4 Responses to "What Are You Wearing?!"

Those who wear Lolita are all too familiar with the question "What are you wearing?!" Sometimes it seems like you can't take more than a few steps in public while wearing Lolita without someone asking this question! Unfortunately, sometimes answering it with "It's Lolita fashion!" leaves people with even more questions than before! So what's a Lolita to do when she's asked this sometimes tricky question? Personally I have a few different responses to it, depending on how it's being asked.

"It's from [insert brand/shop here]!"
This is my go-to answer to this question because it doesn't involve any followup questions beyond possibly someone asking where to buy it for themselves, which is generally easily answered with "The internet!". I usually use this response when someone is specifically asking about the clothes, rather than the general style. Personally I notice a lot of older women being interested in the fashion this way, they're generally excited about the lace, or some sort of details, or the fact I'm wearing a petticoat. Although I will also use this response with someone about my age or younger, as there is a good chance they recognize it as Lolita fashion already and will probably even recognize the brand name.

"It's a street fashion from Japan!"
This is the classic "describing Lolita without saying Lolita" description of the fashion. Mostly this type of response is reserved for people who are asking about the general style, like the sort of questions you get when you're out with other friends who are also wearing Lolita. The downside to this response is it usually has a lot of follow up questions! Particularly because of the addition of "from Japan" usually makes people curious about why someone is wearing something from Japan, so far away from Japan!

"It's a retro/vintage/Victorian inspired fashion"
This response is similar to the above, except it neglects to mention Japan, which often leads to less follow up questions. I would save a response like this for someone who wants to know what the general style is called, seems honestly interested, but you don't want to make a particularly long conversation about it.

"Oh, just regular clothes!"
I generally save this response for when I'm feeling particularly snippy, or don't have time to entertain stranger's questions. For example if I'm visibly in a hurry, or doing something, or talking to someone else and someone asks this without seeming to be genuinely curious. If I feel like they are demanding an explanation from me, rather than asking out of genuine interest they will get this response from me. It's kind of passive aggressive but it usually gets the point across that I don't feel the need to explain why I am dressed the way I am.

How do you respond to questions about Lolita fashion from strangers? Are you one of those brave souls who's ready and willing to patiently explain what Lolita fashion is to the curious, or is that a conversation you simply don't want to get into with strangers?


  1. I do get a lot of comments from people when wearing Lolita, mostly because I live in a pretty small town, but most of the time it's either compliments or just the hushed "What IS she wearing?" kind of stuff. The few times I've actually been asked out the style itself I usually just respond with a combination of "It's a Japanese street fashion based on vintage/Rococo/Victorian styles and I wear it because it's cute." That seems to be good enough for most people.

  2. When we had lolita picnics and tourists would come up and ask ... I go for the fastest answer "fashion club!"
    That seems to be enuff for their passing curiosity

  3. Fortunately I didn't get this questions that much, people that didn't know me, and new the fashion just rolled their eyes, and didn't bother to ask :P

  4. I usually say something like, "This is just how I dress every day!" and most people accept that and don't ask anything else (and it often leads to compliments like "You look very pretty/cute/like a doll" etc.).
    Very rarely do people ask for a more detailed explanation, or about where I got the clothes (which is great for me, honestly, because I'm rather shy when talking to strangers).

  5. I will always answer and say more if the personn seems interested and open-minded. Usually, I answer "it's a fashion from Japan, but inspired by ancient Western Fashion."
    If I am really in a hurry, I simply that I must go and there's no problem.

    The other question I always hear is "Why do you wear like this ? Are you going to a party ?". I like to answer : "Because life is beautiful and should be celebrated with beautiful things ! ;-)" It make the people smile and they often don't ask more. ;-)

  6. I usually respond with "I'm wearing clothes I like to wear." I personally dislike much attention, and will ignore people talking at me unless they sound genuinely (and kindly) interested.

  7. Wearing Lolita for the first time outside of a con Saturday so it was super lucky this article came before!!


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