Monday Morning Coffee: Feat 8th Sin Creations

Can you introduce yourself to us, please?

Of course! I’m Laura, 17 and live in the UK. I own and create all the products for 8th Sin Creations, an online store that sells handmade jewellery, accessories and clothing for alternative lifestyles, Lolita included!

How did you get into Lolita and where did it lead you?

I got into Lolita fashion after I discovered manga at my local library. After I got addicted to anything Japanese, I naturally found myself immersed in Japanese fashion and found Lolita. I fell in love at first sight as I thought it was the fashion style I was born to have – I’ve always wanted to be Goth but cute at the same time. Eventually it lead me to set up my online business of selling jewellery, accessories and clothing because I wanted alternative fashion to become more available to everyone.

What inspires your drive for the fashion?

When I first discovered Lolita fashion, it was perfect for me because I love all things cute and slightly creepy. It’s just so different to “normal” fashion styles out there, as is all alternative fashion styles. I love how Lolita fashion is inspired by Victorian and European dress but it has evolved so much since the 80s to a point where you can only just see the inspiration. It’s become so popular over here in the West and it has become Japanese girls emulating European girls emulating Japanese girls now!

What is your favorite brand and why?

Either Alice and the Pirates or Innocent World have to be my favourite brands. I love the clean, crisp look of their designs and the Classic/Gothic style of their clothes. As much as I am a Gothic Lolita, I also love Classic Lolita in the darker colours, like navy, Bordeaux and chocolate.

Where does your unique style come from? What really makes it you?

I take all the fashions that I am interested in – Gothic, Lolita, Steampunk, etc and mix the all the elements together. I am obsessed with learning everything there is about a topic so thankfully through the years I have learnt a lot. When I was younger I used to read trendy fashion magazines like Cosmo and Glamour so I know how to piece together an outfit and the basics like that to apply to alternative fashion. I guess what really makes my fashion style me is that I give all my outfits a cute twist and that I really don’t care what is in fashion at the moment or what people think of me.

What’s the name of your business and where can I find it?

My business is called 8th Sin Creations and you can find the official website at www.8thsincreations.co.uk. I’m also on Etsy, Tumblr and Facebook. I’m on a couple of other social networking sites like VampireFreaks but they never really worked out for me.

What inspires  your designs?

I create items inspired by all the fashion styles I’m into. I’m inspired a lot by Japanese street fashions like Lolita, Gyaru and Decora as I think there isn’t much availability for Western girls to buy items like that. I’m also inspired by vintage designs, pretty lace and street fashion snapshots as it has a true representation of what teens and young adults are wearing right now. My products aren’t just for one fashion style – for example, Lolita – I want people to be able to incorporate my items into their own fashion style and make it their own.

Can you tell us what lead you to design?

I guess it was because when I started making things, which was when I was 15, I didn’t have much money. I wanted to be a part of these unique and lovely fashions but I couldn’t afford lots of clothes or brand accessories, so I quickly learnt about wardrobe staples I can wear again and again and to make my own accessories. Also some of the things I think up don’t exist quite yet so I have no choice but to make them myself!

Any advice for loli-newbies or first time loli-oriented business owners?

For Lolita newbies, I suggest going into Lolita forums and websites to actually talk to people who wear the fashion. That way you can quickly dismiss any myths, stereotypes or worries you may have as the people aren’t actually like that. For Lolita-orientated business, I would say that you have to practice, practice, practice! Lolita is a high quality fashion style and the most disheartening thing is to receive a complaint about your item or be told they aren’t good enough to sell at places. So when you first start making items, treat yourself! Make them for yourself at first, then when you get good at them and iron out any craftsmanship kinks and learn little tips and tricks to make crafting easier, then think about selling them. I don’t actually sell any clothes on my website at the moment as I’m waiting on an adjustable tailor’s dummy to take professional photographs and to ensure my clothes are of high enough quality to sell.

My week in photosnaps

My week has been nothing but Christmas. Richard’s family is really into it. We went and bought a tree where his mom forced the tree boy to take a tip by putting it in his Schmoe’s (censored for his protection) vest like some Chip N’ Dales dancer. ;161

I’ve been wrapping so many gifts that I’m actually sick of it and shopping too. (Hell must have frozen over. LOL) I bought more stuff for Richard’s sisters than I originally planned to. I guess I have some residual feelings that maybe I should try harder to get along with his family despite some serious clashing. ;113 They seem appreciative so I suppose it’s ok. ;163

Nabbed a rare item for myself, and then because one of them really likes Pokemon too, I sniped one for her too. These little guys came out when I was a little kid and now they can get as high as $130 in auctions. I sniped hers at $6.25 shipped. ;100 (also, I can post this because neither of of his sisters reads my blog)

BEHOLD! The original pokewalker; The virtual pikachu pet/pedometer!

It’s really hard not to wanna shake this thing to earn watt points. ;103

And then the rest of the week has been just visiting his family, exchanging gifts to put under our respective trees. I took the girls shopping too and bought Boom a whole new ensemble. (photos later)


Not a good angle for Richard but this photo is for his Maataa. ;101

Oh yeah, did I mention I built an entire platform bed in the middle of the night? ;87  ;67

In case I didn’t;
I built an entire platform bed with 6 drawers in the middle of the night/wee hours of the morning
.

Monday Morning Coffee; feat. Lemontree11

Can you introduce yourself to us, please?

Hi everyone~ I’m Oli and I own a very independent shop called Lemontree11.

I’m currently a student majoring in Fashion Design graduating in the spring (yay!). I really love to make clothes, dress up, get crafty and draw. I also have a Lolita web comic called, “The Totally Non Fiction Life of a Lolita.” Its a cute comic that portrays the good and bad in lolita :)

http://nonfictionlifeofalolita.blogspot.com/

How did you get into Lolita and where did it lead you?
I think it was from when I bought my first artbook called Chocola 2000 which was form Digi Charat (I was in middle school). At the time, I just thought they were gorgeous outfits with so much detail. I really didn’t think much after that because I wasn’t really into fashion till I turned 16 and got in general “Harajuku fashions.” However, when I got into VK music, I would browse a lot of the VK style clothing online (and even the ita clothing that were hand in hand in these shops), but not buy them. Black was just not my color at the time. So I was a bit sadden how all these cute clothes had details and colors that do not suit my personality. Then I discovered BJD (ball jointed dolls), they wore such adorable clothing, it made me wish I was a doll. When I got into PGSM (Live Action Sailor Moon) I began to follow more pop culture events in Japan(looking up japanese magazines like kera, seventeen etc), and at the time Nana Kitade was becoming rather popular and even saw an ad for Kamikaze girls, there I soon discovered the fashion term Lolita. Finally a style that was edgy, but suited my tastes and personality!

What inspires your drive for the fashion?

People, their muses, and art. I think I look at people for references the most. Some say that creativity is gone, i think it’s just been either evolved or modified to suit todays tastes. Just like how 90s fashion is in, we modify it so that it would look good in 2010. I try to do the same thing where I work with something basic and make it my own. I will NEVER say that I came up with the design 100 percent, because I always have a reference or inspiration.

What is your favorite brand and why?

LoL it constantly changes.
When I started lolita fashion Mary Magdalene was the Holy Grail of brands to me. It was just so classy and beautiful. The more I began to get very involved with Lolita and volunteering for events, I began to wear more sweet items, and Angelic Pretty became my favorite brand.

Today, I think Emily Temple Cute is one of my favorite brands. They take simple concepts and co-ord it very nicely. Their ads always win me over, more than any other brand.

Where does your unique style come from? What really makes it you?

To be Honest, I think I’m still discovering my style. Many of my friends say I have a style, but I don’t see it. I wear what I want, or what i’m in the mood of wearing. When my taste changes, or as I grow older, I think my style will change to suit my maturity. Although at the moment, I’m really loving Magenta Greens, and other bolder colors.

 

What’s the name of your business and where can I find it?

Lemontree11 is the name of my shop. At the Moment its on Hiatus, I am working on recreating my vision and creating a more steady line. Though do follow my blog because I know the minute my shop reopens, I will announce it on my blog!

http://lemontree111.blogspot.com/

What inspires your designs?

Hmmm, anything really. Mostly anything cute. When I work on my Fuzzy bows for example, I think of a theme. What should be the highlight of my bows, stars, bunnies, bears, those are usually my themes. I also imagine, what sort of person would wear these items. Though I am always surprised how much better my customers wear my merchandise. They are so stylish!

 

Can you tell us what lead you to design?

The more I sew the more confident I became in believing I can make anything without spending too much. I really like bows, and wanted to make some unique bows that were inspired by chocomint. I didn’t want to make a replica, so I began to develop my bows, to have a special touch, in other words, a bit of myself in each piece.

My bunka bear and bunnies, were inspired by bunka dolls. I’ve always wanted to make a bunka doll, but I figured making accessories of them would be more convenient, then I added, what if I made them into bunnies and bears, wouldn’t that be even cuter! And that’s how it came to be.

Any advice for loli-newbies or first time loli-oriented business owners?

Loli-newbies: You have it so easy now, many of the “rules” are much more laid back from when I first started, which is great. Also lolita garments are so much more accessible, so its much easier to obtain with the right resources, so always do your research. Also browse all kinds of magazines not just the Lolita bible. That way you will be inspired by not only things in lolita fashion but many things outside the fashion that you may want incorporate into lolita. Lastly, be confident, wear lolita because you want to not because its popular or to become popular. In the end, dressing up should be fun, not a chore!

Loli-Oriented Business Owners- As much as I want to say create items because you want to, don’t forget the business aspect. The majority of shop owners who own physical shops close down due to poor managing. In other words they did not figure out how to promote, organize, and profit from their business. When making your creations, write down how much you spend on supplies, and labor, and figure out your prices from that. Don’t sell something at a low price to just sell, there is no point in selling something you are not profiting form. You might as well keep it for yourself. That being said, you don’t want to create something and sell it and be of poor quality. remember you are basically selling your reputation on each piece. You want to be reputable, so make sure your items do not break down easily. If they do, figure out new ways to keep them in tact. Lastly, listen to your customers, they know what they want, and will help you tell you what works and what doesn’t sell.

(Sorry this was so late! ;57 I’ve been doing nothing but running around for Christmas with family and working. I haven’t had time to just sit at the computer and blog these past two weeks. Hopefully it slows down a bit. ;04 )

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