Reading Corner: Daddy Long-Legs

Reading Corner: Daddy Long-Legs

During elementary school, I remember fondly that all of my classrooms had a reading corner–a little nook with comfy cushions and a bookshelf that was always full of a rotating selection of age-appropriate titles. I have always loved books, so I thought it was heavenly whenever there was a moment that I could tuck myself away and drift off into another world. I was so taken with this kind of thing that I moved all of my furniture around (despite being even tinier as a child) to make my own bedroom book-nook.

My interest in lolita fashion reawakened my love of Victorian literature, which in turn spurred me on to seek out books that I could somewhat identify with the fashion I adore. Due to my association of the style (particularly because I am a sweet lolita) with old-fashioned-ness and the dreams of young girls, certain books make me reminscent in that respect. I don’t limit my “lolita-ish” reading to only Victorian literature, because the fashion does not take its inspirations solely from that era.

The most obvious choice for “lolita reading” is Kamikaze Girls (originally Shimotsuma Monogatari, which translates as Shimotsuma Story), which I suppose I will reflect on some other time. (I had lent it to my best friend, and I cannot recall if she ever returned it to me. Whether she did or not, I certainly can’t find it!) After that, however, there aren’t any novels in English written about the style, and my Japanese ability is far too poor to read any other works from Novala Takemoto.

The other day I decided to reread Jean Webster’s Daddy Long-Legs. Oddly enough, this is a book I have never read in paper form–the first time I ever read it was a endlessly long text file downloaded years ago, and I reread it thanks to the wonder of Google Books.

Although there isn’t the slightest hint of lolita fashion in Daddy Long-Legs, I feel that it is worthwhile reading for any dreamy-hearted lolita. After all, it is the tale of an orphan girl who is sent to college by a mysterious benefactor and suddenly finds herself enjoying life as a young lady, all neatly wrapped into a sweet love story. ♥ When the spirited Judy (neé Jerusha) talks of drinking tea while studying, running off on little adventures with her friends, or buying clothing and trinkets, I can’t help but think similar times with my own dearest friends. Sometimes I image that the gowns she orders for each school term are fanciful creations such as BABY, the Stars Shine Bright might design!

I nearly flew through the pages once I started on it, and I enjoyed reading her letters so very much that now I’m wishing I had a pen-pal again!

Outfit Snap: Keeping it Pink!

Outfit Snap: Keeping it Pink!

It feels like it’s been forever-and-ever-and-a-day since I last wore a lolita outfit, although I know that the last time wasn’t quite so long ago. (The wonderful picnic and walk that I attended on May 31, 2009 was a lolita fashion meetup, after all!)

I moved not too terribly long ago, and when I did so a lot of my belongings were stored in the room at my mother’s house. My person and I could not afford to rent a moving van, so we had to move necessities a bit at a time whenever anyone was kind enough to drive us to our house. The rest we carried when we rode the L train back into the city of Chicago. Due to this odd method of moving, my lolita clothing was rather laid by the wayside–left at my mother’s house with no-one so intent on getting it moved in as I was.

Today I shall be meeting with some friends–something about zombie cake–so it seemed the perfect occasion. I happened to ask if there was anything in particular I ought to wear (I love getting opinions!) and was told, “Anything anti-Moitié.” Well, that was certainly easy given my closet!

My wonderful person helped me assemble this outfit. I am particularly proud of the wrist cuffs. They started off as white wrist cuffs handmade by my little sister, and I added large bows that match the dress for a little something extra. For some reason this one-piece is a bit on the shorter side, but hopefully I can get away with it since this is summertime~

Hairbows: Angelic Pretty
One-Piece: Angelic Pretty
Wrist Cuffs: Handmade
Bows-on-Wrist-Cuffs: Angelic Pretty
Socks: Angelic Pretty
Shoes: Angelic Pretty

Goodness, you could never guess my favourite lolita fashion brand after that!

On Being Lolita: Joining a Community

On Being Lolita: Joining a Community

Because Chicago is a major city, our “lolita population” constantly ebbs and flows. The sheer volume of people living in the city or various suburbs means there are bound to be several people interested in something you like, even if it is very obscure. This is particularly true for lolita fashion–numerous lolita live in the city, and even more can be found out in the outlying suburbs. There are constantly people moving in and out of the city, coming to and fro for university, and of course there are always new girls (and inevitably some guys) discovering the fashion.

I firmly believe that the very best part of lolita fashion is the communities that form around it. I particularly adore my local community, as most of the members are really great people that I feel very lucky to know. ♥

When one starts getting into lolita fashion, it can be very confusing to sort things out and get a true grasp of what the fashion is and is not. Even following the “rules” cannot guarantee a successful understanding of the style. It takes time and experience to really get a feel for it. Spending time with other lolita is a great way to evolve and grow from a fledgling lolita-admirer to a ♥lolita♥. The best way to do this is participation in the local community–interacting with other, more knowledgable lolita.

However, not every community is the most welcoming. Some lolita have forgotten what it was like to be brand-new to the fashion, enthusiastic about everything and ignorant of sublties of the style. They might have rude comments about the outfit a newcomer was so excited about. However, weathering any initial unpleasantries can reveal willing help–especially if one is eager to learn.

It is very important for a lolita-hopeful to learn how to accept criticism. Most lolita are extremely opinionated, and some will add their 2¢ even if it wasn’t requested. Learn to ignore the rude, unhelpful comments from those who just want to be insulting, but pay close attention to the people who offer constructive criticism–criticism that doesn’t just point out what is wrong, but provides suggestions to make it right. Don’t assume to be an expert on the fashion at first try; be willing to listen to what veteran enthusiasts have to say.

Some people don’t have patience or tact, so they are best avoided if one is brand new. However, there will inevitably be kinder individuals who wouldn’t mind helping out someone unwise in the ways of lolita fashion. Additionally, some people are much crueler online than they are face-to-face; the same person who might be spiteful on an internet community might prove to be a wealth of knowledge that they share with a smile if one is meeting her in person. Attending a local meetup is a great way to talk to experienced lolita, ask them questions, and learn more about such an intriguing style.

It can be intimidating to go to a first meetup–an event where everyone else seems to know each other except you. Being friendly, willing to join conversations, and participating in whatever is going on at the meetup will open doors.

Besides, you just might run into a silly person like me, who loves talking to lolita-to-be~ (Especially since the others are bored with my nonsense by now!)

Daily Life: On a Date!

Daily Life: On a Date!

My person and I have been together for nearly five years (it will be exactly five years as of tomorrow), but I still get all giddy and excited about doing something romantic together–especially going out on a date!

Going out on a date is one of my favourite things that we can do together. It can make any day extra-special. Although we spend quite a bit of time together, not just anything is a date. Oh, no–a date has to be planned. A date cannot be running the errands or cleaning the house; a date has to be something at least a little bit out of the ordinary.

That’s not to say that it has to be expensive. The very best dates are the ones we do our best to enjoy with as little spending as possible. We can go for a walk along the lakefront, and then make dinner at home and spend some time cuddling together with the guinea pigs. We could borrow a movie that we’ve both wanted to see, play board games or card games, or try to one-up each other with funny video clips.

Today we were lucky enough to go to the movie theatre! My mother had won a movie theatre gift certificate at work, and she was kind enough to give it to me. When my person mentioned that he wanted to see Up!, we decided to get up early and see a matinee showing to get the most out of our gift card. Our bus got us to the theatre with plenty of time to spare. We were the only ones in the room–it felt really neat to have the whole place to ourselves while the movie played! It really came in handy, because I cried the entire time.

The movie was amazingly well-animated and the storyline was very well-developed, but I was really emotionally moved by everything about the story. After the first fifteen minutes or so I started sobbing, and cried almost nonstop throughout the rest of the film. It was incredibly embarassing–even when the credits were rolling I couldn’t stop crying! I was so glad that no-one else could see me. Going out for lunch hadn’t really been part of our original plan, but it was improvised as a bit of a cheer-me-up. We don’t usually eat at restaurants, so it was really a treat.

After a delicious meal at the Oak Tree (where I learned that their “toasted epicurean cheese” menu was some kind of slang for wonderfully creative grilled-cheese sandwiches), we stopped by more for dessert. Cupcakes are one of my favourite-est desserts in the whole world (although I have the stereotypical sweet-lolita love of all desserts), and more was closest to us. Today’s flavors all looked quite tasty. My person chose blueberry right away, but I had a really hard time picking from strawberry-rhubarb meringue, s’more, and key lime pie. Eventually I picked key lime pie, after much deliberation.

We brought our treats home and made some of my person’s favourite tea. (He really likes the Samurai Chai Mate from Teavana. However, since we don’t have any in-cup tea-strainers at the moment we don’t make it very often, since we have to make a whole pot of it at a time.) Then we relaxed in the kitchen, chuckled at the antics of the guinea pigs, and ate our delicious cupcakes. It was blissfully wonderful~

I don’t ever want to stop treasuring our time together, no matter what we’re doing. Days like these make me so happy that we’re together. My heart is so full of love and sparkles! ♥

Introduction: Pink Milk Tea

Introduction: Pink Milk Tea

About the Blog

Pink Milk Tea is my attempt at writing a blog focusing on lolita fashion from the perspective of one sweet lolita. It will have entries on different topics related to the fashion or the authoress.

There is no direct plan for this blog. I want to write about lolita fashion because it plays a significant and important role in my life. I would like to share my writings with other lolita or interested parties.

About Lolita Fashion

Lolita fashion is a Japanese style that takes inspiration from young girl’s clothing of Victorian England, the decadence of Rococo art and interior design, and the dreams of an utopian anachronistic era that never was. Lolita clothing is designed to look inspired by the past but utterly unhistorical. There are many sub-styles of lolita fashion with slightly different characteristics, such as gothic lolita, sweet lolita, and classic lolita. There are also complimentary styles such as Japanese gothic, aristocrat, and dandy-looking boy styles.

The major publication for lolita fashion is the Gothic & Lolita Bible. Recently the American company Tokyopop has released several volumes of an English-language adaptation Gothic & Lolita Bible.

Lolita fashion is not connected to the well-known novel by Vladimir Nabokov. Although the historical origins of lolita fashion are vague, the fashion evolved from other Japanese styles. Lolita fashion is not a sexual fetish or connected to sexual activities.

About the Authoress

I, Alice, have been wearing lolita fashion since 2006. I am a sweet lolita, adoring everything fluffy, pink, and cute~ ♥ I am not a “lifestyle lolita,” but I enjoy the rosy tint that lolita fashion has cast over my day-to-day life. I am an active member of Chicago’s gothic & lolita community, and moderate ChiGothLoli, where we plan events and talk.

When not wearing frills, I enjoy spending time with my person and my guinea pigs, causing mischief with my dear friends, rocking hard to heavy metal music, and eating as many cupcakes as I possibly can. I study accounting at business school and love it!