Saturday, February 27, 2016

Kawaii Not: What's Kawaii Fashion and Why you want to try it

(Photo from We Heart It)

I have a confession: I. Love. Kawaii fashion. The colors. The crafting. The creativity. I love it. And while most of it is simply not my own taste, there is so much I appreciate.

Kawaii is the Japanese word that translates to "cute". Kawaii fashion, while it can be cutesy, doesn't have to be. There are ladies who choose to look doll like while there are ladies who choose androgyny, and at the same time, there are ladies who dress like monsters or ghosts.

(Photo from We Heart It)

But don't call it a costume. To these women and men who aspire to the Kawaii aesthetic, how they dress, unlike a lot of popular American style, isn't to mask anything but instead to express who they feel that they are internally. For example, here we have something called a "power suit" that many choose to put on to feel powerful, as if power can be exuded from a garment. Kawaii participants, however, dress in bright colors or all black because that's how they feel. In essence, it's not the clothes or the colors or the crafts that make them feel anything, but instead expose everything they feel about themselves.
(Phot from We Heart It)

Another interesting difference between popular American styles and Kawaii: a good portion of Kawaii elements are handmade by those who wear them. In fact, there is huge encouragement of DIY culture within Kawaii, making their looks all the more authentic to themselves. While we here support DIY, ask 10 people on any given day on the street if anything they are wearing is handmade, and my guess is that at least 9 out of 10 will say no.

The Kawaii aesthetic essentially boils down to being your most creative self.

So, you inspired yet?

Cool beans. Like this style but don't want to go over the top? Here are some easy ways to infuse some Kawaii to your everyday style.

-Patterned Tights: You can find these all over the place, from high end brands to affordable stores like Forever 21/ H&M/ and Primark.

-Patterned Socks: Again, you can pretty much find these anywhere and in any pattern that stands out to you.

-Cell Phone Cases: Cutesy, funny, or animal/ mythological creature inspired cases are easy small ways to add a little Kawaii to everyday.

-Bag Pom Poms: These are insanely popular right now. But bag Pom Poms are perfect pieces to carry everyday that are both adorable and chic and can go on any type of bag from your standard back pack to your fanciest purse.
-Key Chains: Smiling flowers, unicorns, miniature dolls. Whatever small, adorable, or funny thing you find and appeals to you, snag it and Kawaii up your keys.

-Stationary: This one is easy! Color rich stationary is a perfect way to infuse just enough Kawaii into your everyday.
-Scarves: Who doesn't love a patterned scarf? What about one with a fun print like clouds, galaxies, or even eyes? Great ways to toss in some Kawaii.

So go for it. Create your own unique look with a few Kawaii pieces, and most importantly, have fun!

Here are some of my top picks for easy Kawaii infusion:

Kawaii Picks

Fishnet tight
overstock.com

Richer Poorer cotton socks
$11 - famedrop.com

Topshop heart jewelry
$9.02 - topshop.com

Asking For Trouble jewelry
$5.55 - notonthehighstreet.com

Louise Coleman silk scarve
$140 - wolfandbadger.com

Tech accessory
zazzle.com

Iphone case
modcloth.com

Oval sunglasses
popmap.com

Pink key chain
openingceremony.us