A few times recently I've been asked to write a "style guide" about Erololi for my blog, but the problem is, I don't really know how I feel about Erololi in the first place. Not necessarily a matter of "Do I like it or don't I?" but I've been wondering lately: Is Erololi really even a thing?
I know a lot of people kind of have a lot of different definitions of what makes something a Lolita style, and personally I think that it has to have a definite aesthetic that allows a wide variety of experimentation and it actually has to be worn by a significant amount of people and the term used by those people who wear it, and bonus points if it's used in "official" Lolita publications or by brands (ex: while maybe people do technically wear it I wouldn't call "Bittersweet Lolita" a proper Lolita style because the definite aesthetic it has is entirely based on Sweet Lolita's aesthetic and there's no experimentation beyond what's on the print, nor would I call some random person's made up personal style an official Lolita style because no one but that person wears it, even if it's a very developed style). So, these are my own personal "criteria" for really considering something a Lolita style or substyle and, for me, Ero Lolita doesn't really hit any of these marks: People can't really agree on what it looks like (fancy bloomer outfits vs Lolita with corsets), I haven't really seen people wear it or even talk about it this side of 2006, and I don't think I've ever come across it mentioned in Lolita publications, or even on Meta's ancient "style guide" system. In fact, the ancient Meta site has something called Hard Goth that they featured in 2003 that looks an awful lot like what people think of when they think of Erololi.
So digging around for where the term even came from in Western Lolita comms I found this 2004 post that is a very well thought out "What is Loli?" post that mentions they only place they've heard the term is from the old Lermin.biz Lolita guide. Looking back on that guide (which is where a lot of people at the time seemed to get their ideas about Lolita, because it was coming from a girl who lived in Japan) there's obviously a huge bias towards both the Visual Kei fandom and towards whatever her particular circle of Lolita friends thought, so I would take the terms and definitions with a grain of salt. Perhaps it was some local and current trend at the time that just got included because it was very popular and it stuck with the rest of us because it was included among more well-known styles?
Personally, what a lot of people consider as Erololi I have always just considered either part of Gothic Lolita or something simply not Lolita at all that gets lumped in with the style sometimes.
I'm curious how other people feel about Erololi. Do you think it's a substyle, and why or why not? Has anyone ever noticed the term used in any of the bibles or by a brand? I know Kana is usually brought up when Erololi is mentioned, did she ever even use the term? Does anyone actually wear it on a regular basis?
back in winter, I ordered this skirt from R-Series: http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.5.w4002-2939005222.30.YFBcvZ&id=12796516325
The skirt itself is gorgeous in person; however there is one thing that I just can't stand about it. There is some very cheap plastic boning within the skirt that seems like after enough stress will poke through the chiffon outer layer in due time. The plastic bones feel like there were actually sewn in to bind to the chiffon layer of fabric when I tried to poke at it before. Besides the obvious outer layer of chiffon, the skirt is lined with the same stuff baby and AP use to line their dresses. I've been considering taking out the inner lining and seeing if I could pull out the bones, and replace with interfacing or just patch it back together without. The skirt doesn't seem to really need bones since they always warp anyways, after all. However at the same time I am worried that I will destroy this skirt and should instead look for a good tailor to deal with this.
What should I do, egl? Tear it apart myself or bring it in?