Those wearing Sweet Lolita sometimes find that they fall out of love with or feel self-conscious in the bright, in-your-face style. This phenomenon rarely affects Classic and Gothic Lolitas, who are told comparatively less often to ‘dress their age’. Remember, that there’s no age limit on Lolita fashion and you don’t have to switch styles once your age hits some arbitrary number. However, if you want your Sweet Lolita wardrobe to become more mature without selling your dresses, here are some tips. And hopefully they won’t break your budget either!
You can’t do much about the dress itself, but you can tone down the colours of everything else. White and offwhite will work with everything, creating a neutral base that will tame your Sweet Lolita down a little. Any colour more muted and less bright than pastels will work, just remember it has to match. Sometimes even the sweetest of Sweet Lolita prints have hidden muted shades as an accent colour that you could use. If you’re prepared to invest a little, swap your prints for other, less Sweet colourways. For example, compare how much more mature French Café looks in red or blue instead of pink. Just don’t forget to consider what will fit your changing wardrobe. However, if you can’t bear to sell or trade things, simply use more mature colours in the rest of your coord.
With a style as vibrant as Sweet Lolita every accessory makes the outfit stand out more, even the non-OTT ones. Carefully consider what kind of accessory would complement the coord and limit yourself to a maximum of two pieces. Going for smaller or less busy accessories could also make a difference. A pair of bracelets or a matching rosette won’t overwhelm your Sweet outfit, in turn making it stand out less. Extend that tip to hair accessories too and swap head-eating headbows for a smaller ones or a pair of clips with a simpler hairstyle. When trying to make Sweet Lolita appear more mature, the accessory rule is less is more.
The standard blouse for Sweet Lolita is a Peter Pan collar one. That style tends to look more childish, especially if the collar’s oversized. Change up your blouse for an instant outfit tone-down. A standing collar will work with any dress cut and will add some Victorian elegance to your Sweet coord. Choosing a blouse with lace or mesh see-through sleeves could also work well. Recently many high street brands have been making blouses and cutsews like that, so you could get some inexpensively. Remember to stick to a neutral colour to tone down the coord and neutralise the pastels.
Many struggle with OTKs in Sweet Lolita as generally shorter dresses inevitably show at least a bit of skin. Opting for tights with minimal to no print would solve that issue, but also make the outfit appear more mature. There are plenty of tights available on the high street in solid neutral colours or interesting textures like knits. The less fussy prints like polka dots, lace, small flowers or ribbons will also work in a more mature coord. No need to compromise on having something interesting on your legs, just remember to coordinate the print motif with your dress. And you’ll love not having any bare leg in colder months!
Nothing says ‘cute yet mature lady’ like a classy cardigan! It adds a preppy touch and, more importantly, covers up a chunk of your dress and therefore the print. Pick a simpler design to avoid accidentally adding extra fuss when you meant to take it away. Pastel tones will work too, but a neutral shade will tone down your coord more. Even non-printed dresses have plenty of detail on the bodice like lace, bows or buttons, so hiding that is an instant way of minimising the Sweet in Sweet Lolita. The adventurous amongst you may even wear a cardigan without a blouse underneath – because you can. And because cardigans in general are amazing!
Whether these tips gave you the confidence to keep your Sweet Lolita dresses for a little longer or inspired you to wear them in their full glory, hopefully this has been useful to you. Don’t be afraid to rock who you are, whatever your style!
29-year-old Capricorn, Polish-born, UK-based and in love with Japanese fashion (predominantly Lolita). I enjoy a good bargain, OTT coords, cats and baking, and when in Japan I’m a self-confessed purikura addict. When I don’t blog, I work in the education sector, overseeing international exchange programs, and sometimes I get to do some exciting freelance translations on the side.
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