Saturday, February 28, 2015

Product Reviews: Violle Ville

Hello everyone! So recently I was given the opportunity to review some items from the online store Violle Ville (she can be found on Storenvy or Etsy). I'm going to be going through the whole process, from buying to recieving. Enjoy!

 After receiving the offer, I went to check out what all was available for sale in Violle ville's shop. She has a wide variety of items for sale from bags, accessories, plushies, and phone cases. Having just gotten a phone case and having a bit of a spending limit, I decided to purchase some accessories. While the storefront was a little difficult to browse due to Storenvy's annoying feature of showing everything that's out of stock, I had a little trouble finding some items I liked the look of that were still in stock. I eventually settled on the Mini plate of sweets necklace in blue, Hearts and Bows necklace in pink, Marshmallow necklace, and a Mini Alpaca plush.

 Shipping was from Israel and took 17 days, about two and a half weeks, to get to me after ordering. Everything shipped out the day after I ordered them and arrived well withing the 2-4 week span predicted for shipping on her website.

Receiving and Packaging
 When the package arrived in the mail, I had to sign for it as it was registered mail. I was a bit worried when I saw the package as it was a fairly weak material and already had a rather large tear in it. Everything inside was alright though as the alpaca plush was in a plastic bag and all of the necklaces were in a little jewelry box wrapped up in bubble wrap with a business card on top.
Front of the package
Back of the package
Detail of the tear (appologies for bluriness)
What was inside!

 So the first and most obvious item in the package was the alpaca plush I'd ordered: an Arupakuso! He's very cute, soft, and cudly. I love his little smile, and he's the perfect hugging size!
Ain't he a little cutie?

Also inside the packaging was the little gift box with bubble wrap and a business card around it. Upon opening the bubble wrap around the gift box, I saw that it was a very cute, dark blue box with a little ribbon and bow detail on it.
Violle ville's business card taped securely to the bubble wrap

Underneath all that bubble wrap!
 Upon opening ther box, I saw that all of the necklaces I'd ordered were safely in there as well as a couple extras included as free gifts! I got a Pastel Purple Heart necklace and a cute little fruit Tart necklace.
Inside the box
All the necklaces lined up!
Hearts and Bows necklace
Mini Plate of Sweets, blue necklace
Marshmallow necklace
Tart necklace
Pastel Purple Heart necklace
All of the necklaces were very cute! The chains and clasps are all good quality and didn't look to be in need of fixing with my pliers. All of the pieces are well made and don't look like they'll be coming apart anytime soon with proper care. I was very happy to see that the parts of the pendants were all glued firmly together as well as to the bails (the loop backings), so I'm not worried about the pieces falling apart. I wore the Heats and Bows and Mini Plate of Sweets necklace together the following day and had no problems with them falling apart, breaking, tangling themselves on my hair, or having the annoying grey marks from the coating coming off like with a lot of inexpensive jewelry nowadays.

Final Thoughts
 I'm super happy with my order from Violle ville! Other than the torn package, everything was great from her comunication to the final products! I would definitely consider ordering from her again in the future and would reccomend Violle ville to anyone looking for some super cute accessories, clothes, or plushies. I'm looking forward to wearing these cute necklaces all the time with Fairy Kei, Decora, and maybe even Sweet Lolita coords!

Check me out on Twitter: @animlolicouture
I've got a Facebook page:

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Being a Swolita

Hello everyone! So today I'm going to be talking about my experience as a body builder and a Lolita, or "Swolita" as I like to call myself.

 I've always struggled with fitness. I've never been a fat kid, but I've never been much of an athlete either. When I was younger I was in karate and dance, but around 14 I had to stop both due to finance and transportation issues. During my dancing years, I became quite proficient in tap, jazz, and ballet, even going so far as to win an award with the rest of my dance group at a competition we attended. I always pushed myself in class and would practice a particular step or combo at home if I was struggling with it in class so I could have it down by the next lesson. For most of my dancing career, I would spend 3 or more days a week at the dance studio, typically with two or more classes lasting an hour to an hour and a half. At one point though, I switched to a school where I only had two classes a week. I started noticing that I was gaining weight (a bit more than was needed for someone still growing) and my parents had to explain to me that I couldn't eat the same ammounts as when I was in more dance classes because my body didn't need as much to be maintained. I had been in fairly intensive dance for so long that I had become acustom to a higher metabolism. After I left dance and karate, I struggled to find another, closer physical activity I could participate in that would allow me to stay in shape. I tried fencing for a while, and was getting pretty good at it before the group I was in broke up. Since then I've struggled with staying in shape or even finding something I enjoy doing in the way of physical fitness.

 While I still don't have the strongest of workouts, after a eight week overall fitness program and a 12-week weightlifting one about a year later, I've put on a lot of muscle. Before I moved out of my parent's house for my career and fitness change, I wore small to medium blouses, had a bust of 34 in and a waist of 27 inches, and typically weighed 125-130 lbs. Now I struggle to find blouses and jackets that fit my shoulders and don't fit like a sack, have a larger chest and waist measurement, and weigh around 145 lbs. All of this is due to muscle gain. I have several handmade blouses as well as my first Lolita dress and multiple pairs of bloomers that I made quite a while back that, after the 12-week weight lifting program, no longer fit. Keep in mind, these articles had all fit about a year ago, long before I started the program. Now I face the struggles of a Swolita, too much muscle to properly fit a lot of Lolita clothing. I'm having to face the reality of the fact that I'm either going to have to buy "Plus sized" Lolita (which is pretty much anyone over a US medium) and alter them as needed, or buy articles with lots and lots of shirring.

 While there are the disadvantages, there's also some amusing byproducts of being a Swolita. I've halfway jokingly and somewhat seriously discussed the idea of making a Swolita gym outfit. Think you're pretty awesome showing up in your muscle shirt and gym shorts, guys? Well you ain't seen nothing until a Swolita walks in wearing a floofy dress and asks if you even lift. And then proceed to lift like a boss. Yes I am overexagerating. With that in mind, if any of you are looking for a good exercise program, I highly recommend as they have exercise programs for all skill levels and goals. The program I used was Jamie Eason's LiveFit 12-week program and it worked great for me! Just make sure you use enough weight for the number of reps you're doing. ;)

 Have fun becoming a Swolita!
Check out my fanpage (maintained by yours truly):
I'm on Twitter! @animlolicouture

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Lolita Level Up Quiz!

Hello everyone! A while ago I watched one of the Lolita Vloggers I follow take a Lolita Level Up quiz off of F Yeah Lolita and decided to do the same myself! While there's obviously the opportunity to "cheat" by looking things up as I type, I assure you that I shall dedicate myself to this post and not stray for stolen answers! With that being said, let's start!

*Please note* This is going to be a very long post. I blabber on at times...

  • You have a favorite brand (+1)
Yup! Baby the Stars Shine Bright. :3
  • You own a petticoat (+1)
Multiple hand-made ones. I had a full on, floor length petti, but it was too big to pack, so I gave it to a friend. ;-;
  • You own multiple petticoats in different cuts and/or lengths (+1)
Yuppers. Not all of my techniques quite worked...
  • You own a parasol (+0)
Sadly, no. I keep wanting to get one, but never have. T-T
  • You own an item from a brand (+1)
Yes! I got my first Brand piece not too long ago: a second hand BTSSB cutsew. :3
  • You own a novelty item from a brand (plates, mugs, stuffed animals, home decor, and other "non-wearables") (+0)
  • You own an item from Bodyline (+1)
  • You own an item from a Taobao brand (+0)
I still haven't figured out shopping services...
  • You own an item from a Western indie brand (+1)
Yup! Several pieces from the lovely Miss Carlyfornia!
  • You own an item you bought of eBay, Amazon, or a shady website and it came out okay (+0)
Never ordered from a shady place.
  • You've bought brand directly from their official store (+0)
Hahaha, I wish I had that kind of money. ;-;
  • You've bought a lucky pack (+0)
  • You bought an item in reserve (+0.2)
Not entirely sure what this means. I've bought multiple items that I had put on hold.
  • You own a complete Lolita outfit (+1)
Yup! Need some better blouses though...
  • You've worn a complete Lolita outfit in public (+1)
Almost since day one of discovering it. And yes, I did go through a "ita" phase where my outfits were thrown together with whatever I had that sorta worked. XD
  • You've worn a complete Lolita outfit in public and it wasn't even on Halloween or at a convention (+1)
For funsies and at church multiple times. :3

  • You've bought and sold on an online Lolita community (+0.5)
Bought, yes. Sold, kinda? Do commisions count?
  • You've paid retail price for a rare secondhand brand (+0)
Not to my knowledge.
  • You've paid double the retail price for a rare secondhand brand(+0)
Not to my knowledge.
  • You've paid less than 20% the retail price for secondhand brand (ex: you paid $40 for a piece that originally cost $200) (+0)
Seeing as how I'm having trouble figuring out any info on my one brand item, I have no idea.
  • You've bought from a Japanese auction (+0)
  • You've ordered from a shopping service (+0)
  • You wear clothes you've made for yourself (+1)
All the time!
  • You wear a print you've designed yourself (+0)
Still working on that...
  • You wear clothes you've had custom made for you (+1)
  • Have had brand pieces altered to fit your size or style (+0)
Not really. Had to resew the elastic in one sleeve on my brand blouse, but that's it.
  • You've been wearing Lolita for over a year (+1)
  • You've been wearing Lolita for over 5 years (+1)
Yup. Not that actively, but yup.
  • You've been wearing Lolita for over a decade (+0)
Not quite.
  • You have enough Lolita outfits to wear a new one every day for a week (+1)
Barely, but yes.
  • You have enough Lolita outfits to wear a new one every day for a month (+0)
Hahahaha, no. ;-;
  • You've converted an interested friend to Lolita (+0.2)
Not quite yet, but we're working on it. He's gonna come with me to a meetup eventually. :3

  • You wear brand with your "normal" wardrobe (+0)
  • You don't have a "normal" wardrobe because you only wear Lolita (+0)
Nope. Also into Fairy Kei and Decora. And then there's the days that I just wear a Tshirt and jeans...
  • You know how to handwash your Lolita clothes (+0.5)
Stiiiiillll figuring that out. I know how to handwash stuff, just figuring out how to make knits not stiff when they dry...
  • You know how to wash a wig (+1)
  • You've worn a wig, circle lenses, or false eyelashes (+1)
  • You've worn a wig, circle lenses, and false eyelashes all at once (+0)
Don't own circle lenses yet since I want to do a bit more research on them first. So that would be a nope.
  • You own a pair of rocking horse shoes (+0)
TT-TT I want a pair so badly...
  • You own a pair of tea party shoes (+0)
Not yet.
  • You own a purse shaped like something ridiculous (+0)
  • You own an old school rectangle headdress (+1)
Yup! A cute all white one. :3
  • You own a bonnet (+0)
Nah. Don't really like how they look.
  • You own Lolita roomwear or pajamas (+0)
Does cherry printed PJs count? (Nope...)
  • You own a Lolita item that was released this past year (+0)
Iiiii...don't think so?
  • You own a Lolita item that was released over 6 years ago (+0)
Again, not sure.
  • You own a Lolita item that was released over 10 years ago (+0)
I don't knooooowwwww!
  • You own every item released in a favorite print/series (+0)
;-; No...

  • You've worn something on your head that was never intended to be worn on a head (+1)
A table runner? XD
  • You've worn a trendy accessory (deer horns, halos, peignoirs, eyeballs, etc) (+0)
Nah, don't really like that stuff too much.
  • You've worn Sweet Lolita (+1)
  • You've worn Classic Lolita (+0)
  • You've worn Gothic Lolita (+1)
  • You've worn Old School Lolita (+1)
I'm going with Yes since Miss Carlyfornia's designs are more Old School (the ones I own at least).
  • You've worn Boystyle (+0)
  • You've worn one of the lesser worn Lolita substyles such as Punk, Ero, Wa, or Guro (+1)
Sailor Lolita! And I'm working on a Guro dress that's kinda taken up residence on my manequin...
  • You know the difference between a JSK and an OP (+1)
JSK: Straps or sleeveless. OP: Sleeves. (Yes)
  • You can name at least 5 prints (+1)
Milky Planet, Jewelry Jelly, Romantic Rose Letter, Dream Sky, Sugary Carnival. (Google confirms yes.)
  • You can tell which items are from which brand just by looking at them (+0)
Sometimes, but I have been proven wrong many a time. (Curse you Angelic Pretty for looking like Moi Meme Moitie! XD)
  • You can tell which items are from which brand just by looking at them, even if they're not a print (+0)
Again, not really. I can kinda tell with the more eccentric looks from Alice and the Pirates as well as with Baby's more old school styles, but otherwise, nah.
  • You can tell which year a brand piece came from just by looking at it (+0)
Hahahaha, no! XD
  • You've taken Lolita outfit snaps (+1)
Aaaaaalllll the time.
  • You've traveled to visit a fancy looking place just to take outfit snaps (+0)
Too cold outside right now... And I only recently got more pieces...
  • You've started a trend that others have followed (+0)
Not to my knowledge.

  • You own a Gothic & Lolita Bible (+0)
I've only been able to borrow them from friends... ;-;
  • You own every single Gothic & Lolita Bible (+0)
Why must you mock me so, test! T-T
  • Your picture is in a Gothic & Lolita Bible (+0)
Did I mention the fact I haven't worn Lolita all that long despite being into it for years? (Tha's a no.)
  • Your picture is in a Gothic & Lolita Bible because you're a model for a brand (+0)
  • You own a Lolita sewing pattern book (+0)
  • You've made something from a Lolita sewing pattern book (+1)
  • You've seen Kamikaze Girls (+1)
Yup yup. And you can find my review of it here!
  • You've read Kamikaze Girls (+0)
Not yet. I kinda forgot it was a book too...
  • You've met Novala Takemoto (+0)
Awhozada? *Googles it*
  • You've met Misako Aoki (+0)
No, but she's a very cute girl. n_n
  • Misako Aoki has made you an official Lolita ambassador (+0)
  • You've met one of your favorite Lolita designers (+1)
  • You've learned how to sew/craft just so you can make your own Lolita clothes/accessories (+0)
Nope. Learned sewing to make clothes for my stuffies as a kid.
  • You've decorated your house/bedroom to match your Lolita wardrobe (+0)
Not really to match my wardrobe, but definitely to make it cuter.
  • Your Lolita wardrobe is part of your decor (ex: you display your hats on a shelf, keep a mannequin dressed up on display, etc) (+1)
I guess you could say yes. My rolling clothes rack (that all of my Lolita clothing is stored on) is out in the open along with some other pieces.
  • You've been interviewed for a newspaper/magazine article for wearing Lolita (+0)
Sadly no.

  • You've made friends through Lolita (+1)
A couple so far, yes!
  • You've made friends in foreign countries through Lolita (+0)
Not yet.
  • You've celebrated International Lolita Day (+0)
I think I was busy with school at that time... (nope)
  • You have a separate facebook profile just for Lolita (+0)
Kinda? I have my fanpage for outfits and stuff in general, including Lolita coords.
  • You're known by a different name when you wear Lolita (+0)
Not really. I do use the name Butterfly occationally, but it hasn't really caught on since I mostly hang out with my "normal" friends and they call me by my regular name no matter how I dress. ^^;;
  • You've twinned with someone (+0)
  • You've tripleted with people (+0)
  • You've been part of a group of clones (+0)
I don't even know that many Lolitas... o_o;;
  • You've taken purikura in Lolita before (+0)
Purikura, yes. In Lolita, no.
  • You have a purikura app on your phone (+1)
  • You've had to explain what you were wearing to a stranger (+1)
Many a time.
  • You've been called a princess by small children (+0)
Can't remember a specific occurence, but it might have happened...
  • Old ladies have complimented you and remarked how nice it is to see young people dressed so nicely (+1)
All the time at church.
  • You've been called Bo-Peep (+1)
Aaaaalllll the time.
  • You've been asked if you were in a play (+1)
Quite a few times, yes.
  • You've been asked what you were cosplaying as, or compared to an anime character (+1)

  • You're a member of online Lolita communities (+1)
Yup. Several on Facebook.
  • You're active in online Lolita communities (+1)
  • You mod an online Lolita community (+0)
I don't have that much free time.
  • You mod an online community of over 1,000 members (+0)
  • You've attended a meetup (+0)
Not yet.
  • You've attended a tea party meetup (+0)
Not yet.
  • You've attended a brand sponsored tea party (+0)
  • You've traveled multiple hours to attend a meetup (+0)
  • You've hosted a meetup (+0)
Sooorta. I had a tea party birthday once, but no one really wore Lolita besides me. I don't think my sister did either, but my memory is failing me...
  • You've hosted over 6 meetups (+0)
Hahaha, nooooo.
  • You've hosted a meetup with over 20 attendees (+0)
  • You've been to a Lolita swap meet (+0)
  • You've attended a large scale Lolita event or convention (+0)
  • You've been on staff at a large scale Lolita event or convention (+0)
  • You've been to a Lolita panel at a convention (+0)
I think so?
  • You've hosted your own panel at a convention (+0)

  • You've seen a Lolita fashion show (+0)
  • You've modeled in a Lolita fashion show (+0)
I wish. ;-;
  • You've seen a brand fashion show (+0)
  • You've modeled in a brand fashion show (+0)
Sooooo wish.
  • You own your own Lolita clothes/accessory line (+0)
Not yet, but working on that. Need to find some good patterns to start off with...
  • You've hosted your own brand's fashion show (+0)
  • You have visited a Lolita shop (+0)
Not yet, but I have been made aware of the existence of one not too far away. But it's far enough away I haven't been able to visit yet.
  • You've traveled to another country just to buy from Lolita shops (+0)
I've never even left this contry...
  • You own and run your own Lolita shop (+0)
  • You're friends with a brand shop girl (+1)
*Googles Brand Shop Girl* ...I still am unsure what that means... I'm going with yes since I have a friend who runs her own shop and another that works with her at that shop and I'm assuming this is what they mean... Girls who wear a Brand at a shop. (Indie shop in this case)
  • You are a brand shop girl (+0)
No. But have worn my handmade Lolita while working at my friend's shop.
  • You run a Lolita blog (traditional, tumblr, vlog, etc) (+1)
No. This is merely a piece of fried chicken. (Yes, silly!)
  • You run a Lolita blog with over 1,000 followers (+0)
*checks* One follower. I think that's my sister...
  • You have been called "e-famous" (+0)
  • You have been called "e-infamous" (+0)
I don't think that many people even know of my existence...
  • You've been featured on TV for wearing Lolita (+0)
Nopeity nope.

*And now to add all the points up for the final score...*

40 points (Not including partials. Counting those as nos)

So that makes meee...

Just Starting Out

16-40 points means you're just starting out in the world of Lolita. You may have been interested in the fashion for a few years but are just now getting involved in wearing the fashion on a regular basis and joining local communities. You probably have a couple full outfits but are still working on building a larger wardrobe. Alternatively, you have a larger wardrobe and definitely know your stuff, but you aren't very active in local or online Lolita communities and are perhaps more of a lone Lolita. Your next step is probably either finishing up adding a few more pieces to your wardrobe or to starting getting to know some other Lolitas.

 So, I find this pretty accurate. I have been into Lolita for a while, but am only really just starting to build my Lolita wardrobe. (Doesn't help that my handmade blouses don't fit my Swolita shoulders any more. XD) Plus I'm not very active in my local Lolita community since I only recently discovered their existence. All in all, this was a fun quiz! Took a while due to all of the questions, but I finished it! n_n

I have a fanpage now! (Maintained by yours truly):
Check me out on Twitter: @animlolicouture

Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Victorian Maiden of Old

Hello everyone! Recently as I've been getting more into Lolita again, I'm seeing many changes from when I originally became interested in the Lolita style approximately eight years ago. One of these changes that I'm going to be talking about today is the typical Lifestyle Lolita.

 When I first learned about Lolita I took every opportunity I could to learn more about as many different aspects about the style as I could. While this didn't include buying due to my limited funds and the general lack of availability of Brand items, I learned about many different substyles and what was the Lolita culture at the time. One of the things that intrigued me greatly at this young age was the concept of the Lifestyle Lolita, a girl who completely dedicates her life to being as elegant and beautiful as possible in the Lolita fashion. The Lifestyle Lolita was a girl who was always dressed in beautiful clothing, wearing elegant nightgowns to bed and always being dressed in Lolita during the day. She would read peotry and drink tea, flounce and flutter everywhere she went, and had a very delicate personality. While at the time I had not yet watched Kamikaze Girls, my idea of what a Lifestyle Lolita was had become very similar to Momoko's. Being rougher around the edges and more of a tomboy in general, I bemoaned the fact that I would likely never be this perfect Lolita, this Lifestyle Lolita that I had pictured in my mind.

 While I still have my childhood views of a Lifestyle Lolita, in more recent times it has come to mean a very different thing. No longer must a girl be delicate and elegant to be a Lifestyle Lolita, drinking tea and daitily eating pastries. Anymore, all one has to do to be considered a Lifestyle Lolita is wear Lolita on a daily basis and surround themselves with cuteness and tea. Many of the girls I have seen in YouTube videos are much like me, rougher around the edges, but still fascinated with the elegance and cuteness of the Lolita styles. So, while the current definition of the term has changed, my fanciful dream is still in place. I don't expect more modern Lolitas to conform to my ideals, but someday I hope that I can become more like the elegant lady I wished to become.

Have fun wearing Lolita and don't let anyone tell you you're wrong or that you don't have the personality to wear such pretty dresses. As much as being a Lifestyle Lolita of old seems to come along with the fashion, in the end Lolita is just another style, like crop tops and skinny jeans. You don't have to fit into a specific mold to be able to wear what you love.


I'm on Twitter! @animlolicouture
Check out my fanpage (maintained by yours truly):