Winter ILD 2017


This Saturday once again Lolitas across the world have gathered, either physically at meet ups or metaphorically online, to celebrate the Winter International Lolita Day. I hope that you have been able to do something for the occasion, big or small, in group or alone, for the full day or just a portion of it. I was lucky enough to be absolutely swarmed with ILD meetup invites from across the various comms I am part of (and beyond), but remained loyal to my local Leeds comm.

| BtSSB Secret AIR MAIL from Sweet Kitty JSK | Innocent World lucky pack
blouse | vintage jacket | Sheena's Bella Bows mini-hat | Mufish tights | Innocent
World shoes | Innocent World brooch | Milkribbon brooch | Tea Party
Club pin | Twinkle Kitty Boutique and Tea Party Club rings |

Selfie at the beginning of the day, when my hair was still
fresh. Although it held ok through the day.

The only closeup of some of my rings, when I was brainstorming
accessories the night before. Ended up not using the necklace.

Even though there was no official theme, since this ends up being our Christmas meet too, I decided to be as festive as I possibly could have and went with a toy soldier/nutcracker theme. I wanted to wear this Baby dress because: a) it’s on the list of dresses to wear before the end of the year; b) it has a fully shirred back, so great for festive eating; and c) because its main accent colour is red which is a very festive colour indeed. Very quickly I was able to pick the remaining matching pieces, whipped up my favourite hairstyle and added some sparkle to the makeup (which you sadly can’t see on the photo) and off I went!

On the day it turned out that plenty of people had issues with public transport and many people were delayed. Luckily, the venue, The Queens Hotel, is literally adjacent to the Leedss train station, so very little walking in the cold involved and it really would be an achievement to get lost looking for it. Everyone has had some kind of either festive or winter theme in their outfits going on and I love seeing what other people do for bigger occasions like this!

There were about 20 of us on the day, which is about standard for meets like ILD, but at the same time it was comfortable enough that you could chat to everyone, as well as meet new people. The room was also laid out in a way that kept us together, making it easier to socialise.

Very classy private room.

That fit us all comfortably and had a few good lighting spots!

While the main thing was standard afternoon tea (albeit that chocolate mousse was the best chocolate mousse I ever had in my life!), our wonderful organiser added her own touch to the event to make it more fun. At first, to make sure that we all felt welcome and had a chance to get to know everyone, we had to stand up, introduce ourselves and say how long it took us to get ready that morning. Most people averaged somewhere in the region of two hours, although there were a few who got ready in an hour or less (who got a round of applause) and a few people who stretched it to longer (e.g. I said that I started curling my hair the night before, so if we counted that, it’d be closer to twelvve hours). It’s such a great way to break the ice: a simple question that everyone can relate to, but that’s also not the standard “and talk about what you’re wearing” – something light that everyone can laugh at or take seriously if they want to.

Compulsory food photo. That mousse though!
The second major thing was a five-part quiz. I feel like I cheated by joining a team who really knew their Lolita trivia, because some of the questions were absolute news to me. Each part was its own little sub-category, like anagrams spelling out brand names or “Lolita fuckery” meaning the weirdest, most obscure bits of trivia formed into true-or-false questions. One part involved two of our comm members, who are notorious for not knowing any print names, not even the ones that they own, and each team had to get them to guess the print name they had drawn out in an Articulate style game. There was no point in explaining what the prints looked like, all we had to do was get our randomly selected contestant to say the words in the print – and some people got abstract! Although it was the joining words like “of” that were very tricky to explain, we managed to get most simple print names down – only some weird-ass Baby print with a sentence of a name and Vampire Requiem, which through the explainer’s invention turned into Walrus Requiem, were genuinely too difficult to get. And our lovely print-name-challenged comm members each received a cute Christmas glass so that they wouldn’t feel too picked on. In the end the team I was on and another team ended up in a draw, so we continued with that game sudden death style – and sadly lost. But it was still loads of fun. And our host actually made the quiz available online, so if you fancy giving it a go, you can find it here.

I had to take my jacket off, the quiz was intense and required
a lot of focus to explain print name words properly to score
us points. :P

And lastly were Secret Santa and raffle. If you have read about Winter ILD 2016, then you will already be familiar with our style of Secret Santa. For new readers, this is how it worked. Everyone participating had brought a gift. The first person had to pick a gift from the array and open it in front of everyone. Every person after that could either pick a new gift and unwrap that OR steal a gift from those already opened – and stealing had to be respected, no arguing or resisting. The person who had their present stolen then got to pick and open a new one from those that were left. And so on until all gifts were distributed. Last year I was lucky in that no-one had even tried to steal mine. This year I was one of the last people to draw and since I didn’t fancy stealing anything, I picked a new one – which turned out to be Lush bath bombs that I was quite happy with. And then the very last person came right up to me and took those away from me. But! That turned out to be a blessing in disguise. The last remaining unopened present was actually from my present stealer – a beautiful necklace that she had on preorder on her Etsy store page. And it matched my ILD coord so perfectly that I simply had to put it on. I am far, far happier with that necklace than I was with the bath bombs, so I’m grateful for fate looking after me like this! (Psst, there are still some available and cheap too, get youself one, support indie brands!)

So many mysterious gifts...!

...and the best one ended up mine!

As for the raffle, there were quite a few interesting prizes, including a very WTF pink canotier with a panda head on it. (By the way, I know that there was a panda print from Taobao not that long ago, but I feel like it does come in pink, so I hope that the two will meet one day.) The grand prize was this beautifully displayed Baby JSK, which I have just managed to find out is the Starry Sky of Mother Goose print. Unfortunately, very few of us in attendance stood a chance of fitting it thanks to a complete lack of shirring, and the person who ended up snagging it won’t fit it either, so I hope that they manage to find something to do with it. I modestly came home with a brown velveteen headbow from Cutie Creator – the same one I already own in green that I wore to the Christmas Markets in Manchester. Never too many headbows in my world and I only have one brown one, so I’m sure this will be useful.

The grand prize, displayed in the most subtle way possible.
At the end there were the usual last minute outfit shots, selfies and general vanity before we all dispersed on our way back home. I think everyone had a tiring week and just wanted to change into something comfy, myself included. But for last 2017 Leeds comm meet, this definitely was great and as always I enjoyed spending time with these lovely people. I have one more actual, official meet left this year, although I will be wearing Lolita on my own at least once before, which I’ll try to get a photo of to document here.

Did you do anything for the ILD weekend? How long did it take you to get dressed, if you dressed up in your frills? Any more meets still left for you this year or has your comm winded down now?


  1. That sounds like such a great meet...and I love your hairstyle :)

    1. It was tonnes of fun. It's hard to beat good company, nice food and fun games. :)

  2. That hairstyle + hat combination is too cute!

    1. Thank you! I love doing a victory roll with a mini hat, they balance each other so well (and I don't have to worry about making my victory rolls even). :)

  3. This sounded like a superduper fun meet, I wish we had those more! Ah and the mother goose jsk :O what a price!
    Love your outfit and hairstyle, really festive!

    1. I know, this was a really generous gift, even if the no-shirring cut probably didn't make it so generous for those who would've wanted to wear it, but wouldn't fit. Makes me want to know the story behind the dress, how it ended up as a raffle prize.
      And thank you, it was so fun being festive, need to do this more often!

  4. This sounds like such an incredible meet! I don't think I've ever done something big on Winter ILD which is a shame, as I think winter is a great time to gather and be cosy somewhere.

    I love that version of Secret Santa so much! There's must be so much tension involved in that moment where you're wondering if your present will get stolen! I'm glad that you ended up getting something you liked more in the end, and it does match your gorgeous coordinate perfectly.

    I'm always so impressed by your hair and makeup. Makes me want to improve my skills! I particularly love your victory rolls. That retro look really pairs well with your lolita style <3

    Honestly, that panda canotier sounds like the kind of nonsense I'd really be into, as I love panda themed items!

    The picture of the dress displayed with its own spotlight really tickled me XD

    I didn't do much on ILD except for go to the post office (and turn around to come straight home as the queue was so big) and decorate the little Christmas tree I have in my bedroom.

    1. Winter is the best time to be cosy. And in all fairness, with all the layers involved in a Lolita outfit, I feel like it's the most comfortable time to wear it out too. No need to worry about being cold and if you end up too warm, there's usually something you can take off.

      This Secret Santa version is incredibly fun! It's also interesting to watch which presents end up changing hands and how often - sometimes people have only just sat down and they have to get up again because their present got stolen by the next person! And unless I'm very wrong, no-one was really upset by it because everyone made effort to bring a truly lovely gift, which at least gives some sort of reassurance that you will still come back with something nice.

      Aww, thank you! ^^ I have definitely practiced victory rolls and vintage hairstyles a lot and spent absolute *hours* bingewatching A Vintage Vanity on YouTube (she's such a sweetheart and explains her techniques, what things do and how stuff works really well). But I keep finding other people who are absolutely incredible at makeup, so my plan is to practice more intricate things than what I normally do. ^^

      Nonsense like that panda canotier are one of the reasons why I love Lolita fashion so much - you never know what will be the next wacky thing you'll find.

      This should be how all brands display their dresses in store!

      You're one Christmas tree ahead of me then. Christmas decorating is my Mum'ss thing and she's been busy and then away, so we're still waiting for out house to be thoroughly Christmasified. :P


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