Thursday, June 20, 2013

Otakon 2013: Support the Indie Lolita Fashion Show!

Hello my lovely wonderful followers,

I am sure a lot of you have seen this already if you are a fan of the Pop Princess Facebook page, but I wanted to reiterate it here on the blog just to get the word out there to as many darling lolita darlings, fashion lovers, and Pop Princess' fans as possible.

As I'm sure you already know, by looking at the Otakon 2013 schedule the indie lolita fashion show, along with other lolita fashion related panels, have been axed from this year's convention. There are a lot of rumors going around right now about why that is, and we don't have all the information. We think it is unjust, however, that the lolita community is being excluded especially if this decision was based upon the actions of one person, which ends up judging all of us to be the same. Many of us have decided if this is the case, that we will not travel to support Otakon this year.

A frilly (and may I add quite magical and mighty!) group of us lolitas from all over are banding together to write letters to Otakon petitioning them to reinstate the indie lolita fashion show---to name a few: myself, the awesome Melissa Lipscomb, Victoria Suzanne Stella Alice, Kelsey from I Do Declare! So if you have a favorite indie brand out there that you were headed to Baltimore to see, then it's time for you to write a letter too, and share this with as many friends as possible.

All we can hope for is change, and show our support for our community and each other! So pop open those word documents, pull up the Otakon contact page and click the option for "con chair person" and send out those emails!

If you need an example to follow, here is the one I wrote! Good luck, my loves! xo Annika

To Whom It May Concern:

As both a member of the lolita community, an indie designer, and a regular Otakon attendee, I was very disappointed to see the lack of fashion and lolita panels on this year’s proposed schedule. In particular, I was very much looking forward to flying out to participate again as a designer in the indie lolita fashion show that Otakon has had on schedule for approximately the last five years. Many of us a part of the lolita community drive or fly out from all over the country to show our support for the indie brands, network among the community, and showing appreciation for our fans, followers, and friends who also come out to see us.

As a designer who participated in the fashion show under the close watch of Kelsey Hine and Melissa Lipscomb last year, I was very much looking forward to working closely with them again for another successful fashion show with what would hopefully be another full house of eager fans. Under Kelsey and Melissa’s watch, they were able to draw designers both nationally and internationally to the indie fashion show, featuring designers from all across the globe. They were both extremely fastidious in their ability to organize, maintain, and produce the fashion show in a way that was professional and courteous to all its participants. I applaud their efforts in maintaining a well balanced, and kind hearted manner under what was certainly a stressful and pressuring time, and I believe Melissa would have furthered the success of the indie fashion show this year.

I am sure you recognize there is a great deal of chatter across many social networking sites expressing disappointment in the fashion show being excluded from the schedule, and whispers about why, what, or whom may have caused the panel to be axed. Without the incentive to participate in lolita fashion panels, and especially the absence of the fashion show itself, a great deal of lolita are already talking about not attending the 2013 Otakon convention. Due to lack of fashion panels, as well as a general frustration of having no real interest in financially supporting an institution that has, as it appears, excluded them from the attendee fan base, a good deal of the community has chosen not to attend.

There has been no official commentary from Otakon as to why the fashion show and other lolita panels were excluded from this year’s schedule, which only creates further speculation to populate across the community and the web. We recognize that perhaps the convention had used up all its budgeted funding on other special guests or panels, but considering that the fashion show is run for and by fans, we would be more than happy to have a less elaborate fashion show than the years before. The show is not about the stage, music, or the lights but about being able to share and be a part of exhibiting moving works of arts from talented indie brands from every walk of life.

Otakon brings in the biggest revenue out of any event for the city of Baltimore year round, and it would be a shame to further disappoint the lolita community across the country, especially if a majority choose not to financially support the convention by not attending.

It would make a great deal of us happy if the indie fashion show was reinstated, or if at the very least, Otakon would make an official statement on why it was excluded.

Annika Simmons

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