On Being Lolita: Why Not Every Day?

On Being Lolita: Why Not Every Day?

Whenever someone asks me if I “dress like that” every day, I wish I could say, “♥★♥★♥YES!♥★♥★♥” (Even better if a shower of sparkles could emanate from me in a halo~)

Unfortunately, that’s not the case, no matter how many stars I implore. I used to tell myself that it’s because I can’t afford to wear lolita fashion on a daily basis–I can’t afford to buy enough garments to outfit me for more than a few days, and I can’t afford the time and cost launder them properly. I would tell myself that I’d worry too much about ruining my nicest clothes–I can’t wear it every day for practicality. I used to say that I didn’t have time to get dressed up on a daily basis–I can’t wear lolita fashion every day because it would take too long. I’d insist that wearing lolita constantly would be tiring–I can’t put forth the effort. I’d think of all these excuses and convince myself that there was something about me that meant prevented me from doing what I wanted to do.

Sometimes, you have to make a choice–do I wear what I want or do I wear what is accepted/appropriate/expected? As much as it would be fun to always wear what I want, I make many clothing decisions based on the wants of other people. My job doesn’t have a strict dress code, but all the same I can’t wear a formal lolita coordination in my style. My clients and coworkers have expectations about what is to be worn at work–and even if I could explain to them what the fashion is and what it means to me, it would add another layer of connotations and impressions of me. I want those who interact with me to remember me for my work ethic and disposition–not for being “the weird girl.”

Similarly, I don’t wear lolita to class. I’m studying at business school, hoping to enter a field that is very conservative and traditional. I certainly wouldn’t be hired if I wore lolita fashion to a job interview, and because of this I don’t wear lolita fashion to class on a regular basis. Sometimes I just can’t help myself–especially if I’m taking a class that is an elective as opposed to required for my specialization–but usually I try to dress like my classmates. My professors and any special guests that might come to the class are all potential business contacts; I want their impressions of me to be free of biases due to my clothing habits.

Some people would consider my actions to be cowardly, conformist, or weak–and for the most part, I agree. After all, it takes quite a bit of courage to be true to yourself even when outside forces are against you. However, it is hard to make and act upon a decision to restrain or unfurl yourself, regardless of the final choice. If I wore lolita fashion constantly, I know that it would close doors to different choices in my life. I make a choice to limit my self-expression to avoid limiting my opportunities, but I’d much rather have both than one or the other; I want to be a constantly complete “me.”

However, I can’t guarantee that I will want to wear lolita fashion forever. I won’t make decisions based only on that aspect if I have to endure the future consequences after things have changed. With this constantly in mind, it’s a bit confusing to maintain a balance in my life of enjoying the things I want to do and working at the things I have to do. (If only they were one and the same!)

I greatly admire those who wear lolita fashion (or any alternative fashion!) on a daily basis. Putting your frilliest foot forward isn’t simple. Some people will fawn over your expression; others will chide or exclude you. It takes a lot of courage to overcome hurdles and withstand biases that would be otherwise nonexistent if only you’d change your clothes!

Sometimes I consider revising my goals, so that I could wear lolita fashion every day. If I aimed for a different career, applied for a new job, and transferred to another school, it would remove some of the restrictions on my clothing choices. Would that really be the right thing to do? Not for me. If I must compromise, it will be on my clothing, not my future–that is how my priorities are arranged. Despite this decision, I still worry that at some point that wearing lolita fashion will have a negative impact on my career… but not enough to stop wearing it.

Almost everything in life is best when there is a balance. This is how mine is working out, at least for now. I can’t even imagine what will happen ten years from now!

9 thoughts on “On Being Lolita: Why Not Every Day?

  1. I can relate to your post, I wish I could wear lolita every day, but it's not possible…
    For me, it's the cold weather, the fact that I don't have the time to dress up every day, I don't have enough clothes, etc. etc. A lot of the reasons you mentioned.
    And I don't dare to wear it in school. I'm a bit intimidated of what people would say to me…

    But I hope the best for you and your career, no matter what clothes you're wearing!

  2. I'm mostly the same as you. I'm not ashamed of who I am, but not wanting people to judge me negatively and have it affect my career is not the same as being ashamed. I wear lolita when I'm not at work, and when I'm at work, no one would guess I wear lolita…unless they recognize my little IW bow or glimpse something frilly on my computer screen as I read blogs between assignments! XD

  3. This little article came at just the right time for me, couldn't be better! My tutor at college felt uncomfortable when he first started teaching me (our classes are small, 15 people per class) because I wore lolita. At the time I couldn't understand why but after talking with friends and thinking it over I get it. And I now wear lolita infused outfits to class, jeans with tea party shoes and spank! type coordinates with sneakers. Needless to say we've got to know each other much more so he knows me as Michelle now, not the scary girl who wears the weird clothes and doesn't talk much!

    Sorry for writing a novel! I really enjoyed your post 🙂

  4. @ The Osaka Koneko: That's how I am at work, too. I want to use a lolita advertisement for my desktop wallpaper~

    @ untouched_sugar: I think wise might be a bit of an overstatement~ It's true that you have more freedom working retail–although there are usually still dress codes.

    @ Chelle: I'm glad you enjoyed it! I appreciate that you shared your experience, too. :3

  5. Hello, my name is Audrey, this is my first comment here and, since I'm not english, maybe I will do mistakes while writing (sorry if I do so).
    I'm a brand-new lolita, I wear it only on week-ends. I'd like to wear it everyday, because it is with frills, lace, ribbons, pettis, JSK, that I feel being myself, the real me. When I wear my working clothes, I feel disguised, as if I was compromising myself. In my working clothes, I'm not me. I'm a teacher, so, I don't have to wear strict clothes or a uniform, but I don't feel well at ease with my "serious" adult-like dresses (I only wear dresses, I couldn't wear trousers).
    I'm asking myself a lot of questions about being myself nowadays, and if being myself is implicated by always wearing what is you… And the feeling of not "being myself" five days a week is really hard.
    I always felt, behaved, thought like a lolita. And I only discovered this universe a few years ago, so, I'd like to live it as free as I can now, since now I know who I am (because to me, being a lolita can concern more than clothes, it can be about behavior, tastes…).
    Maybe my comment is a bit confused or too long, but I felt so much concerned by your great article, I had to share my feelings.
    And thank you so much for this beautiful blog.

  6. Yes I to completely relate I just own so little lolita due to its cost that if I wore it every day it would be really weird. It would look like I was repeating every three days!

  7. We have to prioritise…and sometimes Lolita has to take a back seat!
    Well done on an excellent post, which highlights the dilemas that some of us genuinely face.

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