Geek Couture!

Hello Lovelies,
I’ve just seen this awesome video on facebook and I need to share it with you as it’s so inspiring. It’s basically geek couture and some of the dresses are stunning! The outfits are all based off TV/film/comic book etc characters but rather than doing a Cosplay or Cosplay inspired outfit its designed to work as actual fashion or couture fashion. Really beautiful and creative.

Find out more here: http://heruniverse.com/fashionshow/

Flora Wedding, Petticoat – Review

I needed a black petticoat quickly so after searching ebay for UK based sellers I narrowed it down to the store Flora Wedding. Buying petticoats online is a bit of a nightmare as the descriptions can be really vague and most stock photos don’t show enough detail. A few years ago I bought a petticoat online and it was made of really stiff scratchy net – it created a nice poof but would have been really uncomfortable to wear and ruined your tights/bloomers/skin. Needless to say I didn’t keep it.

I was after a soft chiffon type petticoat, rather than net or mesh, and so opted for this one ~
Stock Photo:

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Item link: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/161216315857?_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649&var=460269750744&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

Ebay shop: Flora Wedding

It has a proper elasticised waistband and is stated to be made from soft mesh organdy. They only had it in a size xs-m which is stated as fitting a UK 6-12 and stretching from 60cm/23.5” to 95cm/37.5″ and being 45cm/18” long. Ordinarily I would have bought the larger size as I hate things being tight in my waist but given that I needed it soon and it was stretchy I risked it.

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The order arrived within a couple of days. It was packed in a standard plastic posting packet (see above). The petticoat was in a vacuumed sealed bag, it helps keep it compact for posting but I was worried it would be really creased. On opening the bag and giving the petticoat a quick shake it poofed up and didn’t seem too creased which is good. It had also been packed inside out to protect the outer layer of organdy.

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The skirt has an inside lining with a layer of gathered mesh organdy over the top. The fabric is very soft and is sewn in a 3 tier effect with an over sewn edge to stop any fraying. As it’s a single layer though it’s not going to be able to support heavy fabric.

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The petticoat label says the skirt is made from 100% polyester. The waist un-stretched measures around 61cm/24” and will go to a maximum of 88cm/35” though it’s not really wearable at that size. Personally I think around 76cm/30” is the maximum it will go to for comfort. The length is 45cm/18” as stated and is best for a UK size 6-12 as stated so the information in the listing is pretty accurate. The lining is fairly narrow/tight though due to the stitching going across the middle of it. Its just about 99cm/39” measured flat, so if you have large-ish hips/bum or want to wear it over bloomers it will bunch up and be too tight. It’s probably best if you have 37”/38” hips at the most.
The petticoat cost £10.99 plus £2.99 shipping, so £13.98 in total. I think it makes a great starter petticoat and is good quality for the money. If your dress/skirt is made from a very light/thin cotton or other light fabric I think it will work great but it’s not going to support heavier fabrics very well.

Worn Pics:

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Here you can see it worn under my new Bodyline dress. This dress isn’t the lightest fabric but it’s certainly not that heavy and as you can see it doesn’t give it much of a poof at all.

Review:
As described: 5/5
Speed of delivery: 5/5
Value for money: 4/5
Poof: 2/5

Floral/Country Themed Outfit Planning

Hello Lovelies, hope you are all well.
I’m sorry it has been a bit quiet on here lately, there’s just been a lot going on. I do have something I wanted to share with you though. The lolita community has produced a calendar for the last 2 years and are doing one again this year. Basically the smaller comms across the UK are each given a month, they come up with whatever theme they want and organise their photo shoot. This year the Lincoln comm decided to take part again and this time I ended up organising it, so much stress! The final photos aren’t sorted yet but here is a sneak peek of my outfit planning (I did change this a bit for the actual shoot). Our chosen theme was floral/country, my outfit ended up being super summery! The shoot was lots of fun, I got to meet some newer members and we had six people this time which doubled last year’s entry where we only managed three of us. Yay!

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Flower crown: Bodyline
Wig: ebay
Hat: Primark
Wristcuffs: Peacockalorum
Bolero: Charity shop (it’s from a wedding shop originally and was brand new)
Shoes: Natrelle (off ebay)
Basket: Antique fair
JSK: Atelier Pierrot
Ankle Socks: Primark
Underskirt: Peacockalorum

Fabrics and Fancies, ebay Shop – Review

I’m sure lots of you craft from time to time so I just wanted to do a little plug for an ebay shop I bought some trim from.
Ebay shop link: http://stores.ebay.co.uk/fabricsandfancies/
I was in a panic trying to finish my outfits off for the Steampunk event I went to in August and needed to some trim to finish a bolero. I found a store on ebay that had the kind of trim I was after, they were also the cheapest place and it arrived really fast.

The reason I’m doing this mini review though is because of how nicely they packaged it. I always love it when you receive an item and see a lot of care has been taken to presently it nicely – it was a lovely surprise. The trim is wrapped on a card tag, they had then carefully wrapped it in pretty pink tissue and tied it up with string. Cutest little parcel ever and great customer service. I will definitely buy from them again.

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Fashion Gala – Asylum Steampunk Festival

On the Friday of the Asylum Steampunk Festival I met up with a couple of my local lolita ladies for tea and cake, then in the evening I went to Lady Elsie’s Fashion Gala. The fashion gala partly showcases artists and designers work but it also exists to inspire its attendees and show that Steampunk is more than brown, Victorian fashion and goggles.

The first collection was by Karen Grover and her aim was to showcase outfits that would inspire people to create their own. She used commercial patterns (some which she adapted slightly) and readily available fabrics, some of the dresses were even made from patterned quilt covers. Her collection had a slight Harry Potter influence, it was to do with the story of a young wizard set in a Steampunk world. There’s even a Steampunk quidditch player.

Magician and mentalist Dr Corvus Marconi then did a short set.
https://www.facebook.com/corvusmarconi?fref=ts

He was followed by Mother’s Ruin Millinery who make fantastic hats, fascinators and statement head wear. The collection had a Slavic/Russian influence using traditional designs but given a Steampunk twist. They believe that any colour can be used in Steampunk and so aimed to bring a colourful, playful and regal collection to the stage.
Website: http://mothersruinmillinery.yolasite.com/

Harlots & Angels corsetry created some stunning and jawdroppingly beautiful designs for their collection. My favourite was the petal dress which had over 250 handmade petals. Just gorgeous! They produce their own patterns, some of which you can buy, which with a little imagination and creative thinking can be altered to produce something very different from the basic pattern. Their collection was all about showing how their basic patterns can be transformed to appear as very different items. So much talent!
Website: http://www.harlotsandangels.co.uk/

Alice’s Night Circus them performed a few songs, she has such a beautiful and powerful voice and her dress was so sparkly! According to the programme Alice’s Night Circus is a curious journey down a magical rabbit hole, featuring a blend of apocalyptic fairytale steampop sung by Alice.
Check out her website here: www.alicesnightcircus.com

Next was Diamantequeen Designs who brought true statement pieces full of colour, sparkle and attitude. Just amazing! Description from the programme: An eclectric, vibrant, multi-cultural collection of new, re-cycled and up-cycled garments and headpieces. Using influences from India, Japan, nature, Punk Rock, the film Velvet Goldmine, 70’s Glam Rock/Bowie.
Website: www.diamantequeen.com

Blue Lady Couture brought beautiful well crafted historical pieces with Victorian, Fairytale and Steampunk influences. The millinery pieces were created by Ooh La La Boudoir. Collection description: A gothic world of enchantment and mystery lit by gas lamp and swathed in steam, period styling entwines with classic detailing to create a striking re-imagining of tales as old as time.
Website: www.blueladycouture.etsy.com

Second Coming brought a very unusual collection to the stage. The collection was titled “Show Some Restraint” and is inspired partly by the event name ‘Weekend at the Asylum’ (the event originally used a building that used to be a Victorian asylum) and methods of restraints used in Victorian Insane Asylums. Not to mention all Steampunks are a little crazy anyway.

Cirque and cabaret style aerial artist and burlesque performer Scarlet Butterfly then dazzled the audience with her amazing pole dance skills before the final collection of the evening took place. I couldn’t get any decent photos. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Scarlet-Butterfly/376995592429247?fref=ts
The final collection featured characters from The Imaginarium which is a Dickens style, Steampunk themed story set to stunning Fine Art Photographic images. It sounds really intriguing, I can’t wait until it’s finished and the images are stunning. Find out more here: http://www.g-n-p.co.uk/

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Why the Asylum Steampunk Festival is the best event ever!

Hello Lovelies,
Long time no post, sorry about that.
As I mentioned a while ago I’d been super busy crafting and planning for my visit to the Asylum Steampunk Festival. The Asylum, held in the city of Lincoln, is the biggest Steampunk festival in the UK, perhaps even in Europe. It was the 7th one this year and is still attracting more and more people.
Although Steampunk doesn’t directly fall under the Kawaii fashion category it does embrace all the elements that I love about Japanese Street Fashions and has lots of similarities and overlaps, especially with lolita. It’s very creative, flamboyant, empowering, fun and very inspiring. It’s also very contagious, Steampunks and non-Steampunks alike tend to become infected with Asylumitus – characterised by aching feet (from all the walking and not always wearing practical shoes), sore face (from smiling) and the tendency to say “next year I’m…”.
There are no words that can really sum up the experience and atmosphere of attending, you really do have to go and see it for yourself. The golden rule of the Asylum is ‘Be Splendid’ this basically means be nice and respectful to each other – no-one should be made to feel unwelcome. What this rule creates is a community where you can be as expressive or creative as you want and embrace inspiration from pretty much any source you want. Although Steampunk is heavily routed in Victorian history and fashion with sci-fi futuristic elements there are more and more people adding fantasy and fairy tales in to the mix as well. I’ve also seen a lot of Steampunk superheroes, people drawing inspiration from games, film, TV other cultures it really is limitless and even better no-one is there to judge or state ‘That’s not Steampunk’.
Unfortunately in lolita and some of the other Japanese street fashions there is a rule book that generally you are expected to follow and often a lot of judgement is passed on those believed to have got things wrong or who have decided to bend some rules. Steampunk lets you play with ideas and do whatever you want – it’s so wonderful from an artistic perspective to have that freedom. It’s this, seeing how wonderfully talented, inventive, eccentric and kooky people are and the incredibly warm and welcoming atmosphere that makes the event so special to me. So many people greet you with a hello or good morning, smile and compliment you on your outfits, it’s a wonderful community to be part of.
If you ever get the chance to go then please do. Even if you can’t attend the event properly just go and soak up some of the atmosphere, I swear a lot of you will be back the following year to take part.