This is a stock photo from BL. It's not my set, but you get an idea of how it looks: it came with a jumper skirt, a blouse, some detachable bows, a tie, and a floppy top hat. BL actually took the set off their site recently cuz last time I checked (2 weeks ago) it was still there T_T o well.
Here are my BEFORE photos of the set:
As you can see the blouse alone had a lot of crap lace on it. There was crap satin ribbons on the blouse, and the worst part was that a lot of the lace was sewn in together with the ruffles on the collar and cuffs of the blouse. Some of the lace was even sewn into the serged seams on the blouse! I forgot to take before pictures of the jumper skirt because I was banking on BL still having the set on there. But I will mention where the lace WAS in the after pictures.
But as you can see from the photos, it's not really a bad blouse at all. The concept is good, but there's just so much crap lace on it. I can just imagine what Mr. Yan was thinking when he had this blouse made: "Hmmm, warehouse told me we have too much of this lace, and I don't want it to go to waste...O I KNOW I'LL SEW IT ON SOME SETS AND SELL THEM!"
Now, here are some AFTER photos.
What I did to improve the set:
1) Spent at least 10 hours just sitting there ripping out the crap lace. I remember watching 20 episodes of Welcome to the NHK (30 minutes each) and about 3 episodes of House (1 hour each) so combined it must've been at least 10-13 hours of just ripping out lace.
2) Spent at least 4-5 hours sewing some parts of the garment back together. Like I said, a lot of the lace was sewn into the serged seams of the garment. So I had to be really careful not to ruin the serged seams. The pin tucks on the sleeves were the hardest. I had to rip out the seams that held the lace there, then hand sew the pin tuck back in because those seams also held down the pin tuck. Some of the lace was sewn together with the ruffles on the blouse too, so after I ripped out the lace, I had to sew the ruffles back in :/
3) Cut off the edges of the hat. It used to be a top hat, but what sailor lolita wears top hat? Since I didn't know exactly how to make a pill box hat, I just cut off the edges of the top hat and voila! Lol.
4) The lace on the jumper skirt was both the easiest and the most frustrating to deal with. As you can see it's a tiered skirt. It has 3 tiers, and on edge of each tier there was more of that awful lace. Those were the easiest to rip out because they were mostly in a straight line and wasn't sewn into the serged seam. They were also the hardest, however, because some of the lace was sewn around the shirring in the back. Tearing out the lace there also meant that I tore out the seams holding down the elastic shirring. It took me a long time just to get the elastic back in the proper place and sew it back together. There was also lace on both sides of the buttons in the front, but those came off ok. Thankfully the whole garment is mostly black so even though the shirring is messed up in the back you won't really be able to tell.
Here's a photo of just how much seams/lace I took out
Here's a photo of what this pile of lace would look like if it was alive
A true lace monster, eh? :3
Overall the un-lolifying process took me about 20 hours, I want to say. It was awful, but now I have a fairly nice musical sailor lolita set to wear! :] Thanks for reading! :D