What Types of Topics Would You Like Covered in a Lolita Panel?


Sometimes having an entirely separate event just for lolita just isn’t feasible. Anime conventions are a great alternative, as you can tag along some J-fashion programming and let someone else do the bulk of the hard work, and panels work really well for con format. Of course, you can have them at lolita events too, but from what I’ve seen they’re more common at cons. Having said this, there’s only so many times you can host the same ‘What is lolita fashion’ panel and still gain something from it. This week’s Lolita Blog Carnival prompt will explore some other lolita panel ideas that we would like to see and for me personally it’s more things for non-beginners.

The first one that came to my head was a panel on lolita lifestyle. This is directly inspired by the one Madeline Hatter co-hosted during Katsucon 2019. While many of us are not lifestyle lolitas and there are still some disagreements as to what this actually means and entails, it could be extremely entertaining as well as informative. Listening to how actual lifestyle lolitas balance the fashion with the reality of daily life and work could inspire others how they can incorporate bits of the fashion into their lives. Similarly, it could also explore what lolita lifestyle means to individual people and whether it even is a relevant idea in the times we’re in now, since the concept obviously originated over a decade ago.

On another note, I also really liked the Lolita Horror Stories panel idea that was done at G Anime 2019 (you can see bits of it in Lovely Lor’s video). Again, this can be really fun and very educational, depending on what spin you put on it. Laughing (or cringing) at real life examples could be very cathartic, which is sometimes exactly what you need during a long and tiring con. At the same time, hearing the panellist discuss how they would deal with the situations at hand or what are the potential solutions could help people in similar situations and prepare newer/younger lolitas by teaching them what to avoid where possible.

In terms of some new ideas, a panel about hosting lolita meets and events is something that I’d love to see. The fashion and its community is growing, meaning that there may be need for new comms in previously comm-less areas. A panel like this could give these new communities some basis on what to do or look out for when hosting meets (how to avoid people dropping out last minute is a common question I’ve seen). On the other hand, to keep those more experienced interested, delving into the practicalities of organising a larger event could help them with their next ILD celebration. Of course, there’s always room for humour and anecdotes in those to balance the purely informational content. It could also get very meta to talk about organising an event at an event that one may have organised.

When I think of conventions and panels, I also think of discussion panels, mainly from my background in Polish sci-fi conventions. There are so many great topics that can be discussed in more depth and you can easily give them a clickbaity title to boost attendance. Depending on what kind of an event the panel is held at, it could easily be adapted to suit the particular audience (e.g. if you expect J-fashion attendance to be low) and could also easily get the invited guests involved (just remember to tell them that and get a good interpreter when necessary). Can you imagine a panel discussing the effect the rise of Chinese lolita brands has had on the overall fashion with a Japanese brand guest in attendance? This may be a little too extreme (though fascinating nonetheless), but you could host one even without any famous guests, by just getting a few people of different opinions on the topic and a solid moderator. Bonus points if one of the panellists has done some extensive research into the particular topic and can back up their side with academia!

Lastly, an interactive panel about posing in lolita would be great. This is something that you notoriously hear lolitas struggle with and sometimes an article, however good, just doesn’t cut it. Moreover, if it’s a smaller con when lolita/J-fashion exclusive programming would be hard to sell, you could easily incorporate cosplayers into it as well. With a cosplayer, a J-fashionista/lolita and a photographer with a camera connected to a projector you could do some real life, real time examples of how good posing can change the whole photo. Comparing what you see with your naked eye to what the camera sees will put all those tips into perspective, plus it can be a bit of fun if the models get a bit silly with poses or faces.

There actually has been a similar, though broader Lolita Blog Carnival prompt in the past and after skim reading that last post, I still stick by much of what I said there. There is lots that you could do and lots that could fit the panel format. The key is to find balance and to not overdo it. Conventions and lolita events are already quite tiring, especially if you’re wearing an elaborate coord. Panels at least allow you an opportunity to sit down and catch a break, but it has to be interesting to attract you to catch a break there in the first place. Hopefully these suggestions will give someone out there an idea on what to do besides the ‘Lolita 101’ panels. And if you need more, then definitely check out what the other participating bloggers have come up with, there will be some great ones there!


  1. This was a very interesting read! I agree with your idea on hosting a panel about lolita meets. It would make for a better experience for everyone if comm members already have ideas on what to do.

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed that. With the organising meetup panel I was thinking more in terms of the practicalities that go into hosting. Every meet idea is great and I think if you build it, then they will come, so knowing how to ensure that it's a success once they come could give more people the confidence to host meetups. Because there's always plenty of people happy to complain about there not being enough meetups, but very few of them step up to the plate to actually do something about this.

  2. You had so many great ideas for panels subjects! If you don't mind I may get a bit of inspiration from your post for an "Advanced Lolita" panel I'm going to host at a local convention. ^^ I feel like it's hard to find subjects that would cater to more experienced Lolitas and I think you nailed it perfectly!

    1. Do it! That was the whole point of the prompt, wasn't it? :) It's definitely harder to get a good panel that would get the more experienced lolitas interested because that isn't always open enough to incorporate other things and a general anime con wants to give that time and space to those who will attract the most people. So you have to either be clever with your panel title or include the wider J-fashion community to make it worth people's time.


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