Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Did everybody have a good holiday?

My Christmas was extremely hectic. On the 23rd we spent the evening with my boyfriend's family and had dinner. Here are a few of the gifts I got:

I got a Domo! And the cute yak from Harvest Moon! The yak is so soft <3

Then on the 24th, we went to my Grandpa's house. I wasn't feeling well so I had my Mom take me home ofter a few hours. I felt really bad for leaving but I just wanted rest and that's hard for me to do when there are people around ;-; But I got to spend a little bit of time with everyone. They sent my gifts home with my Mom and Dad.

My Grandpa gave me a card with $50 <3

 Bath set from my Auntie :D

A cat hat and pajama pants with Eeyore from my other Auntie! I've always wanted a hat like that with the hat, scarf and mittens all in one. And the pants are SUPER soft.

Later that night, my boyfriend and I went to my parent's house to open presents because the BF had to work the next day D': I really enjoyed watching my parents open their gifts. We gave my Dad 3 flannel shirts, a leather wallet, cologne, and Gran Turismo 5. We got my mom a matching necklace, earring, and ring set and tickets to see Bon Jovi in concert. She was so surprised >:D I got my boyfriend a .25 ACP, but he already knew he getting that because he picked it out. I also got him the Yu-Gi-Oh Jaden Yuki Starter Deck. Here are the things I got from my parents and boyfriend:

 My parents got my a compound bow, extra arrows, and an arm guard. I really like archery so this was cool gift. And it's something I can do with my Dad.
They also gave me a $100 Visa giftcard!

 My Dad gave my $61.10 in dimes XD

 My Mom got my this pretty necklace. I have a lot of Spring/Summer clothes that will look great with this!

And they gave me some tea. 

My boyfriend bought me the movie 'Thirteen" which I absolutely adore. And a wardrobe for my lolita clothes!! I've wanted one forever and now I finally have it (but now we have to put it together...)

On the 25th, my boyfriend had to work so I went to my Mom's and spent the day with her side of the family. We had lunch and visited for several hours. It was a lot of fun watching everybody else open gifts. (I had opened most of mine the night before.) I got $50 from my other Grandpa and his girlfriend. And a giftcard for Red Lobster from my Uncles. <3

I also got a lot of candy and cookies from everybody.

And earlier in the month I got a very unexpected gift from my best friend...

She got me a Coach bag and matching wallet. A REAL COACH BAG! I was so shocked because even if you buy them secondhand they are still a bit pricey. So needless to say, I was very happy and thanked her profusely.

My Christmas was pretty awesome and I really enjoyed spending time with everybody.

Have a Happy New Year.

<3 Aina

Friday, December 14, 2012

Christmas Crazyness: Personal Update

Hi everyone.

So, in my last post I talked about things that I wanted to do to make myself feel good this holiday... And I've done quite well for the most part :3

I've been working like crazy and haven't had much opportunity to wear lolita, which makes me sad because I was hoping to post some outfit shots this month. Oh well :/

Ive also been working really hard on my dresser, but it's a tedious task to sit there and paint flowers on it.

My heart also go out to the victims of the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. It was such a senseless incident.

And I'm so tired of hearing everybody talk about what's going to happen December 21, 2012. I've heard so many strange things: the world will end, the aliens are coming, solar flare, meteor hitting the Earth, a shift in consciousness, and nothing will happen. I don't know what to believe, but it's nothing we can control, so why talk about it. There must be a better topic to discuss.

And I have almost all of my Christmas shopping done :D

Anyway, I hope to make more lolita related posts soon. And maybe open an etsy shop!
I hope everyone is having fun preparing for the holidays.
<3 Aina

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Holiday blues

Hello lovelies! Hope you're all doing well. Can you believe that it's almost Thanksgiving?

Personally, I'm not a huge fan of this time of year. Sure, I love the holidays, the decorations, giving gifts and being around my loved ones (although my family always seems to have trouble getting along, and even more so around any major holidays.) But stores and restaurants are over-crowded, people seem more pushy and aggressive just because they want to get a good deal on the latest gadget, and the cold weather makes me sad. 

Lately, I feel myself slipping back into my old, sluggish, "Winter habits." I've been sleeping way more than I really need to be, I'm eating more junk food, and when I'm not working or taking care of household chores I'm sitting my butt on the couch watching t.v.

I want this year to be different. I don't want to hibernate anymore than I already have. So, what am I going to do for the next few months? Glad you asked :D
  • Cut back on junk food! 'Tis the season for sweet treats, but that doesn't mean I have to eat my weight in cookies everyday. I love Santa, but I don't want to look like him.
  • Stop procrastinating. Give the house a GOOD cleaning, finish some of my smaller craft projects, and paint my dresser (I'll post pics of the dresser as soon as I finish this).
  • Exercise. Get up and move. Go to the gym, play DDR, anything to get my butt off the couch for a little while.
  • Me time. I know this is the season for giving... but I need to find something to do for myself that doesn't involve shopping, eating, or sleeping in. Haven't decided what I'm going to do yet though.
  • Salt lamps. These are used as negative air ionizers. For those of you who don't know, negative ions are supposed to make you feel good. These are fairly inexpensive and I figure that if it doesn't work, at least I'll have something pretty to look at.
 I'd love to know how all of you combat the "Holiday blues." Feel free to leave any suggestions.

<3 Aina

Friday, November 9, 2012

Aina's guide to thrifting

I was recently going through my closet and I couldn't believe how much I'd purchased from thrift stores. A lot of people don't like thrift store because they consider it to be "other people's junk". But most of us know the saying "one person's trash is another person's treasure." So, I'm going to post a guide on how I like to shop.

1. Try not to limit yourself. For example, if you go in and only want to look for a black cardigan, you will miss all kinds of really great things. Instead, try looking through all of the sweaters and cardigans, not just going straight for the black ones.

2. Try to find things that will match the rest of your wardrobe. (Although a thrift store is a great place to buy things if you want to experiment with a new style.)

3. Check the size, care instructions and brand labels. Duh! 

4. Check for any holes, tears, loose threads, missing buttons, stains, unpleasant smells, etc. Decide if you can live with the damage then determine if it can be easily and cheaply fixed. If not, put it back.

5. Stay away from shoes. You never know who had them before you. Did they have Athlete's Foot? A toenail fungus? Or maybe their feet just smelled bad? I always get creeped out when I see used shoes, or when I have to rent bowling shoes. That's just my personal preference though.

6. Stay away from undergarments. Yuck. Again, who knows where they came from.

7. Look through EVERYTHING! A lot of things get misplaced. You could find an adorable purse hiding in the children's section because someone decided they didn't want it and was to lazy to put it back where they found it.

8. If you think something is cute or has potential, buy it. It can always be altered. You can have it tailored to fit you body better, add or remove bows, lace, etc.

9. Many thrift stores give 20% - 50% discounts on certain days. Find out when they are and try to go then.

10. Have fun!

Here are a few of the things that I've purchased.

I thought this skirt was super cute. It's kinda lolita-ish (maybe?) and super feminine. $4

 A long red/burgundy dress. I really loved the tree pattern and it fits nicely. $9

A cute lavender purse. Perfect color for fairy kei. $4

And we've all seen these pretty sweaters with the fur trim...
(The above image was taken from here.)

Here are a couple that I found. This one caught me by surprise! I never expected to find such a gorgeous shade of pink. And the fur is even removable. I noticed a small hole in the lining of the fur trim, but no one can see it. A great find! $5

Here is another one that I found. The label reads: 79% Silk, 14% Cashmere, 6% Nylon, 1%Spandex. Because of the cashmere this is needs to be dry cleaned. And unfortunately, the fur on this one cannot be removed. But still, another great find. Cost of the sweater: $5. Cost of dry cleaning: $6.50

Adorable star shaped vase! I decided to put my make-up brushes in it. Total cost? A whopping 75 cents!

Winnie The Pooh honey jar!!!!! I haven't decided what I want to do with this yet. But I love Pooh, so I HAD to get it. Only $3

Thanks for reading. I would love to hear about some of your thrift store experiences.

<3 Aina

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

What's so special about brand anyway?

Many lolitas, especially those new to the fashion, seem to bring up this question. But the answer varies from person to person. Here are a few explanations of what may make brand appealing.

1. The quality. The quality of brand items is amazing. The fabric is thicker and softer than anything you would find from bodyline and the lace is soft and not scratchy in the least. The ribbons used on this particular JSK have barely frayed and this was made in 2006. And the stitching! When you examine the garment you can see that a lot of time and effort went into making the piece. The attention to detail is incredible.

 Inner stitching
 A zipper that's practically invisible.
Attention to detail. Use of high quality ribbon that barely frays!
Full satin lining.
Small built-in petticoat to give a little bit of poof.

2. Brand whores. There are so many people, not just lolitas, that are obsessed with labels, whether it be something fairly unknown to most of the world (like Angelic Pretty) or a brand that EVERYBODY has heard of (like Chanel or Louis Vuitton). High end brands have always been sought after. Maybe it makes the person feel special. Or perhaps they saw a celebrity with a particular item and decide that they have to have it. Or maybe they are simply trying to fit in with a certain crowd or make someone else jealous. Regardless of the reason, brand whores will always be out there.

3. Luxury. For many, buying lolita is a luxury and they want it to feel like one. 

4. Original prints and trend setting. Companies like Angelic Pretty and Baby, the Stars Shine Bright are held in high regard because of some of their products and must have prints. AP started a huge trend with the release of Sugary Carnival. Even though this print was released in 2009 and re-released in 2011, it's still a dream print for many lolitas. Bodyline even made their own carousel print which has become very popular as well.

5. Treating yourself. Sometimes, you just want to do something nice for yourself... and buying a brand item is your way of doing that.

So, I'm not saying that you have to wear brand to be considered a lolita or anything like that. But it is nice to have a few brand pieces in your wardrobe. I know it can be expensive but always keep your eye out for a deal. The JSK pictured above is from Angelic Pretty and I only paid $50 (second hand obviously) for it because it was slightly damaged.

Don't ever let anyone make you feel like less of a lolita just because you aren't wearing brand. It takes time to build up your wardrobe and if you WANT a brand name piece, save up, and in time you will have the wardrobe of your dreams.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Bodyline review (Image heavy)

Over the past few months I've made a few purchases from Bodyline and have finally decided to review them for you all.

Bodyline's website is very easy to navigate and ordering is simple. I chose the cheaper of the two shipping methods and received both packages in less than 10 days. If you only order shoes, they will be shipped in a shoe box. But if you order shoes with other items they will be wrapped in tissue paper and shipped in a plastic bag... thing. Anyway, onto the fun stuff!

I bought this lovely one piece in white.

Here is my photo of the dress:
 I was very pleased with the overall quality. It's well stitched and the material is soft. It comes with detachable waist ties and a detachable bow which I really liked because the ties were thick and looked a bit odd when I tried to tie them :/ The bow was a bit to small to use as a traditional headbow, but that's ok. It's still cute. The thing I cannot stand about this dress however...

The lace is just plain bad. It looks okay but it is very poor quality. It itches like you wouldn't believe. After I wore this my arm were red and raw from the lace. In my opinion, the lace is worth replacing.

  There is shirring on both the front and back of the dress. It give a decent amount of stretch but it was a bit snug in the bust area. My bust measurement is about 38 inches, so I don't recommend this dress if you are busty.

 And here are a few pictures of the detail on the dress. Very cute.
I am happy with this dress, especially for the price.

The next item I purchased was the Squirrel Party dress in blue (sax).

My photos:

This dress is soooo cute. I fell in love with the print as soon as I laid eyes on it. After going back and forth trying to decide between blue and lavender I finally decided on this one <3
The material used for this dress is soft and it's slightly stretchy, but it stretches length wise, not width wise so it won't make any difference in sizing. It's also very difficult to get the wrinkles out of this dress. I spent the better part of an hour trying to iron it and still didn't get rid of all the wrinkles. 
The waist ties are not detachable and they are rather bulky, which made me mad when I was trying to tie them nicely.

The bow is detachable so I turned it into a headbow. There is plenty of room to slide in a small headband. There were three pearls sewn to each side of the bow. I thought they were a bit tacky so I cut them off.

The lace on this dress is a little bit better than the other dress I bough. It's not as itchy and didn't irritate my skin nearly as bad, but it was still uncomfortable. (The bows on the front are a bit crooked.)

There is shirring on the back. There was more than enough room in the bust and waist, so you could probably get a fair amount of stretch :D

Now, onto shoes!
I bought these shoes in white. (I couldn't find the white ones on the site anymore.)

My photos:
I love these shoes. They are actually quite comfortable. I got them in size 24.5 and I wish that I had gotten them half size smaller, but I wanted to make sure that I had enough room. I can always stuff the toes with a bit of tissue paper to make them fit better :3 These get scuffed easily so be sure to keep them clean and polished.

One thing that I really liked was the snap! It looks like the shoes have traditional buckles, but it's actually a snap which is super convenient because buckles are a pain. 

And lastly, I purchased a pair of black shoes.

My photo:
These are nice a comfy. I ordered these in size 24.0 and they fit much better. 

I really likes the hearts that go all the way around the shoe. Super cute.

The weird fluffy balls ARE detachable. They have a small elastic band so you can slide them on and off the straps of the shoes. I personally don't think they look right on the shoes, so I'm going to find some other use for them.

I hope this helped you all!

<3 Aina