So, how much is Cats Tea Party actually worth?

かわいいデ-タの物語

Kawaii Data no Monogatari

How much is Cats Tea Party worth? Why is it so expensive? This question has plagued people in kawaii fashion circles for many years. By which I mean, since approximately 2014. So three years.

It’s bothered me for a while too, so I decided to finally, definitively find out using the only tools I had available to me; crowdsourced data, some spreadsheets and a recently acquired knack for data visualisation.

The result is this.

Sales values of Angelic Pretty Cats Tea Party since 2012 (separated by colour)

cats tea party scatter graph

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Thoughts About Shoes

When I was younger I was a voracious manga reader, it took me less than an hour to read a volume and my concentration could get me through multiple volumes in a day. I probably couldn’t remember most of what I read now, but when I read Hana Yori Dango (Boys Over Flowers) a quote from one of the characters has always stuck with me.

“Good shoes take you to good places.”
I find it difficult to buy things just because they’re pretty, not to say I don’t ever do it, but I don’t own a lot of accessories for this reason. However, beautiful shoes have a great loophole in that they are inherently functional. I think that’s why a lot of women like shoes, they’re beautiful and despite often absolutely destroying our feet we can still class them as a functional and useful purchase.

This particular pair; velvet peep toes with a platform and stack heel, are definitely not a functional and useful purchase but they were an unmissable purchase. They also make my legs look amazing. I think MIU MIU is a beautiful brand, they’re optimistic, fun, glitzy and glam. I’ve been a quite, sparkly eyed admirer of the brand since seeing one of their detachable collars on Tavi Gevinson way back in like 2009 or something. Everything they make looks like it should be in soft focus on a glittery, dream like background and that is absolutely my vibe. All the models should look like Aubrey Beardsly illustrations.

However, retailing at £445, a MIU MIU shoe purchase such as this one was never going to be within my grasp. Not in my current situation for sure. But of course, dear reader, I didn’t get this pair for £445. Due to a beautiful bit of retail pricing glitchery I didn’t even pay 10% of that. So, despite not needing these shoes at all, I laughed and bought them because designer dreams don’t just float in to your life at high street sale price every day.

And they are beautiful. Leather uppers, inner and soles. Deep Bordeaux velvet, so the box says, somewhere between magenta and plum if you ask me. Every detail is precise and every stitch perfect. I need to find some kind of platform in my house where I can elevate them to the highest status. Is it really uncool and common of me to be excited about designer brand purchases? I don’t care. I was laughing my way out of the shop. I’ve mentioned before, about an article I’ve recently read wherein women of a certain wealth and status in New York will not wear black tights, and therefore others seeking to emulate that status will not wear them too. There is a certain type of behaviour, and clothing, for a certain type of person – and even though sumptuary laws are long gone I feel like they are still unspokenly there in signifiers of class.

I wondered, was my behaviour in the shop laughable for “real” designer shoppers? If someone saw me turn over every pair of heels in the sale section until I got to this pair of heels, light up, try them on, smile, get excited about the price, get hyped with the shop assistants and walk up to the till giggling, would they cringe? Would they cringe because it’s just a pair of shoes and we’re all supposed to be cool and not care about how much money were spending when designer brands are concerned? Would they be disgusted that I was happy about getting them for so cheap? I’ll admit, I was a tiny bit embarrassed when I walked out, thinking that I must have identified myself as a scrub, a serf. But that quickly passed when I spent some time strutting around my house and taking pictures of an insanely beautiful pair of shoes. I’d really like to not care about class and status, but as always they are inseparable from fashion.

I know this all seems a bit much for a post that is essentially “I bought some shoes” but I see social strata getting more and more defined these days. I suppose an instagram blogger with 1.5 mil subs wouldn’t post a picture of these shoes because they’re so later than last season, but I’m just hoping they’ll take me to good places.

30s Evening Wear at The Lady Lever Gallery

Seeing dresses on mannequins in a gallery always gives me a strange feeling. We see dresses on mannequins all the time around us in shop windows and yet put them in a gallery and we feel the need to pay close attention to them and take close up shots of them. Would I take close ups of mannequins in Toshop? Probably not, but then the lighting isn’t half as good. It’s all context I suppose.

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WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 4 – River Island

Another day, another set of outfits. I’ve got back to daily wear for today’s theme. I was actually impressed with River Island’s selection of work wear and accessories because I was able to put together some outfits quite easily all from one shop. I like the consideration had clearly been taken by the designers to match accessories to match each other so that shoppers can easily create well put together outfits.

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WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 3 – Topshop

It’s actually really hard to buy an entire outfit from the same shop. It’s also definitely not something I’ve ever done myself. I’d rather get my shoes from somewhere that just does shoes and does them well, my clothes from somewhere that does clothes and does them well and my jewellery (which admittedly I don’t buy a lot of) from a very niche seller on etsy, ha!

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WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 1 – Warehouse

Happy new year! I spent new years day on the couch eating and watching Atelier on Netflix. I started the series a week or so ago and have been totally obsessive about it ever since. It’s fantastically written, the lighting and staging is my favourite TV lighting I’ve seen in years and I am incredibly invested in the lives and motivations of all the characters. I watched the whole series as quickly as possible and spent the final three episodes crying my eyes out for pretty much the entire time because I was so invested in the choices that the characters were making towards the finale. Atelier is the kind of show I will always go for; it’s about a small group of people who care passionately about their chosen way of life or profession. In this case, Mayuko Tokita is a new employee at the custom made lingerie brand “Emotion” in Ginza.

The two central characters are the new employee Mayuko and the boss of Emotion, Mayumi Nanjo. My favourite thing about the series is the dynamic between them and how they slowly come to have so much understanding and affection for each other. To be honest, the dynamics of the characters in relation to each other are excellently written; nobody has stupid or shallow motivations and while you may not agree with the actions the characters take you can always understand why they’ve made their choices. I honestly wished they were real people.

Another thing that I loved about the show was the style. Obviously, fashion is a key element but the characters have such great and unique style. Shopping around in the sales yesterday I found myself thinking “Ohh Nanjo would totally wear this, Mayu would totally wear this” so what a fun blog feature for this week! If you’re interested in stealing their style on the British high street I’m dedicating my week to what each respective Mayu would wear.

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Outfit Building Tips for Lolita Fashion

d1db4-bb-coord

Last week I saw Angelic Pretty’s British Bear special set for the first time and thought “wow, that’s an ugly dress.” I think the combination of bright yellow, wine red, navy blue, tartan, ribbon and bears in those proportions is a visual assault. The yellow is particularly offensive, and reminds me of really cheap American mustard or squeeze cheese. You don’t really want to think of condiments when your aims are cuteness and elegance.

However, as a hardcore fan of metamorphose and a general worshipper at the altar of ugliness I have a little soft spot for the dress and set about to make myself immune to it’s eye-burning qualities by putting together a cute outfit around it. My original aim was to integrate the yellow, but as you can see that didn’t happen. I went for just j-fashion brand items for this little self imposed challenge, but you could totally do this with high Street clothes and a few lolita specific items. I’m going to refer to this ugly dress throughout, so bear it in mind. Get it, BEAR it in mind?!

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A week off!

My parents have been home for the past week, so we’ve been out and about all this week and I’ve not had a lot of time to blog. It’s been a nice little mini-staycation but I’m quite ready to get back into it right now.

Recently a post came up on my Facebook timehop from 2010 that said “Sometimes I wish I could dress like a complete weirdo and not care, but my greater sensibilities always take hold.”

Well, that’s not a problem any more! I’m still getting odder by the day – for example in the photo below I am wearing socks and sandals and I think it’s the coolest thing despite my parents looking at me like I’d emerged from my room draped in a winter coat made of mingeflaps.

Necklace: Creepyyeha
Top: HOLE t-shirt from the happy shack in Camden
Skirt: Warehouse
Bag: Dr Martens
Socks: Topshop
Shoes: Office
I feel like I’ve perfected my summer goth look just in time for the weather to totally mess everything up for me…

Thoughtful Thursday Links

I started writing a post today about how we can all be better friends to each other the days while times are hard. Then someone who follows me on tumblr asked me about the humans series which has just finished on channel 4 at the moment and I wrote a huge response that got me thinking about bigger stuff on a wider scale again.

Here’s some food for thought for the week in the form of a linklist:

Does Ethical Shopping Exist? Kind of but not really; now how are you going to be holier-than-thou about your purchases?

http://highline.huffingtonpost.com/articles/en/the-myth-of-the-ethical-shopper/

Thinking about feminism and race in Humans made me think about it a bit more in general. For a while I was really interested in riot grrl and read a lot about it but something about it didn’t really appeal to me? There felt like there was something missing.

https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/alternatives-to-alternatives-the-black-grrrls-riot-ignored?utm_source=idfbuk

If you’re interested in my basic thoughts on Channel 4’s Humans then there I am discussing it over on my tumblr!

http://oldtrainers.tumblr.com/post/126009655978/you-took-the-words-right-outta-my-mouth-had-to

Please feel free to come and chat to me.

Also – I still want peoples 1997 Mizz mag embarrassing stories. Please email them to me and maybe I’ll make a tumblr or a webspace or something to illustrate and share them.

I also suddenly want to know everything I can possibly know about Marie Kondo.