Sweet Lolita fashion recalls ‘sugar and spice’ girlhood
Published: Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Updated: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 19:04
Among the 1,600 anime fans who converged for the anime convention Mizuumi-Con 4 was a sub-group of teen fashionistas.
The Sweet Lolita style of Japan stood out even among the many costumed characters at Our Lady of the Lake University March 26.
"Lolita fashion is all about being modest and pretty," Arriola said.
The Japanese street fashion Sweet Lolita is in no way associated with the "Lolita", where a middle-aged man becomes obsessed and sexually involved with a 12-year-old girl named Dolores Hazed of the Vladimir Nabokov book.
The childlike innocence of the Lolita style started out in the late 1980s in Harajuku Station on the Yamanote Line in the Shibuya ward of Tokyo.
As with many fashion styles, it was pioneered by bands, whose fans followed in turn.
Inspired by the Victorian and Rococo eras of bell-shaped skirts over petticoats and silhouettes, the Lolita style embraces a variety of influences from punk to aristocratic elegance.
Sweet Lolita fashions are in pastels with fruit-, flower- and animal-themed fabrics finished with lace, bows and ribbons.
Marina Arriola, 16, Kelly Pulliam, 19, and Sophia Sharpe, 21, modeled Sweet Lolita outfits.
Each girl wore a pastel dress prints of either cupcakes prints or lace ruffled bows.
Appropriate because they were working a booth selling Vanilla-Cupcake products.
Vanilla-Cupcake is a small company that is owned by Monica Meneses, San Antonio Sweet Lolita club member.
Sharpe, who was born to a Korean mother and American military father, learned about the Lolita fashion style when she was 18 years old and picked up a copy of the "Gothic and Lolita Bible."
Arriola explained the Vanilla-Cupcake items are handmade accessories. Sharpe said it took her a whole year to understand how to dress as a true Sweet Lolita.
Sharpe usually dresses in jeans and T-shirts, but said, "Sweet Lolita fashion is modest and mature. It's a good change from today's pop culture. It is nice to be modest and pretty."
Arriola, Pulliam and Sharpe are members of San Antonio's Sweet Lolita Club, which has 20 members.
"Lolita members dress up like this on special occasions. Tea parties, birthdays, Christmas events and picnics," Arriola said.
"Lolita sometimes is more of a life style. Big aspect of the fashion is being feminine. Very cut, meaning cute," Pulliam said.
As a sweet Lolita, one of the major requirements is to always wear a blouse under a jumper dress and it must be a modest one.
Lolita dresses are bought on the Internet and range from $200 to $500, depending the print and the softness and vintage of the lace.
For more information on Mizuumi-Con, log on to www.mizuumicon.org.
For Vanilla-Cupcake items, log on to www.etsy.com/shop/asiancandie.
For Sweet Lolita outfits, log on to www.angelicpretty.com.