søndag den 28. september 2014

LBC: Your Usual Lolita Make Up

Goodmorning my lovely ones! I'm sorry about my quietness as of late. I promise to be back soon. I've had a very busy time, with my mom getting married, LARP'ing and P&P roleplay nights, meet-ups galore, and getting back to my studies. This month has been the longest month ever, but hey, October is upon us, which means Halloween, and plenty of new Lolita themes to talk about!
But first: A belated Lolita Blog Carnival post.

This week's theme is one I went back and forth about whether or not I should participate in. My camera sucks, and it probably is gonna suck for a while still, until I get the cash moneys to buy a new one. But then I thought "Well, why not? It's fun! Let me show the world my usual Lolita make up!"

There you go! Me sans make up, before the transformation. Are you guys the "put clothes on first" or "put clothes on after make up" types? I tend to be the first, because I'm kind of paranoid about getting make up on my dress while pulling it over my head.

Here you've got my make up arsenal! 
(I love my pretty pink "Doctor's make up kit" of brushes. They were about 5 dollars on ebay, and are soft like baby kittens.) 

Of course I always put on my circle lenses first (I use "Barbie Girl" circle lenses from Jihoshop), and put on some nice smelling moisturizer. Then I start out with concealer, on my problem spots. I swear by Rimmel London's "Hide the Blemish" concealer. It's easy to use, gives good coverage and also doubles as my highlighter. For foundation I usually use Maybelline's liquid "Dream satin" foundation. I find that it's simply very easy to manage, and blends in with my skin quickly. I finish the "canvas layer" of my make up with the powder from Maybelline's "Dream" series too, which I put on using the big brush. Using a brush instead of the sponge gives a nicer, lighter coverage, I find.

A closer look at the next important stuff. The blush is one I bought in Wallmart back when I was in the US. I don't remember the brand, but there's a "CG" on the lid. It's a nice, kind of peachy pink. I use plenty, all the way from behind my eye along the bottom of my cheekbone. After that, I use 5 different shades of pink for my eye. I start out with a shimmery layer of light pink all over my eyelid (the one you see in the Rimmel London box), move on to a slightly darker shade of pink all over my double eyelid, and gradually shade towards the outer corner of my eye with the dark one in the Rimmel box. Then I use the two shades of brown in my "Body Shop" eyeshadow box at the outer corner of my upper and lower eyelid, blend, and finish up with a light shade of pink shimmer below and across my entire eyelid once more. I find that using a bit of pink shimmer below my eye gives a dreamy effect. In the end, I use the white eyeshadow on my "Rimmel" palette or a more stark white I've got, to highlight the inner corner of my eye, and along a third of my lower lash line.

That's when I move on to my falsies. This is my (almost entirely used up) arsenal of extremely false-looking false eyelashes. They're very nice quality, and also a cheap ebay find. They cost about a dollar, but are very sturdy and lovely. I find that most pairs I can use two or three times, (if I have the patience to clean them). They're my go-to lashes.
I finish up with eyeliner, a pretty bubblegum pink lipstick by "Coolcos", and a coat or two of Rimmel's "Scandaleyes" mascara. I'm looking for a better choice of mascara, though. One that gives more volume and seperates the lashes. What would you recommend?

 And this is the finished look! I'm very fond of it, myself. It really has become my "usual" Lolita make up, as it matches most of my outfits. If you want a better picture, I used the same make up in my photoshoot this summer.

Want more make up inspiration? Check out the posts below!

torsdag den 18. september 2014

LBC: 3 Things You'd Tell Your Young Lolita Self

Me ca. 2011, about a year into my Lolita life. 
I love when the Lolita Blog Carnival topics bring up a sense of nostalgia or deeper reflection over the fashion. You can say a lot about how Lolita is just a pretty fashion, but it takes effort, and whether we like it and recognize it or not, there is probably deeper reasons about why we started dressing the way we do. I know that "3 Things You'd Tell Your Young Lolita Self" doesn't necessarily have to be 'deep and mentor-like advice about the Lolita Force', but I can't help it: Stuff like this just hits me in the philosophical spot. Bear with me.
Here are the 3 things I'd tell my young Lolita self if I had a time machine, from the deep stuff to the basics that would just have made me look a billion times better.

1. Do not buy replicas!
Granted, there are one or two replicas I might actually, at some point, in the far future, get to tailoring to fit my current body type, but wow, do I have a closet of replicas now that I just do not wear anymore! Some of them have moved on, but had I just dealt with it, made more of an effort with my excersize earlier on to lose some weight, or just bought some pieces with full back shirring, I would've had a much bigger closet of beautiful, better quality, better fitting and much loved pieces now. I picked the easy way out, and I thought I had some pretty good excuses: Replicas can go in the washing machine, and I'm a tall girl, and nothing is gonna change that. Many brand pieces are gonna be high waisted on me, but that's OK! It looks cute! And underskirts are actually a thing if the length starts bothering me at some point!I missed out on a lot of really cute releases because of this, that cost hundreds of dollars more on the secondhand market today.

2. Experiment more with make up and hair!
Lolita was the beginning of my journey towards becoming a girly-girl. Before Lolita, I just threw on whatever and headed out the door. I did start experimenting with make up when I started Lolita, but I never went out of my way and did something big and eye catching. A bit of eyeshadow, mascara and powder, a headbow on my head and out the door. Today I could've been much more of a "kawaii make up guru-chan" (never typing that out again) than I am, and I would have had some much more flattering photos to look back on!

3. Keep going strong! Lolita is gonna be with you for a long time!
I don't really have a number 3, so this is just gonna be words of encouragement. I actually did pretty well, as boring as that sounds. My ita phase was more of a learning process than me obsessing over lacemonsters, and I had long since shed my cat ears. Looking back, I know what worked for me, and that's what I share with every new Lolita that is confused about where to start when they first drop in on the Lolita Fashion Mentoring group on Facebook, or EGL. Research, research and more research, and trial and error. Those are the only things that moves you forward. I was aware that you need to crawl before you can walk, and walk before you put on false eyelashes, wigs and bunny ears and try to rock it. Start out small, figure out what works for you, and what makes a good Lolita coordinate. If you're passionate about something, take your time to learn. You don't become an expert over night. 
Time and time again, I doubted if Lolita was actually for me. I was just finding my feet. I looked up Steampunk and Goth and other fashions, but Lolita stuck with me, and I returned to my favorite blogs and EGL to read some more. I was a sponge back then, and I still am. 

Lolita is evolving, and so are we, as it's wearers. 
I'm wondering what 3 points of advice I'd give myself today, if I look back in a 5 years time?
(Wow, that became very deep, very fast!)

What 3 pieces of advice would you want to give your young Lolita self, if you could? 
Also, if you're new to Lolita and want some pointers, I'm open to questions this week!

Check out the blogs below if you want more Lolita nostalgia.

fredag den 12. september 2014

BREAKING: Novala Takemoto's First Solo Collection, Lecture and Tickets to the Fashion Show!

Hello everyone! This just in!
I was contacted by the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and asked to please give some exposure to some really exciting news! Novala Takemoto's first solo fashion collection, appropriately named "Novalar's", will be debuting at the SGMS: Mechademia Conference, and you can buy tickets to this incredible event!

Here's a little of the information I was given about what you can expect:

On September 26, Novala Takemoto will be giving a public lecture on the development of Lolita Fashion at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This event will take place at 7:00pm.

On September 27, during SGMS: Mechademia Conference's annual fashion show, Full Fashion Panic, Novala Takemoto will debut the "Novalar's" collection, which was in the message I received described as the "next generation of Lolita". Oh, and Novala will be playing a piece of Nana Kitade's music on the guitar during the runway show! (How cool is that!?)

Tickets can be purchased in advance here and are $15 per person, or at the door at the day of the event for $20. This ticket covers both of the events. 

Some information for those of you who're unfamiliar with Novala Takemoto's work and his influence on the Lolita community:

Novala Takemoto is a musician and author who has written many influential essays on Lolita fashion, which made him practically the patron saint of the Lifestyle Lolita. His essays are published online, and can be found here, translated into english. And of course he wrote Kamikaze Girls, a novel that was turned into the movie that continues to be THE defining piece of media of the Lolita world, and which, like his essays, continues to be an inspiration for any Lifestyle Lolita (and a good laugh for the rest of us, who can nod in recognition as Momoko continues to struggle to stay "maidenly" )
I can only say: Check it all out!
The essays and the movie were a personal source of empowerment for me when I first got into Lolita, and I return to all of it time and time again, both in nostalgia, but also because both his essays and the story of Momoko and the yanki Ichiko continues to charm me. It's genuinely beautiful.

His most recent work includes the novel, "Emily", which could turn out to be the next "Kamikaze Girls". I haven't had the chance to read it myself, yet, but of course I'll have to! Especially since it's done in collaboration with Kira Imai, the great Lolita artist, who did the cover art!

He's also coorporated with punk Lolita icon Nana Kitade to form "Nananova", a punk/electric duo, in which Novala Takemoto plays the guitar and ms. Kitade is chanting and DJ'ing. You can hear an example of their magic right here!

Novala has also done plenty of work which has gotten him featured in both the english and japanese Gothic Lolita Bibles wearing his trademark androgynous clothing style, and he's collaborated with Baby, The Stars Shine Bright on the clothing line titled "Pour Lolita".

The "Novalar's" line will, however, be his first solo clothing line, and I'm so sad that I cannot be there, but I hope that some of my american readers can! Oh, and please post some pictures of the event below! I'd love to know that you got the chance to go (and I'm so very curious!)

So, will any of you guys be going? Hurry and get your tickets!

(A heartfelt thank you to Frenchy Lunning of the Minneapolis College of Art and Design for contacting me and letting me bring these exciting news!)

LBC: My Most Prized Lolita Piece

This week's Lolita Blog Carnival topic has us choosing between our children.
Haha, just joking! But kind of not, anyway. As difficult as it is, we have been asked to choose between our pieces to select our most prized Lolita piece. I suppose there are a couple of different ways you could read the word "prized", but I thought it over and decided that the way to go about this would be imagining which piece I'd be most sad to see ruined if there was a flood in my house while I were gone for something.. And I was surprised to find that it turned out to be a bit of a tie between one very expected, and one very unexpected piece.

(Excuse the boring lighting in the picture. I couldn't get access to my photo editing tools for some reason)

I was torn between the most beautiful piece I own, which is my BtSSB "Memory of my first Soiree" and the simple BtSSB Babydoll JSK. I was certain It'd break me the most to see my Soiree dress go, but well, I just adore the Babydoll JSK too, apparently. 

The soft lace and pretty detailing on the JSK makes me so happy every time I look at it, and I feel just adorable wearing it. And that's kind of the point, isn't it? It's how you feel wearing it, not the dress itself. That's probably also why my first Lolita skirt is not one of the two. While it was the first skirt I got, it didn't make me feel anything in particular as it was just an impulse purchase, back when I didn't know anything and just "Wanted something Lolita right now!"

My Soiree JSK is pretty enough that I almost don't think I'm gonna feel half as beautiful in my wedding dress when that day comes.
I suppose I equally enjoy feeling adorable and beautiful.

What piece is your most prized Lolita piece? Please leave a link or something in the comments so I can check it out! I'm madly curious!

Also, if you'd like to read about some other much loved Lolita dresses, check out the other posts below!

tirsdag den 2. september 2014

Hunting with Cash, for Beauty and Dreams

Finding a title for this post was very difficult. Almost as difficult as adequately describing that hardcore mission that is "Lolita Shopping" on the internet. I can only speak for the internet, as I've yet to actually try going for a shopping spree in a real Lolita shop, and I imagine that the experiences are of course entirely different. In real life, you have the posibility of falling in love with a piece because of how it looks at you when you're trying it on. On the internet, you have to use your imagination.
This post will be about a Lolita-related epiphany I had as late as yesterday.

Recently I received a rather neat paycheck, which I decided was big enough for me to spoil myself by purchasing a Lolita dress. The secondhand market is huge, and I knew that I would be able to hunt down at least one of the dresses I've been pilling up on my wishlist, or as I like to call it, "the prediction of my future wardrobe". And true enough, stalking Mbok, Yahoo JP, the egl-comm-sales and Facebook groups brought me across multiple dresses from my wishlist, from Day Dream Carnival, to the Cameo Print JSK, the Secret Between Alice and the Clocktower.. Even Cinderella Jewelry, which I've been wanting in that specific colorway for half a decade!

However, I was surprised to find myself in doubt. None of the dresses that I've been pining for in years and years really made me want to press "Buy". I knew I should want them (a silly thought, because who're really telling me I have to?) but I didn't feel any real excitement or glee at the prospect of owning and wearing these pieces. I scrutinized the exquisite details, the lush fabrics, the flattering designs, and even if I really, truly appreciated it all, I felt nothing. And I was so confused. 
I have a tendency towards being a bit of a Scrooge, but it's not like I didn't have the money, or was falling out of love with Lolita all together. I just wasn't passionately in love.

I browsed the internet a little more, and went back and forth between the auctions and sales posts I had bookmarked with each of the dresses I had found that were also on my wishlist, or knew dresses I found that I kind of liked. However, none of them spoke to me, even if I stared at them for long, long period of time.

And suddenly, late at night, as I was digging my way through Mbok after a long day of work and studies, I felt a sudden pang in my chest, and I was in love. I was in love with a dress that I'd never thought I was ever gonna like.

I had seen the dress with the silly name "Fall in Love with the Sweet Magic of Scent" for sale before, multiple times. I'd looked it over time and time again on Closet Child's website, and every time I'd shrugged and closed the tab again. But I was completely and utterly lost, all of a sudden. This was it. The ivory colorway just displayed the details of the print so perfectly well. It complimented the delicate pastels of the print. The lace and gold details were a sprinkle of magic and richness to an otherwise simple garment.
I could see myself wearing this thing, twirling around my bedroom, shimmering and glittering like a princess! 

And suddenly it struck me, that this was what Lolita is all about. This is what one is supposed to feel when choosing a dream dress, in my opinion. An appreciation of beauty that makes you smile, makes your heart beat a little quicker, and before everything else, a piece that you can see yourself wearing and feeling beautiful in.

 The dress in itself is nothing special, in that it's not particularly rare or expensive.
It's a bit like when I purchased my "Alice's Doll House" piece. For some reasons, I see these dresses for sale all the time, except I'd only ever seen "Magic of Scent" in the blue and pink colorways. The other dresses on my wishlist are beautiful, lush and perfect in design and detail, and that's why I keep them there. I know I'd enjoy them, but they're not my dream pieces. My dream dresses seem pop up all of a sudden when surfing the internet. 
They grab a hold of me when I least expect it, and won't let me go. 
They fill me with that same passion that I felt when I found the first dream dress that secured my long lasting love for Lolita life.

What's my point?
Happiness in Lolita is not necessarily about saving up and hunting down a rare and expensive Lolita piece. That feeling is not something that you can bring about by sheer force of will. 
To some Lolitas it can, and will, come jumping out of nowhere in even the smallest of packages. 

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