Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Q and A #1 , Patterns, wigs and more

     Our First Question and Answer Post

     So I really wanted to make a video to answer the Q and A questions- but when I finally sat down to do it, I realized that the web cam was on my old laptop, which is broken :(  So I decided to do a blog post instead.  You don't get to see me face, but hey- you still get your questions answered.

     Our first question was from Hope and she asked "Where do get your patterns?"   There are a lot of answers to this.  I draft some of my patterns completely by hand with a design ruler and sloper patterns.  I plan to add making a sloper pattern to my list of workshops for the next Saboten (so you can make your own).  A sloper pattern is a basic pant or blouse pattern that is custom made so you can alter it however you please and you already have a base pattern that fits you perfectly.   I also sometimes use Vintage patterns or Japanese patterns and then alter them to my own design idea.  I did this with some old overall patterns to make salopettes.  You can really see the 50s in some lolita after looking at the patterns from back then.   
First of the new series
     I also use some Japanese patterns as a base- like those from Gothic Lolita sewing books.  I used to use these all the time when learning to sew- and I love them so much.  They printed 16 of the old ones, and just started a new run of only lolita patterns (no gothic).  They are in all Japanese so you have to know your way around patterns, but they are a lot of fun to look at and be inspired by. The patterns are laid out all over each other too, so you have to have a keen eye to differentiate them. 
Many pattern lines overlap.
You can purchase these books on Etsy and Ebay and Jlist and other places that sell Japanese craft books.  I create patterns on this stuff called Pattern Ease (like trace paper except not stiff) and then label all the pieces and save them together for the next time I use them.  

layers and longer bangs
side part with longer bangs
     The second question came from Allison, " I feel my jaw line is far too square to wear curly pigtail wigs and I look more like a boy then a kawaii lolita. What would you suggest?"  Don't worry Allison, pigtail lolita wigs aren't the only wigs out there.  The feeling you are getting is probably from the straight across bangs that are typical with that style wig.  It creates a very square feeling, which most people attribute to masculinity (strong square jawline kind of thing).  Try something that doesn't have such strong bangs, like a longer bob, or something with longer layers with the long side swept bangs instead.  Also wigs that part on the side and not the middle.  I think there are a lot of options when it comes to wigs, so don't feel that just because it isn't "typical" lolita that it won't work with your outfit.

     Our third question comes from Holly  "Do you feel there is an age that lolita becomes inappropriate? and how do you feel about chunky lolitas?"  I get these questions a lot, maybe because I am one of the older people in my local community.  First, I personally feel that the only time you need to give up lolita is because you don't care for it anymore.  Second, it's an eccentric hobby, and eccentric hobbies get harder and harder to explain as you get older- especially to bosses and coworkers.   But I don't feel that getting older means you should give up what you love, that's just silly.  If lolita makes you happy than you should keep it up.  I've seen plenty of older lolitas that look fabulous and are very involved with their communities.  I've even seen mother daughter lolitas and it's adorable. This same statement goes with being curvy.  I have seen some of the most amazing coordinates on plus sized girls. I don't think that being skinny makes you a better lolita, and it's kind of a silly notion. It makes it easier to get brand- that's for sure- but it doesn't mean much else unless you let it.  Sloppy outfits on anyone look bad, regardless of size.  And amazing outfits look good on anyone- in my opinion anyway.  Just stay away from the hate, and love your hobby and yourself.

     Our last question comes from Amanda: "I'm a woman of 25, and also have been a model for 8 years. I would like to try to find companies to model for, but am broke and cannot so much as buy the most inexpensive lolita items without saving up for almost a year (too many bills to pay). I can sew a little bit to make items for myself, but I would like to model for designers (they can even be just starting out) and not only get them, but also myself, more well deserved exposure. What suggestions would you have for me? Do you know of any places looking for models that are willing to trade items for photos?"  There is a site called Model Mayhem- you can register there as a model, specify what kind of work you want and message other designers and photographers in your area to set up a shoot.  A lot of designers will do something called TFP (you probably already know this, but I'll explain for others)  which means a trade for prints or portfolio (whichever pertains to you).  It basically means you will trade your time for a shoot for someone to put the photos in their portfolio or the designer will send you outfits, you wear them for a shoot, then return them and exchange the prints to the designer to use for their advertising purposes.  As long as no one is making money on the trade, it works out.  I've done this a few times before and it is always fun and worth it AND you make some great connections as well.    I can tell you to be careful when you meet with people, and always bring someone with you and protect yourself, you never know who is out there.  I don't know what state you are in, so I don't know who to suggest to you, but Model Mayhem is a great place to start and search. 

Thanks to everyone who submitted questions.  I hope to do more of these as time passes.  Hopefully is was informative ><

xoxo Mikki 

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