If there is anything in this world I believe in, it’s that the Japanese second-hand market is the best place to buy j-fashion. There, I said it.
For those of you that know me, that’s not really much of a surprise considering I pride myself on the in’s and out’s of shopping services and international shipping. My most recent haul was with the shopping service DeJapan. Now, I want to preface this with a massive disclaimer that is this as follows; while DeJapan is ‘free’ their service is incredibly hit or miss. With DeJapan sometimes you want to scream in jubilation, and sometimes you want to scream in anger. For some unknown reason, the DeJapan Gods have determined they liked me and so I have never had any problems, but I know plenty of people who have had problems. However, the topic of shopping services is a post for another day, for now let’s focus on what was a very fruitful haul!
For ‘hauls’ like this what I typically do is abstain from buying for a few months, and then purchase all the items I’ve been wanting to buy at once. This does a few things, it helps save money because I’m not paying for shipping on smaller orders, typically the larger the order the more you’re likely to save on shipping. While shipping does go by weight, once you get over 2,000 grams (about 5 pounds) shipping prices open up in that prices increase by much larger increments. This means you save money as you’re not getting charged by smaller measurements but by larger ones. For example, if you’re in the smaller measurement category you’re getting charged per skirt, but in the larger category you’ll be getting charged per 2-3 skirts. It is essentially bulk buying, the more you spend the more you save.
I paid no late fees on this order, though I did really toe the metaphorical line. I had one item that only had one more day of free storage which definitely had me nervous. While DeJapan does not charge you a fee to purchase from Fril and Rakuten, they do not send reminders about when an item has exceeded it’s 30 day free storage window. This means you have to keep track of what day your oldest item is, and be aware of when it needs to ship to you.
Once it shipped it was here in a few days, though I was quite surprised when I got it.
It was a LOT smaller than I thought it’d be (my cat, Pilomela/Mel for reference).
My cat is unusually small (she weighs about 4 pounds) and this package had a lot inside of it, so I was a bit worried they may have forgotten anything. Luckily, everything was in there, they had just switched over to a new packaging method.
Whereas previously DeJapan kept items in their original packaging, this time they rewrapped the items and put barcodes with the item number in their system on the outside. I really liked this new method and it made it easy to check off that everything was in there.
So now, let’s go through what came in!
We’ll start with my Liz Lisa pieces, as I was most excited about them!
While browsing Mercari JP one morning I came across a seller selling a lot of Liz Lisa M’s and I was absolutely thrilled! It can be so difficult to track down the M sizes, which are the ones I prefer since they fit a bit more comfortably than their one/free sizes. For me, the one/free sizes fit ok, but they can be a bit snug in the bust for one week of the month, so I prefer the M sizes as I can wear them whenever. She had quite a few M’s including the Salon de Patisserie OP in blue, but sadly that one sold before they could purchase it. I was heartbroken! However, the next day she listed the Liz Lisa Heart Sweet OP in Brown! I remember being so excited! I have the pink OP, but I have it in the free size and I love it! It’s one of the most flattering Liz Lisa dresses I own, and I had added the brown to my wishlist of items. I was so thrilled I not only found it for a good price, but in the M size. She also had for sale the Liz Lisa Ballet OP, also in a size M. I debated on this one, as while I liked this print, I had always chosen to pass on it. I decided to get it since it was so rare to find M’s on the second hand market as Liz Lisa only makes a handful of them during each production run. I added them both to my order and waited for confirmation.
Most of the time I don’t get too anxious about placing orders with my shopping services, but this time I was on edge. I just couldn’t let M’s slip through my fingers! Unfortunately, due to a technical error DeJapan had purchased them, but I didn’t get the confirmation email. I had to poke them several days later and ask them what was going on for them to confirm they had purchased the pieces just fine.
Classic DeJapan move.
This however, was not the last of the issues with these pieces.
After I unboxed everything I went back through to do what I call ‘processing’ which is when I take notes about the condition of a second-hand item and begin work on any repairs that are needed. I started this process after a notoriously bad purchase from a US seller who sold me a Liz Lisa skirt over the retail value with a permanent ink stain on it.
Anyways, these dresses were not in great condition. In fact, the Heart Sweets OP I was so in love with was missing several buttons and covered in various stains. Luckily, after some closer examination I found out the stains were makeup, probably foundation, and they’d be straightforward to remove, I just needed some good old fashioned elbow grease! Makeup and food stains are typically pretty easy to remove as they both break down easily with the right soap. I washed the badly stained bow in some warm water with my special stain removing soap and got to work! It came out much better!
Next I nipped some spare threads off, and put her in the washing machine on a gentle cycle. I then hung her up to dry and she’s all better! Now all that’s left to do is wait on some replacement buttons to come in and I’ll replace her buttons and then she’ll be as good as new.
The Ballet OP wasn’t in as bad of a state, but there were some wonky patches, including this weird stitch that was coming undone? It wasn’t by a seam nor was it by the wait bow that had been removed, so it was a bit of a mystery. A snip later and it was gone and tossed in the wash.
I have to admit that I was a bit on the fence about this one at this time, that was until I put it on. Out of every piece I own, this is easily one of my most worn pieces. I love the color scheme, it fits like a glove, and because it isn’t like a dream piece I wear it a ton. I’m not really scared about anything happening to it because I’m not really emotionally attached to it. Despite being initially hesitant about purchasing it, it was the best purchase out of everything in the haul!
Next up we have a really cute Liz Lisa Sweet Bear Cafe sukapan. I’m not sure if this is the actual name, it’s an older print but one of my favorites! I had originally slept on this print until Sarah convinced me to buy the sukapan in pink to match her and Cheerie. Once I saw it in person I was sold! It’s really lovely and includes my favorite things, bears, crowns, and flowers! It’s really lovely and I saw these go up for sale for about $30 USD and I jumped on them! I really enjoy bordeaux prints and this one is just so lovely in person.
I also got another skirt. I used to be really big on skirts, but slowed down buying them because I find they require more mental energy to coordinate than an OP. Lately with work being the way it is and having my hand in too many buckets I’ve found it much easier to throw on an OP in the morning than to try and get my brain to put together a nice coord. With this particular print I have no other option as the OP is notoriously small. I really desperately wanted this print in blue, but as we’re getting closer to Christmas I figured I wouldn’t see it pop up in blue anytime soon and settled for the white.
I have to admit, this print is stunning in person. It’s much more rich and beautiful in person than photos can show. It’s in perfect condition too so I couldn’t be happier! Naturally, once I received my order it popped up on Mercari in blue for a good price, ugh! I’ll probably wear both this holiday season and once spring comes around I’ll sell off whichever one I reached for less.
Or at least, that’s what I tell myself.
Lastly, I got a pair of flats secondhand that were brand new and at the top of my wishlist! I own the same flats in pink and they get a ton of wear so I’ve been after them in the other colors with bordeaux on the top of my list since I wear it so often. I was so pleased to have found them NWT and completely unused. Secondhand shoes can be a big gamble, but these were still in their original box so I snapped them up! They match a lot in my wardrobe so I’m very happy with my purchase.
I also purchased two Amavel shell tops, which you can find here:
They’re really nice, the body is a jersey with the peter pan collars being a structured poly. They’ll be perfect to wear under my sweaters with the collar poking out! These are also nice if you have a bigger bust as the material has a ton of stretch since it’s jersey.
I find myself wearing them very often, they’re really nice to put under a sweater to give an outfit more of a ‘cute’ vibe. Here I am wearing it in white to a hockey game, it even managed to make a sports jersey look cute!
I also got two pairs of Maison de Fleur gloves, both of which I’m very pleased with! They’re really warm and inside they’re lined with a nice minky fabric. They’re really warm and perfect for what is shaping up to be a harsh Northeastern winter!
I chose a nude beige to go with everything and a black pair to go with my black Angelic Pretty coat.
Those are all of my Liz Lisa purchases, now onto my Lolita ones! (Himekaji and Lolita are different styles, with Himekaji being a substyle of Gyaru and Lolita being it’s own fashion in the EGL realm. I do sometimes use pieces from one style for another, but I am still following guidelines for each substyle to achieve the desired look consistent with the style)
The first is my sock lot! I purchased a sock lot that contained Angelic Pretty Classic Fairy Tale OTKs in ivory, British Bear tights in ivory, and Charlotte’s bear tights in sax. I ended up selling the Charlotte bear tights to Sarah, as they’re a bit sweet for me. I typically wear Classic and Country Lolita so they really didn’t fit with my wardrobe. It works out that I’m friends with Sarah who is more into sweet Lolita than I am so we can split lots. It was a pretty good deal with each pair costing around $20 USD. They were all in great condition, so once I did my sock cleaning process they were ready to go!
I also got the British Library OTKs in ivory as well, those are NWT so they don’t have to go through the cleaning process. I really believe that for Lolita having a good variety of tights/OTKs to pull from can really strengthen your wardrobe.
Speaking of OTKs, I was incredibly lucky and while visiting my boyfriend in DC, a listing for BTSSB Kumya-chan’s Christmas Holly Night JSK came up for an unreal price. DeJapan came through for me and I was lucky to snag the JSK and two OTKs NWT and two face clothes for only $190. It was a crazy good deal! While I would have preferred JSK I, I was happy enough to get this one for such a steal. I just can’t justify paying more than $200 for a seasonal print. I felt like I really got my money’s worth as the JSK was in perfect condition, and both OTKs were NWT, such a good deal! I’m very excited to wear it this Christmas. I might look into trading it for my preferred cut after the holiday season ends, but for now I’ll enjoy it!
The seller even threw in these two microfiber Kumya and Usakumya microfiber face towels which is so kind! After several days of just anxiously staring at them and being afraid of ruining them, I bit the bullet and started to use them. They are SO nice! I’ve just been using regular hand towels so these were wonderful and gentle on my skin. I was even talking about it with Sarah and she mentioned that I should only use microfiber as regular fibers can be too harsh on your skin and cause damage.
Whew! That was quite a haul! Both me and my wallet are a bit tired. There will be a part two as I do have a Buyee portion that I have to write up, but it’s significantly shorter so it should be up a bit quicker!
Thanks for reading!