Thursday, June 30, 2011

Why I Am Busy and Stuff!

Sorry for lack of timely updates! I will continue to be quite busy for the next month because I am creating 4 full looks for a fashion show!

There are some new things that I am excited to try, so I hope this is a good learning process. Fashion sketches after the jump~


Look 1:
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Jacket
Jsk
BLACK short sleeve blouse (I changed my mind about the coloring after I finished this picture)

Look 2 and 3:
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Black Shorts Salopette
White Blouse with Detachable Sleeves

White Skirt Salopette
White Short Sleeve Blouse

Look 4:
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Fabric Swatches:
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I am using the pale pink with black print for the JSK
Black with Blue print for the shorts
White with Pink print for the skirt
White with Black print for the OP

So I am going to be very busy! But I will update with progress photos :)
Hime OP


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Lolita 100 Meme #91-100

The final part of this meme!

(91) 1日大好きなあの人とデートが出来ることになりました。相手も自分の好きな格好をして来てくれます。(One day I will go on a date with that person. What would you like to wear for him?)
Whatever I feel like :) He has to accept me for me. I will not change for him, so he must accept my style!

(92) アナタが将来お店を開くとしたら、どんなお店を持ちたいですか?(If you want one, what type of store would you open in the future?)
A cafe/boutique combination, either side by side or upper and lower levels. It is a very far off and unlikely dream, but it would be awesome!

(93) ついついコレに目が行っちゃうのよね〜。というモチーフはありますか?(Your eyes get attracted inadvertantly to something. What is this motif?)
Sweets and cute animals!

(94) 自分の子供もロリィタにしたいと思いますか?(Would you dress your child in Lolita?)
Yes! If she liked it anyway

(95) 一着のロリ服にいくらまでかけられますか?(How much do you spend on one outfit?)
I am not sure - if it is handmade maybe around US$20-30 just on material for the dress... If it has accessories and Lolita-style purse, probably around US$50

(96) これぞロリィタ! という仕種があれば、教えて下さい。("This is Lolita!!" Please say what you would say this about.)
I am not sure, just something beautiful and elegant! Very classy, for sure!

(97) 一度でいいから着てみたい! ロリィタ以外でそんな格好ありますか?("If I could just wear it once I would try it!!! Aside from Lolita, what would you like to try wearing?)
A dark, aristocratic, spooky, elegant outfit. So I can look like a Gothic QUEEN!!

(98) 自分のロリィタを見て、一言で表すとしたらどんな言葉だと思いますか?(Look at you in Lolita. In one word/phrase, how would you express your style/image?)
Elegant Innocence (is my goal, anyway! I am a far distance from it, but I will improve more!)

(99) アナタの理想のロリィタ像とは?(What is your ideal of Lolita?)
Beautiful, Elegant, and Confident

(100) 大変お疲れ様でした! 100答えてみての感想をどうぞ! (Thank you for taking this Baton!! Please state your thoughts on it!)
It is so long!!! But had some very good questions

To my readers, if you would like to answer these questions in the comments, I would love to see your answers! Read More......

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Review~Classical Puppets Petticoat (bell-shape) Plus a Bit of Background on Pettis in General

Petticoats are essential to any Lolita outfit. They create the proper silhouette that Lolita is so known for. When I first got into Lolita, the emphasis on petticoat construction and quality was on the stiffness of material. Tulle and netting were the preferred poof-providers despite their itchiness. Later, lined petticoats became the standard to help combat the itchiness. Questions and tips on reviving flattened petticoats popped up on EGL often. The fact is, stiff materials will lose their stiffness over time. We can steam, starch, hang upside down, and fluff all we want, but in the end you will end up needing to layer 2-4 petticoats (hello there, fat waistline!) or buy a new petticoat.

I have also made several tulle petticoats for fashion shows and personal wear. While they were wonderfully fluffy to begin with, eventually they all died and became good only for a casual outfit that required minimal poof.

Eventually, softer organdy, organza, cotton, and chiffon petticoats became more popular since they didn't itch nearly as badly, though their softness was cause for great concern at first! Would such soft, drape-y fabric create the fullness we so desired? Well, the short answer is: yes. The longer answer is: yes, but you will need EVEN MORE material than was required for stiff netting/tulle pettis! The cost of buying so much fabric deterred me from ever trying to make a soft petti. That, plus the gathering. So I made do with my tulle petticoats for a few years.

Last year, TaoBao became popular for cheap Lolita clothing, and Dear Celine and Classical Puppets both got quite a bit of publicity for their petticoats. I wavered between the two until I moved to Taiwan and most of the local Lolitas had Classical Puppet petticoats, so I joined a Group Order for one :)


I prefer to own and use something for a while before writing a review so that any easily damaged or broken bits become apparent. I have had this petticoat for over a month and used it frequently.

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The bell shape

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Classical Puppet tag is on a soft ribbon and not uncomfortable or scratchy at all

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Top layer gathered softly for a smooth silhouette

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Finished with good, crochet cotton lace

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Inner layer gathered extremely fully - so fully that the sheerness becomes opaque!

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Inner layer and lining finished with overlock

Now to show the with and without petticoat photos!

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Shown here with a plain, bell-shaped skirt. It is easiest to see the difference here!

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And shown here with BABY's Parfait print skirt! It has a built in petti, but definitely looks better with a real petti underneath!

And on a side note, this is the last, beautiful photo of this BABY skirt. I spot-cleaned it but the water spread throughout the fabric while it was drying and the colors ran

Goodbye, my first Lolita love

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Snapshot!

Homemade food is good. It is delicious and the making process is fun. You also don't need to worry about cancer-causing chemicals in your food. By the way, that post was just the first one I found :3 It has spread past drinks and has been found in breads and other foods too :o

Anyway, baking is fun, but requires lots of equipment and space to keep said equipment. Taiwan is rather short on space. And thus, we avoid buying single-purpose goods. Like waffle-makers, which only make.... waffles. Well guess what? I LOVE WAFFLES SO I GOT A WAFFLE MAKER.

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Look at my waffle maker all making waffles and stuff!

Except, it's not making waffles in that photo. Oh no, it's a multi-functional machine! It's busy making pizza pockets.

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This was a fun experiment fueled by my lack of oven and recent craving for pizza! It is quite easy to make. Simply make or purchase some pizza crust dough (we made our own) and roll it out quite thin. Then layer crust, toppings, crust on the iron and gently close the lid. Remove excess dough and allow to cook for 5-15 minutes (depending on your iron)

I suggest NOT using liquid-y fillings such as pizza sauce. Use fresh tomatoes instead! Also, the crust may seem too much in a crust to filling ratio, so I would recommend using stronger flavors for the filling. Garlic, basil, and other spices can brighten the flavor intensely!

This would be sort of fun to bring to a picnic or just as a surprise food (like cupfakes!) where it looks like a sweet but is savory!

If you find that your iron is not very accommodating of the amount of filling you would like, you can also put a small wad of dough into the iron to bake (remember, dough expands, so don't overfill!) and then top with toppings and put in an oven or under a broiler for a few minutes to warm up/melt your toppings. Have fun with this!
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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Cinderella Solutinns~Affording Fancy Meetups

Despite the large, online community, Lolitas are still few and far between in real life. How often do you bump into another Lolita on the street? Not very, I assume. Thus whenever there is a Lolita Meetup happening, most of us tend to get very excited to meet new friends, share interests, and maybe do something fancy!

While it is obviously not required to go to a tea house or something similarly "stereotypical" of the Lolita lifestyle, oftentimes it is fun to take afternoon tea with cute cakes and sandwiches or go somewhere for a photoshoot. We don't get all dolled up just to watch a movie and then go home, you know!

However, fancy places usually come with a fancy price tag too. And many of us are still students trying to pay for school, food, rent, gas or public transportation, and of course, our Lolita dresses! How is one poor Lolita supposed to afford such fancy things?

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Oh you gorgeous towering tea tray, GET IN MY BELLY!


The first few meetups I went to here cost from NT$300-600 for afternoon tea. While it was very fancy, gorgeous, and enjoyable, it simply wasn't realistic for me to do this every month!

Recently our local group has begun to have cheaper meetups in new locations found via the magic of... Groupon!

Click on the link to learn about Groupon and how it works! Basically, it offers local coupons that you can purchase and then use at the advertised location. It is a great way to discover new cafes and eateries nearby while saving money! After you select your location it will give you daily coupon offers with huge discounts (around 50-90% savings). What a wonderful way to try new places without spending too much!

There are other, similar sites such as Living Social, though Groupon is the only one I have had experience with. After we started Grouponing, the meetup cost averaged out to about NT$150, or about US$5 for a meal. Now that, I can do!

I hope this little tip helped some of you out :) Do you know of any other couponing sites like this? Please share in the comments if you do!
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Aurora's Chambers~Jewelry Organization Tutorial!

A looooong time ago I said I would do some "household" type tutorials and here is the first post! Finally!
好久好久以前說會PO些關於家庭整理教學,終於發第一篇文章了!

I have quite a few necklaces and bracelets which were kept in a box and become tangles constantly, so I finally decided to create a cheap little organizer that looks pretty and keeps my necklaces from becoming one huge knot!
我有許多項鍊和手還可是放在盒子裡常常會打結。 有一天忽然想到個好辦法來把他們整理好!

There have been many jewelry organization tutorials on the internet that I found. Most of them consisted of an empty frame with netting stretched behind it or a corkboard you can hang up. Since we are renting cannot hang things on the wall, I had to make a free-standing organizer!
在網路上搜索了好多配件整理教學可是都是用相框加沙布掛在牆上的那種。 目前租的房子不能掛東西,所以只好自己創照新的方法吧!

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Tada! A Wire Tree!
完成的鐵樹架!

Materials材料:
*Wire in varying thicknesses 鐵絲
*Wire cutter 剪鐵疵的夾子
*Pliers 小夾子
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Directions做法:
1) Cut your wire into several lengths that are LONGER than your necklaces.
將鐵絲剪成許多比項鍊要長的一段一段
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2) Curl one end of the wire into a little spiral, and the other end into a hook.
用小夾子把一邊捲起來,另一邊彎個鉤
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The bigger the spiral, the more stable your tree will be. Vary the sizes of the spirals to make your tree more interesting!
卷卷那頭越大樹站的越穩。每隻的大小都會有點不一樣

3) After all your wires are bent, bend the spiral end at a 90 degree angle to make the roots of the tree and your tree will stand up. Gather all your branches together and begin to wrap the trunk with more wire. I found that using a thinner wire for this part was easier
接下來把樹根彎成90度,讓書站起來。 再把所有的樹枝用細一點的鐵絲綁起來
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You can also add more branches at this point. Just make a V with a wire and bend BOTH ends into hooks, then wrap around the trunk of the tree. Secure it all with the thinner wire as a final wrapping
現在像多加些樹枝也可以。把鐵絲灣個V形,兩頭彎鉤鉤,在把它繞道樹上用細鐵絲蓋住

4) This is what it should look like when done:
最後的成果:
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5) Hang your necklaces on! If you find that your tree is not balanced (some pendants on necklaces can be quite heavy!) you can bend the tree branch to let the heavier necklaces just barely touch the surface of the table or wherever your tree is standing. This way, the table will help support some of the weight of the necklace, but the tree still holds the chain portion up so it doesn't tangle!
把項鍊掛上吧! 如果有些項鍊比較重讓樹站不穩可以把樹枝網下彎,讓像練輕輕碰到桌面。 這樣桌面會幫忙撐住重量,樹枝把常常的鏈條拉高就不會糾結囉!
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Doesn't that look so much nicer?
看起來舒服多了!
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Saturday, June 11, 2011

May the Power of Lolita Compel You! (A Diary Post)

I have run out of scheduled posts! Time to make real-life update ;D As I mentioned before, this month I am a bit more busy because I'm working 2 jobs and getting ready to test my way into University. Well, the day is here! Tomorrow is my test/analysis/careful scrutiny of every aspect of my person to try and set the course for the next 2-4 years of my life!
今天來篇人生報告文!之前提過這個月會比較忙。除了上兩個班還要準備實踐的徵審入學考。明天就要考了!! 好緊張! 明天過後就知道未來的兩到四年要如何過下去。。。

Wow, that sounds very dramatic :x
講的好誇張喔^^;

Anyway, we were supposed to come up with a portfolio of our past works. I spent hours upon hours finding old photos, taking new ones, editing them on my computer, and spent NT$1000 getting them printed. Then I did fashion sketches for the basic styles. After putting it all together, I realized.... Everything is Lolita. Except for the 4 kigurumi I did as a collaboration with my sister. I don't know if this lack of variety is going to get me auto-disqualified or not....
徵審要把作品整理成文件。 我花了好幾天找相片,拍新相片,修相片,還花了一千多塊把它們因出來。 最後還畫了好幾張服裝畫。全不整理完後才發現。。。 除了四件kigurumi(日本可愛動物角色睡衣),所有的作品都是蘿莉塔服。希望這麼沒花樣不會害了我!

In more Lolita-related news, next week I am going to meet another Lolita to pick up some things I bought as part of a Group Order. Would anybody be interested in reviews of some of my purchases?

Thus far I have/will be getting:
Classical Puppets petticoat
AnTaiNa shoes
Secret Shop Socks
Surface Spell flowers (for hair or pin)

And I already did a review of the DoL Strawberry Purse here

Let me know in the comments below! (P.S. click on the post title if you cannot see the comment section!) Read More......

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pose! Full Body Photos~ Cross Step

Another simple leg pose for full body shots is the Cross Step. It is pretty easy and the only thing you need to watch out for is to make sure you don't look like you need to use the restroom!

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Literally, you just cross your legs. You weight can be on your back leg or evenly distributed on both feet. Normally, I point my front leg to avoid the "I need to go to the bathroom NOW!" look


Other variations include:
*Slightly twisting your front foot in a coquettish way so you're standing on the edge of your foot (keep weight on back leg)
*Pointing both feet outward and standing evenly on both feet in a ballet-like pose

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The Gothic Lolita in the middle shows a beautiful ballet-style variation of the Cross Step

This pose looks quite elegant. Try it out sometime!
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

On Leveling Up

Back in the Stone Age (or somewhere around there), there was a Big Bang of Lolita bloggers that exploded out of the darkest abyss which was the Internet. A new blog popped up and was advertised on EGL every couple days. For every advertised blog, there was probably 3-5 blogs that weren't advertised. As one of these ninja blogs, ABC Lolita emerged as a single-cell organism and floated around in the endless void of blogs. Eventually, it evolved into a sort of organized blog with a few followers, which meant the content needed to actually have more meaning.

Over time (from Stone Age to now is just over a year, I believe) ABC Lolita attracted more followers and started getting comments. Good thing I had a good commenting system than allows for reply subscriptions :D

And now, ABC Lolita has leveled up from single-cell to plankton or something similar. Still less than 100 followers, but apparently quality enough to have gotten... an award.... O_O *play music from LoZ when Link opens a treasure chest!*


Blogger Award

First of all, I'd like to thank Lemonberry Lulu for giving me a blogger award! I would never have thought that I'd get one when I first started this blog!

So now I am going to share 9 wonderful blogs with you all :)

Here are the blogger award rules:

Make a post containing:

1)Say thank you to the person who gave you the award
2)Write about someone that gave you the award
3)Write about yourself
4)Award and banner code
5)Give this banner to 9 of your friends
6)Don't forget to leave a message in their chatbox
7)Use the image on your sidebar without changing the code

Lemonberry Lulu is probably the top commenter on this blog, thanks very much for that! Getting feedback always feels really good :D Don't worry, everybody else, there are definitely a handful of you that I remember the usernames of because you guys comment a lot, too!

Something about myself... Well I originally started this blog because I wanted to share something with the world, but was actually too scared to promote my blog at all because I am not a good writer and don't really like to do Brand updates, write intelligent articles (actually, I am just incapable I think?), etc. I DO like to post tutorials because free Internet tutorials is what got me started on my fashion design and construction path, and I'd like to give something back!

This post is already getting long, so here are my 9 blogs in no order:
1)F Yeah Lolita writes the type if intelligent articles about Lolita fashion that I wish I could :P

2) Moments Like Diamonds has an awesome title and writes Gyaru style and daily life posts. She hails from MN (yay!) and I enjoy her One Item 7 Ways posts a lot! Also the Japan posts :)

3)Tokyo Kawaii Etc. is a blog about Japan by a Japanese woman (in English). It is quite interesting!

4) Viva Woman blogs about beauty and the safety of products. She has a lot of nice reviews and natural home DIY projects. Based in Singapore

5) Doe Deere is an entrepreneur who created the cosmetics line of Lime Crime. I like to follow her blog for the photoshoots :P Back when she just did makeup tutorials, I started following and then she launched her own line!

6) Anna the Red is a plush and bento designer. She also does a lot of non-bento food art. I LOVE food art!! Pretty much everything she does is awesome. My computer couldn't access her site for the longest time D: But I followed her Flickr. Then I changed my IP address and now I can stalk her blog all I want!

7)Japanese Snack Reviews is a really niche blog, but I figured it'd be interesting to some of you :) I think it's quite nice!

8)Hyperbole and a Half is a random, quirky blog made of MS Paint drawings and hilarity. My favorite post that actually made me laugh out loud while home alone is called "Texas". You should definitely check out her blog! It'll cheer you up :)

9)Gothic Charm School is quite famous and popular already, but I thought I'd share anyway! It teacher etiquette and how to handle tough situations with grace and manners. Definitely something we can all learn, especially in a subculture fashion!

P.S. I'm terrible at science :(
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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Belle's Library~ Alice: Madness Returns

Alice in Wonderland is a timeless classic. Many artists have created their own spinoffs in movies, storybooks, video games, and more! As one of the biggest influences in Lolita fashion, Alice is a popular motif and one of my favorite characters. The quirky world of Wonderland leaves itself open to interpretation and many interesting theories!

This month, a new release of another Alice interpretation is coming... a sequel to my favorite video game, American McGee's Alice!


The first video game was released in 2000 for PC. It was an extremely popular game, though it did freak me out because I played it late at night ^^; In case you couldn't tell from the poster for the sequel, American McGee's Alice and Alice: Madness Returns are Gothic Horror games.

The story behind American McGee's Alice is that a fire destroyed Alice's home and killed her parents. Unable to live with the horrifying reality, she is admitted into an asylum. She is living in her imaginary world of Wonderland, but her insanity has caused Wonderland to also become twisted and dark. The Red Queen (for Alice fans, this game also treats the Red Queen and the Queen of Hearts as the same character) has taken over and Alice must fight her way through Wonderland to save it.

Be warned that it is quite gore-y! The characters bleed and the sound of the Vorpal Blade slicing into their bodies is a little scary! I only got through the first 3 levels/chapters because honestly, the game is a little difficult, so save often!! There aren't a ton of checkpoints, but you can save at any time in the game and choose which point to go back to. For example, if you end up going to wrong way and have already saved, it won't delete your previous saves, so you can choose to return to an earlier checkpoint and go a different direction.

In Alice: Madness Returns 11 years have passed (corresponding with real time between the games) Alice is released from the asylum and sent to a London psychiatrist. Her nightmares and the new environment prove too much for her and she tries to return to Wonderland, but finds that in the time she has been absent, it has once again become a dark world...



The website has a lot of cool images, wallpapers, and an interactive storybook you can play with to get a summary of Alice's adventures. The facebook group also has new information and media updates. The new game is available for more platforms than just PC!

Also, if you pre-order you can get the OST *u*

This makes me wish I had the Xbox here... ;_; It's still in America!!

Readers, what are your favorite Alice movies, stories, games, etc.?
My personal list:

Movie: Alice in Wonderland (2010 Tim Burton version)
Story: The Looking Glass Wars really interesting take on Wonderland!
Game: American McGee's Alice :P

Is anybody else excited for this??
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Saturday, June 4, 2011

On All the Good Things

Wow, I know that I said June would be a month of few posts because I would be busy (and I am - today was exhausting!!) but today I found that I need to make 4 posts, 3 of which are time-sensitive!! So to save your sanity, I am going to combine the time-sensitive ones into one post of tremendous joy ♥♥♥ and schedule-post the fourth!

P.S. Also going to start blogging bilingually sometimes :P I know I said that before, but this time, I mean it! Wow, this post is just full of positive energy! :D

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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Pose! Number 5!

Accessories are important in Lolita fashion, so show them off with a stylish pose on your photos!

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A closeup of your face/chest with a hand by your face catches all the earrings, necklaces, bracelets, rings, and any nail art or deco you have on, as well as your makeup/hair details. It addition to portrait shots, Pose Number 5 is good for full body photos as well!


"Bashful Doll"
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Combined with the False Step from last week, this photo looks sweet and innocent. Softly touching your face/mouth with your hand looks a bit shy, giving a dolly feel overall.

"Surprise!"
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Using different facial expressions, you can change from bashful to surprised! This pose/expression seems quite popular, as if the model was caught unaware

"Heya!"
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The model here isn't wearing Lolita, but I see this pose a lot too. Basically, act like you're calling out to a friend across the room. It adds more "action" feel and interest to the photo

I hope you enjoy the series so far :) Let's add more variety to our outfit snaps!
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