Important Foundation Pieces In A Lolita Wardrobe

Undergarments are a very important part of a Lolita's wardrobe, as they literally form the foundations for the whole wardrobe and each individual outfit. I've made a number of different posts about how to build various types of wardrobes, but I've often neglected talking about what sort of undergarments wardrobes might have. Lolita wardrobes usually need more than just a petticoat when it comes to undergarments! Keep in mind that basic good fitting, neutral colored, bras and underwear should be included as well! But hopefully those are things everyone has anyways.

Camisoles and Undershirts
Camisoles are an important part of a Lolita's underwear drawer because they're handy for wearing under chiffon blouses that you might want to pair with a skirt, or for layering under blouses that are only slightly too sheer. While cute and lacy camisoles are perfect to have, you might want to consider adding a couple very plain, breathable, undershirts as well to this collection, for when you simply need an opaque layer under your clothes. While frills and bows may be tempting for this layer, try to avoid any unnecessary decorations that might show through in an obvious way under a blouse.

A well-rounded Lolita wardrobe is going to at least 1 camisole in a matching color for every sheer or semi-sheer blouses you might have, as well as a couple plainer undershirt in at least a neutral color close to your skintone and whatever base colors your wardrobe has (black, white, or offwhite generally). Generally,  you're going to want to have enough camisoles and undershirts to be able to wear a fresh one every time you wear Lolita.


Corsets or Shapewear
Corsets are not exactly a vital item that every Lolita must have, but they're definitely something you might want to consider if you wear Lolita on a regular basis, especially a more Classic or Gothic style. Corsets are a good item for slimming down the extra bulk all the layers of Lolita might add to your silhouette, making sure you can fit into that last half an inch of a particular skirt, and for layering over coordinates for an extra luxurious look. One of the first entries I ever wrote on this blog was about how great I think corsets are in a Lolita wardrobe and features some advice (that is still relevant!) for any Lolita looking to add one to their wardrobe. You can check that post out here!

A Lolita wardrobe could easily benefit from having two different corsets, a plain one you can wear under clothes, and a fancier one you can layer on top of your clothes. If you're not really looking to spend a lot on a corset, but are still interested in smoothing out your silhouette, there are a lot of shapewear out there, that even has the added benefit of looking cute and lacy, that you can pick up for a relatively cheap price.

Socks and Tights
Does anyone get more excited to receive socks as a gift than a Lolita? While socks and tights are such a major feature of the Lolita fashion that it's hard to designate them to the underwear drawer (myself, like many Lolitas, actually have a whole drawer dedicated to just socks and tights!) I feel as if I should cover them in this post anyways. First of all, any Lolita is probably going to have an assortment of knee highs and over-the-knees and tights that they like to match with their favorite dresses, and this is fantastic, seriously, you should have as many of those as you can get your hands on, but what about the less exciting legwear? As easy as it is to overlook, you should probably have a good amount of "boring" legwear to go with your Lolita wardrobe, and honestly, most of you are probably going to have these things as part of your non-Lolita wardrobe, but they make a very useful crossover into your Lolita wardrobe as well.

One of the more important types of boring sock a Lolita can add to their closet is a few very basic pairs of  low-cut or "invisible" socks. Ideally, you should have a few pairs of these in whatever base color your socks are! They're perfect for wearing over your more expensive Lolita socks to help keep them from getting dingy or from getting holes worn in them. If you're wearing a shoe that doesn't allow you to hide an extra sock, you can always wear them under your fancy Lolita socks for some added cushioning and protection against wearing holes in them.

Plain colored opaque tights, particular in either black, white, or cream, are also a great basic addition to a Lolita's underwear drawer. Besides making an easy addition to pretty much any coordinate, they're also useful for layering under something like lace tights or sheer tights in the cooler months.


Petticoats
A petticoat is often considered the most important part of a Lolita's underwear drawer, and it's undeniable that they're a very important part of the Lolita aesthetic. Depending on your own Lolita style, different types of petticoats might be more suited for your wardrobe. If you tend to wear styles that have a lot of poof then a mega-fluffy chiffon petticoat might be your best bet, if you have a lot of tea length skirts an appropriately long petticoat would be required, etc.

Generally the most well-rounded Lolita wardrobe is going to have a number of different petticoats to choose from, or to layer as needed. If you're just starting a Lolita wardrobe a puffier petticoat and a more toned down petticoat, both in neutral colors that compliment your wardrobe, are good additions to your wardrobe. If you're curious what sort of minimal hassle petticoat I would suggest, check out this post!

Bloomers
Bloomers are sometimes considered a non-necessity for a Lolita wardrobe, but personally I think they're a very important part of a Lolita wardrobe. Their most important purpose is to prevent any up-skirt flashes that are all-too common when you're wearing a relatively short and poofy skirt. In addition to preserving your modesty, bloomers also provide warmth in the winter and an extra bit of cuteness and lace to outfit year-round.

A full Lolita wardrobe is going to have enough pairs of bloomers to wear every time you wear Lolita. Ideally they should be in a color that compliments your outfit, but as they're generally not meant to be seen (although they do end up showing most of the time anyways!) you can get away with pretty much any neutral colored pair of bloomers. Bloomers are relatively easy to make yourself if you need to add a significant number to your wardrobe, check out the tutorial section to find some bloomer how-tos!

In a pinch, or in hot weather, shorts in a breathable material are a good substitute.


Underskirts
An underskirt in the perfect length is another item, like the corset, that's not exactly necessary but is a good idea anyways. An underskirt's main thing is to add is a few extra inches to any skirt that might be slightly too short. They also can help even out any lumps and bumps in a petticoat or provide a solid base under a thin and slightly-sheer skirt so your petticoat's color doesn't show through.

Ideally a Lolita wardrobe should have a couple underskirts in complimentary or neutral colors so they don't look out of place peeking out under skirts.

These are the types of clothes that I consider to be foundation pieces in any well developed Lolita wardrobe, things that you can literally build great Lolita coordinates upon! Of course though, everyone wears Lolita in their own unique way and some people might have different types of foundation garments in their wardrobe. What sort of things do you consider necessary Lolita undergarments? What sort of pieces would you consider optional and which would you consider the most important?

17 comments:

  1. Yay for Bloomers! I have a lot of them nearly all colours I have dresses in.
    I also wear them at home.

    Especially in Summer I wouldn't wear my pettis without Bloomers!

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  2. I prefer shorts to bloomers, just as a personal preference type thing. Also, as a curvy girl I do find the shape wear idea a tad offensive because that's basically saying "well, you don't have the silhouette, why not suffocate for it instead?" Corsets were damaging to internal organs. I agree about camisoles, though, and I even have a few for sleepwear and casual summer days (non-Lolita days, obviously). One thing I'd add in general are just blouses or lacy cutsews that could go with Lolita skirts. I'm classical/Gothic, so I've found some of Macy's blouses are really great for casual Lolita coords.

    A handbag in the primary color of your wardrobe is a must, at least for me. I love purples, but I don't wear them with Lolita 'cause my Lolita wardrobe is exclusively classic (ivories, browns, reds, greens, etc.) and Gothic (black and white). I just got a nice simple shoulder bag in black with those Macy's blouses and it works fabulously.

    Something else to consider would be blouses in ivory, white, and black as those colors can be mixed and matched with pretty much ANY type of skirt or JSK. I'm not about to venture into Sweet, lol, obviously pinks/whites/pastels there, but yeah, just stuff you can mix and match and USE for more than one coord. You know, make your purchase count. I think that's what this fashion is about in terms of shopping on the larger scale, making your money count so that you end up with a functional wardrobe and not something half-Sweet half-punk that you can't match (red plaid with pink unicorn prints? XD). That's my personal tip, as a cheap American who knows she's gonna have to work hard to earn a living after college. XD

    Great blog, btw, keep it up! :)

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    1. Thanks for the comment! I was mostly trying to keep it strictly underwear but blouses and a handbag in a complimentary color are definitely wardrobe musts!

      In regards to corsets: I am by no means small myself and I am definitely not saying that you have to suffocate to have an "ideal" figure! I mostly didn't want to just repeat what was said in the previous post about corsets, but in Lolita, they're primarily good for sort of streamlining the torso when the necessarily layers of Lolita make a bunch of under-JSK bumps and lumps that are not necessarily there (buttons, waist ties on under shirts, fully shirred skirts, all things that might add awkward bulk that has nothing to do with your natural figure). As someone who wore corsets on a daily basis for about 5 years, if you're wearing the right one, they are actually not suffocating in the least (as a fellow corset wearer once said "You breathe with your lungs, not with your waist"), and corsets actually do not damage internal organs. A properly fitted corset does nothing damaging to your organs, and even an extremely wasp-waisted corset doesn't damage organs, just sort of shuffles them around. A lot of the "evils of corsetery" horror stories were things invented (generally by men :P) about a hundred years ago as the corset fell out of popularity and shock stories were invented in order to scare people away from them. If an truth lies in the dangers of corsets horror stories, it's only from a very small handful of people doing extreme things for very extended amounts of time with very badly fitted corsets. http://waistedlives.tumblr.com/post/28924941194/dangers-of-corsets this is a good post about the supposed dangers and the truth behind them! Sorry that I sort of rambled about it xD but it's something I'm really passionate about.

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  3. I find that undershirt or camisole that matches the color of your skin tend to be the most invisible under a sheerer white shirt. I have a hard to find bra size, so I just wear whatever bra that fits me and wear a beige undershirt to cover the pattern of the bra instead of trying to find a neutral colored bra that won't show through a white shirt.

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    1. That's what I do! I mostly wear black so it's just easier and cheaper for me to buy black bras and different colored camis to wear over it!

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  4. Camisoles are great! While not ideal, they also help with gaping blouses.
    I have a love-hate relationship with socks. They look really cute, with the lace tops and the prints, but not so much when worn. I find knee-socks unflattering and OTKs either don't fit or always fall off. Tights are my favorites, but I wish there were more cute plus-sized options available!

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    1. I feel you about socks! I have honestly pretty much given up on otks, because they always end up as exactly-in-the-middle-of-my-knee socks. I usually tend to wear tights or just say "screw it!" and actually just wear knee highs that don't have a big ruffle at the top and have a cute print on them. Knees aren't so bad! I think that if your socks are cute on their own, and so long as your knees aren't covered in a bunch of bruises or something (like sometimes mine are xD I'm really sort of clumsy and this IS a problem for me!) there's really nothing unflattering about knee socks, regardless of size, if your skirt length is complimentary to them. Like if I will end up with 5 miles up upper leg showing, I'll skip knee socks, but if my skirt is on the longer side, knee socks are a perfectly OK option for me.

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    2. I would suggest you to find a sock glue! They are at least sold in Daiso in Japan (and probably everywhere). It's a thing. lol

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  5. I gotta say, I am so glad that you blogged about camis/undershirts! They're a must-have for me especially under OP's because I like to have the extra layer between by bare skin and the expensive material, especially since I can't afford to be constantly dry cleaning my pieces after every wear. Weirdly enough, I also tend to feel cooler with the extra layer because most of my lolita pieces aren't made out of 100% breathable cotton, so having the cami prevents the poly-blend from sticking to me.

    I also totally second the low-cut socks! A lot of my leather shoes stain socks, so having a cheaper pair in between my expensive socks and the shoe is a life saver. Not to mention it extends the wear. I also cheat a lot at conventions and just take off my shoes after some time, and wearing a pair of crappy socks makes me feel better about walking around barefoot.

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  6. Nice post. As a fat Lolita I tend to avoid knee socks and OTK like the plague, but I too wear socks often with my tights to keep my feet cozy and my lacey/fishnet stockings and tights where they are supposed to be located. Plus, boots feel so much better with nice fluffy socks.

    I also agree with the shapewear business. Full on corsets and all the trimmings can be cumbersome and restricting at the max constriction but I find it EVEN MORE IMPORTANT as a fat person to smooth seams and makes sure all my layers are neat and tidy to present my overall outfit best. I do not don steel boning though for most, I find my Spanx is the most useful and even helps when I want to avoid bloomers on warm days! There is no extra discomfort with it as well. (Lolita can incorporate many layers at a time and that can make things very bulky!)

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  7. I was just thinking the other day about wearing low cut socks over my OTKs! I've been getting away with putting ankle socks over my tights and I love that it extends the life of it.

    Being a pretty short lolita I've never had a need for an underskirt but I do like that they smooth out pettis!

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  8. I never thought how important camisoles are!! I'll have to get a few more!
    But one question because I'm stupid and noobish. If you wear a translucent blouse under a JSK, you don't need a cami, right? because the JSK already covers that area.

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  9. What kind of material is best for an underskirt? I have a petticoat that could use another layer between it and my skirts, but I'm not really sure where to start or what to look for.

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    1. Like any Lolita skirt, a high quality thicker cotton underskirt is generally a good idea! Cotton is breathable, isn't going to cause a lot of static cling, and is generally light weight enough that it's not going to weigh down a petticoat too much!

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  10. I totally have a whole entire drawer dedicated to socks and tights. I thought I was the only one xD

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  11. Thanks to this post and your Petticoat Woes post, I am saving up for a chiffon petti before I get anything else :)
    I love your blog so much omg!!

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  12. Great info! I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have. http://tng-services.co.uk/fitted-wardrobe.html

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