Sunday, March 31, 2013

Google Reader's Upcoming Demise

Google is doing away with Google Reader for some reason, so I have switched to Bloglovin'!
Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Friday, March 29, 2013

Classy and Wild

Animals play a big part in fashion, no doubt about it. The most commonly seen prints in mainstream fashion is probably leopard and zebra print with the occasional giraffe thrown in.
In Lolita fashion, teddy bears and bunny rabbits definitely feature prominently in prints and as "ears" on cardigans. Innocent world has a few "forest" animal prints that include other small, cute rodents and nearly every brand has a version of Swan Lake and carousels. Birds have made a few appearances as well.

The Lolita Blog Carnival theme for this week is to choose an animal and create a coordinate around it. I decided to do the "national animals" of Taiwan: The Formosan black bear and Formosan blue magpie.
Formosan Black Bear
Hunted for medicine (notably the paws) and due to habitat loss, the Formosan Black Bear is an endangered species. The most notable thing about this animal is the light color moon crest on its chest. In my coordinate, I kept it black with a white focus on the chest area on the cutsew and then some white detailing on the jacket and socks to help balance it out a little.
Formosan Black Bear

The claw jewelry is just for fun :P I thought they were interesting!
The bear motif jewelry is my "real" coordinate idea ;)

Formosan Blue Magpie
A lot of the animals seem to just be called Formosan -insert animal here- like the Formosan clouded leopard and Formosan sika deer. Whoever came up with the English names wasn't very creative!
Anyway, here is another Taiwanese animal, which I believe was also voted to be a "national animal" but isn't as recognized officially.
Formosan Blue Magpie

This was more difficult to come up with a coordinate because of its coloring. I'm not sure how well the blue and orange worked together or if it seems too blocked out or anything... I put two bag/clutch options because I couldn't choose!

What is your favorite animal?
My favorite is actually really difficult to choose... maybe grizzly bear or timber wolf!

 photo 545430_945698161629_573562109_n.jpg
Other Blogs
Hello Batty
Hologram World
Super Kawaii Dragon
Darkly Darling
Angel Shinigami

Monday, March 18, 2013

Our Future Lies in Your Dreams

I am very Photoshop-inept, so these photos will be very special ^^; I've also created a new label for school-related posts called Fashion University if you'd like to see all the school-related posts at once :) I think some people will be interested to know what sorts of things go on in a fashion school!

My teacher said that I need to work on my overall styling, which is very true! I also need to work on my post-editing skills....

Background Story/Line Inspiration
This is the PPT we made for our line (click to make it larger):
 photo PPT_zps25385180.jpg
Basically, in a futuristic world, technology has advanced to the point where humans don't need to worry about things such as illnesses or working because it's all automated. The purpose of this is so that humans can pursue "greater" things such as arts, peace, etc. as well as clean up the planet from the pollution caused by previous generations.
However, the world instead uses the technology to create more and more advanced simulations, virtual reality, games, etc. and instead mentally decay. Being that they spend their lives basically plugged into virtual stimulation programs, they need to use medication to induce sleep and cease to dream.
Virtually all species are extinct, save for mutant insects and single-cell organisms, who tend to be hardier and able to evolve more quickly.
Dream-eating tapirs are also dying out due to the fact that the humans are no longer dreaming, so they have no sustenance. In an effort to save the planet as well as themselves, they use the humans' technology to put them into an induced coma and create a "dream world" where the humans continue to "live" their regular lives through dreams. This creates enough dream material for the dream-eating tapirs to survive, but due to the lack of creativity (e.g., the weird, unrealistic dreams we have), it become essentially like eating a piece of white toast and a cup of black coffee for every meal every day for the rest of your life. Boring.
The dream-eating tapirs are divided into different groups depending on their duty. There are computer-programmers who are in charge of making sure the humans' dream-world remains flawless, protectors who need to defend the cities from the mutant creatures, and dream-collectors who harvest the dreams and convert it into energy to power the cities and as food for themselves.
Though their world seems pretty bleak right now, the dream-eating tapirs still hope that one day the humans will come to realize what they have done to the planet and be able to be released from the induced coma and save the planet as well as bring back their own creativity and actually dream.

The last few pages are reference movies and music and fashion inspiration.

Now, on to the photos! Click on them to make them larger!

Computer Programmer
Clothing: Iku Wang (my partner)
Hair/Makeup/Styling: Me
Photographer: Kenny Paul (Images by Kenny)
Model: Flora
Post-Editing: Me
 photo Flora_zps424f0295.jpg

Clothing: Me
Hair/Makeup/Styling: Me
Photographer: Kenny Paul (Images by Kenny)
Model: Naomi
Post-Editing: Me
 photo Naomi_zps62a7e72e.jpg

Clothing: Me
Hair/Makeup/Styling: Me
Photographer: Kenny Paul (Images by Kenny)
Model: Julia
Post-Editing: Me
 photo Juila_zps27a9e3cd.jpg

Clothing: Iku Wang (my partner)
Hair/Makeup/Styling: Me
Photographer: Kenny Paul (Images by Kenny)
Model: Emily
Post-Editing: Me
 photo Emily_zps9a7f9a9e.jpg

 photo Group_zps43857805.jpg

Friday, March 15, 2013

Seriously Matching

Matching drinks to your outfit!
I decided to use drinks that Taiwan is known for to introduce some culture as well

The first drink is one that everybody should be familiar with:
Boba Milk Tea
I love to get boba milk tea with the large pearls, hot, and sugar-free. They are so readily available from any of the many beverage shops that line the streets of Taiwan.
Boba Milk Tea

The milk tea is usually an ivory color and frothy from the mixing. I chose a lacey, ruffle blouse in an ivory shade and then paired it with a similarly colored Lolita skirt with a dark print to represent the boba at the bottom of the cup.
The socks are continued to be the milk tea color, and then I have two pairs of shoes because I think this look can work with either brown "boba" shoes, or blue shoes. What is the blue throughout this outfit? It is the straw! The colorful boba straws can be brought throughout the look from top to bottom with accessories. Blue in the hair, on the wrist stoppers and jewelry, and shoes if you want. I chose metal-theme rings for the "glass" of the cup. Normally, we actually get the boba milk tea in plastic go-cups, but in sit-down restaurants you can get a fancy glass instead!

The next most famous drink of Taiwan is:
Papaya Milk

Papaya Milk

Papaya milk is lovely and summery, so I made a summery coordinate. It also uses mainly offbrand clothing. The sheer blouse can be worn with a white base on the inside. I like papaya milk smoothies, so the white dots made e think of ice crystals. Even though papaya milk is all one color, that would be boring, so I added black like the papaya seeds in the accessories. The earrings and ring and bracelet have more "seedy" feel with the beads.

Azuki Matcha Milk Tea
This is one of my favorite drinks to get from a beverage shop by my school! Azuki and matcha are a common pairing for everything from waffles and ice cream to drinks and cakes!
Azuki Matcha Milk Tea

The layered look is really pretty, though that does make it more difficult to translate into an outfit without looking blocky. I used a milk-color JSK with a brown print as a starting point and some matcha green accessories and a top. The purse I hope can bring the matcha color through to lower parts of the coordinate so it doesn't seem like it's only in the top portion.
The socks are reddish-brown like azuki beans with brown shoes. The jewelry was also chosen to match the azuki and milk colors.
This one was definitely more difficult to come up with a coordinate, but I think it looks OK :)

What is your favorite drink?

And remember to check out the other blogs doing this week's theme!
 photo 545430_945698161629_573562109_n.jpg

Kira Kira Shoujo
Geisha Baby
Lace a la Mode
Loli Dreamland
The Bloody Tea Party

Monday, March 11, 2013

Fashion Week at ShihChien University

Last week was Fashion Week at my school. Even though my partner and I didn't make it into the finals and our score wasn't very good, I still quite like the two outfits I made.

Yesterday we had a real photoshoot and I will post the photos from that when I am done editing them!

Here is a preview of the line:
 photo IMG_1334_zps46b962c0.jpg
I made the two outfits on the left and my partner made the two outfits on the right.
Our theme was Dream-Eating Tapirs in a post-apocalyptic world where humans have to be put into an induced coma and live their lives through dreaming (similar to The Matrix) due to their destructive nature and the dream-eating tapirs are now in charge of maintaining the dream world, protecting their cities from the mutant insects in the real world, and collecting the dreams from the humans to survive.

My teacher didn't like the blue skirt I made, so in the photoshoot I redid it with black netting, which shows the layered pants on the inside more clearly anyway.

The hair and makeup were all done by me. I'm not exactly an expert, so in the later close-up photos you will probably be able to see the flaws!

For Second Year at ShihChien, we were "experimental" and many of the other groups had very extravagant and artistic lines! I'm personally better at ready-to-wear and not good at extreme wearable art, so I'm not surprised that our line was said to look "flat" in comparison. Next year, we need to do more wearable, yet creative lines, so I hope to do better!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Favorite Accessory

What separates a good coordinate from an excellent coordinate?
In my opinion, accessories can really add that extra bit of "wow" to any coordinate! For daily wear, I normally forget accessories (mostly because mine are out of sight), but for events and such, you may want to bust out your best jewelry, hair accessories, wrist stoppers, sock toppers, and all that other jazz!

It's difficult to pick a favorite accessory, so I'm cheating and choosing two!
1. Hair Accessory
Having some form of headdress, hair bow, ribbon, canotier, headband, or hat can really make your hair much more interesting. You don't need to have a very fancy hair style if you have a lovely hairpiece as the highlight instead.

Simple hair accessories can easily be found in regular accessory stores, or you can make specifically Lolita ones yourself!
Hair accessories

OK, so the pipe headband might not fly with every coordinate, but I just thought it was really cute and unique :P

2. Rings
Unique rings are really lovely and add a nice touch of glamour to your hands. They're really great for when you're taking finger-star photos at a meetup, and to compliment your nail polish/nail art. Even if you have plain, clean nails, a ring (or several) can make your hands seem more elegant or cute. Plus, with so many fingers, you can wear many rings!

Rings are my favorite jewelry because they are easy to add on, easy to coordinate, and don't get in the way of sleeves/sleeve stoppers like bracelets, don't needs clasps like necklaces, and don't require pierced ears (or pinched ears, if you are wearing faux earrings!). You can actually make your own rings out of wire fairly easily, too!

You can also wear quirky or "theme" rings without them throwing off your whole coordinate the way a larger piece might, so break out the mustache or deer-head rings!

What is your favorite accessory and why? Please share in the comments! I like to know others' thoughts, too!

 photo 545430_945698161629_573562109_n.jpg
Other blogs participating in this week's carnival:
The Bloody Tea Party
Sweet and Simple
Dollhouse Diaries
Starry-Eyed Lolita
Ice Age
Under the Parasol
Hello Batty