Thursday, April 14, 2011

Confessions of a Kuro Lolita

I'm a kuro lolita. While I appreciate, collect, and wear other styles, I keep coming back to my first love, kuro style. What is kuro style exactly? It's all black style. The word "kuro" in Japanese means "black," hence, all black coordinate. Kuro style seems boring to many people, but for me, I love the simplicity. I have three black dresses (but I'm planning to sell one) and a black skirt I got while I was in Japan. I'm always looking for more black pieces to add to my wardrobe. When I tell people that I'm a kuro lolita, I get a similar response almost every time, "but isn't that boring?" I don't think so though. In fact, I think it can be harder to create an interesting Kuro coordinate than a more straightforward style.

Kuro (and it's sister style, shiro) can be coordinated in so many ways! You can have classic, sweet (bittersweet in the case of kuro), or gothic based coordinates, but they all can be made as a kuro coordinate, if that made any sense. What I'm trying to say is that if you tend towards a certain major style (gothic, sweet, classic), then you can still stay true to your style choice while still making a kuro coordinate. My kuro stuff is more on the bittersweet side of things. It can be tricky to create a nice kuro coordinate, the more pieces you use, the trickier it becomes. I have a few tips for making your own kuro coordinates (and as far as I know, these tips can apply to shiro style also).

1. Choosing pieces
I'm a big fan of jumper skirts for kuro especially. However, you can use whatever pieces you like to make a kuro coordinate. When choosing pieces for really any coordinate, you want to look at the details of the pieces. This goes double for kuro and shiro. For example, if you have a detailed skirt (lots of lace/trimmings/a bustle or something else) then you want to go for a simpler blouse. You do NOT want a detailed blouse with a very simple skirt. That makes the coordinate look top heavy. If you have a simple skirt, then choose a simple top to go with it. A casual style works very nicely for this.

2. Keep true to your style
If you're an OTT sweet lolita and you're looking at Kuro style, that's totally fine! Just because you prefer pastels or prints doesn't mean that you can't experiment in kuro or you can't wear it at all. It would be pretty awesome to see an OTT kuro coordinate. By combining the poof, sweet elements, and decora-inspired elements from sweet styles with the all black requirement of kuro, you can get a look that isn't seen at all.

3. Don't feel like you have to have black hair/makeup
Yes it is Kuro lolita. Yes you wear all black clothing and accessories. No, you do not have to have black hair and make up. I don't own any wigs, and I do my makeup pretty much the same everyday. Of course you can wear black makeup and have black hair with kuro lolita, I'm just saying it's not a requirement.

4. Prints...
This is something kind of weird, and I hope you get what I'm saying. Prints are okay, as long as they remain true to the black on black color scheme. You can have a black print on black fabric. Of course, it's probably not going to be a complicated print with lots of little details. But I just bought a dress with a polka dot print, and it is black on black. So it can work, but the print is going to most likely be simple.

Here are some examples of Kuro lolita dresses. I'm going to talk just a bit about each one.

This is an example of a sweet-kuro dress. This is actually the dress I just got! It has a light dot print and lots of gathers and bows. This makes for an interesting piece that is definitively sweet. This dress actually comes in a bunch of other colors too, including white (for a cute shiro lolita coordinate!). The OP style makes this an easy dress to coordinate. Sweeter shoes would work nicely with this, as well as either socks or tights. Since it is an OP, you don't have to worry about a blouse or any other pieces really clashing with the dress, making it a good choice for newcomers to the fashion. You also wouldn't have to purchase a blouse, which means less money spent on a fabulous Kuro coordinate.

Ack! I just said that you don't really see complicated prints that are black on black. This Innocent World dress is a great piece for a classic-kuro coordinate. The chandelier print makes it super classic. It is a JSK, meaning you would need a blouse or a cardigan or bolero over it. However, if you choose a simple blouse without puff sleeves or a wide collar to go underneath this, the dress will speak for itself, making a streamlined, classical coordinate. This dress is beautiful, and the print looks like it has a bit of a different texture than the rest of the dress has. The simple bodice should be flattering on a number of different body shapes. It was made in 2007, so good luck finding this dress for sale if you're as in love with it as I am.

Moi Meme Moitie is often called the definitive gothic brand. I have to say, I'm not extremely familiar with the brand itself. But this dress is a great example of a kuro dress that can work in a more gothic coordinate, or even in a sweeter one. It seems to have that same type of print texture as the IW one does, but it's not clear to me what this print actually is. This is also a jumper skirt, meaning you do need a blouse. One with a high collar would really drive the gothic-ness home. Lots of gothic jewelry would complete the look also. If you wanted to go sweeter with this dress, a blouse with more frills, possibly bell sleeves would do the trick. So this dress is quite versatile it would seem. I could see this going well in any of the three major styles, but it really fits in well with gothic the best.

So you see, Kuro lolita is most definitely not boring. It can be interesting and fun if you make it like that. Are you going to try out some kuro styles now? If you do, post a picture here and I'd be thrilled! Especially if you try out the OTT Sweet-Kuro that I was talking about up there. Of course, don't feel like you have to post a picture or anything at all! Trying new styles out is fun, I hope you try this one out sometime!


  1. I love this post! I'm a devoted follower of kuro gothic style. I love going as complicated in my outfits as I can, and layering different textures and fabrics, but still keeping the subtlety of an all black outfit.

    I love shiro gothic too, but there's something about black on black on black... Speaking of which, I love that IW piece. Chandeliers are one of my fave things ever. ^^

    Long live Kuro of all styles!

  2. I love kuro lolita! I admire it so much. I'd love to see an OTT kuro outfit... that would be crazy!
    By the way, I'm totally in love with that IW jsk too. Ah, if only...!