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Monday, 31 March 2014

Why I love Lolita Fashion

Momoko is a good representative for this post
   I think it's obvious by now that I adore Lolita fashion. Whilst it has it's downsides, like the tiny sizes and ridiculously expensive prices, there are a lot of things I love about the fashion:

 1. The amazing designs that are inspired by certain periods of history; I love the Victorian and Rococo inspired dresses, and have a soft spot for the retro 50s-ish designs.

2. Each print tells a story. Sometimes it's Alice in Wonderland, sometimes Romeo and Juliet, and others it can be anything from Dracula to Cinderella. Every dress is so different and unique, and I could spend a long time looking at all the beautiful details and find something new each time!

3. Despite the confusion with the book, Lolita, the fashion is very modest and innocent, with a doll or child-like appearance. Whilst wearing the fashion, you don't feel caught up in the need to grow up, move out, and get a job. You can just be yourself and stay in the moment. The fashion is all about what appeals to you, and not what anybody else thinks.

Saturday, 29 March 2014


Practicing more realistic portraits, this time with my OC, Aika Rowland, as the subject! This was a lot of fun to do, and I think I've finally found a style I'm 100% happy with! Whilst painting in a semi-realistic style, I feel I can make the characters look more individual.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Les Amitiés Particulières by Roger Peyrefitte

I was so happy to have found this book, as it is out of print in English and therefore very hard to get a hold of. With some persuasion to my dad, I managed to get Les Amitiés Particulières for fifty pounds on Ebay. As my volume is first edition from 1950 (making it that much more special!) there are some signs of wear, but mostly it is a very well-made book in good condition. None of the pages fell out as I read, like in some of the other old-ish books I own that were actually printed in the 80s, and the text wasn't overly faded in places. In fact, it has that lovely old book smell to it, another reason why I love it!

Georges De Sarre is a fourteen year-old boy with an aristocratic background, enrolling in Catholic boarding school, Saint Claude, under his parents instruction. At first he is reluctant to go to public school, as he had been home-tutored all his school life, but he soon makes friends with the two boys who sit next to him - Lucien Rouvière and Marc de Blajan, whom are both polar opposites of each other. Lucien has a secret friendship (read: relationship) with another boy in the school, André Ferron.
Marc, on the other hand, cryptically informs him that some people may seem good, but are in fact not; referring to Ferron whom is romantically involved with Lucien two years his junior. Set in the 1920s, this would typically be the response of peers in this situation. The main character, Georges, is confused by this statement, but soon comes to realise what de Blajan meant. Instead of being disgusted or disturbed of their behaviour like Marc, he becomes envious of Ferron for having Lucien's affections. He becomes close friends with Lucien, but on the other hand seeks to destroy his relationship by getting Ferron expelled. When Ferron was removed from Saint Claude by his doing, Georges felt very guilty and regretted his decision despite having Lucien all to himself.
Whilst watching a communion one morning, Georges sees the beautiful 12 year-old Alexandre Motier, who is serving as the altar boy for the ceremony. As his advances towards Lucien had remained fruitless, he soon fell for Alexandre instead. After watching and waiting to catch glimpses of the boy for a couple of months, Georges is finally introduced to Alexandre by Maurice Motier, who comments on their matching red ties.

Soon, the two boys meet in secret at the greenhouse - the place where Lucien and Ferron would often rendezvous - and exchange poems and the odd few kisses. Their relationship is very sweet and wholesome, with no sexual connotation at all, yet the priests at the school strongly forbid such friendships despite having feelings for some boys in the school themselves.
One priest, Father De Trennes likes to wake up boys in the middle of the night to meet in secret, giving them alcohol and cigarettes as bribery to talk with him. While nothing sexual is mentioned in the books between the father and the students, it is seen as suspicious, especially as Father De Trennes seems to know about Georges' and Alexandre's relationship. Sick of being woken up in the middle of the night, and afraid of being expelled for his secret friendship, Georges cunningly slips an anonymous letter under the Rector's door, telling him to go to De Trennes' room, where he was found smoking and drinking with Maurice. Father De Trennes is dismissed from the school, and everything is almost back to normal for Georges and Alexandre.
However, Father Lauzon, a close friend of the Motier family, walks in on a secret meeting between the pair, learns about their relationship and wants it to end immediately. He simply wanted to protect Alexandre from homosexuality, but by forcing Georges to send back his love letters (as a way of saying the relationship is over), he ends up with Alexandre committing suicide. Georges feelings were unchanged towards Alexandre, and is distraught at his death. Dismissing the thought of killing himself, Georges stays alive to avenge himself and Alexandre.

Georges de Sarre in the film didn't really strike me as much as Alexandre did, but whilst reading the book, it is the other way around, as it is mostly set from Georges' point of view! We learn that he is very intelligent and studious, top of almost every class. As well as being smart, he is also very cunning and sneaky, and can come up with clever schemes to get exactly what he wants. He is also confident and bold, which comes in very useful when he's in trouble with the fathers at school.
Alexandre, on the other hand, is youthful, energetic, and has very passionate emotions. He can get carried away with certain ideas, and is quite naïve in some places. However he is also sweet and beautiful, and has been described as the angel of the college by the teachers.

To be honest, whilst I was waiting for this book to arrive in the post, I was kind of worried about whether I'd be able to understand it or not. I come from a very atheist family, so have next to no knowledge about the Catholic religion, apart from the brief lessons at school every so often. When I watched the film of this book, a lot of the religious things such as confession, mass, and all the saint days were lost on me, and I felt very ignorant about the setting. In the book, thankfully, I found it a little easier to understand - and some parts of the film I misunderstood, about the letter Georges was going to send Alexandre before his death, for example, was clarified.

I loved reading this book, and think it was well worth the money I paid for it. It has given me a lot of inspiration, and I'm so glad I found such a rare book.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Waiting for Spring to Arrive

That's what I'm waiting for anyway... The weather is so gross in England right now! I can't wait for spring and summer.
And here's Johan being tortured... I mean, and here's Johan posing for a photograph. I was going to take photos of him in the park, but it started raining very heavily and I had to make do with indoors... My mum bought me some daffodils and these other purple flowers (I'm not sure what they're called) so I used them instead. About the setting of the photo... I'm not even sure why I arranged it like that, ahaha.

Today I'll be revising for my French exam next week. It's going well so far, I've just got a couple more paragraphs to memorize and I'll be done. Also, in the evening I think I'll watch Les Amitiés Particulières for about the third or fourth time.

Les Amitiés Partiulières Chapter 2

Black Butler Chapter 91

I have read a lot this month, so expect a lot of book reviews!

This chapter starts off with Ciel rejecting Sebastian once again, so instead of trying to comfort the young master, Sebastian leaves to look after Sieglinde. Naturally, her own butler seems pretty annoyed by how perfect he is, and how much Sieglinde is starting to like him.
Sebastian tries to teach her to behave like a proper Victorian lady, and at one point scolds her quite badly. Sieglinde isn't put off, however, and sees it as a learning opportunity. Also, she asks Sebastian to teach her English so she can communicate with Ciel better once he's feeling well again.

Then, we got to Ciel's side of things, where he's being looked after by Finny. He refuses to eat, so Finny, under Sebastian's instruction, offers him warm milk with honey (his one weakness!). Because of Finny's inhumane strength, when he blew on the milk - intending to cool it down so Ciel can drink it - the hot milk ended up all over Ciel's face. There was a sweet moment where he tries so hard to be gentle whilst wiping the milk from his face, that Finny's arms start shaking with the effort.
Finny then offers to take Ciel on a walk outside for some fresh air, but Ciel declines, saying that there are scary things out there; Finny then tells him that he'll protect him no matter what (which was so cute!). Ciel says that he's not worth saving, then breaks down crying...

This ending of this chapter was just as sad as the previous one! :( I'm really wondering what Ciel was going to say at the end... It made the Two Ciel's theory sound likely.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Down The Rabbit-Hole

I decided to do a fan art of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, as I love the book so much. It's so eccentric and inspirational, especially in aspects of Lolita. Also, there's a song by Ali Project that I like, called "Megalopolis Alice", that reminds me of Wonderland so much.

The textures I used were: Cloudy-sky texture by cloaks and moon texture by Zephroth. Thank you for the textures!

Character (c) - Lewis Carroll

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Alice's Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

For me, reading this book has a lot of nostalgia. It reminds me of spring, beautiful Victorian dresses, and Black Butler. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland has always been one of my favourite books, as not only is it fantastically imaginative and eccentric, but it is one of the inspirations of beautiful prints in Lolita fashion and art! Whilst reading this book, it has given me a whole lot of ideas for new pictures and dress designs. Also, it transports me to a different time and place that is magical and beautiful to be. The descriptions and imagery of this story is so vivid, and you can see it's influence almost everywhere on art websites and fashion.

One of the things I really like about this story is that Lewis Carroll based the main character on a little girl he knew in real life. I saw this from an exhibition in the Tate Gallery in Liverpool. It was a really interesting idea for an art gallery to have, and I could have spent ages looking at all the influences of Alice In Wonderland! 

I hope to read Through The Looking Glass sometime soon, as my edition of the story did not contain it. However, the cover of the book is absolutely gorgeous! It looks just like an illustration from the Victorian days would.

I won't bother writing about the plot, because a) almost everybody knows it, and b) where do I even begin to explain it? The story is so strange, that you almost wonder how on earth the writer managed to think of such a thing!

My favourite parts were the odd game of croquet that Alice played with the Queen of Hearts, and the Lobster Quadrille chapter. The songs the mock-turtle and Gryphon were singing is still stuck in my head; they always make me laugh!

"Will you walk a little faster?" said a whiting to a snail,
"There's a porpoise close behind us, and he's treading on my tail.
See how eagerly the lobsters and the turtles all advance!
They are waiting on the shingle – will you come and join the dance?
Will you, won't you, will you, won't you, will you join the dance?
Will you, won't you, will you, won't you, won't you join the dance?
"You can really have no notion how delightful it will be
When they take us up and throw us, with the lobsters, out to sea!"
But the snail replied "Too far, too far!" and gave a look askance --
Said he thanked the whiting kindly, but he would not join the dance.
Would not, could not, would not, could not, would not join the dance.
Would not, could not, would not, could not, could not join the dance.
"What matters it how far we go?" his scaly friend replied.
"There is another shore, you know, upon the other side.
The further off from England the nearer is to France --
Then turn not pale, beloved snail, but come and join the dance.
Will you, won't you, will you, won't you, will you join the dance?
Will you, won't you, will you, won't you, won't you join the dance?