Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Evolution of my Decora

Decora is a Japanese street fashion that is dying off quickly, I hear. I've been into it for, oh, I'd say six years now. However, I only started attempting to dress in decora three to four years ago.

Over all my decora experience, I've found it is one of the easiest fashions to find stuff for, however it is on of the hardest fashions to hit dead on. I've been to many cons and there's almost always a Japanese street fashion panel. I walk in and there is the whole gang; lolitas (especially), a ganguro, a gyaru, a visual kei, (plus all sorts of sub genres and sub categories galore.) and yes, a decora. But I rarely ever see a good decora. There will be a talk about decora- briefly- saying "just throw stuff together! it's everything random!" but that's not really how it is. I always cringe a bit to see these "experts" saying how easy it is to achieve and how fast you can get into the decora fashion. Decora is something that has taken me years to perfect, and thus I go into my evolution of my decora fashion.

I learned about decora early in my sixth grade year. Remnants of my newbie-ness are left on my old neopets account ("I like to think of myself as a Harajuku Scene girl"). However, it wasn't until my freshman year in high school that I was actually inspired to try decora out. I was doing a project for a class where I talked of "all" the Japanese street styles and explained them. My friend Kim and I were slowly merging into the world of Japanese street fashion.

I remember the first day I dressed decora at school. As I walked in I felt this twinge of regret. I wanted to run back to my mom's car and ask her if I could go home and change. The feeling didn't get any better as I walked in, ghetto people screaming at me and I heard nasty comments behind my back. I wanted to cry, but I kept walking. This was the moment that I realized decora was absolutely for me. I saw my friends, sitting in their usual gathering talking about whatever, and suddenly everyone was in awe. "Jamie, you look so cute!", "Where did you get your necklaces?!" Comments showered me asking all about my outfit and everything about it. Suddenly I didn't want to go home. The rest of the day I paraded around the school feeling as good as I did when i got dressed in the morning. I loved the standing out despite the comments, and I realized that i was doing what I loved. The next couple days I dressed likewise. This kind of style got me known as "the girl who dresses weird" that I am forever known as at my school.

However, this was just the beginning. I really kind of sucked at decora. I didn't understand the concept and without further ado, here are some pictures.

Me and NDK, an anime convention
Me in 8th grade, during my decora beginnings.

 All of these pictures are pretty much from me in my freshman year. My concept of decora then was that of many people's; just throw random crap together and you get decora. But that's not exactly what it was. I was call myself rainbow decora by pairing random colored hair clips, random colored shirts and necklaces and saying that was decora.

However, in most of my newer pictures, Such as the next one in this little line of pictures here, I was growing into learning that decora is an art. Just as in photography or painting or any kind of art, you need a color scheme. Rainbow wasn't cutting it. I also learned that the decora style I wished to achieve kind of stayed away from black and dark colors.

A newer picture of me experimenting with  fairy kei but looking more decora
After my freshman year, I started to learn the tricks of the trade. I strayed away from wearing rainbow colored necklaces and realized the main focuses of decora. What I once thought was a necklace based fashion turned out to be more of a hair clip based fashion.

I became aware that all of my attempts were lacking the main points of decora. I also realized that decora was mainly a pink style.

This brings me to newer years; my sophomore and junior years of high school. These years I've been losing my decora roots a bit to lolita fashion. My sophomore year was filled with lack of dressing up altogether, so I hardly have any picture from then. However this year I think I've been improving my decora looks. I now have legwarmers and various socks, a crucial part of decora. I focus less on bracelets and necklaces and more on the hair clips and clothing pieces. Decora, I've learned is all about layers. But you can't just throw them all together and expect a masterpiece. I spend hours a day the night before crafting my decora outfits. Does this shirt look good over this one? Will I be hot? Does this pink look too purple? Should I go just with pink or add another color? The possibilities are endless, really. But I feel all of this hard work and determination has made me a better decora girl today than I ever have been. I guess the whole point of this post is to banish the ideas that decora is a thrown together fashion. Here are some new pictures. Enjoy ;D 

My friend Natalie and I at NDK

Me at NDK

A watered down version of decora

Decora at school ♥
I hope you enjoyed this post on my evolution of decora and have a good day ♥

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