The Oft-Neglected Pinafore

When you think of the word pinafore, dear readers, what comes to your mind? Perhaps the frilly apron which Alice wore over her blue dress, or the kind of embellishment sometimes seen in Natural Kei. Maybe you think of something your grandmother used to don in order to dust and sweep the house - but the pinafore is an item that comes in many different shapes and styles. And it is often overlooked within Lolita.

There are many a brand that have tried this concept in the past, but you still don't see it much at actual meetups or in daily coordinates.

As I have stated dear readers, they come in a variety of styles, from an apron meant to be over a dress to a skirt featuring criss-crossed straps and waist ties. Certainly something for everyone, no?

Yet I believe I know why it has come to be so avoided - the dreaded Ita-Maid look. It's one that is pushed into Lolita's mind from the beginning of their frilly journey. Along the same lines of not wearing cheap lace and please don't wear maxi pads on your head, the idea of the apron has rooted itself into ita or maid territory, both of which are something your average Lolita does not wish to be associated with.

So what advice do I have for my intrepid readers who may be willing to attempt this garment?

1. Avoid white - Choose a pinafore in a popular print  - Angelic Pretty and Meta both make an apron style JSK for many of their cheerier prints. Opt for white or a plain color underneath and let the apron be the focal point, rather than the other way around.

2. Choose one that is heavily stylized - a border print, corset lacing, bows, etc. It should complement the rest of your coordinate, not appear as something you merely tossed over it.

3. The brave Lolita wearing white should keep it simple - the apron should look like another layer of your ensemble. In that respect, keep it streamlined and avoid excess lace or ruffles.

4. Give it a country twist - an apron over a natural kei style dress (something long sleeved in a dainty floral or calico print) will look more Little House on the Prairie than housekeeper.

But why, do you ask, dear readers, did I dig up this particular topic? Well, as luck would have it, a recent trip to a large thrift shop yielded a new acquisition in the form of a vintage frilly apron in a dark blue polka dot calico and I'm extremely fascinated with finding unusual ways of coordinating it. I was merely inspired, readers, and now I hope that you might be too.


  1. Honestly, the first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word "pinafore" is the ones I wore with dresses as a child.

    I am a particular fan of the Meta dress and pinafore up at the top of the post. It's white, sure, but so very country that it doesn't look at all ita.

    The apron you found sounds adorable! I hope you have fun coordinating it.

  2. When I was a kid my favourite dress was a blue dress with tiny flowers and a white pinafore. I sang the old song Early One Morning (the one that makes Spike crazy in Buffy) at an Eisteddfodd while wearing it. So old fashioned!

    I like the first and last pinafore. They look the most correct to me.