The Trouble with Tom
I was in search of a reasonably priced local seamstress or tailor in my local lolita community and made a post about it in the group page. What I needed done was very simple. Two dresses needed length adjustments and one dress needed a new zipper and a waist tie and lace sewn on. I immediately got a response from someone tagging another individual in the community. To keep his identity safe, I will call him Tom. This person boasted about how Tom did a fantastic job for his cosplay. Tom came on and Tom's exact words were, "i can hem, stitch, patch, or tailor whatever you need. message me if interested"

I messaged Tom and we arranged a time that I could come and drop off my clothes. Upon arriving at his house, my boyfriend and I immediately noticed that Tom's house was not as nice looking as the surrounding neighborhood or houses. My boyfriend had said, "I kind of don't want you to even knock on the door. We should just drive off now." And suggested that Tom would just keep the dresses and sell them. It's true, there actually was an old mattress in Tom's front yard, but I decided not to judge a book by it's cover and knocked on the door.

Tom and his very wild children greeted me and my boyfriend. I explained to him what I wanted done. I showed him how I wanted the lace put on and he even repeated the words back to me. Then I showed him the dresses I needed shortened and explained that they would be the same length as the dress that needed a zipper. These two dresses had a layer of chiffon on the outside and another layer underneath that was a polyester liner with chiffon attached to end and peeked out beneath the first layer. He asked if I wanted the chiffon just cut off on both layers or if I wanted to keep the same detail it had. I told him to keep the same detail it had, just shorten it.

After I left, I felt nervous about it because he seemed like he didn't fully understand what I was asking and didn't seem like he asked enough questions to relay his understanding. I just hoped that I would still have wearable dress when I got it back. He called me a few days later saying it was all done and I came to pick it up a week and a half later.

I didn't take pictures of what he did with the lace, but remember that he repeated back to me how I wanted it done. I told him I wanted it sewn through the middle, which would need two lines of stitches with the curvy part up, pointy part down. He put it on upside down and all of it was sewn on crookedly onto the edge of the neckline. It was also sewn onto the shirring in the back, which makes no sense. Once I took the lace off, I realized that he didn't bother doing what I said because he would've had to remove a bow to do it correctly and then put the bow back in. To save himself the work, he put all the lace as close to the edge as he could and cut off any bit of lace that interfered with the bow.

Oh, excuse me, I forgot to mention something first, HE DOESN'T HAVE A SEWING MACHINE! He hand stitched everything! I'm sorry, but one should question the sanity of someone taking on a sewing job like this and doesn't even own a sewing machine! Anyway, this is what he did with the zipper, note the use of two different coloured threads.


The lining to this dress is also meant to be attached to the zipper. A good seamstress or tailor would've noticed that and sewed it too. The zipper was actually also cut on the wrong end (though it didn't need any cutting at all.) You don't cut a zipper on the side where it ends because the pull tab could come off. Instead, you cut the side where it starts and sew over it to close it off.

This is what he did with the waist tie sash:


This is what the tie is supposed to and what the other sash does look like:

The other two dresses are both exactly the same, just that one is red and one is black. I took pictures of only the red just because it's easier to see. Remember that these dresses were to be shortened. I also specifically asked that whoever do this job know how to work with chiffon because it should be hemmed a particular way. This is what I got. The bottom layer completely untouched, therefore not adjusting the length at all. The top layer crookedly cut off revealing the lining underneath.

Not only was it cut off lop sided, it was also cut jaggedly.

Furthermore, his house stinks! I mean, freaking reeks! It smells like old, dirty, mildewy carpet and pet urine. That's what my clothes came back smelling like.

Don't get me wrong, Tom is a nice guy. However, he and his friend led me to believe that he knew what he was doing and that he
can hem, stitch, patch, or tailor whatever, which he clearly can't. Under normal circumstances, I would've let it go because this is all still fixable, but what if someone else in the community was looking for work done and asked Tom? After all, he was recommended! What if Tom completely ruined someone's garment because of this? And we all know lolita clothes is not cheap or prevelant. I feel it's my responsibility to warn my community members about this, however, because Tom is such a nice person, I couldn't just sit there and make a post about him completely embarrassing him. He may not be able to sew for beans and he may be a bad housekeeper, but i still believe him to be a stand up guy and good human being.

I decided to just make another post asking for a seamstress/tailor and if Tom commented, I would publicly criticize his work, so that people could at least grasp what happened. Tom did reply and I criticized him being as honest, yet respectful as I could thanking him for his time and effort. However, he commented that he didn't think his work was that bad, which not only made me look like I was being a jerk, but it prompted another member to attack me without even full knowledge of the situation, or even personally knowing me or Tom. Now please understand that I have the best intentions for everyone.

Beautiful Beast Beauty: Tips and Basics for Unnatural Hair Colour

So you’ve been thinking about dying your hair baby pink? Maybe green, blue or purple? Well, here are some tips on keeping that colour from fading in a week and basically what to expect.

  • No matter what colour you choose or what colour your hair is naturally, the most important thing you can do for long lasting unnatural colour is to bleach your hair. It makes your hair more porous and accepts the colour easier. Not only will the colour be more intense, but it’ll help retain the colour longer if you bleach it to the lightest you can go. If you’re afraid of damaging your hair, then do the bleaching process in steps, but the ultimate goal should be as white as you can possibly make it.

  • Your hair should be unwashed and unconditioned. Wash your hair the day before and skip conditioning.

  • If you really want long lasting colour, do not use Manic Panic. That’s pretty much the go to product for unnatural hair colours, but they’re really not long lasting colour. Special FX is a favourite among many, but I personally like Jerome Russell’s Punky Color. The only problem I had with SPX is that it stains your skin like no other. It’s really hard to get it out. PC lasts just as long, but without staining as bad and the price is more reasonable.

  • Demi and Semi permanent colours do stain your skin, and your bath tub, and your sink, and everything. If you get some in places other than your hair, wipe it off as soon as you can. To remove it from your skin, rubbing alcohol is often recommended, but I’ve found nail polish remover to work the best. To remove from the walls and most of the bathroom, use bleach. If you get it on clothes or bath mats, you’ll probably never get it out, so remember to remove bath mats and toilet seat covers and use dark or old towels dying. Unless you’re really careful, you should never dye your hair on carpet.

  • To keep the dye from getting on your forehead and ears, put a layer of petroleum jelly on your hair line and ears.

  • Let the dye sit in your hair as long as you possibly can. I’ve heard people actually sleeping in it, but you don’t have to do that. You should wait till it dries at least, though.

  • Once you wash it out, it’s best to keep your gloves on because it can still stain your hands unless you’ve rinsed it out really well before touching it.

  • You don’t have to shampoo or wait till the water runs completely clear, despite what the directions say. I usually just rinse out the excess and dry it as soon as I can.

  • Once you’ve finished rinsing with water, rinse it once with vinegar. It helps seal in the colour. Then rinse once more with water. (The vinegar will burn if you have it on open wounds. Heads up if you take a shower and shave)

  • After dying it, try not to shampoo your hair that much. You can still rinse out grease with water and condition your hair everyday. This will actually help repair the damage from the bleaching too, but the colour will fade every single time you shampoo.

  • You can use a dry shampoo for excess grease. Suave makes a really good and cheap one that’s only $3.

  • When you do shampoo your hair, wash your scalp, not your hair. You’re only aiming to remove excess oil, which occurs at the roots.

  • After dying your hair, the colour will bleed onto clothes and pillows. It’ll wash out of clothes after a couple washes, but pillow cases tend to stay that colour, so you might want to change your pillow case to a darker colour. I’ve actually had it on my ears and hands if I touched it too much. You can usually wash it off your skin with soap and water, but it’s something to know.

If you follow these steps, you will actually be able to go at least a month between dye jobs. I’ve actually been able to go several months between dying.

Beautiful Beast Beauty: How to Fade Stretch Marks

Stretch marks occur when your body changes quickly and the skin is not properly hydrated. People most commonly get stretch marks from body building, pregnancy, weight gain, and puberty. The issue with stretch marks is not just that the body changed rapidly, again, its that the skin was not hydrated in the process. That might be the possible reason as to why some people are more prone to stretch marks than others, because some people have dryer skin than others.

Stretch marks start out red and fade to a silvery white colour leaving the skin a different texture. Stretch marks are literally deep scars that occurred from torn skin. Hydrated skin is more elastic and conforms to the new body shape easier.

Skin has many layers. As the top layers shed, the bottom layers go up. Stretch marks start deep in the skin layers and rise as the skin sheds. That’s why it seems like they appear over night. With this in mind, what I’ve found most effective in removing stretch marks is promoting skin regeneration.

  1. Get a somewhat rough loofa

  2. At the end of your shower or bath, gently scrub the skin till it turns red

  3. Once you dry off, rub an essential oil into the skin (You could also use Bio Oil or other stretch mark oils) for a couple minutes.

  4. Use cocoa butter (You could also use a stretch mark lotion or cream) one or two times the rest of the day.

This system promotes skin regeneration in a manner similar to microdermabrasion. While products like Bio Oil and cocoa butter do work for stretch marks, it takes a really long time because you’re waiting for the skin to regenerate on its own. Microdermabrasion removes the top layers of skin to accelerate the growth and thereby the effectiveness of the product.

  • Remember that the most important thing in this regiment is to stay hydrated so try to use the oil once a day and the lotion or cream twice a day if you can.

  • Only scrub your skin 3 times a week at the most.

  • Do not scrub too vigorously because you might hurt yourself or even cause bleeding (Which is counter productive)

  • When you rub the oils and lotions into you skin, massage it into the skin for a couple minutes. It’s helps the skin absorb the product.

  • Be patient and persistent, they won’t go away over night.

  • New stretch marks will be easier to remove than old ones.

We're All Mad Here Review
I did not alter or edit any of these photographs. I tried to represent this product to the best of my ability with the pictures.

I'm writing this in reference to the We're All Mad Here Skullete Skirt in lavender. I felt completely ripped off with this product. I paid a little over $200 USD for this skirt, including shipping and I do not feel it was worth it.

Right off the bat, I was pretty disappointed because the colour was not lavender. It's lilac. Lavender is light purple, lilac is light pinkish-purple. I may be asking for a lot, but I think that someone that has something in different colours should actually know what each colour is. I can't tell from my computer screen, so I'm trusting the colour description. You may think that I'm just being unfair here, but the colour is way off. It doesn't match my shoes in the slightest and it actually matches pink things better. I compared it to my dog's collar because it was close by. I'm actually considering dying it to match better, but I have no clue what kind of fabric this is as it's not listed either on the tag or the website. 

The second thing I noticed was that the fabric seemed really thick, but on closer inspection, I found that it was actually just the lining that made it seem thick. However, the lining reminds me a lot of a bed sheet. If I didn't know better, I'd think they, in fact, used a bed sheet to line this skirt.

I don't have many prints to compare, but I remember reading that you know it's a quality print if the print is not blurry. Well, the print is blurry! If you look closely, you can see sort of an echo of the print very faintly. I tried my best to properly photograph this, but if you look around the upper left corner, you'll see what I'm talking about. Again, I DID NOT alter this photo at all.

I didn't notice this at first, but I found a little secret pocket on the side. That was very nice. I love secret pockets! However, I happened to glance at the seems on the inside and found a wad of unstitched thread. When I looked further, I found more.IMG_0362IMG_0369IMG_0370

Beside the skirt, they gave a lot of little extra things. Really cheap jewelry that looks like it came from a gumball machine, a sticker, and a skull shaped pin that had their logo on it. I didn't care for anything, but I really liked the skull pin. That is, until it broke. Actually, it broke twice! When I went to attach the pin to the skirt, the little needle part fell off. I fixed that, but when I went to wear the skirt later, the whole clasp fell off!

So it's one thing for it to happen to a pin that was not actually a part of the design of the skirt, but it's quite another for it to happen to a piece that IS part of the skirt. The bow is multipurpose, but right as I was deciding whether to wear the bow in my hair or on the skirt, I noticed that the clasp was falling off of it as well. Plus, when I went to pin it on the skirt again, the needle part broke off of it too!

I've never had so much trouble with a lolita piece. Not even JSKs that cost me less than half of what this skirt cost. Every time I look at it, I find something else wrong. I'm so upset because I could've bought a brand skirt for the price of this and known that I got quality. The idea of the skirt was fantastic, the print is cool, but the execution was awful. This is not good quality, this is not professional and they do not deserve the price they're asking for. It's not the fact that these little things happened, it's really that I paid what I paid for it.

Edit: I was offered a full refund, but declined and got a partial refund making the skirt $100. I'm very happy with the help and level of professionalism I got from the customer service. I'm much happier with this purchase now that I feel like I got my money's worth. I want to reiterate that it wasn't the quality, it was more the quality I received for what I paid.

Also, for anyone interested, I found out the skirt is made of polyester. The lining is most likely cotton.

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