For you who has or never been to Japan must have heard the popularity of Harajuku. This very place where you seem like walking in a public runway with all the eye-striking fashion styles that worn by most of the people there.
There are numerous types of fashion styles that you may find amazingly unusual here, almost like a Halloween party. But of all the staggering fashion choices, you will find Lolita! So what is Lolita fashion?
‘Lolita’ terms originate from fictitious work by Nabokov that first published in Paris in 1955 detailing the story of a middle-aged man called Humbert Humbert with his interest of 12-year old stepdaughter named Dolores Haze, Lolita.
Inspired by the fashion from eighteenth-century France and Victorian-era like what is found in Alice in Wonderland, Lolita terms in Japan is a whole different story.
Being so-called doll fashion, Lolita pictures the imagination of a girl’s childhood full of dresses and dolls. If you think that this fashion look is only a matter of what you wear, it is not. There is more meaning than on the skin-deep.
With the hard work, responsibility and duty come with adulthood, many youngsters in Japan are terrified by it and trying to go back to the freedom and fun times of being in childhood.
By dressing in the doll’s clothing a real girl is imagining herself taking her adult identity and able to go back to the child times when life is less stressful.
They believe that after done with the imaginary world, they will be able to go back to the responsible life they have and being a slave for the culture.
So being said, what is Lolita fashion? It is one way to escape adulthood by dressing doll-like.
In Japan, this trend of fashion is started in the ’80s and has going on strong until now.
Visual Kei rock bands such as X japan and Malice Mizer promote the trend of androgyny and over the top fashion was a great way of spreading the Lolita style not only in Japan but worldwide in the ’90s and early 2000s.
Sub Styles of Lolita
Ways of dress Lolita’s style are not limited by one way only. There are many subgenres and here are some of them. We cannot know what is Lolita fashion without looking at the types of
The main character of Gothic Lolita is the use of dark colors such as black, navy, and burgundy. The contrasts like black and white are also common in ‘goth loli`.
It is quite different from the Lolita style that we know, but there seem to be many Lolita fans who are choosing this way of Lolita fashion.
The gothic elements much take inspiration from victorian goth fashion. It is not rarely seen that gothic Lolita wearers complete their fashion with accessories like skulls, crowns, gothic crosses, fences, cathedrals and so on.
2. Sweet Lolita
If you are new to the world of Lolita fashion, it is almost always that you will encounter this style first. Sweet Lolita is also considered to be the most popular Lolita of all types.
With the basic aesthetics of Lolita, the pastel color is the most fundamental element of sweet Lolita.
The sweet Lolita style has evolved over the years with the old style one being solid pastel base with the addition of embroidery with headpiece and tight sausage curls. The look would not be complete without the rocking horseshoes.
Recently, sweet Lolita has developed to be more excessive with the use of prints and accessories rather than lace and sewn details.
The motives also vary from cute animals to cupcakes and pastries. Hime Lolita is now more becoming adopted for sweet Lolita looks, this includes layers of ruffles and lace with a hint of elegant feeling but still cute. The over the top sweet is more frequently seen still.
3. Classic Lolita
This type of Lolita is probably the most influenced by the Victorian style . with the basic aesthetic and with the elegance and modesty feeling. The use of A-line is very common but petticoats with bell shape are also popular.
The typical color of ivory, wine red, brown and dusty rose is often used with the motif floral prints, candles, and elegant animals such as birds and deer is very common.
Besides the three major types above, there are other substyles such as punk Lolita, casual Lolita, country Lolita, hime Lolita, ero Lolita, pirate and sailor Lolita, and the list goes on.
Hopefully, this brief guide is going to give you an answer to the question, what is Lolita fashion?