torsdag den 31. oktober 2013

Lolita Blog Carnival: Tips for Staying Warm for Fall

"Brace yourselves... Winter is coming!"

I'm sorry, I couldn't NOT do it.

Fall has long been upon us, but this weeks Lolita Blog Carnival theme lets me dish out some much needed tips for staying warm and comfy throughout the rest of the season. It has been a pretty mild year so far, but I'm always prepared! The weather turns around like mad here, so you never know!

I want to do something besides just dishing out suggestions for how to add layers ("besides" being the keyword!), so I'll be throwing in some suggestions based on my favorite ways for coaching in the comfy fall spirit as well!

Turn up the oven and add some cinnamon!
Baking is a great way to warm up a little bit, both inside and out. For some reason, as soon as we get on the other side of August, I find myself wanting to turn out one pumpkin pie and another loaf of cinnamon bread after another! If I actually made every single batch of cookies that is getting crispy in my imaginary, country-styled kitchen, I would live in a very happy neighborhood!
So, put the insides of that Halloween pumpkin to good use, everyone!

Learn a new (old-timey) skill: Knitting!
I've actually been wanting to try this for a long time, and I do have a pattern or two for some really cute scarves in my Gothic and Lolita bibles, so well.. Why not? Knitting is the new "thrifting" where I'm from, and it would be a great excuse (do you ever need one?) to spend some time with one of the older family members, who seem to be so good at some of the skills that were once common-place. I've heard that it is also a great way of keeping your hands occupied while relaxing in front of the TV- 
So pop in that Kamikaze Girls DVD and prepare for the cold!

Get cultural!
What better way to stay warm than to just stay inside?! 
Just kidding- but with the entirety of summer being all about tea parties in the garden, picnics and amusement parks outdoors, fall is the perfect season for museum- or castle visits! Tourist season has passed, which should give plenty of petticoat space, and afterwards a castle would be the perfect setting for a couple of outfit photos, complete with fall-colored leaves in the background.

And last but not least, your outfit photos should of course not be of you shivering in your kneesocks and JSK. Some people complain that fall and winter means hiding your coordinate underneath a big coat that'll look the same at every meet-up, but remember: Fall also brings along the opportunity for experimentation! You're able to try to many different combinations in a variety of layers without becoming a sweaty mess! With the (not as) recent rise in popularity of the substyle 'mori girl', I think it would be very appropriate to take some inspiration from there. How about going for a dolly kind of look? But not the usual one- A doll owned by a little girl who grew up in the woods. Lots of raggedy layers in a variety of materials, long scarves, a combination of thick wooly socks and tights and a warm knitted beanie? Combined with the poofy skirts and elegance of our beloved fashion!
I have little knowledge of mori-girl, but I should think the limits are imaginary!

Now, you should be dressed and equipped to face the Fall! So make a pie, put on your best knitted scarf and join your girls and guy-friends for a nice trip to your local gallery!

Or would you rather stay inside with a nice cup of tea and a good read?
Check out the ones below!

onsdag den 30. oktober 2013

This is Halloween, This is.. Christmas!

Original picture from Fanpop

Happy early Halloween, people!
Tomorrow is my first Halloween in my own home, and luck has it that I'll be working all night. Not that I'm complaining as I will be doing what I love, with a Halloween-twist to it (and I will probably be able to wear my frills to work for once, too!) 
I just had some other stuff planned, but that's the perfect excuse to have two Halloweens in a row! As some of the more gothically inclined out there know, there is no Holiday Police maintaining a legal limit as to how many Halloweens you may have.

Tonight I will finish up all my studies early, read through my homework as a tornado and wrap up my projects early, so I will finally get to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas! I've really wanted to watch that movie for years. I could slap myself- A huge Tim Burton fan, but never watched his most iconic work! but I've been stubborn- I needed the perfect night to do it! 
Work stole my Halloween, so I will just have to make my own.

My official Halloween night I will be spending in an old victorian house.
As some of you might know, I work at the local historical museum, and tomorrow we keep the doors open to kids and adults with Halloween-themed workshops. Stuff for the children in the early evening, and some stuff for the older kids later at night, with some horror stories and the like. 
As usual, I will mainly keep the shop and information booth occupied, but if everything goes the way it usually does, I will get to participate in the festivities as well! Help out the kids, shop for treats etc. 
And all of this probably dressed in a Victorian Vampire-inspired Lolita outfit. (Gotta keep the historical inspiration! And work my way through all of the clichés I didn't get to try out as a kid!) 
Lolita might not be a costume, but Halloween will be a free-pass to wearing it. Hopefully without catcalling or unwelcome parazzis.

But first of all, there is tonight!
 It will be the perfect "transfer" from the spooky time of Halloween to my biggest love of every year- Christmas! The shops have already moved the ghosts to clearance and put up the christmas stockings and expensive christmas truffles for sale- Seeing that makes me strangely excited to go grocery shopping, even if I'm too much of an Auntie Scrooge to buy anything.

Enough of me rambling- My point is,
I hope you have a night of splendid Nightmares before Christmas season catches on!

søndag den 27. oktober 2013

Review: Barbie Girls circle lenses from Jihoshop

Picture from Jihoshop's Ebay shop.
I've wanted a pair of circle lenses for a couple of years now, and now I finally got my chance at achieving that adorable, doll-eyed look that I've been envying on other girls!
 And boy, did I get what I paid for!
I ordered a pair of Barbie Girls Blue Eye-Cherry Blossom circle lenses from Jihoshop, and this was my experience as a circle lense newbie.


I made my purchase from Jihoshop's ebay-shop about a week ago, and they shipped promptly! I made a mistake when making my purchase (I chose prescription -3.00 instead of -2.50), but they promised me that they would fix that for me. I didn't really expect them to remember, but they did, and to me that's a sign of great, personal service. The shipping was free, but I received a tracking number and they sent it as a recommended letter. I would have preferred if they didn't, but it was a nice gesture. 

I received them in a sealed envelope, in this cute little bag with a thank you note and a gold sticker (according to them the sticker is 24k! Wow.. I have my doubs). The pack was wrapped in plenty of bubblewrap and everything was OK.
All in all they deserve a top rating and I can't wait to empty my wallet into their pockets some more!

General service:     

Barbie Girls Blue Eye-Cherry Blossom lenses: 17.92$, Free Shipping

I tried the lenses on right out of the bottle (after washing them in some solution). The lenses does not have the distinct cherry blossom pattern that they do in the picture, but the color is a nice deep blue and they enlarge my eyes a lot! The color is not too unnatural, which was my main fear about circle lenses. They blend in really well with my dark brown eye color. They are not exactly comfortable, and they rely heavily on the moisture of my own eyes.
Even if they are not the most comfortable, I think I could wear them for a longer period of time if I just do not think about them too much- I don't really notice them when just walking around my house doing my thing. All in all, a nice product at a cheap price.
 Here is a picture of me wearing them. No make-up, and in natural light: 

How they feel:  ♠  (Not comfortable, but wearable!)
How they look:     (Great, but nothing like the product picture!)

In conclusion: I am pretty satisfied with my purchase, and I will probably be purchasing a pair of lenses (or 15) from them again!

Oh, and before I leave you I just wanted to let you guys know that..

Northern Star now has a Facebook page!
Go check it out! The page will be updated everytime a new post is up, or something exciting happens that I want to share!

Thank you for reading, and I hope to see you soon again here on the Northern Star!

torsdag den 24. oktober 2013

Lolita Blog Carnival: My Perfect Lolita Halloween Party

Picture from Google
I've recently had the pleasure of becoming part of the Lolita Blog Carnival, a blogging society for lolitas that come up with the most fun and inspiring blogging ideas! In this case, many minds really do think better than one! This week, it was decided by a great majority of excited votes that the very seasonally appropriate topic would be "Your Perfect Lolita Themed Halloween Party"!

So, let's let our imagination run wild, shall we?

My perfect lolita-themed halloween party would of course take place in the ballroom of an old victorian manor, with elegant but sumptous decor. The darker the better, Addams-family style! Everyone would be seated in groups at small tables spread out across the hall, with a set of cards at each table. The cards would be halloween- and lolita themed conversation starters with questions to ask, or topics to discuss- Something like "What is your best Halloween memory?"
The party would need a curtained stage for entertainment, and a small catwalk in the middle of the stage, of course. The buffet would be a dark but elegant take on small finger foods. One could play around with some food colouring to make purple damask patterns on the sandwiches or something like that! Of course there would be huge, decorated cakes for dessert. Three-layer wedding cakes, decorated with spiderwebs, raggedy bows and lace!

Now, with the setting done, let's invite some girls and guys and get to the activities! The guests would receive their invitations by hand, handed out to them by a hired actor in a gothic costume, to set the mood. And in that envelope, they would receive a small task to complete- A chance to actively participate in the preparation of the night's fun!
What would a perfect party be without entertainment?
Before the party, everyone would have been split into smaller groups, with whom they should prepare a small play to show on stage. The theme for each play would be a different well-known horror story, like Frankenstein or Dracula, but the group should make a modern lolita-themed take on the classic! How fun would it be to watch a play where a girl at a meet-up turned out to be a werewolf, or a crazy lolita tried to create her own Mr. Yan in a secret basement?

Later in the evening, a costume contest would be held. Of course poofy but creepy costumes would be the dresscode for the evening. Anyone who wanted to participate in the competition, would get to show their horror-themed coordinate on stage, and then anonymous voting would take place, with a price for the winner. The price at my ideal party would be something fun- Like a ticket to something, or a trip somewhere! Maybe a ticket to the Phantom of the Opera musical?

Afterwards, people would get to explore the grounds of the old victorian mansion further- A treasure hunt! New teams would be made, and then everyone would be let outside to go look for clues and complete little tasks to get to the prize, with horrific surprises along the way- Ghosts and vampires would jump out and scare the petticoats of the participants, and little props and sound-effects should be spread out throughout the hunt!
A night-time race through a labyrinth to get to a prize in the middle would also be fun, with scary things around every corner!

The evening would end with another round of prizes to the lucky ones who first completed the hunt, and then the rest of the mansion would be opened up for everyone to go take outfit photos and the like in the other rooms of the old house. There is nothing like an opportunity to make memories in beautiful surroundings- Especially after something that in my imagination turned out to be one of the most exciting evenings! Now, could somebody just get me a victorian mansion already!?

Want to crash another Lolita-Themed Halloween Party? Let's see what the other blogs are imagining!

The Bloody Tea Party
Elegant Poupée
Her Lumpiness
Lace a la Mode
Dollhouse Diaries

mandag den 21. oktober 2013

Why my local community is a blessing

Original picture from google
When I first started out in lolita, I was a young and naive, socially awkward girl who had a very difficult time making new friends- Frankly, I didn't want to make friends with "mainstreamers". But I was lonely in my special snowflake bubble, and like most naive, awkward girls who suddenly find themselves as part of a subculture that gives them the opportunity of starting a-new, getting to know new people and meeting up with other people that they are totally certain will be little copies of their own awkward self, I had no doubt that my first meet-up would be a gathering of princesses with whom I would get along with immediately (From what I've seen on the internet, new lolitas tend to be especially prone to these expectations). We would be best friends forever, go out shopping, gushing about new prints together, eating french pastries and giggling and looking picture perfect, and life would be beautiful.

I'm sure you see where this is going- My little fantasy was crushed, and I found myself sitting alone in a corner. I found it difficult to take part in conversations, as everybody else already knew each other, because of course people naturally tend to talk to their friends when they meet up! There is nothing strange about that.
I see that now. 
But back then, I was sorely dissapointed. My first meet-up was not the magical, instant-friend-making-party that I had hoped for. It was a lonely, depressing experience, and not a memory I look back on with anything but an awkward, grey-clouded pull at the corner of my mouth. 
I'm sure the title makes less and less sense, but don't worry- it get's better.

For some reason, and I can't explain it as anything but the loneliness of being a strangely dressed teen, that first meet-up did not turn out to be my last. I kept coming back, even though the next couple of meet-ups turned out to be perfect mirror images of the first one. But I kept going- I pretended to have fun, I made happy comments on the meet-up pictures that were shared with the internet community afterwards, and I kept telling myself to have fun.  Of course I was gonna be part of this community, even if those people didn't exactly open the door for me or tried to pull me inside. I insisted on having fun, no matter what! And one reason I really, really wanted to elbow my way in was this: Those girls were so amazingly sweet, fun and talented! I had nothing but admiration to offer. I never held it against them that I had a tough time getting "in there".

And you know what? I finally did. I got in.
 And that was a very important lesson to me, that I think is important to share with other lolitas who want to become part of their local community; Or any close knit group of people, for that matter.

It is not easy. From my experience, groups of people that have stuck around each other for a long time get into certain habits; They get comfortable with each other. They know exactly what needs to be said, what to talk about, how to joke and laugh with each other. Everybody has their place- like the instruments in a band, and the music plays in perfect harmony! But what happens if you suddenly add another instrument?

It takes time and effort for everybody to adjust. People aren't mean- it might feel like they aren't making an effort to include you, but they just have to get used to you- and suddenly, if you keep coming back, keep trying to strike up conversations, you'll become a natural part of the picture. 
They will find room for a xylophone in their musical band. At first your instrument will get a couple of notes- slowly, you'll get more and more space. You'll be included in conversations, they'll learn how and when to joke around you.
Don't give up before they even get the chance to notice you! The least you can do is offer them time, and show that you really want to have a good time!

Now I look forward to every meet-up. I get to know the girls better and better. Every time I get to know yet another person even better! There are such a huge variety of different people in even a small community, and every single one is sweet, funny and incredibly kind and patient, in their own way. Even though I've moved to the other end of the country, they keep inviting me back. Not just for meet-ups, but for parties and gatherings outside of lolita as well.
One of the most important things lolita has told me, is how to be social. How to get to know new people, and what to expect when trying to become part of something. 

So, moral of this?
Give your local community a chance. And another one. And another one. Slowly but surely, you might be digging closer to a real treasure.

Oh, and I can't wait for Friday! Housewarming with my lolita pals and more. Yes, please!

søndag den 20. oktober 2013

Lacebook: Lolita Social Network

Original picture from Lacebook

Since last, a new social networking site for active lolitas has sprung up: Lacebook- Lolita fashion snaps.

Lacebook is a platform for lolitas to share coordinates and thoughts, in the form of photos added to a public or private photogallery, and blogposts posted to a personal blog on your profile or posts in a small forum. It is only possible to join Lacebook if you have received an invitation from a person who is already a member of Lacebook- and this person must also have received an invitation from a member, and so on. The invitation is given by asking a moderator for a code for a specific lolita (including name and future username of the lovely lady/bro) and then passing this code on to the aspiring Lacebook user.
The invite system, though kind of slow and probably only getting more and more heavily stressful for the moderators and administrators as the site grows, probably keeps out spammers and creepy lurkers, and as such I think the system is a good idea- Though I hope they will find a way of setting up the system as an automatic feature. Experience tells me that sites that needs a large amount of manual activity from the administrators to run smoothly, tend to die out as they become uninspired to do tedious tasks, like handing out codes to people.

Apart from the above, the site of course has a bunch of small hiccups like any new website would have- Only moderators are able to customize their profile with a cover photo, for example. Apart from this, the site is very well run, and I think overall it is a great idea to have a Facebook-like site where you can make status updates and easily browse through gallery upon gallery of creative coordinates and make comments to each photo.

What I am not OK with, though, and this is my only major critique point- Is that you are able to "rate" peoples' pictures(At least the ones the user does not choose to make private, because that is also an option.) With a click of your mouse you can rate an outfit on the scale of 1 to 5, without having to take the time to leave a comment. This feature might be very handy in the sense that you can give a person a quick compliment without having to sit down and type out why a coordinate is great. Sometimes giving a reason for why a coordinate is great can be hard- it just looks great, yo! But in this case, it is not just a "like" feature, like the one Facebook has. The rate feature also pretty much gives you a "dislike" feature- 
1 star, well: You suck!

Do you see my point? I like the quick and easy browsing ability that Lacebook gives you- It is quicker and easier than the former primary outfit-platform that we had, Daily Lolita, and the invite system protects us from trolls, creepers and spammers, but on Daily Lolita you had to type out a message to the lolita whose outfits you were judging, which meant that constructive criticism was shared. The rating system makes it too easy to be the judge of a person's outfit without giving them a reason for the critique, and ways in which they could improve. You should always take anonymous opinions dealt out on the internet with a grain of salt, but I see how some people with softer souls could be hurt by happily sharing a coordinate that they themself liked, just to receive a number of 1 star ratings- The equality to being "boo'd" off stage.

In conclusion: Lacebook is great and very innovative.
 It is quick, easy and effective, the way the internet-users of today like it! It has the potential to become a very popular social platform for lolitas all over the world, to share ideas, outfits and thoughts, especially if the forum finally takes off. All it needs is the option of better customization of your profile, and maybe an online "Meet-up Planner" and the option of making your own groups- Unless I have overlooked that option somehow. Please correct me if that is the case. 
Oh, and please; Remove that rate function. It really doesn't do the friendliness of the site any good. 
Thank you.

lørdag den 19. oktober 2013

A New Life-Chapter, A Frilly Rebirth, A Reborn Blog

I just experienced sort of a "lolita rebirth", you could say.
And that is what this post is gonna be about. Ultimately. But first, Here's a lot of personal stuff.

Since last year, a last pile of things have been thrown at me; enough that it almost feels like a decade, and I know that I have become a different person since then. I barely recognize the young, frilly girl who started this blog!

Since then I have returned to Denmark from the states, and shortly after settling in in my new home in the other end of the country, I decided that it was time to pack up my life and move into my own place. I have made myself a comfortable home, a mix of retro 90's stuff (a fancy expression for old electronics from when I was a kid and given to me by my grandparents so that I can keep up with the outside world) and beautiful antiques, just the way I like it. I like my furniture to have a bit of history- It's fun to imagine who must've been sitting in my couch before a poor student decided to bury it in books and homework. 

Since I moved out it feels like time has been flying past- Summer came and went, and I don't remember half of it. I guess I went to a meet-up or two with the girls. At least that's what the pictures in my Facebook album tells me- and I finally got to meet up with my local lolita circle, too! Truth be told, I was kind of worried that I wouldn't fit in. You know how rumors can be. I was told that the girls in the circle up here would be less engaged in the fashion, and more of a cosplay bunch, and as much as I admire talented cosplayers and how they are capable of turning fiction into reality, I cannot sew a button back onto a shirtcuff to save my life!

The rumors were quite wrong. Yes, most of the lovely girls and guys are into fictional culture- But the "fiction" that they are into are TV-series are mostly fandoms that I am absorbed by as well, and their humor is as wacky and dorky as I like it! We had a wonderful and hilarious day in "The Old Town in Aarhus", a small old-timey town inside the second largest city in Denmark with people in period costumes (We fit right in.. Well, that's what people seemed to think), and we had a great bunch of fun in the new 70's section, recognizing stuff from our grandparents' homes. Well, I guess that's another way of getting to know each other! I cannot wait to meet up with them again. I have been considering setting up a "Thor 2" cinema meet-up, so I guess it's gonna be very soon.
Moral of the story? Lolitas are, and will always be, a diverse bunch! We're not seperated into groups of weaboos and classy girls- Don't listen to rumors. Ever. Unless there is a chance that you're gonna get hurt.

Since the meet-up in Aarhus, I've pretty much been living the life of a person locked in a cabin in the woods, when it comes to my lolita life. I've had plenty of social interaction, but it's all been revolving around my new life as a university student. I got into the local university, and will be spending the next 5 years studying history- I will preferably end up with a degree, with Italian renaissance and Leonardo da Vinci as my special field. This first semester is one that I just have to live through- It's a shared semester with a bunch of other kind-of-relevant-but-kind-of-not subjects that we just have to learn- economics, politics.. if I were a pokémon, those would be the Squirtles to my Charmander. Marx and I are never gonna be friends- his theories are way too complicated.
The constant parties in between studies should be very welcome breaks from all of this- but if you're like me, they're really not. I'll never be fond of going out at night, squishing through packs of drunk youngsters trying to get to the bar, and purchasing over-priced drinks.

 I miss my picnics and my skirts.. And that was when the BTSSB sale happened. 
And I fell in love all over again. I hadn't worn lolita for months, but I decided to treat myself, because hey, do I deserve it!? I've evolved so much this past year; I got a job, I'm a university student, I got through my first school project. Frankly, I've done pretty darn good. And here I am. I've become a frilly grown-up!

I never purchased anything from the BTSSB sale, actually. I probably would've, a year or so ago- It's cheap brand, after all! But I went for a gorgeous infanta dress instead. The one in the top picture. 
Why is this an important point? It's actually quite simple. I've evolved above caring what anybody else thinks. I thought I didn't care before, but now I recognize that I did. And maybe I still do a little bit, but in a different way. I don't care about brand or offbrand, the way I did before, when I was kind of influenced by the general consensus in this fashion, that brand is supreme. Brand really doesn't matter- what matters is spending your money on stuff that you actually love. And currently, I'm kind of bored with what the brands put out- But very impressed with the originality that the Taobao brands show! You go, little chinese brands! You go!

When it comes to wearing lolita in my daily life, among "regular people", I used to be a rebel. 
I wore lolita because I could, and sometimes because I wanted to insist on my right that I should be able to, no matter what! Even if it made other people uncomfortable. I still think it is silly, but now I recognize that it's more difficult for some people than others to deal with the extra attention.

 Now I'm truly wearing lolita for me, in spite of what others might think. 
Because I think I look gorgeous when I do, and that's when I feel my best.

 And I'm back. Not back to a regular posting schedule, as I discovered that forcing out blogposts will do no good for anyone- But I'm back.

Hello, readers! And welcome to a more freely run and more personal "Northern Star"!
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