When I started this blog a year ago, I honestly didn’t think I’d keep up with it at all, despite it being one of my resolutions. While perhaps I haven’t posted as regularly as I wanted, I’ve managed to keep up pretty well – and I’ve also learned a lot about how to schedule my time. But, now that 2016 is finally coming to an end, I’ve been reflecting on how this year went, and what I’d like to achieve over the next.
As a lolita, I’ve had both a wonderful and horrible year. I was lucky to be able to travel for several large lolita events, and was able to meet many new friends from around the world. But, at the same time I had to cut ties with several close friends and I’ve distanced myself from my local community. Overall, I feel like I’m in a better place than I was 12 months ago, but I still feel like it is time to set some goals for the new year.
While I have several personal & professional goals floating around in my own head, the ones that I’m listing here are primarily related to lolita fashion & the related communities. I’ve separated them out into three sections, and organized each section chronologically to help keep me on track.
Define My Personal Style
If you had asked me during 2015 what my personal lolita style was, I’d have shown you some pictures of OTT hime outfits from various large scale events I’d been attending. But when I’m left to my own devices – out shopping and just hanging out with friends, my style is much less outrageous. I tend to prefer casually soft and flowing ensembles, and I feel that for awhile I was feeling pressured to transition into outfits that were more showy and age appropriate than the youthfully sweet styles I am typically drawn to. This year I’d like to focus on defining my personal style through elegantly coordinated outfits. Each item used should serve a purpose and should work towards balancing the outfit – not just be piled on because the colors match.
Refine My Wardrobe
Another goal of mine is to sit down with my wardrobe and discard all of the items that no longer suit my style, or don’t bring me joy when I wear them. This means that I’ll need to have at least one coordinate for each main item I keep, and that they need to stay because they are pieces I love – not because they’re popular. Often times I settle for a cut that I don’t care for, because I’m worried about the garment measurements. I’d prefer to replace quite a few of my JSKs with the OP versions – which means that if the new item doesn’t fit it will need to be altered or sold. Also, items that don’t have a full coordinate will need to be carefully considered. Will I ever complete a coordinate for this item? Will the items needed to complete this coordinate fit in with the rest of my wardrobe? If the answer is no, then those will need to be sold as well. Overall, I want my wardrobe to have a cohesive feel and look – so that most items can be mixed and matched to work with one another.
Create a Wishlist for Future Purchases
I used to be very strict with my purchases and to keep myself on track I had a wishlist that I refined on a monthly basis. Over the last few years I’ve strayed from this style of shopping, and I’ve found that mistake to be costly. After I’ve cleared out my wardrobe, I want to sit down and think about all the items I’ll need to purchase, in order to complete it. As I mentioned before, I want to sell a lot of my JSKs and instead purchase the OP versions. With this transition I don’t expect to be needing many new blouses or headbows – but I do think that a new petticoat, wristcuffs, and a cute apron might be in order.
Become a Conscious Consumer
For a few years Angelic Pretty was so popular that it was difficult to get ahold of any item – let alone the style or cut you wanted. Sometimes it was actually easier to just go ahead and purchase multiple items from the series and just resell the ones you didn’t want – since most western lolitas don’t get the opportunity to see the items in person before buying. Over the last year Angelic Pretty has increased their production to the point that this sort of shopping frenzy is no longer necessary – and consumers have the opportunity to really think about a cut or colorway before making a purchase. I’m very thankful for this, and I want to re-condition myself to become a more conscious consumer – to only purchase items in the cut or colorway that I love – instead of just desperately latching on to a leftover I don’t really care for.
Develop a Daily Lolita Style
When I was in college I used to wear lolita on a daily basis. Over the years I worked two jobs that didn’t care what I wore, so I had a casual lolita style that I would wear to both the office and to class. Once I graduated I slowly stopped wearing the fashion as often – to the point that I rarely wear lolita outside of a meetup or special event. I’ve been told by some people that this is part of growing up – but it isn’t like my actual daily fashion choices have somehow matured, they’ve just gotten sloppy. Despite growing older I still feel like there is a way for me to work lolita into my daily fashion choices – I just need to put some thought into how to achieve the look I want without all the excess.
Create a Lolita Diary & Scrapbook
When you are dealing with depression, it can be hard to remember why you do the things you love. Your hobbies and interests become meaningless ways to waste the time, and you find yourself wondering what ever inspired you to begin with. I’d like to start a lolita diary and scrapbook so that when I’m feeling down, I’ll have a physical copy of all the little adventures I’ve shared with my friends and community. It would also be nice to have a cutely organized place to write down my thoughts and inspirations – since social media these days hardly serves that need.
Create a Cute & Relaxing Space
Over the last half of 2016, I spent quite a bit of my time decluttering and cleaning up my living space. I’ve followed quite a few decluttering bloggers and vloggers, and I’ve read several books on organization. I’m at the point my entire living space is ready for one final decluttering, so that it can be overhauled and reimagined as a cute and relaxing place. My hope is that by creating an aesthetically pleasing living space, I’ll find more energy to live a creative and happy life.
Start Hosting Meetups Again
I’ve been hosting meetups for my local community since 2008, and between the years of 2012 and 2015, I hosted over 50% of my local events. During 2016 I felt so overwhelmed by anxiety and depression that I simply couldn’t keep up, and for awhile I thought about leaving my local community completely. After taking nearly a year off to focus on my mental health, I finally hosted a small ILD meetup and found myself content to be surrounded with new & old friends. I finally feel like I’m ready to reconnect with my local community and start hosting again, and I’d also like to focus on helping newer members find a desire to host as well.
When I started this blog, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to write about or how to structure the layout, I just wanted to start writing again. I feel like there is enough content here now that I should be able to easily restructure the layout to be more reader friendly.
Develop a Monthly Blogging Schedule
Additionally, I’ve found that when I utilize the queue function, I tend to have a more reliable posting schedule. It is easier to set aside a day or two each month for blogging, than it is to try and write something new every single day.
Create a Lolita Lookbook
This is sort of the online version of the Lolita Diary & Scrapbook I mentioned in the online section. I used to have a look book, and it helped me solidify what styles I liked and what styles I didn’t care for. Recently I’ve been using instagram as a lookbook, but I haven’t had a whole lot of success keeping up with it, since I don’t find the format to be aesthetically pleasing. I’m considering using Aliceholic or simply creating an entirely separate Instagram instead, but I haven’t quite figured which I prefer.
Find & Follow Other Lolita Bloggers & Vloggers
Finally, my last goal is to find and follow other lolita bloggers & vloggers. Ever since the livejournal lolita era ended, I’ve felt that the lolita community as a whole has been pulled apart by geographic location, and most discussion has stifled. While we do have various facebook pages like rufflechat or lolita updates, these places tend to be filled with newbies who are asking basic questions instead of discussing more advanced topics. I’m hoping that over the next year I can find and create a blog/vlogroll of lolitas who post regular and interesting content for those of us who have been into the fashion for several years.
Now that this is all written out, it seems a bit overwhelming! Still, I think that most of these topics are managble, and the results could be easily shared with ya’ll as the year goes on. Here’s hoping I can stick to some of these!
I hope you have a great 2017, and please let me know what your lolita resolutions are! Perhaps we can keep each other on track!
– Rosie Darling