Monday, 18 August 2014

♥ Lolita Fashion in Media: Live Action ♥

It's time for part two on Lolita Fashion in media! In my first article on lolita in the media I discussed lolita fashion examples in anime and video games, their often terrible executions of the style and their few golden examples.  In this article, I'm going to focus on live action depictions of lolita fashion, in all kinds of genres and examples.

As for live action examples, surely everyone involved in the style is familiar with Kamikaze Girls (Shimotsuma Monogatari) with it's immense popularity. Novala Takemoto can be a little bit eccentric, so it's no surprise that Kamikaze Girls is a little strange as well. Though Momoko can be a little sociopathic, I believe it was a very good depiction of the style at time. I'm very happy that it has gained the popularity it has over the past ten years!

No need to talk too in depth about something so well-known to the lolita community though, what of the other depictions that we as a community may have missed?


The most recent example of lolita in live action form, as far as I know, is Nuiguruma Z! Nuiguruma Z, or 'Gothic Lolita Battle Bear' as it's known internationally, is a tokusatsu film starring Shoko Nakagawa.  In this film Shoko is a lolita named Yumeko, who along with her teddy bear, battle an army of undead by transforming into the hero Nuiguruma Z!

This film features Baby the Star Shine Bright in a collaborative effort. All of her clothes, when she isn't in her skin-tight super hero outfit, are supplied by BTSSB. The featured dress in the title is Baby's Princess Liddell’s Ice Cream Cake OP. The original dress was released in 2012, but there was a re-release of the set in early 2014 to coincide with the movie's release.

The film is on par with the director, Noboru Iguchi's usual fare. It's super violent, extra bloody and not for the faint of heart. However, it's funny, clever and entertaining still! Despite the strong ties to BTSSB, the film does unfortunately refer to her style incorrectly as "gothic lolita" throughout the movie. It's not the best movie ever made, and definitely not the best to represent lolita, but it's a good watch nonetheless.


It seems like lolita fashion in tokusatsu  is a popular trend! The ever popular Super Sentai megaseries has a  television show, Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, which also features a character that wears lolita!

The show features Yui Koike who plays Ahim de Famille. Ahim is the pink ranger of the team, Gokai Pink. When she's not in her sentai form, she wears lolita from many different brands! Much of her wardrobe consists of items from Metamorphose, Atelier Perriot and Victorian Maiden!

Despite being the pink ranger, she is often seen wearing many cream and brown outfits. She does often accessorize with pink items, however, and usually has a pink jacket worn overtop her lolita outfits! I think she is honestly one of the best examples of lolita fashion in live action form, despite often wearing non-lolita-style boots for running around in.

Another example of lolitas in the Super Sentai universe are Nai & Mea! Nai & Mea are henchmen featured in Mahou Sentai Magiranger. Magiranger ran from 2005 to 2006, so their style is a little outdated and costumey, but it's still a fairly good example for its time.

They dress in a strange gothic/punk blend but it really works for their playful and imp-like behavior! Mea is more accurate in depicting lolita fashion with her full skirt and princess sleeves, but Nai still shows a lolita-style influence in her clothing! While their style is really different, I really love their dark, but cute, look!


Kamen Rider Wizard is another tokusatsu show that features lolita fashion, but not nearly at the same extent as Gokaiger.

One of the characters, Koyomi, wears a unique and comfortable style. While she does wear lolita items, both brand and otherwise, they usually aren't worn in the 'normal' lolita way. Most of her outfits are reminiscent of "old fashion" English clothing, dolly kei and cult party kei with their lack of petticoats and often short skirts. They all share a strong earthy and old fashion feel to them, featuring many browns, greens and other neutral tones.

 It wasn't until the movie, 'Kamen Rider Wizard in Magic Land' that there was a lolita outfit proper, worn in the traditional lolita style, in the series! The film actually features a collaboration set by Metamorphose as a tie-in. The collaboration set, which included the Gold Braid Tuck Pinafore Dress,  had incredible popularity and it is surprisingly cute too!


The last live action example I'm going to share is one of my favourites, Deka Wanko. If you want to see something that isn't tokusatsu, this is a great one for you! No transforming sequences or aliens here, just a lifestyle lolita doing her job!

Deka Wanko is a tv drama, based on a manga by the same name. The show features Mikako Tabe as Ichiko Hanamori, or "Wanko" as she's called by her colleagues. Wanko is a young woman who is a homicide detective for the Tokyo Police. In her day to day, at work or at home, she is always seen wearing lolita fashion! Even her pajamas and loungewear have a cute, lolita-inspired look! Sometimes her clothing leads her into dangerous or embarassing situations, but Wanko is a character that sticks to her morals and won't change for anyone, clothing or otherwise!

The show is officially sponsored by Angelic Pretty, so most of the clothing in the show is by them. Quite often you'll also see Wanko wearing Meta and Maxicimam as well. Sometimes Bodyline is featured worn by secondary and background characters, oddly enough. Their outfits are usually worn in a more traditional lolita style, and very simply at that.

Wanko has a very original sense of style, and though they do fit the lolita aesthetic, she often pairs lolita in an unusual and unique way. The show is filmed in the fall or winter, so she often wears sweaters and cardigans under her JSKs. Personally I love the way she wears her clothing, but others may disagree and consider it too different and gaudy.

Her outfits may be a little strange, but I think the show is a fantastic example of the fashion as it shows the lolita style in a good light and also shows the "lolita lifestyle" with a really positive outlook towards it! Unfortunately the show is only 10 episodes long, but it received enough popularity to later release two television specials!


There are a plethora of lolita characters in live action media, I could not have listed all the examples of lolita fashion. There are so many characers who dress in lolita inspired styles and items borrowed directly from lolita brands! Despite the large amount of these characters in popular live action media today, I find there still isn't a modern-day representation as accurate as Kamikaze Girls yet.

I'm very happy with the few characters that are visibly wearing lolita fashion, but I'd love to have a Kamikaze Girls for the mordern day lolita. Wanko is a good example, but I find it isn't as directly relateable or influencal as Kamikaze Girls.

What do you think - Do we have a modern day Kamikaze Girls-like live action representation of lolita? What do you think about the listed examples above?

Thanks for reading!

Friday, 1 August 2014

♥ Trends I Would Like To See In Lolita ♥

As it is in any style of fashion, lolita fashion trends come and go with the time. In lolita, some can be are harder to predict than others. It was obvious to see the growing trend of classic lolita from 2010 until now, but who could have predicted head-eating headbows when rectangle headdresses were de rigueur? Being an old school lolita at heart, I'm still shocked to see skirt lengths getting shorter and shorter.

Trends will always change, but it's still surprising to see them when they first emerge. Still, it is fun trying to predict them! Today I'm going to share what I think the next big thing will be, as well as share a few fun ideas of my own that I would like to see be "big" in the fashion!


Upcoming Trend Prediction #₁

Intense Rococo Hair/Headwear

[Source - La marquise de becdeli√®vre, Alexander Roslin (left) College of Fine Arts (right)]

With the recent trend of OTT classic explosively reaching new heights, I wouldn't be very surprised if we started to see more giant "head-eating" hats worn in the fashion. Hats are common in lolita, but usually only in 'normal' sizes or in the minihat variety. While the large style of hats have been worn before in coords, as seen here and here, it is still an uncommon style to wear. However, I have been noticing big hats have been getting more popular!

[ Source: Starrori ]

Do you think we will start seeing rococo hats, and maybe even hairstyles, worn commonly sometime soon?


A Trend I'd Like To See  #₁

Wa Lolita Style Blouse

I know, this sounds horribly outlandish and I know many immediately think "ita" when they see wa lolita, but I think if it's done well and tastefully it can look really nice. I prefer wa lolita that follows a very traditional kimono aesthetic, using solids or muted prints instead of the bright sweet lolita prints or black/white/red combo that seems to be so common with wa lolita. I think using classic techniques such as traditional embroidery and beading would also suit the lolita aesthetic really nicely.

A nice tailored blouse, with kimono-style sleeves could work very nicely underneath a JSK, or even over-top a skirt with a nice obi or lolita-friendly belt. I would love to have a insert for the blouse, similar to how detachable yokes work, in order to make the blouse look more formal. It would be much less hot than adding multiple layers of kimono tops. One could even add nice cotton lace to the inside layer in order to make it more suitable for lolita! 


Upcoming Trend Prediction #₂

Chiffon/See-Through Overskirts

It's already been done before with Angelic Pretty's Day Dream Carnival but the concept hasn't been seen in many brand releases much beyond that. Despite this, there are quite a few indie brands and independent seamstresses experimenting with them and creating their own overskirt designs! 

Both Lady Sariel (left) and Haenuli (right) have sold their own overskirt designs. 

Since the sheer look is currently being popularized with the peignoir trend I think this one will be just as popular! I can either see this trend gaining vast amounts of popularity or completely failing to miss the mark. If people don't get too sick of the peignoir look, this is a much more easy to wear and accessible way to have that sheer, transparent look in outfits without struggling to make peignoirs "fit" in a traditional lolita coord!


A Trend I'd Like To See  #₂

Medieval and Renaissance Inspired Lolita

Sleipnir by Ergi (left) was inspired by Vikings, while these dresses by Cloudberry Lady (right) are renaissance-themed.

This one is a bit of a stretch, possibly wishful thinking on my part, but I do believe this could be a common trend! We've already seen it been done a few times from indie brands, but nothing really from the big brands.

I don't think lolita should just be limited to be inspired by Rococo and Victorian. The medieval and renaissance periods have some beautiful styles of cuts, bustiers, sleeves and design motifs in general. Rennaissance clothing is especially opulent! Right now would be the best time for this trend to emerge, as BTSSB's designs are getting more and more regal and fancy with each release!

I know it is quite different from the normal styles of lolita, but I do really hope the trend grows, with more and more people inspired by these eras.


Upcoming Trend Prediction #₃

Full Veils

[ Source: Siriusc (left), BTSSB's Maria Veil (right) ]

Short veils have been popular in lolita for a long time, but full, long veils have always been reserved to the bride-themed coordinates. Long veils are capable of looking elegant and innocent as well as ghostly and eerie. They can be incredibly versitile and work with both classic, gothic, and sweet! I'm actually surprised they haven't gained huge popularity already.

Lately long dresses, lacy underskirts, and ultra-opulent dresses like CDC have been intensely popular. After experiencing it in 2008, I can say firsthand lolita is going through a huge shift right now with how the style is overall and I wouldn't be surprised if longer veils skyrocketed into popularity! 


A Trend I'd Like To See  #₃

Kokoshnik Headwear and Tiaras

On both sides of my family, I have strong Ukranian and Russian heritage. Since I was a child, I was always fascinated by the cultures of my various familial backgrounds. It is because of that passion for cultures, and my love for fashion, that I hold kokoshnik dear to my heart. 

Grand Duchess Alexandra Pavlovna (left), A modern kokoshnik by TROIKA (right)

Kokoshnik is a style of headdress worn in Russia from the 16th to 19th century. In the early 19th century, the kokoshnik was adapted into a style of tiara. They are made in many different styles, shapes and sizes. They are still worn, but only in special occassions and when traditional dress is worn.
The Rosenborg Kokoshnik Tiara
Source ]

 I find them so incredibly beautiful and elegant. I would love to see them worn in lolita, in any of the styles. The formal nature of the headdress, with how elegant and beautiful they are, would work wonderfully in lolita fashion. With how popular the 'Maria' Halo style crowns are lately, I think these really could be received well with the fashion.

I can only hope, if kokoshnik do become worn in the fashion, that they would be worn elegantly and with dignity. 


I hope you enjoyed reading this! What do you think the next trends for lolita fashion will be?
Thanks for reading!