The season for lucky packs is upon us. Many brands have already started reservations for these, while others simply announced what will be available. When a dress alone can cost around ¥30,000, spending this much on a full set is incredibly tempting. But are they really good value for money? Read this article to find out if buying a lucky pack is for you!
These used to be two different things, but nowadays many brands use these terms interchangeably. A lucky pack, or fukubukuro in Japanese, is usually a blind bag with previously unsold stock. On the other hand, happy packs were the special sets released specifically for the New Year’s sales. However, nowadays special sets are sometimes called lucky packs and happy packs could refer to fukubukuro. Make sure to read the description to ensure that you know what you’re getting. In the rest of this article, I will use the terms as defined above to distinguish between the two types.
Getting into lolita fashion means a lot of initial costs. These can pile up very quickly, if you don’t watch your spending. For a newbie lolita a happy pack is a quick way to get an almost complete coord. I say almost, as majority of these don’t include a petticoat, without which a coordinate is not complete as lolita. On the flipside, lucky packs are a gamble. You may receive pieces that work well as a coordinate or they may be completely random. Looking up past reviews and unboxings can help establish which brands do that better than others, but it’s never a guarantee. Nonetheless, a lucky pack or a happy pack would be a quick and easy way to jump right into wearing the fashion.
The New Year means as much a wardrobe post season as it does a lucky pack one. As you document your collection, you’ll notice missing pieces which could give your coordinates a final polish. A lucky pack may be a cost-effective way of filling out those gaps. Sometimes brands like Angelic Pretty release item-specific lucky packs e.g. with tops or legwear. These are usually offered in store, so would require a shopping service to obtain. However, many indie brands will also do lucky packs. As these will have a more defined style they cater to or even substyle-specific options, they’d be better suited to filling out your wardrobe gaps. Check the websites and social media for your favourite indie brands to see if they will carry lucky packs this January.
Although a single-substyle wardrobe is easier to keep cohesive, variety is more exciting. Once you have enough options for your basics and primary substyle, branching out is easier. And just like for beginners, lucky packs and happy packs are a quick way of doing that. That way even if you were missing some key builder piece, e.g. socks, you will still receive something to match. And if you decide the style isn’t for you after all, you wouldn’t have spent that much on it, as well as could resell the pieces. Again, happy packs will offer some clarity as to what to expect, while lucky packs will be a surprise, so research the brands thoroughly before purchasing.
This boils down to why you want to buy lucky packs. If you have a very specific style, are very picky about what you like or have restrictions such as size, lucky packs may not always be the best option. For people like this it’s best to save your money to spend during the New Year’s sales. The other thing to consider is your attitude towards reselling clothes. The upside of lucky packs is that most items can be sold again, although you likely won’t reclaim the original cost. However, if you find selling clothes a hassle or prefer to buy for keeps, then lucky packs probably aren’t for you.
I have put together an article on lucky packs how to’s on my blog about two years ago. The majority of the information within it continues to be relevant today, so if you’d like more tips, head over there.
Below is a list of Japanese lolita fashion brands that have already confirmed their sales and reservations of lucky packs. The links will take you to the pages with the original information about those, which are predominantly in Japanese. In some cases the lucky packs have sold out in reservations, but there may still be some available in store over the first few days of January. If you really want one, it’s worth contacting a shopping service of your choice to confirm the availability of the lucky packs and the shopping service. This list is correct as of December 12th 2019 and is not exhaustive.
Will you be purchasing any lucky packs this New Year’s season?
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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