Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Virtue: courage

Just like any other hobby lolita/himegyaru fashion seems to bring out the best or the worst in people. I have noticed some of the most charming people turn into either e-fame seeking elitists or humble mentors over the years. With myself honestly falling somewhere between those two. Thinking of subjects like this reminds me of an ex-associate of mine. She was so sweet when I first met her, but than turned vain and spiteful toward the end of our friendship. Now I avoid coming in contact with her as much as possible. You are who you associate with and I do not want to develop a reputation like the one she has.

One of the first virtues that comes to mind when I think of lolita/himegyaru enthusiasts is courage. Most people would not associate fashion with a quality such as courage. However, I think that every one of the ladies and gentlemen that dare to be different because they want to, and not because it is the cool thing to do, is extremely courageous. For every amount of praise I receive from strangers I receive just as many negative comments and snide remarks. There are many lolita that have reported being harassed and even threatened. Not to mention the courage it takes every one of us to deal with the negativity in our own fashion communities.

It takes courage to deviate from the norm and stand up for your interests. To know that you spent hours primping, fluffing, and getting ready only to have people stare at you, make rude comments, or ask why you waste your time/money on such an odd hobby. It takes courage to know that you are wearing something you love and your family, friends, or co-workers might not approve. It takes courage to go to meet-ups and post pictures of yourself. It takes courage to receive and accept constructive and some non-constructive criticism. And it takes courage to ignore any self doubt and express yourself.

All of those factors weighing against us and yet we still have the perseverance to continue to dress up and go enjoy ourselves confirms that lolita/himegyaru are definitely courageous. These fashions may be cute, feminine, and youthful, but they are definitely not for the bashful. The next time you are accused of being a wimp or coward do not believe that for a minute. You are lolita/himegyaru/(insert whatever alternative fashion you like)! Always hold you head up high and be proud that you are different.

image from:The POWerful Word


Alexandriaweb said...

I don't think it's fair to say Lolita brings out the worst in people, I think people bring out the worst in people.
You get one bad apple and soon more follow, it isn't down to the fashion itself, it's down to bad luck.
That bit about your friend stuck a chord though, I'm going through something similar with a friend right now too :(

Hiyoko said...

I believe fashion and money bring out the worst in a woman. I find it's typically girls who lack control in their lives; they turn to fashion to exert control over other people (similar to men with cars and boys with game consoles). It's the idea that "I have something you want and therefore I am better than you."

It really bugs me that a girl can go from being a sweet but awkward outcast teenager to some megab*tch just because she has money and access to brand clothing. I see it a lot with goth chicks; they start off wearing an ankh necklace and plain black thrift store skirts but as soon as they get enough money they blow it on the most expensive crap just to hold it over other girls.

This is often a big problem associated with styles and Lolita is not excluded from it. I've been on a lot of Lolita blogs where the author just dictates how Lolita should be worn (which is usually her way). I understand that there are "lifestyle" guidelines, and that debateably if you dress Lolita you should abide to them, but at the same time you're you... so do what you want and eff everybody else.

I think that's why I appreciate the woman who breaks the fashion mould, and doesn't restrict herself to one set style. You can like her for who she is, and not what she's trying to be.

Lady Kristen said...

Alexandriaweb: I hope that you are either talk sense into your friend or be able to end the relationship without any hurt feelings.

Some people are just bad apples deep down and it takes just a little push to bring it out. Sadly my friend was like that. The people we associated with were not a bad influence. I still talk with them and they want nothing to do with her and her attitude.

Hiyoko: I completely agree with you! I do not know about this happening in other alternative fashion, but it happens frequently in the lolita fashion. This is already an expensive and limited supply hobby and the girls do strive to buy the most coveted item so they can flaunt it to others.