Post Reply Wat is Gothic lolita?
Posted 5/30/08
Gothic Lolita is a fashion by japanese teenagers to manifest their favourite Visual Rock stars. The clothing style tends to imitate the looks of Victorian porcelain dolls. It has been described as “French Maid meets Alice in Wonderland style”. Japanese culture places a higher value upon extremely youthful appearance and cuteness is very popular among Japanese teenagers. However in Gothic Lolitas, it can be described more as creepy cute. During weekends women dressed up as Gothic Lolitas pose for tourist’s pictures. It is also another way to gain attraction from the public.

In Japan it is mass-marketed and has wide visibility particularly in the streets of Tokyo and Osaka, on television as well as on manga. The fashion was influenced and popularise by Visual Rock bands such as X Japan. These are bands that wears elaborate costumes during their performance



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Posted 5/30/08 , edited 5/30/08
Actually, gothic lolita was out as a result of post-punk goth culture reaching Japan in the late '80s, and lolita element was already around for almost a decade. Many people combined the two looks. It just was popularized by Visual Kei, which hit the main scene in the early '90s.

Lolita (not just the gothic sub-style) is mainly worked around a Victorian look, mostly based on children's wear of the period, though many styles are more grown up and can take in influences from all sorts of periods and cultures, most notably Rococo and the '50s. While there are differences in the look of lolita, the key things that define the fashion are it's quality, elegance and modesty matched up with it's generally bell shaped skirt.

Lolita is divided in several sub-fashions, most notably gothic lolita, sweet lolita, classic lolita, and punk lolita. These sub-styles are determined by the color scheme, motif and accessories of the outfit.

Goth lolita has more dark tones, notably black (with white or all black), with darker themes matching the goth subculture. You'll see a lot of crosses and roses here, as well as the occasional bat and coffin.

Sweet lolita looks exactly as it sounds: sweeter. Pastels are dominant, though some more strongly hued red and blues and even black are also present, it's frillier (the frilliest, usually, of all styles) and has more cutesy motifs and accessories.

Classic is kind of a mid way between goth and sweet: it's got more color than goth, but it's more mature than sweet. It's often called "sweet lolita's older sister". Florals, dusty pastels and classical (read as Victorian-looking) motifs and accessories are employed here.

Punk lolita is obviously just like goth, only you trade everything goth for punk style. Plaids, frilly (or not) versions of band shirts, blazers and lots of pins are often seen in punk loli. Nana kitade is primarily a punk lolita.

There are also common themes in lolita. Asian inspired styles are common, such as wa lolita (Japanese) and qi lolita (Chinese). These styles take in certain elements of traditional Asian dress, such as a mandarin collar or a kimono print. Hime lolita are the lolitas you see most fancily dressed and topped with a crown or tiara. Country lolitas look fresh off the farm or ready for a picnic, usually with a gingham pattern, fruit motif or straw hat and purse. Sailor Lolita is pretty self explanatory. Erotic lolita is more skin revealing and is probably the only lolita style that has anything inherently "sexy" about it (hence the name). It's ultimately still modest and not all "look at my t&a". Some lolita also make their own theme around a concept or character they like, like Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White and, the most popular, Alice in Wonderland.

What about boystyle and aristocrat? Well, they aren't lolita. They're related, and will be depicted in Gothic and Lolita Bible and other mooks, but people have to note that these things still aren't exclusively lolita publications (see the "and" seperating "Gothic" and "Lolita"). This isn't to exclude boys from lolita fashion: it's highly recognized that kodona is like lolita's brother or boyfriend, and boys can also crossdress, just as some girls do for kodona. If it were impossible for boys to be lolitas, Aya and Mana wouldn't have the impact on lolita that they do.

Lolita is not cosplay. This is a fact on lolita that can never be stressed enough. Yes, you can cosplay lolita, but it's best to cosplay a character that is a lolita than just run around a con saying, "I'm so loli, kawaii desu ne?!" Not that there is anything wrong with going to a con dressed in lolita, either. Just keep in mind that it's still not cosplay. Goths don't get it when people dress up as a goth as a costume, and lolitas don't get it either. Part of the reason why "cosplay lolitas" irritate other lolitas are because the "play" part of cosplay lays out certain irritating stereotypes and make the rest of us look like we go around in cheap costumes 24/7. Lolita clothes are clothes, and are made to be reasonably durable and have a nice quality to them. "Cosplay lolita" isn't. The general rule of thumb to pick between cosplay lolita and real lolita is if you ask yourself, "Would I seriously wear this as an everyday item, even when I was 5," and the answer is "No", then it's cosplay. Unless it's part of a cutsew hood or winter wear, lolitas don't wear animal ears. They're not maid costumes, either, though there are aprons and pinafores present in the fashion. Basically, your getting it wrong when you move away from Alice in Wonderland and closer to a French maid.
Posted 5/30/08
or that......... O__O
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Posted 5/31/08
oh yeah i put in tooooo. when doing make up for goth lolita dont use heavy makeup. its not goo unless it is kurololi but even then dont use alot but goth is not like our goth it just simply means darker colers
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Posted 5/31/08

tsukiko88 wrote:

oh yeah i put in tooooo. when doing make up for goth lolita dont use heavy makeup. its not goo unless it is kurololi but even then dont use alot but goth is not like our goth it just simply means darker colers


Yeah, don't go for pale face and black lipstick, ala Mana style, but aim more towards a smokey eye look and/or darker lipstick shades.
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Posted 5/31/08

CerridwenStorms wrote:


tsukiko88 wrote:

oh yeah i put in tooooo. when doing make up for goth lolita dont use heavy makeup. its not goo unless it is kurololi but even then dont use alot but goth is not like our goth it just simply means darker colers


Yeah, don't go for pale face and black lipstick, ala Mana style, but aim more towards a smokey eye look and/or darker lipstick shades.


finally we agree on somthing. oh i have a question..smokey eyes thing. i never do that i usally use my colors i use for every day that matchs my skin color. i dont know how to do the smokey eyes. do you use grey or black and do you put it on the lid or bottom of the eye or both
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Posted 5/31/08
You can use both gray and black. Or a different color, but grays and blacks are the most common. There are several ways to do smokey eyes.

It's easier to see how it's done than to describe, so here are some of the tutorial videos I found:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCnJ8B0Ay14

This one's a bit dramatic, but you can easily subdue the look with some control and more highlighting:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmFEeI1p92M&feature=related

This one's probably the best for every day use, even out of gothic lolita. It's just a bit irritating to watch.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPrW8WoR7nc&feature=related

I keep forgetting that Sephora has a youtube:


the easiest thing is to get a smudge pot creme shadow, though, and just play around with it.
Posted 6/2/08
wow u kno alot about lolitas
Posted 6/2/08
Hehhe lol shes an expert/ pro !!! XD
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Posted 6/3/08
Well, i have been into the fashion for about 5 years now.
Posted 6/3/08
oh no wonder i just started liking lolita last year -.-
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Posted 6/4/08
they're dresses looks cute
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Posted 7/8/08
Adding this, because of all the not-loli pics posted.

Defining lolita fashionwith them "icky" rules

Mind, the rules are more like a guideline, and several get broken (though generally lightly by highly experience lolis with good eyes), but they're here with good purpose. They help beginning lolitas from calling an outfit lolita when it's something entirely different and help the style be recognizable as it's own thing. All fashion has "rules", and while these rules do get broken, and broken well, they are here to help us look good.


First and foremost, lolita is a modest fashion. This means that skin isn't shown too terribly much. Lolita is supposed to capture an innocent and nostalgically child-like look, not take after it's promiscuous jail bait namesake, Delores Haze. Skirts are never too short. Even when a brand labels a skirt as a "mini", they're not going by the '80s western miniskirt definition. Ideal skirt lengths are more like a '50s Coco Channel (who was strongly anti-miniskirts). They can be a little longer or a little shorter. My personal rule of thumb is to measure by hand. If you sit down and rest your hands on your legs so that the tips of your fingers are laying right on the bend of your knee, where you wrist is is the limit to how high the hem of a skirt can go in a lolita outfit. Any shorter an you're entering cosplay and kinderwhore territory.

Similarly, tops need to be pretty modest. There are plenty of sleeveless ensembles in lolita fashion, and it's common to see a thin strapped tank top from a major lolita brand now, but cuts on the neckline aren't plunging. If you cannot fit a basic bra (not a sports bra) under the tank without the cups showing, you know it's too low. Try to avoid necklines that show more than an inch of the top swell of your breasts. Classic decolatage can be pardoned, but it's best to avoid looking like the heroine on the cover of a trashy romance novel.

continuing later...
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Posted 6/17/09

CerridwenStorms wrote:

Adding this, because of all the not-loli pics posted.

Defining lolita fashionwith them "icky" rules

Mind, the rules are more like a guideline, and several get broken (though generally lightly by highly experience lolis with good eyes), but they're here with good purpose. They help beginning lolitas from calling an outfit lolita when it's something entirely different and help the style be recognizable as it's own thing. All fashion has "rules", and while these rules do get broken, and broken well, they are here to help us look good.


First and foremost, lolita is a modest fashion. This means that skin isn't shown too terribly much. Lolita is supposed to capture an innocent and nostalgically child-like look, not take after it's promiscuous jail bait namesake, Delores Haze. Skirts are never too short. Even when a brand labels a skirt as a "mini", they're not going by the '80s western miniskirt definition. Ideal skirt lengths are more like a '50s Coco Channel (who was strongly anti-miniskirts). They can be a little longer or a little shorter. My personal rule of thumb is to measure by hand. If you sit down and rest your hands on your legs so that the tips of your fingers are laying right on the bend of your knee, where you wrist is is the limit to how high the hem of a skirt can go in a lolita outfit. Any shorter an you're entering cosplay and kinderwhore territory.

Similarly, tops need to be pretty modest. There are plenty of sleeveless ensembles in lolita fashion, and it's common to see a thin strapped tank top from a major lolita brand now, but cuts on the neckline aren't plunging. If you cannot fit a basic bra (not a sports bra) under the tank without the cups showing, you know it's too low. Try to avoid necklines that show more than an inch of the top swell of your breasts. Classic decolatage can be pardoned, but it's best to avoid looking like the heroine on the cover of a trashy romance novel.

continuing later...


For a little more on skirt length, I'd say about 4 inches above your knee max, but taller lolitas, and Angelic Pretty tend to have problems with this. If you are a taller lolita, instead of opting for Knee socks, try over the knees. Makes the skirt appear longer.

But, ILU. D: This needs to be said on ALL J-fashion communities, not just here.
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