Category Archives: shopping

Trend Alert: Enamel Pin Collections

enamelpins

1: @shop.luella of @pinksamurai’s heart collection; 2: @innaboxdesign; 3: Cherished Cliche; 4: @pinship

Showing off your cult fandoms and kawaii style has never been easier or more wearable with this latest Insta-popular trend: enamel pins. Small enough to fit on any jacket or bag, and designed by kawaii nerds for kawaii nerds, there is most definitely at least one pin that will tickle your fancy.

While some people only have one or two, the most popular trend is to amass a collection – hopefully tagging each individual maker so everyone can grab one of their favorites! The hunt is part of the fun: each one is uniquely designed by small artists, and there is no one-stop-shop for all your enamel pin needs. I picked up my first pin at Planet Cute in Brooklyn – pink text that reads simply ‘kawaii’. You can scour the Instagram hashtags for ‘#enamelpins’ or ‘#pingame’ to find ones you like, or search enamel pins on Etsy. Use them to show off your favorite movie or TV show (check out Barb here from Stranger Things… snap her up here, she’s limited edition!) or just, y’know, cats dressed as donuts and macarons. And best of all, they’re pretty affordable, so feel free to start an enamel-pin harem without breaking the piggy. Here’s nine more of our favorites!

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L to R – 1: Pink Crystal Cluster; 2: Birth Control; 3: You Must Be a Mermaid; 4: Bye Felicia; 5: Team Mystic (best team sorry everyone! ;) But they do make Valor and Instinct as well); 6: Candy Unicorn; 7: Clever Girl Jurassic Park; 8: Polly Pocket; 9: Kawaii Babe

Do you have a pin collection already, or a favorite pin shop? Are you designing enamel goodies into the wee hours of the night? Leave us a comment!

Review: Devil Inspired’s Strawberry Kitchen

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Usually I’m not big on the usual summer fruit prints that come out nearly every May and June. We’ve all seen the strawberries, cream and cherries before, punctuated with the occasional daisy or lemon slice. They all seem the same to me, and even the names blend together: Strawberry Whip, Milky Berry, and all the others. But this year I can’t get enough. Maybe it’s the country-ish way they highlight the warmth and whimsy of the season, or maybe I’m feeling more partial to cream now that I’m no longer in an all-out war with dairy.

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Lolita Miranda Priestly: a truly fearsome face.

When I saw Infanta’s Strawberry Kitchen jumperskirt from their online carrier Devil Inspired, I decided to give fruits a go this season. I was pleasantly surprised – the original print has a very Baby the Stars Shine Bright feel, as does the wide heart-embellished lace along the neckline and hem. The print itself features the obvious strawberries, jars of jam and twining ribbons. I decided to take this dress out for a spin at a local ice cream shop.

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I paired this dress with a lightweight pink chiffon blouse (because trust me, the heat dome of New England is no joke) along with a pink ribbon choker from Peiliee and a quilted Betsey Johnson purse. Oh, and cherry chip bordeaux makes for the best photoshoot prop!

Etsy Spotlight: Deedee’s Adorable Smartphone Cases

headermelodycaseDecoden, the art of decorating cellphone cases (decorate + denwa, the word for phone, gives us the portmanteau word ‘decoden’) has grown and evolved since a few years ago. Clam shell style phones have given way to the flat glass of smart phones, and seen its share of trends from slim and streamlined to bulky status symbols. While I prefer a slim and sturdy style of phone case for every day use – currently I favor a hard back Angelic Pretty case with a Daydream Carnival motif! – there are some decoden that I’d make an exception for. The phone case started out as functional, but it’s now a full-fledged fashion accessory.

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This Etsy shop, Deedeegoods, is kawaii on a whole other level. Update from basic to alpha with these cases – perfect for showing off at conventions or big meetups. Full diorama scenes and sculptures decorate your cell in a way reminiscent of the scenes displayed in Marie Antoinette’s hair! Choose from Hello Kitty, My Melody, or any other custom character of your choice – she makes all of her designs by hand in Malaysia.

If you’re finding these creations a little pricey, she also makes custom phone charms for a more affordable price. Cookies and ice cream are paired with soft puffs of fur and dangling crystals.

I’d love to snap up one of these masterpieces to dress up my phone for special events, or add one of her dust plug charms to a simpler case for every day princess style. Who’s your favorite character for decoden and phone accessories? Do you think you could coordinate one of these extravagant designs?

 

Yuu Kimura’s New Fashion Label Opens to Overseas

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Yuu Kimura, the baby-faced street fashion and fairy-kei Kawaii Ambassador, announced on her Facebook page the launch of her new fashion label KOKOkim. In the same vein as other pastel fairy-kei and street fashion styles as CANDY STRIPPER and Nile Perch, she’s created soft pastel gingham onepieces, straight-silhouetted and baby-doll cut dresses, tights and jackets. She states on her fanpage, “The concept of KOKOkim is MOEHARA”, which means moe (pronounced mo-eh, meaning an idealized young girl) and Harajuku, the cradle of modern Japanese street style, put together. Previously the label was only featured as collaboration with GLAD NEWS, but now announces its standalone brand. In an interview for Harajuku Press Online, Kimura said: “We want to dress lovely clothes coming out to the world of animated cartoon well not costume play only for special day smartly every day!”

Even more exciting for us pastel fashion enthusiasts overseas, this brand’s webshop is sponsored by the global service of Rakuten and bears a large Foreigner Buyers Welcome sticker! Prices are in Japanese Yen and roughly equivalent with Putumayo pricing. The average dress costs between 11,000 to 15,000 yen ($100 – $150 USD).

Shop here!

Photos: KOKOkim with the exception of AsianBeat‘s photograph

Why We Love Wanelo

There is a new social media scheme out for young girls of marketable age – forget Polyvore or Pinterest, I’m newly addicted to Wanelo!

Wanelo is a website/app that stands for Want/Need/Love, and it’s a lot like Pinterest or Tumblr, where you can collect lots of cute images of things you love. The difference is that you can click on these images and it will take you exactly to where you can buy them. No more messaging random Tumblr users who post cute t-shirts to just be sent to a dead WeHeartIt link. With Wanelo, I click any cute product and I get sent to the website I can buy it, as well as how much it is and if I want to save it to my own “Epic Wishlist”. Hang on to your wallets, girls.

Here’s a sample of my Wanelo gallery – yeah, I would happily purchase all of these pretties. Man, I gotta get a real job.

I haven’t gone on too big a spending spree yet, but already it’s been a great platform for those sweet offbrand filler items. Pastel floral backpacks, pink oxfords, angel-wing iPhone cases? I’ve collected them all on my Epic Wishlist section of the app. I’ve found all kinds of random fashion, makeup, decor, and tech products I otherwise wouldn’t have known existed. Finding a simple summer dress to a bridal shower this spring? Easy. Pastel sneakers? Done.

(And to whom it may concern… my birthday is in June, people. I’ve made it easy to appease the beast this year. Just check the site.)

You can find my Wanelo profile here – if you decide to join up, add me! I’m always looking for new cute-lovin’-shoppers to follow!

 

Here Come The Cats in Black

While it seems like any kind of cat is making a fashion statement recently on everything from BB cream to t-shirts, since we just hit October (can you smell the pumpkin lattes already?!) I wanted to focus specifically on black cats for this fashion collage. (Backstory: also in honor of the possibly stray black cat who keeps looking in my back window at my pom with a ‘What the fluff is that?!’ expression on its face. …Let me lure you into my house already!)

Whether you wear this cute black cat frock dressed down for a casual creepy cute look, dressed up for a Halloween cocktail party, or with a lace cat mask and a sequin moon on your forehead as classy Luna Halloween costume, this dress is perfect for October.

My other favorite products in this collage? Black cat mascara. Cats’ eye makeup with actual tiny black cats for your lashes? Yes please. Korean brand Tony Moly makes ‘Cat Winks’ mascara and matching pink lipstick. For a more kittenish look, don’t forget those big-eyed kitten tattoo tights!

P.S. – This is the answer to the question: ‘But what will I wear with my pearl cat ears?’

Chocolate & Biscuits: Sweets Deco Spotlight

I love deco, but I’m usually more of a crystal-and-pearl girl than the cabochon-and-cream bulky style of sweets deco. It seems like everyone is whipping out their caulk gun and sticking some plastic cookies onto their phone cases these days. But Silverleica‘s Etsy shop completely changed how I think about sweets deco! How about deco that really looks like pastries, cookies and French toast?

I’m feeling very inspired by Angelic Pretty’s new gingerbread house print, Sweet Cream House – and this would be the perfect sweets style to decorate your purse, cellphone, or coordinate – matching jewelry! These necklaces and cellphone charms look like real gingersnaps and chocolate syrup. All of the crystals are Swarovski-Crystallized as well – glass, not plastic! – for great sparkle.

How cool is that Blackberry case on the lower right? The entire case is actually a sweet – it looks a bit like a sandwich – and she added chocolate sauce to give it the look of a giant eclair.

Most of her work is done on commission, but she’s selling some cases and jewelry (doesn’t it remind you of sweets deco couture Japanese brand Q-Pot?) for really reasonable prices in her shop. If you want a few cute pieces and don’t want to break the bank, here are my four favorite under $20!

Macaron & Lace Cellphone Charm: $11 | Crown Cookie Necklace: $11 | Antique Chocolate Bar Rings: $9.50 | Merci Chocolat Eiffel Tower Necklace: $10

Lolita Blog Carnival: $100 Coordinate Challenge

The challenge: one lolita coordinate, totally purchasable, one-hundred-per-cent for sale, any style of your choice – but your total must come to $100 or less! For lolita fashion lovers, it’s a pretty tight budget. These opulent dresses, hairstyles, and handbags on a shoestring? Is that even possible? With a little innovation and creativity, it definitely is.

Buy: Infanta Dolly House OP | Buy: Sheer Dot Tights | Buy: Pink Bow Heels

 The dress. Because I wanted to get the most bang for my buck, I chose a oncepiece – this way you don’t need to purchase a blouse. Qutieland has the dress, an original print from Chinese dressmaker Infanta, for $95+ – but buying it direct from the website saves you $30 in price hikes. I love this dress, which is available as a onepiece or jumperskirt, in buttercream yellow, pistachio mint, or pink cherry. It’s very much a take-off of Angelic Pretty’s Dreamy Dollhouse without being an exact replica.

The tights. I wanted something more versatile and delicate than patterned socks, so I chose these sheer white dot tights. Not only do they look great with anything, they only cost $3 on eBay. Where is the god of your $40 socks now?!

The shoes. I still wanted to go with a more delicate lolita coordinate, and I didn’t want to shell out $60 for Bodyline shoes, the usual cheapest option for lolita footwear. Surfing yesstyle.com, an Asian fashion website (yes, they ship overseas!) found these pretty little pink bow-adorned wedge heels for only $33.

This coordinate is completely read for a meetup, your first time out in lolita, or a day at a convention. There’s no rule that says you have to drop a lot of cash to drop a lot of jaws – with amazement, of course! ;)

 

Okay, but let’s say you’ve got a teensy bit more money to burn. Girl, upgrade! For only $50 more, you can add some finishing touches to your look, like…

Infanta Dolly House Half Bonnet: $8 | Candy Star & Ribbon Bracelet: $3.50 | GLW Blonde and pink blended bob wig: $35

The best part of this coordinate article is that – all of these items are for sale. Right now. No out-of-stock, no coupons, no auction-sniping – just good deals. Click on the links to buy! (And no, I’m not being compensated for these links… I just know how frustrating it is to love a piece shown on a blog, only to see you can’t buy it yourself!)

So, what does ‘Lolita Blog Carnival’ mean?

Lolita Blog Carnival is a blogging network and community started by Caro-chan of FYeahLolita and me, along with Christina of Ramble Rori as our third moderator. Lolita bloggers join up to participate in article challenges, to meet friends, and share links. Every Friday we’ll have a new article prompt, or challenge, for you to read! By the end of Friday, check back to see links to all the other blogs that participated in the same prompt that week! This week, for example, you can read other bloggers’ response to the $100 coordinate challenge!

Click on the carnival tent in the sidebar to access the Facebook page information. If you’re a lolita blogger, we’d love it if you sent in an application and applied for an invite! (The group is only closed so there’ll be some surprise with every week’s topic. No peeking!) We also have a Twitter and Tumblr in the works, so you can see all of your favorite blogs weigh in on a topic in one place!

Other lolita bloggers show off their $100 coordinates!

F Yeah Lolita

Darkly Darling

Puppenschloss

Ramblerori

Sweet & Simple

Magic A La Mode

A Lace Jail

Starry Dreams

Her Lumpiness

Note: Items on Taobao will require a shopping service like Taobaospree. For the purposes of this article, fees and shipping are not included as they may vary according to your region.

Lavender Love

♡ Lavender & pink winged heart satchel: $29 USD | ♡ Lavender lace collar cardigan: $16 USD | ♡ Sheer lavender overdress: $16 USD | ♡ Persian Cat Brooch: $7 USD

If you love lavender like I do, here are four cute items to get your fix! I think all together they’d make for an adorable lavender fairy-kei  or casual sweet style coordinate. Click the links above to buy – remember, though, you’ll need a shopping service like Taobaospree to order from Taobao!

Prices are in Chinese Yuan, make sure to convert them to your local currency!

Everybody Wants to Be a Cat: Pearl Cat Ears

Everybody wants to be a cat. Maru the Japanese cat is famous just for getting in and out of boxes. People spend exorbitant amounts of time photographing their cats and tagging them #catsofinstagram. There are cat cafes where you can hang out petting cats all day with your cup of coffee. And yet again the fashion world takes Disney’s song “Everybody Wants to be a Cat” to new lengths.

top right photo: Mayo from Fashion Salade; bottom left photo: Lea Michele on the cover of Nylon magazine; bottom center photo: pichiinyan; all other photos from Tumblr

Okay, I can’t decide if I am on board with this trend or not. On the one hand, I love a) pearls b) cats c) ears (by which I mean, the fact that the Japanese just can’t get over animal ears – on the other hand, how do you wear this without looking like you stopped by some kind of Breakfast-at-Tiffany’s theme Halloween party?) It sort of reminds me of the usamimi (rabbit ear) headbands that started with the gal world and then filtered all over the Japanese fashion scene. Faddish? Definitely. Cute? For sure. But you know, fashion is about having fun. Takemoto’s character Momoko of Kamikaze Girls says, “Lolita often tumbles onto the side of bad taste.” Taking risks means you may look foolish sometimes. It’s not the end of the world. As averse as the (Western, mostly) lolita world has always been to animal ears, it seems that the rest of fashion has no such issue.

More than likely I am going to give it a shot – they’re too cute not to try! I’m too lazy and ham-fisted to make my own, but they can be found pretty cheaply on eBay or Asian retail sites. If you must have the real glamour item, you can buy them from Topshop or Asos.

Asos ($20.44) Ebay ($4.99+) Topshop ($20) Jacco Fashion ($7.99) DIY (via Moments Like Diamonds)

Okay, show of hands, who wants a pair of these pearly kitty ears – and what do you think you’d wear them with, or to?!

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