink strawberry cake. Some people say AP do too many food prints but you have to admit, they are good at making food prints! The vertical lines and ribbons do remind me of a French patisserie. I like all 4 colours too. I think the brown or mint will look the nicest.

My favourite item from the series is the top. The top is simple, but it does include my favourite cake from the print! I think this would be a good item to have in a sweet lolita wardrobe and it is also casual enough to wear outside of lolita. It would suit a variety of different prints.

I am also a fan of the socks. They are so cute!

I would say this series is bold and interesting. AP are experimenting with different dress shapes. The dresses are also not as OTT as they used to be. If I were to choose a dress to buy from this series, I would pick the tiered JSK. I would definitely buy the top and socks! Overall, I would say the series was a bit 'hit and miss'. I wouldn't dismiss this series' potential but it appears weaker than other recent AP releases.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Reading Lolita Meet!

It feels like my last lolita meet was ages ago now (I have missed 2 Oxford meets in a row) so it felt good to be able to attend a meet in Reading. It was a lovely change to go somewhere different. We all brought some food along so we could have a picnic in the Forbury Gardens. I have never been to these gardens before so I had no idea how beautiful the gardens were. We managed to set up the picnic underneath a bandstand so we avoided the worst of the rain. And then it started raining sideways so we did get a little damp!

Monika brought macarons and cupcakes from Waitrose! Recently, I was told that Waitrose (a UK supermarket) were selling macarons but when I got my husband to look in our local branch we couldn't find them! So well done to Mo for tracking some down. I would like to make a public plea to all my UK readers- please go to Waitrose and buy macarons and if you can't find them, ask them to get them in! If they become popular enough, Waitrose might get the hint and put more in their stores. Wouldn't it be amazing to be able to buy macarons so easily?

They come in a pink box with black swirls on it and have Maison Blanc written on the box. I had a raspberry one which tasted yummy. I was expecting pre-packaged macarons to not taste that good but I was pleasantly surprised. I think fresh will always be best but I would highly recommend these Waitrose ones. All this macaron talk in making me hungry!

This is the Waitrose cupcake I had. It tasted like a small piece of strawberry heaven....

Here is a group shot of us! From left to right we have Raine in Angelic Pretty, Michelle in Angelic Pretty, Shalisa (the lovely host!) in Angelic pretty, Kyra in Alice and the Pirates, Helen in BABY and me in Bodyline.

Mo left before we took the group shots but I hope she doesn't mind me putting up this solo photo! She is wearing Kids Yoyo. This dress is beautiful and Mo was so well co-ordinated!

I finally got to wear my Bodyline cosmetic print dress that James kindly got me for my birthday. I changed my mind about my outfit several times because I desperately want to wear Meta's Fairy Tale to a meet but in the end, I wanted something which I knew would be easy to wear to a picnic (except for my shoes!). The dress and bolero are Bodyline and I was using the matching bag (not in the photo). The rest is off-brand.

Michelle said I looked cute in this photo! It shows off my favourite ring nicely. I always seem to wear that peach coloured cake ring.

Afterwards Michelle, Kyra, Helen, my husband James and I went to the Purple Turtle. I have wanted to go to the Purple Turtle for many years and I was not disappointed!

It was great to get the chance to meet Shalisa properly. I think there should be another Reading meet sometime. It was also lovely to meet Mo, Kyra and Helen for the first time. I have been saying for over a year that I would start attending Tea Party Club and London lolita meets and then I never got around to it! I have only ever spoken to a few of the London lolitas online until Saturday. Well if the rest of you are as lovely as the people I have met, then I now know that the London lolitas are amazing people and I am determined to make more of an effort in the next year. I look forward to meeting you all! Hopefully it will be soon.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Items of Desire- the "inbetween" items

I would consider myself to be a lolita who has to watch their budget. The trouble is, I have been drawn in by both sweet and classic lolita which occasionally means there is a bit of conflict with my lolita purchases. Should my next purchase be a sweet or a classic item? This is a question I constantly ask myself.

This is where items which I like to call "inbetween" items are a life saver. I would call an "inbetween" item anything that has the potential to be worn with more than one style of lolita. When worn one way, an item could be sweet but worn in a different way, and the effect can appear different.

The latest "inbetween" item on my list are these new Bodyline shoes-

At first I thought the shoes were a little odd, but on closer inspection I really like them. they have a removable crown patch on them. Despite the heart buckles, I would happily wear the brown shoes with classic. For a more sweeter look, I can remove the crown patches and make the most of the heart punch-out details. Brown and classic go so well together but I want to wear these with a chocolate style sweet outfit too. If I dislike the crown on the patch I could always try to remove it and replace it with something more to my personal taste.

I really love it when items like these come along because they have so much potential and they don't cost loads.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

AatP's Black Cat and Witch

Today I thought I would have a look at the latest Alice and the Pirates print called Black Cat and Witch. This series has a lot of items including 3 dresses, a skirt, a vest, pants, socks, a headbow, a blouse, jewellery and... a witch hat! Anybody would think Halloween was coming...

This is the first JSK. The bodice has a beautiful shape to it and is very well fitted. The front has a detachable bow. The bow is very big and looks a little OTT with the lace. I would detach it purely to show off the lace underneath. The bodice has some very beautiful large rose shaped lace. It is larger than the usual lace you find on dresses and it has got lots of pretty details to it. You can see all the petals and even the veins on the leaves. There are another 2 lines of lace running vertically and more lace along the neckline which are pretty, but the rose lace is the real star of this dress. The straps look a little thin and flimsy so I would have liked to see slightly wider straps. The back of the bodice is very low and almost looks like a high waisted skirt from the back. There is shirring hidden well by a ribbon corset. The ribbon is spaced well and the colour used blends in well. The skirt part is a pretty shape; lovely and round. The skirt has little detail to it. The main detail is the line of lace running along the bottom hem, which helps to soften the edge.

This is the other JSK. The bodice is not as fitted as the other JSK but it still looks pretty. The bodice has a corset on the front and the ribbon looks like it is good quality. It is spaced well and there is rose lace running alongside it so the edges are not obvious. This dress has a ruffled collar, which I think looks beautiful. The lace, ruffles and bow are well layered and it gives the dress added texture and stops the dress looking too flat. Sadly, the collar ends a little strangely on the back. It is broken up by the ribbon corset on the back. It might have looked better if the ends of the collar met in the middle but that might have affected the shirring panel. The skirt on this dress looks a little less rounded, but due to the gothic style of print, this may appeal to its wearers. It still looks as though the skirt can flare outwards quite a bit so you could fit a decent amount of petticoat underneath. The skirt on this dress has also been kept plain. The bottom hem has a thin line of gold which helps to bring out the gold in the print. The bottom is then finished with a ruffle.

This is the OP. The bodice looks a good shape. The neckline is also pretty. Whilst the lace on the front does look good quality, it maybe wasn't the prettiest choice. It is a shame that AatP didn't use more of their pretty large rose lace on this OP. It also looks a little itchy. There are also 2 velvet bows on both sides of the waist. They do look pretty but could add a little bit of unwanted width on the waist area. The long sleeves on this dress are HUGE. They are very theatrical and dramatic but some would say they might be a bit too dressy and looks a bit like a costume. They do look interesting and are neatly lined with gold trim and feature more velvet bows. However, the size is so big that it might look too big on little arms. I can also imagine them being very impractical and catching on things as you walk past. The back of the bodice has been kept completely clear but the zip looks well hidden. The skirt part looks like it has a good shape but with all those layers, you will need a good petticoat to properly show off the dress to its full potential. The skirt is split in to 2 parts, the solid colour part and the print part. The ruffles are lined with a line of gold trim and sparkly tulle. The glitter on the tulle is very colourful. I think it looks pretty but I am sure many people will also dislike it. The layers look nicely spaced out. Part of the printed part appears on the back of the dress but I would have kept the printed part just on the front with just solid colour on the back. The bottom of the printed part is finished with rose shaped lace and the bottom hem has a wider line of the sparkly tulle. It is a very detailed dress.

And this is the print close-up. This is the sort of print that I have come to expect from Alice and the Pirates. It is a beautiful gothic print. I adore the archways. My favourite part of the print is the moons that are poking out at the top part of the arches because if you look closely, you will see that the moons go in their cycle. In this picture you can see the moon on the left is full but the other moons are thinner and at different stages in the lunar cycle. I also like the playful cat. The print is available in 4 colours- black, red, navy and ivory (going on the print part, not the solid colours they are paired with). I think the navy colour works best with the print but the black and red work too. I think that the brown colour which is paired with the ivory for the OP, looks a little dull and washed out.

I know it looks a little too costume-like for a lolita outfit, but I really like the witch hat! The material looks so soft and I love the feather.

I adore the apple ring. It is a little different from other apple themed jewellery I have seen because the apple is see through with little bubbles inside. I think it looks really pretty!

This cat and broom necklace is also gorgeous. I love the colour of the broom and the cat looks so pretty. If I was a gothic lolita, I would try and wear jewellery like this every single day.

So overall, I would say this is a very strong series. The print is beautiful and will appeal to AatP fans. I would be happy to own either of the JSKs and the jewellery too. I definitely think the navy looks the prettiest but the other colours also work well. I hope that this series is a hit!

Monday, 12 September 2011

Somebody let Bodyline loose with a highlighter pen

I recently praised Bodyline's wigs but I have to admit, I am a little horrified with some of the newer creations which are coming soon.

Surely, I can't be the only person who finds this wig strange? It looks like Bodyline have tried to dye their wig with a bright Sharpie pen (which by the way, can sometimes work very well, but do find a proper tutorial online!) and something has gone wrong.

If this is going to be the latest in wig trends, then I will give it a miss! Question is, who is brave enough to give it a go?

Friday, 9 September 2011

Cute storage inspiration

I am in a very good mood today. Hopefully, I shall be getting a proper wardrobe soon! For ages I have been making do with a clothes rail which was fine before I got in to lolita, but it is now too impractical. The rail was not very secure and because of how open it is, there is always a risk that my clothes will be exposed to moisture. A few days ago my husband James and I moved a load of furniture around in an attempt to maximise the storage possibilities.

In anticipation of my new wardrobe, I have been looking in to the best way to make the most of the space both in and outside the wardrobe.

Underneath all of my hanging clothes, I currently have a large cardboard box which is mainly filled with my various bags. I only recently discovered that handbag storage, like in the picture above, existed. The picture shows a version which hangs over the door but you can get smaller ones that hang in wardrobes. You can get a simple one with hooks or you can get one with clear plastic pockets.

I also have tins like this jammy ring one I picked up on my birthday. I found this in Marks and Spencers (a posh food and clothes shop to those of you outside the UK who don't know what I am on about). I have been back to that store since in the hope of picking up another tin, but they were gone! Although I did enjoy the lovely biscuits inside, I was more excited about having some new biscuit shaped storage.

It is also a good idea to make sure my new storage is not too bulky. I like this hair accessory storage idea because it is flat. Although the storage is small, this person has managed to fit a lot of accessories on it. It also means that all the hair accessories are on display and it is easier to find the item you want.

I am including this picture simply because I think the smiley boxes are cute!

I like the idea of stacking some small cases on top of each other. These ones are by Chocomint but they are sold out. However, cases like these are fairly easy to find. It is worth having a look around whilst going shopping because you can find items like these in the strangest of places.

I was alerted to this cute storage by a friend of mine. I have forgotten the original source of this photo, so I am sorry for not crediting the owner! It appears that the person has taken a simple box and then decorated it with cute trims and beads. I like this box because the box matches the cute items inside. If I had a box like this, then I would probably know instantly what is inside.

This is a mini shelf from Swimmer. I believe it is about 25cm tall so I could easily place this somewhere. It is nice and simple, so you could store whatever small bits you like inside.

Finally, I feel it is worth mentioning Violet LeBeaux here (I adore her site!). Violet is simply amazing. I love how she takes simple items and makes loads of cute (and cheap) items. Her site has a tutorial section which happens to include homewares. Do check it out here-

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Bodyline order review September 2011

My latest Bodyline order has arrived so it is time for another Bodyline review!

Firstly, I would like to apologise for the quality of the photos. I only have a cheap camera and the lighting was a bit dodgy. It was very difficult to photograph the details.

I got these during the Mr Yan Birthday Sale. I think this time around I was VERY lucky. I was browsing the site at the exact moment the sale started on the international site so I got there before the rush. The site at this point was incredibly fast (a lot faster than Bodyline usually is) and I managed to place my order with no problems at all. It is also worth noting how quickly Bodyline and EMS got their order to me. I ordered this stuff on Friday and it arrived yesterday (Tuesday). I was convinced I would get hit by customs again but I was very lucky and I had no charges at all.

This is the EMS bag is came in.

Am I the only person who bothers with parcel tape anymore? Before I even opened the package, there were massive holes in the packaging. As you can see, I could easily see the red Bodyline bags inside. This is not exactly secure! Can you imagine what would have happened if the package was dumped in a depot for days or if it had been raining and water got inside? This is one of the many reasons why I miss using DHL.

And now, on to the actual items. I just got 2 items this time and both of them are basics my wardrobe desperately needed.

This is skirt L377 in black. It fits really well. The elastic is not too tight so the skirt is comfortable to wear. I would say that the measurements given on Bodyline's website are correct. I am below the maximum measurement but I could tell there was a bit of extra room. The skirt ends just above my knee. The skirt can flare out a lot. The material on this skirt is surprisingly heavy when worn and it felt heavier worn than when I initially took it out the bag. To fully puff out the skirt, I would say you need a decent petticoat.

This skirt has a front ruffle which I have tried my best to photograph. It is prettier in person. The lace was better than I was expecting and I love the layering. I was a little worried the material would be shiny because this skirt has a matching dress which is shiny. But the skirt is not shiny and I am very happy about that. There were a few small loose threads but nothing major.

However, I do dislike the waist ties and the detachable bow. They have an odd texture to them. I also didn't realise they had polka dots on them. I probably wont be using the ties.

I also got blouse L382 in black. I chose the size above my usual size because I have wide shoulders for somebody of my height and size. It was a good thing I did because although I would have fitted the next smallest size, I found the fit on this size to be comfortable. The lace is pretty and I really like the rose shaped buttons on the front and on the sleeves. My main concern is that the blouse feels a bit thin and feels a little fragile. I will be washing this by hand as I don't want to risk ruining it in the washing machine.

This is the yoke part on the front. Personally, I would happily get rid of the bows but I really do like the design on this blouse. I think Bodyline's blouses have improved recently.

And that was all I got this time. I was hoping to get some boots I wanted too but they were not included in the sale. I think that given the higher prices, the sale was nowhere near as good this year. I have noticed that I don't make as many Bodyline orders as I used to but I still like to buy from Bodyline from time to time and I would still recommend them.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Alice's Secret Key by BABY

Today I will be having a quick look at the Baby series called Alice's Secret Key. This series is fairly small with 2 dresses, a skirt, a blouse, socks and a headbow.

First up is this JSK. The huge waist bow is the main attention grabber with this dress. The bow is made from polka dot patterned material and it has got a lot of shape to it. Usually I would find bows this size too big but considering the small amount of detail on the rest of the dress, the waist bow helps to make the design more interesting. The bodice is a nice shape but the material looks a little loose and baggy in places. The neckline is decorated with pretty ribbon which has a check pattern on it. Some would say the check and polka dot patterns clash but I think it works. The ribbon line is decorated with 2 small bows and a bigger bow on one side. The bigger bow is well-placed. The 2 small bows I could take or leave. The lace around the neckline and along the straps is small and not overdone. The back part has shirring covered by a ribbon corset. The polka dot material running around the waist breaks suddenly when it reaches the shirring. It draws the eye to the shirring and also emphasises how much the shirring is being stretched on the wearer. So it might make people appear bigger than they are. The skirt part looks a decent length but the shape is a little flat. The only real detail is the polka dot ruffle along the bottom hem. I sort of feel there is a conflict between the not-so sweet print and the cute looking waist bow. if you dislike the waist bow this could cause problems because it is a huge part of the dress design.

This is the other JSK. Baby have decided to name this the Brilliant JSK (I will let you decide how accurate that name is). The overall shape of the bodice is pretty but there appears to be baggy material on this dress too. The neckline is a good shape and the straps are wide, so they will provide ample support. This dress has a lot of bows. The waist bow is a cute shape. The bow which features the print is also a good shape and looks sturdy. There are another 2 ribbon bows at the base of one strap. When all of the bows are worn together, it looks a little crowded but some of the bows are detachable so it is easier to find a balance to suit you. I think if I were to choose, I would detach the bow with the print on it and leave the other 3 bows in place. One of the interesting things about this dress is that most of it is lined with gold as well as thin lace. It is a pretty idea to include the gold but I am not a fan! I don't think it works well with the colours chosen. On the back, this dress also has a panel of shirring hidden by a ribbon corset. Sadly, the edges of the shirring are lined with gold which like the other dress, only seems to emphasise how big the wearer is. The skirt part on this dress also has a classic shape to it. The bottom hem is finished with more of the gold edging.

Here is one of the many print close-ups. There are lots of different things going on in this print and I have only shown a part of it. It is available in brown, pink, sax and black. The style of the art definitely reminds me of the old Alice in Wonderland illustrations. I like the chess pieces and the rabbit is cute. I also like how the horizontal lines are made up of playing cards. However, I can't help but feel that this print is very similar to a lot of other Alice inspired prints that Baby and Alice and the Pirates have done.

Overall, I am very unsure about this series. I would probably choose the skirt over either of the dresses. The designs feel a little unbalanced in places. Whilst the print is beautiful, I don't find it that exciting. Colour-wise, I think the brown and the pink colours work the best. I probably wouldn't buy anything from this series because it doesn't strike me as being that special. When you consider how much Alice inspired lolita there is out there, this series makes me think that Baby are trying too play it safe.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Bodyline- Half Price Sale?

Bodyline fans will be pleased to hear that Mr Yan's birthday 50% off sale has just started. It was on the Japanese website yesterday and has literally just started on the international website.

BUT here is the catch... I was on the Bodyline website yesterday and earlier today before the sale started. A majority of the items have NOT been reduced by 50% like Bodyline are claiming. In fact, some of the prices have fallen by only a small amount. Also, not everything is included in the sale. The sock prices have not dipped and a lot of the wigs etc are the same price too. Don't be fooled by the 50% off banner.

I just placed a mini order (it was a lot quicker than last year but I was on the website at the exact moment the sale started so I got there before the rush). Now before anybody mentions the post I made about money last week, you will be pleased to hear that I only ordered 2 items from the Need side of my Want Vs. Need list! I am still intending to save all my spare money to treat myself at the end of the year as planned. I just thought I should try and get a bargain.

Sadly, the prices are nowhere near as good as some people may be expecting.
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