Thursday, November 26, 2015

Making Big Things Happen: The Power of Details

It's the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.

-John Wooden

This is a post I've been wanting to make for a while, because I find that a lot of people that I know put a lot more focus on articles of clothing than they do on the outfit as a whole.

But, as John Wooden said, the little details are vital.

Accessories make a huge difference in how your outfit looks, especially if you (like me) tend toward the classic and the low key. They can make a Lolita look polished or completely change the genre of an outfit.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Why is This So Hard?: Fashion During Weight Loss

I have been losing weight for almost two years now, and while it’s been a gradual process it’s left my wardrobe in something of a difficult place. I need to buy new clothing to replace pieces that I can no longer fit, but I don’t want to spend money to do so because my weight hasn’t yet stabilized. I’m now down to a US size 10.

My bust hasn’t budged much – I’m still stacked despite the promises I heard from a variety of sources. Really, I look increasingly like Mae West as the lower half of my body gets smaller.

All of this comes together to make it incredibly difficult to find  clothing that fits, and I've learned a lot along the way.

Shirring is My Friend

A lot of weight loss sites say that it's a bad idea to get clothing with elastic because you don't know if your size is going up again, but I strongly disagree with this idea.

I have never been so thankful for elastic as when I started losing weight. Not only did I adore every single one of my skirts and dresses that included elastic and corset lacing, I started adding elastic to every dirndl skirt with a waistband. I don't know that I've ever before appreciated elastic so much, because my Lolita wardrobe is the clothing that has managed to stick with me through many a size, and it always cinches in the waist where I need it most.

Nobody Understands Budgets

The big thing about tips for dressing while losing weight is that they suggest you spend money on all sorts of clothing pieces rather than actually using what you have. There is a reason why I only have two pairs of pants at the moment, and that reason is that I am not going out to spend $25 on a pair of pants that will be falling off in two months and probably needs tailoring to fit now. It's just not worth spending the money.

For me, the biggest godsend has been the thrift store. Is the selection spotty? Yes, but if I find one pair of pants and one new vest in a neutral color, I'll have what I need at a tenth of the price.

Know When and How to Drape

I see a lot of tips that say I shouldn't wear anything that drapes or flows because I'll be swimming in it soon enough. I flatly disagree. It's really about knowing when and how to use that drape.

The things that I get that drape are top layers - cardigans and vests, primarily - that can flow a little extra because they are open. I update my wardrobe every so often with fitted tank tops and other shirts to go beneath them, but those draped pieces really don't leave my wardrobe because the added fullness doesn't matter as much. If you are going to drape, make sure the pieces you are draping will continue to drape well after you've dropped a size or two.

Also, belts are going to be your best friend. Even if you're into mori girl, having a belt on hand to cinch in the waist of something that's oversized is a great idea.

Buy the Essentials as You Go

I don't mean "constantly buy new clothes," because that makes no sense whatsoever. What does make sense is buying the important stuff little by little as you're losing weight. For me, the essentials are bras and jeans, because I can tailor or alter everything else to make it work on the way down. Bras and jeans, not so much.

Keep your coupons, look for sales, and get one or two essential pieces as you go.

Alterations and You 

For some reason, every weight loss fashion tip I've seen ignores the possibility of alterations. I assume that this is because many people don't sew. If you can sew, though, do your alterations because it can save you a ton of money.

One thing I have come to adore about mori girl is that I can very easily Alter the pieces I need. Pull it in at the waist or taper it toward the shoulders and I've still got a great piece to wear. Not every style is so alteration-friendly, but mori girl really is.

Have you ever lost weight and faced the challenge of nothing fitting? How did you deal with it?