Feb 28, 2012

Books for Lolitas: Grimm Fairy Tales

I've done quite a large number of reviews for books that retell some of these, and other fairy tales so it's only fair that I point out that they're an interesting read without being re-imagined.  While some of the stories are silly (The Golden Key) and some are a tiny bit horrifying, many are very good. Of these some are well known and other should be. I would love to see more Grimm inspired prints, perhaps from stories Disney has yet to touch and don't center around girls in red hoods or candy houses. Dancing Princesses would make such a lovely print. Can't you just imagine all the girls in swishing dresses dancing across the skirt? Or any of the many stories with bird themes could be oh so lovely.

Some of my favorite Grimm stories include The Goose Girl (both versions are splendid, though I prefer Goose Girl at the Well) Snow White and Rose Red, The Six Swans, and Bearskin. what are your favorite tales and which would you love to see in a lolita print?

Feb 24, 2012

Coconuts Review

My taobao package arrived at last! I'll do a review of the Infanta dress later, as it did not fit and I'm trying to decide if I want to sell it and buy a smaller size (NOW they have smalls, they only offered medium when I ordered) or if I want to find a seamstress. Still, it's the same quality as other dresses I have ordered. The unknown in this package were the items from Coconuts.

They aren't really a lolita shop, but I found a lot of there items adorable. I mentioned the shoes before, but I also think a lot of their items work for a loli-inspired look when it's just not practical to wear all out frills. In the end I purchased the tribble shoes and a set that seemed somewhat holmes inspired.

Oh my gosh I'm so in love!

Starting with the shoes. They're actually more or less the right size, though I'll need to get a bit of padding as it seems they were made for people with better, higher arches than mine. Even with the tiny bit of wiggle room, however, they're surprisingly comfortable. And I say this as someone who can only wear heel very rarely and for short periods. They're also well constructed and look exactly as advertized, minus a need for some slightly minor fussing with the ends of the bows. All in all, I give them a 5/5.

Onto the sherlock holmes set! I really need a magnifying glass necklace.

I really wanted this as a summer wear. I've got a few trips planned this year and it gets rather hot wearing all those layers. This seemed like a cute mid way point and a good starting place for building an almost-loli summer wardrobe for trips and the like.

I'm pretty happy with this over all. It's a bit shorter than expected, but not so short that I'd feel uncomfortable after throwing on a pair of bloomers under it. It also looks decent with and without a blouse, which is exactly what I hoped for. The material is really thin, though it doesn't feel cheap and that isn't necessarily a mark against it. As I said, this is for when full frills would be to hot to wear. As a nice, unexpected bonus it actually has pockets!

It's also pretty cute without the cape, though that kinda voids the holmes feel.

I have only two issues with this. The first is that it will need quite a bit of ironing as it wrinkles easily. Since I was planning on packing it for trips this is disappointing but not something I can't work with. The other is that one seam in the cape is stitched down in two different directions so that it has to fold twice.

It's not something that effects the way it looks on the outside or the way it falls when worn, but if was an issue when I was trying to press it flat and I know there are those who are a bit pickier than I am. All in all I give this a 4/5.

Over all I had a pleasant experience with this order from coconuts and wouldn't hesitate to order from them again. Not only was I happy with the items I purchased, but the prices were low and they sent my order out so swiftly that when I decided to add the second item not even two days after the first I had to pay shipping a second time as the first had already shipped.

Feb 13, 2012

A Very Happy Valentine's

Whatever your plans this holiday - be they with one you love, close friends, or treating yourself to things you enjoy - I wish you the very best day. In this time that we celebrate how special others are to us, may you remember and be celebrated for how truly wonderful you are.

Feb 9, 2012

Lovely Pink Treats

Valentines is not my favorite holiday, but it is pretty far up on the list, and no that isn't due to anything romantic. Not that I don't love doing something special with my husband, but for romance it's the unplanned things that I prefer.

The true reason I love Valentines day is that it's the perfect time to embrace your inner princess and make everything pink and sweet. And the day after is even better, when you can buy things sweet and pink so cheaply. One of the things I really enjoy doing if making the day special with good things to eat. Last year was breakfast for dinner with (sorta) heart shaped pancakes. While I've yet to decide what sort of pink/sweet/heart shaped culinary adventure I'll be trying this year, I've come across a few things that had me squealing in joy. They seemed perfect for lolita gatherings, so I wanted to share them while it may not be too late for them to be of use in planning.

There will never be any argument from me that the macaron is the world's cutest cookie. The trouble is that they are hard to find in most places and just as hard to make. And if you bypass those difficulties and order them online, you may finding yourself paying quite a bit for your treats. Meringues offer a nearly as adorable alternative that has just as many flavor options and are far easier to create at home. What's more, they require only a few ingredients - egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar and any flavoring or coloring you wish to add. For that extra special event, they can even be topped with sprinkles or made into adorable swirly sandwiches.

Filled Strawberries. These are super easy and require only a no bake cheesecake mix and fresh berries. Simply cut the berries and fill with the cheese cake mix. Then you're free to drizzle with chocolate or dust with cookie crumbs depending on your taste. Or for a simpler berry treat, place chocolate chips into raspberries.

Photo from Bakingdom, home of many many cute recipes

I've only just today stumbled across the idea of strawberry hot chocolate, and I have to say that I'll in love with the idea. There are a ton of recipes for this treat using everything from ice cream to jam to fresh berries. The easiest I've seen uses strawberry milk mix and white chocolate chips, though I imagine the difference is similar to instant cocoa and home made hot chocolate. Needless to say, I'm making a trip to the store this afternoon to try making a version of my own.

If you're planning a tea party, you may want to think about a classic scone. I've recently tried my hand at these and they've turned out to be easy enough to make. For a sweet Valentine's theme you may want chocolate, strawberry or a mix of the two. Many cook books and websites have scone recipes available so finding one that suits you is relatively easy. I recommend the book Alice's Tea Cup for those trying scone making for the first time as the instructions are easy to understand and the flavors are very fun and unique. Make them fresh the night or morning before your event, however, as they are so much better just after being baked.

Feb 8, 2012

Story Time Give Away Winner!

There were so many amazing entries that in the end I had to resort to a random number generator to pick a winner. And that winner is:

drum roll, if you please.


I'll start working on your prize right away, so be sure to let me know where to send it!

Everyone else, please be sure to keep an eye out as I plan to repeat this giveaway should I get 100 followers.

Feb 2, 2012

Pretty of the Week: HMHM Wolf Musical

Grimm's Fairy Tales are my personal favorite theme in lolita. And of the tales, it seems to be that Little Red Riding Hood gets more attention than the rest. And I'd be hard pressed to find anything wrong with that. After all, it's a theme that encourages bold colors and an older, more charming feeling. While this particular print uses red only in smaller amounts, it's rather heavy on the charm. The off white and play of browns with just enough hint of red give it the perfect feel for a fairy tale dress. This is certainly one for my wish list.