Sunday, September 30, 2012

Trip down memory lane: style progression

I'd better get the embarrassing truth out there, and encourage others to do the same! I really had to dig up some ancient dirt, but as we all know; the Internet doesn't forget, so I was able to recover plenty of incriminating evidence!


This was when I first learned there was a style by the name of Lolita. The Internet provided very little information; only a few photos and vague references to dolls and anime. I have no pictures of  the time I initially experimented with the style (towards the end of 2005), but it was awful and dead wrong, trust me. Lots of scratchy lace was involved.


Slowly getting a picture of what Lolita includes, I still made some beginner's errors, as can be seen below. Tiny aprons, messy and fake-looking Goth hair, cosplay-gloves, corsets, nurse-caps and kitty ear-warmers are totally a part of a successful outfit.

Me, making Eä&Visual look even better in comparison.


Finally! The anatomy and quality of a real Lolita outfit pretty much down, and this was the time when it was already a bit more common for brand and information being available online. I myself was an avid Angelic Pretty fan, and got a huge load of pink-and-white items from Japan in the summer of 2007. All of them I sold pretty quickly, I suppose, after only a few uses.

Already flirting with Gothic Lolita for Halloween meetup in 2007.


 This was the year of transition for me. Still a full-on sweet lolita, it was in the summer of 2008 that I wanted to first try Kuro and then also start using black, white and red. My Amalolita days were a thing of the past by 2009.

I and Marie sharing secrets.

Although looking red-nosed and flustered, the outfit was nice and I loved my hair!


So here we are. Starting from full-on Kuro Lolita and eventually moving on to traditional Gothic Lolita. I've been wearing my favourite Metamorphose dress and that self-made bonnet to hell and back, they're probably the only two Lolita things I own that I won't give up or sell.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Lolita and me: what do we have in common?

I stated in my introductory post in a most "look at me, I'm a Unique Snow Flake!" -manner, that I'm into stuff that isn't Lolita. Then again, most of us are, and most of us - I would assume - aren't so deeply 1-dimensional that the only content in their life comes from Lolita-related things and denying themselves anything that doesn't fit that picture. That simply cannot be.

So what on earth am I into, then, that's very much inherently Lolita-approved?


Here is a brief summation. I might go into greater detail on some of these topics later in my blog.


1. Tea

Yes, yes, tea. I've always been a fan of tea with milk, but within this year I've learned to consume it without milk as well. The thanks goes largely to the Tea Parlour/shop called Ounce here in Helsinki. It's a very popular hangout and shopping place for Finnish Lolitas, and their variety of different kinds of tea is impressive. My own favourites usually fall into the Rooibos and flavoured Black tea -categories.

2. Sweet things




 I rarely have cravings, but when I do, it's mostly for candy/sweets/bonbons. Licorice, salty licorice, jelly beans, chocolate - bring it! While not a major fan of baked goods, I simply cannot resist cheese cake. It's my weakness. The soft, smooth, velvety consistency of the cream cheese, the rich, sweet bottom layer, the delicious, so deceptive. I'm fortunate/unfortunate enough (depending on your angle) to have some great cheese cake witches in my circle of friends. 


3. Classical music


I am a fan of classical music. My particular favourites are the late Czhecs of 1800-1900, Antonin Dvoràk and Bedrich Smetana but also Tchaikovsky and our very own Finnish master, Jean Sibelius. I judge classical music like I do any other, so whatever I prefer has to have beautiful, powerful melodies and rouse emotion. I could also listen to piano and cello being played, like, 24/7.

4. Classic literature and poetry

  ...I know it's such a cliché, but I especially adore book classics as well as poetry from the 1800-1900's. The Brontë sisters (Can't get enough of Wuthering Heights, just saying), Charles Dickens, Poe, and Blake come to mind first. In the 1920's there was also a Finnish group of poets called "The Flamebearers", of which some have truly written bone-chillingly melancholy and pathos-filled poetry.


5. Plushies


This is one form of collecting I'm somewhat known for. I have my Queen-sized bed filled with different plush animals, each with names and personalities! What I like to look for in a plushie is realism; preferably no cartoony-looking or overly childish figures - the more real-looking, the better. I also prefer animals that are quite rare in the plushie world. I'll make an entry all about soft toys later, but I do have to mention that I am currently in custody of, for example, a gigantic sea-turtle, an emperor penguin, a white grouse, baby seals, owls, a white tiger, a yak, and of course, two red pandas.


6. Picnics

  No matter how I like frolicking in the snow, admiring autumn colours, waiting for Christmas or watching nature awaken, I'm a solar-powered summer person at the end of the day. And I love packing up all sorts of goodies, maybe a bottle of wine and a big blanket and then heading off to some scenic location to enjoy it all with friends. As an amateur food afficionado (or at least a decent home cook) I've got so many ideas for picnic-lunches that just wait to be put into action.


7. Opera and theatre

"Der Ring des Nibelungen" by Wagner, "Rusalka" by Dvorák, "Turandot" by Puccini...ah! I haven't been able to go to see any operas or plays in a long while, but it's an ongoing dream of mine to get to see world-famous pieces in Prague's national opera. Same applies for theatre and musicals - I don't go nearly as much as I'd like to. Partially this is because I'd like to travel abroad to experience most of the plays and musicals I want to see. My mother taking me to London's West End to see A.L. Webber musicals and pampering me with opera must've spoiled me, haha.


8. Amusement parks

The wilder the ride, the happier I am and more juvenile I act, make no mistake about that. I run from the first contraption to the next, forgetting to breathe or eat and eventually end up with a sugarrush-like state of ecstacy. This usually results in me being exhausted but happy, and falling asleep in the car on the way home. There's also a certain charm in the old-fashioned, ornate and slightly kitschy rides, and who could resist the mixed aromas of cotton candy, popcorn and junk food?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Some things pretty

While there's plenty of amazing items of clothing out there, there are some things that I love for various reasons, and some of those even make my style feel like mine. Maybe there's some nostalgia in these items for some of you as well?


Headdresses, especially the traditional, rectangular ones are super cute and intricate accessories that finish an outfit without being overpowering or drawing too much attention to themselves. Very feminine and cute! Always a must-have with old-school Lolita.


Aprons haven't been in favour for a while, many see them as too maid-like or only fitting an Alice-inspired ensemble. I, for one, wholly disagree! I've wanted this BtSSB apron (below) in black, or at least white-on-black for years, but it's hard to come by. Oh well, maybe one day...


An autumn and winter essential! Thicker wool or velvet capelets bring a Victorian feeling to a coordinate and lighter cotton capelets deliver that little extra "oomph". Two different looks in one go; capelet on and capelet off!


Soft, heavy and expensive, there's something very regal about velvet. Velvet was more common back in the old-school haydays, and some of the most beautiful velvet dresses and jumper skirts are from an era when the clothes were hardly even available for us westerners. Here's two examples that make me want to become a time lord:

The colour red

My favourite colour! It's typical that the only thing red in my coords is my hair, but it's the red items of clothing and accessories that never fail to catch my eye. Ones that suit the gothic look are few and far apart (or legendarily high-priced) but usually worth coveting.

Velvet and red? Talk about dream combo!

Turtleneck shirts

Sometimes an outfit just doesn't need a lace-collared, princess-sleeved blouse, but a simpler, sleeker choice is required. That's when turtlenecks come in handy! Either single-coloured or maybe even striped, turtlenecks can be a surprising eye-catcher that pulls a whole look together.


 Miniature crowns were quite a big thing back in 2004-2007, but you just don't see them used anymore. Such a shame, especially when totally elegant and detailed crowns like these are a possibility. Whoever said small crowns have to be made out of dainty pearls?

It is customary to introduce oneself.

Not all Gothic Lolitas are sophisticated and eloquent in everything they do, not all of us keep up a facade of living in a dark, Victorian fantasy. Some of us like to pretend and make believe just as the rest of the Lolita kind, but enjoy the freedom of the modern world much more. We, who occasionally swear, have some alcohol and mostly prefer contemporary pastimes to sewing, classical music and tea time, forever balancing between the lifestylers and the casuals in our outlook and behaviour. Not all of us Gothic Lolitas think Moitié is awesome. For me, Lolita is just one part of my life, and this blog is all about how my other interests seep into the fashion and the other way around, making the result - well - me.

After this disclaimer-like wall of text; hello. I'm one of the Peter Pan -people of the world, never quite growing out of playtime, dress-up and imaginary friends, cleverly holding on to the vestiges of being a "responsible adult" to society, when needed. But my friends and other loved-ones know the real me, sleeping in a bed full of plushies, putting cheezits in my nose to make others laugh and gathering like-minded people around me to live in a protective cocoon of relative immaturity, creativity and endless fun. I suppose it shows that I began with Sweet Lolita in 2006, but did a 180 two years later, feeling that I was done with pastel colours for good.

This blog will feature coordinations, essays and things I'm interested in, perhaps even my art. My posting is frequent at times and infrequent at others, but I think it's about time I made a blog on the subject. Endless photos of myself will most likely not be a very prominent part of "Tzimisces Wear Ruffles", I sometimes shy away from the camera, and this isn't a way for me to get more adoration, but more of a channel for me to communicate my relationship with Lolita.

I write in English, because most of the ones I know will read this blog understand the language at least reasonably well. However, should they wish it, I can and will provide a short Finnish translation at the end of each blog post - just request if you want it!

Welcome, and please, do follow this blog!

~The Tzimisce~

Picture by Mimmi Lehtimäki (c)