Ideologically I’m neither in favour nor against monarchy. However, aesthetically royalty, especially from various periods of European history, is a huge source of inspiration.
25 Apr 2017
Initially I wasn’t going to go. This meet was organised kind of as a spur of the moment thing (well, as much as 2 weeks’ notice can be spur of the moment) and it was shortly after my return from Belgium, so I anticipated myself to be tired and in need of rest. Plus I wasn’t optimistic that the weather would hold. And, as usual, I’m so glad that I went!
|| Innocent World Revival Sweet Teddybear JSK ||
Innocent World 2017 LP blouse | Cutie Creator headbow |
Sosic Shop heels | offbrand jewellery, tights and cardigan |
For the sake of comfort I went for a very simple coord. In true spirit of #lolitaproblems, none of my sax items match and I didn’t want to do red and blue again (as much as I love red and blue), so decided to white and brown. Innocent World does Sweet-Classic vibes like no-one else and I’m totally into this, especially with this dress, so even though the coord is pretty basic it works so well. I would’ve liked to have maybe a brown ring or white x brown OTKs, but even without those I felt appropriately Lolita.
The picnic turned out so much better than I expected! For one, the weather was really nice, warm with sunny spells – and during those sunny spells many of us took off our jackets and cardigans, it was genuinely that warm. But also, Leeds comm turned out to be expertly organised. We were due to leave the train station at 1pm – at precisely 12:59:57 the last member of our party arrived and we all departed at 1pm sharp. If you don’t understand why this is so shocking in Lolita communities, then you must be very new. And then not only did everyone bring something delicious to eat, we had a good balance between savouries and sweets and enough responsible people to think about the boring basics: cups, plates, cutlery, napkin, even a bin bag. Well done, Leeds, you have nailed that picnic thing.
|Our spread (plus my foot spoiling the photo).|
Photo by Kirsty.
The park we were in was right in the city centre, maybe 5mins walk from the train station (if you walked leisurely), yet it was pleasantly empty, which meant that we didn’t have to fight for any kind of spot to claim and were generally undisturbed. Apart from a wedding party, which took over the opposite end to take some photos, one random guy with his girlfriend who thought he was being swag and one man with a pugalier dog to the delight of most of our party, there was nobody there. This in turned allowed us to really enjoy the afternoon, chat amongst ourselves, browse through the magazines the host brought (mainly some English GLB’s, but also a few other things like Eternita or the Tea Party Club annual), play charades, take photos and, of course, eat copious amounts of food. We all agreed that food meets are smashing and food should be incorporated into as many meets as possible in an official form (leading the host of the next meet to change her mind and declare next meet ‘dumplings and berets’ rather than just berets). And if the weather holds, I’m sure we’ll have more spur of the moment picnic meets as more bank holidays and summer breaks approach.
At the end three of us broke away from the definitely-returning-home group to make a quick stop at Lush – mainly because every time I’m in Leeds I go to Lush, it works out cheaper for me than buy Lush things online. To my despair I learnt that one of my favourite products, hair oil called Shine So Bright (ah, that name always reminds of of Baby, the Stars Shine Bright) is discontinued, so on top of some compulsory bath bombs I ended up with a pot of R&B (to take care of my ends and keep them from splitting) and a very generous sample of Jasmine & Henna Fluff Eaze Hai, which is a pre-shampoo conditioning treatment promising to strengthen your hair and add shine. I tried it on that same day and while it was odd to put it on before washing my hair, but I think it’s done something. Based on the instructions, I probably didn’t put enough, but I was still wearing some of my Lolita and didn’t want the product to end up on my clothes, so I’ll try again next weekend for some extra pampering. I also returned home to my Charlotte Tilbury order having arrived, so extra luxury for me. I was a little hesitant about buying a lipstick from them since it was on the pricier side (still not the most expensive lipstick I bought), but having seen how much care went into preparing my order, including three complimentary samples, two of which I could’ve chosen myself, I’m incredibly impressed. Which means that I’ll probably buy from them again.
|Look at the size of that sample - it's almost a full 100g pot!|
|Such luxury, much treating myself!|
Have you been lucky with the weather recently? Did it result in a similar outdoor loveliness, either with your comm or not? Do you like picnic meets? I used to be sort of meh about them, but this one definitely changed my mind!
21 Apr 2017
I have returned from my trip to Belgium, half refreshed and half tired (a lot of sightseeing and a lot of catching up with long-unseen friends don’t make for a lot of sleep), and I’m all ready to resume business as usual. Despite taking only a small suitcase for a 12 day trip, I manage to pack two Lolita dresses and my Classical Puppets petticoat – packing skills acquired as a student came incredibly useful here, but they did require a little bit of magic as well.
However, although I had enough things to wear a few different outfits with what I brought, I only ended up wearing Lolita twice: on date night with my boyfriend and then on a visit to the Royal Gardens in Brussels. I had packed for a slightly warmer weather, but I’m still happy that I managed to wear both dresses out.
|I hope the mirror selfie isn't too poor.|
| BtSSB Sugar Bouquet Shirring Princess JSK | IW bolero |
IW Rose and Diamond OTKs | Bodyline tea parties | offbrand
jewellery and hair accessories |
Our date night involved going out for a curry, so I pounced at the opportunity to wear something fully shirred and elegant. And it indeed turned out to be the perfect choice as I felt dressed up enough for a date, yet could have all the curry I wanted (still not managed to finish it, but I enjoyed it all the same). A pair of heels would’ve looked so much better with this outfit, but having packed all my stuff I only had enough room for one pair of shoes so opted for these as ones that go with both dresses. I love how many detachable parts are there on Shirring Princess, the dress almost never looks the same. Next time I’ll definitely do something a bit more well-rounded and suitably Classic.
|| AP Diner Doll JSK | AP Creamy Shirring blouse | Metamorphose Heart|
Ladder Lace OTKs | Bodyline tea parties | BtSSB ribbon combs (borrowed) |
Peacockalorum wrist cuffs | After Midnight doughnut brooch | offbrand jewellery |
Now, you may wonder why I wouldn’t wear Shirring Princess again, since the Sugar Bouquet print would fit the theme of visiting the Royal Gardens. The answer is that I needed some fresh shot in Angelic Pretty to submit with my modelling application for DMC and out of all AP that I own Diner Doll felt the most wearable in a slightly more casual way. With the friend whom I was visiting, who also wears Lolita, we actually came up with two different versions of this coord before deciding on this, the third one, which mixed elements of the other two. As I didn’t bring my matching cardigan, I wore my leather jacket over this most of the time when not being photographed and discovered that it actually kind of goes (it’s a mocha/light brown biker-style jacket, which fit both the 1950’s diner aesthetic and, surprisingly, the colours) and I’d love to try something more in that direction at some point.
After the gardens, having walked so much throughout my entire stay, we deemed that cake not only was appropriate, but necessary and turned to TripAdvisor for some suggestions. As that was Easter Monday most places were closed, significantly narrowing our search. Mostly at random we picked this place in Etterbeek, just outside Brussels, which is called Au Vatel and we were totally stunned with how utterly divine their cakes were! And this was number 18 on the list of best bakeries/patisseries in Brussels too (probably because it’s not actually in Brussels, so fewer people would’ve reviewed it). If you’re in the vicinity I wholeheartedly recommend this place – the cake pictured here totally blew my head off, I melted, died in a rich chocolate-y nirvana and never wanted to return to any kind of reality.
I won’t go into detailed accounts of my trip to Belgium, I’ve done so much and this blog is intended to be about Lolita fashion. Overall our focus seemed to have been fashion (we visited three separate fashion exhibitions and would’ve been to a fourth similar one had we not missed the opening hours), food (duh, waffles, chocolate and fries!), strolling around the cities and finding all kinds of weird and wonderful things in each of them (we’ve been to Ghent, Antwerp, Bruges, Hasselt, Brussels and very, very briefly to Namur and each was charming and amazing in its own way) and reminiscing about Japan (which is where we met on an exchange programme). I honestly can’t pick a favourite place of these, I’ve seen too little of the French-speaking part of Belgium than I would’ve liked and as I said every city charmed me with something different, though as a total city rat craving city life and luxuries I could imagine myself living in Antwerp – and then travelling around to revisit all the other lovely places!
And there it is – very brief outline of what I’ve been up to this past week, where I’m so happy I’ve managed to squeeze Lolita in. Usual blogging will resume (this trip gave me quite a bit of inspiration, for general posts as well as for getting stuck with some crafting) and I’ll speak to you soon!
11 Apr 2017
Yes, this should have been a video. However, as you’re reading this, I’m on my way to Belgium, visiting a long unseen friend there and having some Lolita fun. And when this arrived I was too impatient and wouldn’t have had the time to edit so… Back to the good ol’ fashioned text and picture review it is!
7 Apr 2017
Some fashions are ok, even promote chaotic mish-mash and putting together things that clash. Lolita isn’t one of them – we strive for perfection and for the whole outfit to flow together, from the smallest to the largest piece. It’s a skill, putting together things that are so cohesive that individual items blend together to form one whole coord, one that we learn and polish all of our Lolita lives.