Monday, May 24, 2010

Thoughts on "The Rules"

You know what? I'm just going to say it. I like the rules. I like following rules; they give structure and order and define us as a subculture. Now, I'm not saying that I don't occasionally wear a dress without a petticoat, or I never leave the house with bare legs or a bare head, but if I do, I'm much less likely to call my coordinate "lolita," because it just does not fit the rules of that fashion. It's like if a punk went out in a yellow polo shirt and jeans with his piercings and tattoos and dyed hair. Does it look bad? No, probably not. However, is it punk? Not by any stretch of the imagination.

And that's okay. There's nothing wrong with not fitting your little stereotyped mold perfectly, and I think that's something we should strive to do because it's our job to break stereotypes. However, if you do break stereotypes, know that it may not conform to that label anymore - and personally, I think that's awesome. Be a fashion pioneer! Wear whatever you feel like, but know that it might not be lolita. If you're breaking the rules, it probably isn't.

That's not to say that innovation is "against the rules." Take this outfit by Kelsey of I Do Declare:
It's beautiful. It's innovative. It's everything lolita should be this summer, in my opinion, and it still follows all the rules. See? The Rules shouldn't be viewed as something constricting or stifling of your sartorial creativity but rather as enhancing it, providing a framework that challenges your creativity to work within it. And again, there's nothing wrong with breaking the rules. Sometimes you can only make a coordinate work if you forgo socks, or if you wear a highly-styled wig instead of a hairpiece. However, it's important to know where that line is, when it can be crossed, and when it needs to stay a boundary.


  1. That is my dream outfit!!! I could live in that this summer! :D

  2. That is such a beautiful outfit! As someone who only wears lolita occasionally, I tend to stick to the rules for the most part, but I do like to challenge them. The rule that I pretty much never break when wearing lolita is the skirt shape.

  3. haha It follows all the rules from the head to the knee XD I don't like knee socks. . . or most lolita shoes. But the rule I never break is the petticoat rule!

    It was quite a surprise to see my face here hahaha

  4. Kelsey is wonderful. She looks like a modern Marie-Antoinette. Where does her dress come from ? It's astonishing, and she's so elegant !

  5. You express my feelings perfectly! I hate when people say that the rules are stifling their creativity and so on. You can use the rules as a guideline and make gorgeous lolita outfits (like Kelsey's which is amazing!), look individual but still be dressed lolita. I have no problem with people not wearing a blouse and petticoat, or wearing something really different and inspiring that isn't lolita, as long as they don't try to call it lolita and then moan about 'the rules' when people tell them it's not.

  6. @Alice Rose: Kelsey is actually the designer of her own brand, I Do Declare, and she made that dress herself. Isn't it amazing?! Her blog for the brand is here:

  7. Thank you ! I read her blog too (and I'm going very often on her etsy shop). It's incredible she made this beautiful dress herself, she's really gifted ! I wish I could buy the same dress (but for my size). Cheers for Kelsey ! Thank you Miss Lumpy for the information -I admire much more Kelsey now ! She's beautiful AND talented !



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