Lolita Influences on My Non-Lolita Style


Despite wearing frills pretty often, including to work, my indecision/chameleon-ness spans beyond lolita and I wear a variety of looks in my day-to-day life. All of those share a feminine feel to them and the avoidance of trousers, and although they each follow their own set of aesthetic guidelines, lolita fashion has been the dominant influence on my styling overall. And just like those styles seep into how I wear lolita, which you can see through my coord posts, the exchange goes both ways. Even if this isn’t always documented as thoroughly as my lolita coordinates are.

Some random Picrew I did way before that sort of fits the theme of the post.

Layering with coverage

Not many mainstream fashion styles rely as much on layering as lolita fashion does - and even when they do, the purpose of the layering tends to lean into depth and accessorising and less into coverage (to avoid using the word ‘modesty’). Blouses under strapless dresses are definitely not something that rockabilly looks call upon, but I enjoy the effect they create. I also got used to having my shoulders covered at all times thanks to how much time I spent immersed in lolita. It’s not that I wouldn’t bare my shoulders at all anymore - but if possible, I prefer to at least have a cardigan over me. It’s not something that I would’ve gotten into otherwise, since shoulders and arms isn’t an area that I’ve ever felt particularly self conscious about, which is how I know that this is the influence of lolita.


Again, not to say that other fashion styles don’t accessorise - but lolita does it with a specific flair of accessories. My necklaces and brooches need to be worn to alleviate the guilt of owning so much stuff and since they are the easiest to incorporate into outfits of other styles, I am often donning something from a lolita brand. It helps to keep me connected to the fashion style that means so much to me even when what I am doing is extremely far removed from the ideal lolita lifestyle. And when it’s not the jewellery, then I probably have a hair clip, a bow or a flower, thrown in for good measure and balance. Because without accessories it’s just clothes, whereas with them - it’s an outfit. Even when the outfit itself isn’t lolita, the choice of what accessory goes in inevitably adds a touch of that soft, cute energy into the overall vibe.

Importance of legwear…

This one is a bit more specific to lolita because legwear (specifically legwear, not footwear) isn’t much of a focus point nowadays. People wear skin coloured tights or they wear black ones, every now and then you’ll spot a creative soul sporting some fun socks, but that’s about it. Lolita fashion understands the importance of legwear to balance out an outfit overall, but also how much it can add, be it through a pattern or texture. So I inevitably pay attention to which tights or socks I wear, at the very least in terms of colour. I’m far more likely to style with white tights than black given that I wear lighter colours more often. When it’s bare legs weather, I will still wear socks that match the outfit. It just feels incomplete without it. Back in my jeans and T-shirt days I would do a little bit of matching socks to my T-shirt, yet wearing lolita has amplified that by miles.

…but also footwear - with bows

Although not to diss on shoes, lolitas have some really great shoes! Shoes generally are very defining for specific fashion styles in a way that besides them only clothes can be. And lolita ones, even when not your typical tea parties, are still cuter and usually have bows on them somewhere. I wear my Elf Armorie three-strap heels at work practically every week, they add so much charm to any feminine outfit. It’s actually not that often that I don’t wear some sort of a shoe with bows on them, regardless of what brand they’re from. Why have a shoe without a bow when you can have one with a bow? That in itself is probably the most lolita kind of influence.

The influences probably go much further beyond just these things. However, once you’re at the stage where the different sections of your wardrobe mix freely and you wear things interchangeably, the boundaries between what’s an influence on what get extremely blurry. Even in the pictures above you can see all sorts of things get jumbled up and thrown together. At the end of the day, if the whole outfit looks and feels good, then that’s what actually matters, not where the individual items came from or what label to apply to it. Though they certainly make it easier to be spotted as a lolita in the wild even if you’re not in full frills.

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