It’s ten years ago this year that the movie Kamikaze Girls debuted (the same year as Mean Girls… coincidence or girl power conspiracy?) Kamikaze Girls is one of the great catalysts that created lolitas around the globe with its international release – and I was one of them. Though the author, Novala Takemoto, has mostly retired from the lolita socialiate circles since then, I’ll always treasure his contribution to lolitas everywhere in the form of both his beautiful film and his many books, short stories and articles.
I’m excited to see that he’s written a new lovestruck novel in the vein of his most famous, Kamikaze Girls (Japanese title: Shimotsuma Monogatari, A Shimostuma Story). The cover art is done by the famous lolita author Kira Imai, whose work has been made into a variety of printed dresses with Angelic Pretty and lolita fashion magazine covers. Here’s an excerpt of the novel, translated into English:
That’s where I was the first time you talked to me, at La Foret, the fashionable mall located at the intersection of Omotesando and Meiji Dori. There were a few chairs there that anyone could use to pass some time. Rising up between the chairs was a great tree, looking like it belonged there. I don’t know if it was a gingko or a poplar or a gum tree. There were green leaf-shaped objects in the space between La Foret and the street. Instead of show windows, the stores inside La Foret used these hollow translucent objects for shop displays. I sat behind the leaf-shaped objects, on the side of the building, facing the entrance to La Foret, hiding behind the leaf that had the list of shops on it. I sat directly on the ground, hugging my knees to my chest. I didn’t look at anything in particular, and I didn’t think about anything in particular, and I stayed there in the same position until the store closed. That was the only place they’d let me hang out.
Why didn’t I run when you spoke to me? Why was I able to answer you, even with a stammer? I would normally be frightened by any male—whether it was the police, a high school boy trying to hit on me, a poor old country bumpkin confused and looking for directions, or a little Boy Scout holding a donation box. If any male tried to communicate with me I would flee in a flash. Somehow you were special. You’re still special to me. Special things are always special right from the start and remain special until the end.
Unfortunately it doesn’t say when the English edition will be released. I am looking forward to more of Takemoto’s fanciful writing bleeding through with its relatable awkwardness. (If anyone has any information about the release or where to read it, please drop me a line, and I’ll update the post so others can read it as well).
I’m a little late for this week’s Lolita Blog Carnival – I’ll conveniently blame the jet-lag from my recent family trip to Seattle – but I was really feeling the topic, so I decided it would hold over until Monday!
This week’s theme is to talk about your favorite non-lolita fashion styles. And yes, I harbor a few style crushes that I like for daily wear. Anything pastels or fluffy is a given, but this summer for me is all about the Japanese style “himekaji”.
Himekaji is the Japanese portmanteau of the two words hime, meaning princess, and kaji, which is short for casual. Some gyaru have told me they don’t consider himekaji a real subset of gal, and others definitely lump it together with its fancier sister himegyaru. Himekaji loves lace, pastels, some touches of neutrals, and plenty of rose prints. In the past it has occasionally played with a very girly cowgirl/prairie look, and still isn’t above pastel pink cowboy boots.
Soft stone-washed denim in blue, white, and pastels even makes an appearance if you want to throw on jeans once in a while. Makeup is very girly and pink-flushed, but can be lighter than other heavy gyaru eyes. I usually swap out big himegyaru lenses and lashes for a simpler more Korean-fashion inspired eye for daily wear. Straight hair is okay, but fluffy French braids and airy curls are most common for this style.
While Liz Lisa is the big provider of himekaji clothes and accessories, you can definitely find cute things on sites like Dreamv, Taobao, or even the occasional find on Forever21 or Wet Seal. I actually get my few authentic Liz Lisa items from eBay or inside promotional magazines. I just got my new Liz Lisa x My Melody chain pochette and I haven’t taken it off since! Here’s the Instagram of it, along with a lot of Daiso goodies I picked up on my trip:
If you’re looking for cute places to get your hands on some himekaji items besides Japan, check out my Wanelo – I’ve been stockpiling pink sundresses, rose-pattern anything and floral hairbands!
While I was out with Petrina a few weekends ago, I got in some outfit shots of my new Dream Fantasy salopette! I put up the snap on my Instagram, but it didn’t get its own blog post until now.
I wanted to take this really sugary all-over print and play up a Misako-style princessy look, so I went with the straight hair, a jeweled pink Baby sidebow, the clean lines of my heart-shaped MILK bag, and a simple Angelic Pretty cardigan.
I also wanted to give the simple cut of this salopette some more detail and texture for interest, so I stole this three-bow and pearl brooch off my Princess in Love jumperskirt to pin to the front. Since they’re both Angelic Pretty pieces, the color was pretty similar.
(Yes I tried the Lookbook “mirror flip” fad so that there’s two of me. It came out kind of cute I think!)
Boots: DreamV | Salopette, cardigan: Angelic Pretty | Hairbow, blouse, pearl necklace: Baby the Stars Shine Bright | Bag: MILK
I’m going to soup this dress up really fairy-kei and costume-y for the upcoming Kyary Pamyu Pamyu concert, so I wanted to try something traditionally sweet lolita and toned down before that.
My only complaint is I wish the cherry blossoms were real! It’s been so cold here and won’t stop snowing where I live, so all the cherry blossoms are behind schedule. The day I wore this, it snowed that morning. Spring, where are you?!
And I got to eat delicious food at a new favorite cafe in Soho, Hiroko’s! I got to have omurice for the first time. I’ve added it to my list of comfort foods – wish I had an in-house Japanese mom to make it for me when I feel cold and sad, haha.
They gave my food a face and then he looked terrified to be eaten. But he was really delicious.
Welcome to 2013, Parfait Doll readers! As of this year, Parfait Doll (previously incarnated as Lolita Charm) will have been published online for five years! (Crazy talk, I know.) I spent winter break mostly curled up, snowed in, and spending lots of lazy time with my new boyfriend. When not in my pink nest of blankets and fuzzy socks, I loitered anywhere festively lit in New York City. We had a great time just walking down 5th Avenue a few weeks ago, taking in the holiday displays.
Now that I’m back at university for the spring semester, I’m ready to get back on schedule again with my life, and my blog. I’ve cleaned up my bedroom, my calendar, and my hair. I’ve started productive lists. Really.
So here is the illustrated guide of what I want to make out of my next year!
#1. Take more fashion risks.
Looking back on 2012, I am really pleased with most of the outfits I put together. There were no big oh-God-can’t-believe-I-wore-THAT moments like I’ve had in previous years. But I still feel there is a wide world of fashion I am shying away from, because lolita is my comfort zone. I’m so inspired by some of the new friends I’ve made in the past year, and new trends that have emerged that I’m dying to try. My 2013 fashion collage board is definitely getting its own future post – look forward to it!
This just arrived in the mail today – a bright pink envelope marked with Angelic Pretty USA! I opened it up – it was taped up with heart-patterned paper – and found this inside… Stationary with this spring’s new birdcage print, Symphonia! Normally I’d add it to my smashbook but it’s really big and I don’t want to cut it up…
A letter signed by Maki, Asuka and RinRin! Sad that I forget to wear falsies that day, makes my makeup look so bland, but I really love these photos! They’re precious to me because I didn’t get very many photos at that tea party and I made so many new friends there… If I look I can pick out Dalin, Heather, Ellejay, Alice and more! Thanks so much for everyone I met at Acen, hope to see you again sometime!
This will be my last blog post until I return from Otakon in Baltimore! Please look me up if you’re there, I love meeting readers in person! My schedule is unclear yet, but I will be modeling for I Do Declare in the indie lolita fashion show and of course I’ll be ogling my lover-man Peter S. Beagle, author of the Last Unicorn, at his panel! ヽ(〃＾▽＾〃)ﾉ
While all your mainstream buddies are fawning over the latest Taylor or Bieber tweet, you’re poking your phone wishing you could get a closer peek in the lives of some cute lolita or kawaii fashion celebs you’d really rather hear about. Thanks to the wonders of the digital age, you can get a front row seat to the lives of some of the cutest girls and celebrities right from your smartphone. Envelope please – check out my top five kawaii Instagrammers!
Kyary, the up-and-coming Japanese pop sensation, regularly updates her Instagram with crazy outfit inspiration and backstage photos from her various concerts and musical appearances. My favorite is her outfit snaps where she shows off her own daily style. Where else can you see a adorable girl slap a pink convertible on her head?!
Angelic Pretty’s favorite model RinRin shows photos direct from Japan, with everything from casual outfit shots to snaps of work and shopping. She just joined Instagram and doesn’t have very many followers yet, so please show her support – maybe she’ll be encouraged to start uploading more photos of her daily life as a lolita model!
Imai Kira, the legendary lolita fashion artist (she’s drawn numerous prints and art work for Angelic Pretty) posts gorgeous photographs to her Instagram frequently. Besides snaps of her art or printed products, she has a very “shabby chic” vibe that suits a classic lolita or morigirl’s tastes perfectly. Warning: she’s a complete crazy cat lady. Isn’t her Siamese just beautiful? Makes me want one!
Lila, designer of Italian fairy-kei jewelry brand Cute Can Kill, has some of the most addictively cute Instagram photos on my feed, no doubt. Whether she’s posting photos of her creamsicle colored cat (okay, cats do make up about 80% of Instagram photos…), 80s toys she’s found, or new products she’s going to air, I can’t help but heart up a storm on her page.
If you love bright makeup and dyed hair then you will fall head over heels for Shrinkle’s Instagram, the owner of Sugarpill Cosmetics. In these little snapshots are her daily makeup, retro and vintage pop finds (I am dying for Locketship’s new NeaPAWlitan kitty cones she’s pictured here), and behind-the-scenes shots of the super bright girls who work for SugarPill.
Okay, your turn! Do you have any Instagram crushes you can’t help but heart, heart, heart? Make sure to leave your Instagram handle so I can take a look at yours, too – mine’s @victoriasuzanne!
A sneak peek from the art film I starred in two weekends ago, Lucidity! One of the many photos in my life that shows me fixing my bangs…! Hey, those things need upkeep! My new favorite bow I’m wearing is from Etsy boutique I’m Your Present - the twinkling aurora crystals are so cute.
Dozing on set while they switched the lighting… so sleepy with seven a.m. shooting time! I’m really excited to see the footage and how all our hard work came out. The trailer should be up at the beginning of August, so look for it!
For years now lolita fashion has pivoted around two gathering locuses: the Internet and the anime convention. Rightly or not, lolita, as a Japanese subculture and Japanophile interest, was slowly introduced to the anime convention or ‘con’ scene by means of events, lolita vendors and formalized meetups. Now it’s common to expect an anime convention to boast at least one lolita fashion designer and often a bevy of local designers, a fashion show, or tea party. The convention has been a great way to draw hundreds of lolitas from the surrounding area, doing what the local meetup cannot and connecting them on an international or interstate scale.
The only issue, at its heart, is that lolita fashion is not really a perfect fit for the anime scene. Anime conventions are known for its anime and manga fans, its costumed attendees who enjoy the Japanese practice of cosplaying, and while lolitas may enjoy some of these things, they are really outside interests to lolita fashion which has developed a rich internal culture of its own. To be frank, lolita is often the redheaded step-child of the convention, and the time is ripe for more lolita events run by lolitas, for lolitas.
Frill by Affrilliation is the first all-lolita convention, just finishing its first event this past June of 2012. President Chair Andrea Nicole Baker was kind enough to give Parfait Doll the exclusive scoop on how the first ever lolita convention went down!
inside the FRILL boutique!
Q: How did you come up with the idea to start Frill?
Q: Not bad for a first event! What events were most popular?
FRILL: The boutique/consignment shop was the most popular. We had about 15 independent designers represented. I am sure there has never been quite a selection of fabulous fashions ever in one place at one time.
Panels were also popular (We had selected 8 panels topics that would have the most wide appeal. These ran all during the day on Saturday. Some of the topics were: History of Lolita, Sewing, Wigs and Hair, Deco DIY, Advanced Shopping and Loli Library.)
Princess Brolita and Prince Kodona, a genderbent beauty pageant at Frill 2012
Games and contests were also a big success, such as Tea Dueling, Princess Brolita and Prince Kadona Contest and a coordinate contest.
There was also lots of time for socializing at Frill. Spending time with one’s friends and meeting and making new lolita girlfriends! The “smile quotient” at Frill was awesome. So many lovelies having a great time!
The highlight of Saturday evening’s part was the fashion show. About 15 local designers participated, many included multiple outfits. Of course, the fashion shows are always a highlight any time a group of lolitas get together.
The Sunday Tea Luncheon was attended by about 100 people. The food was awesome, yummy and delicious. Another opportunity to get all dressed up and socialize. Following the Tea the Directors had a feedback session for the attendees in order to learn what was most liked and suggestions for the future.
Sorry for the absence, I’ve just had finals for my summer accounting course and I had to ban myself from blogging time until it was finished, so hard! This weekend is my birthday and I’m headed off to see my lovelies all weekend in New York City, so look for photos and perhaps a new video on Monday! As a tidbit to tide you over, check out my new logo done by the very talented Savannah Alexandra! You may recognize her work from her recent Frill convention posters!
Isn’t it darling? If I run into you at Otakon, make sure to ask for a sticker or unicorn business card! Her name is Sailor Unimoon! I know it’s cheesy but that’s just what popped into my head. I just started watching Jewelpet Tinkle as well, and she definitely looks like a cute Jewelpet to me!
As another diversion, check out Savannah’s great Batloli comic – a lolita batman that rescues lolitas in trouble. Batloli was dreamed up when a mysterious lolita significantly supported the Frill convention under that pseudonym.
Click for larger!
Make sure you check out her tumblr to see more of her adorable artwork! The short she just completed for her animation class is pretty adorable too!
Until Monday, make sure you’re following my Twitter or Instagram! I’m addicted to this mobile blogging, so you can see cute fashion, shopping or food photos of my weekend in New York City in real time!
photo courtesy of Anne Pleasant
This past weekend was a crazy adventure – my first time in Chicago, volunteering at the Angelic Pretty pop-up shop, walking the runway for Angelic Pretty, and attending my first Angelic Pretty tea party! It was a total immersion into Angelic Pretty culture and I, as their crazy stalker, loved every minute of it.
Even better was spending the entire weekend with my dearest friends, Ellejay and Dalin, and making new ones who I love just as much – Alice, Brie, Sarah, Lynda, Gloria, and many more! I’m really happy to meet some very cool lolitas in this world!
[Note: this post is very long so I'm using the jump-cut! Click the 'see more' to read the whole thing!]
Friday: Meet the Angelic Pretty Staff!
I spent most of Friday volunteering at the booth. I am both proud and a little embarrassed to say how much I know about this season’s Angelic Pretty stock! I’m also learning Japanese with ‘learn-on-your-commute’ CDs, so having the mixture of Japanese and English around was really fascinating for me. I played the ‘shopping’ study track on repeat in anticipation!
A shot of the jewelry table – taken from my Instagram!
My “work” was mostly keeping the displays neat and tidy, greeting customers, and helping them try things on or carry things to register. I’d never done retail-style work before, and although I now have new appreciation for what staff go through when you inadvertently, say, dig through an entire shelf of panties at Forever21 looking for that one pink pair, I had a really fun time. Being friendly and talking about how much I love Angelic Pretty’s new prints hardly felt like work to me! I do recommend a good pair of insoles though – standing all day is hard! The only trouble about being at the booth is that the longer you’re there, the more stuff you want to buy! Read the rest of this entry »