Japanese Pattern Mooks Galore! ^o^

I have gotten my hot little hands on a number of really great pattern books from Japan, including the Gothic & Lolita Bibles that I’ve been sending for regularly. Though I’ll admit that the GLBs are less impressive than these others, and I feel a little silly that I’ve only just discovered them.

Boutique-sha publishes some really high level sewing pattern magazines, including the other Lolita magazine that I’ve heard whispers of until now. I always thought that the Gosu Rori magazine and the Gothic & Lolita Bibles were the same. Ha… I’m so glad I was wrong.

The Gosu Rori (Goth Loli in English :P ) magazine is a serious sewing publication, with one giant sheet of at least six full garment patterns. What’s even more impressive is that the instruction pages within the book itself has patterns that require you to draft them out yourself. So not everything available in the book is printed on the giant pattern sheet. Challenge accepted.

While I have full confidence that I can interpret the instructions-only patterns, it will definitely be a challenge for sure. Everything’s in centimeters, but the only hard part about that is that my rulers aren’t. So I have to keep checking my measuring tape which IS marked with cm. Silly Americans. Why do we have to make everything so hard?

CoverSo my recent acquisition includes Vol. 15 of the Gosu Rori mook (magazine/book) and another publication also by Boutique that was a special collection of Lolita pieces in their Lady Boutique series (again, very high end sewing book with patterns).

These sort of publications make me wonder if sewing and crafting is a serious past time in Japan. I don’t think they sell anything like it in the States, and I could be wrong. I do recall my mother once looking for a particular magazine she used to know of that had patterns in it, but they stopped selling them a long time ago.

I’m also worried, however, that the Gosu Rori mooks are no longer printed. The latest issue I can find listed anywhere is No. 16 from 2010. I’m hoping I’m wrong. But I could always try to find back issues.

On another note, with these patterns I’m acquiring, I’ve started offering a service to fellow Lolita seamstresses. Now, I’ve been sort of thinking about this with a little trepidation, in that maybe I’m breaking copyright rules by doing this. I’m sharing patterns sold in a mook for a small fee, but I’m not necessarily photocopying them.

Because the patterns in all these magazines require you to trace them from the single giant page it’s originally printed on, I offer to trace them professionally on equally giant tracing paper, ready to be cut and used – like the way American patterns come. I’ll also add seam allowance if it doesn’t already come with it, which the more advanced sewing books require you to do on your own.

So I charge $8 for each pattern. Maybe not the small ones. It is sharing material, and so I wonder – is this perhaps not such a wise thing to do?

I guess I just figured that I bought so much tracing paper for myself (20 yards on a 30” roll) that I thought to share patterns with others. And when I did for the first three that were interested, tracing the patterns with the skills I was taught in Fashion Design School, I realized it was quite a lot of work. So I thought to ask for a little compensation.



  1. Elaine

    It’s fair to ask for compensation. Not sure how copyright works on these things or if the company already sells them from China. Something to research, I suppose.

    I, for one, would be glad of ready made patterns. I once sewed like you do, only I used ordinary patterns. I gott a lot of patterns from Burda, a German magazine that does the same thing – puts in marked sheets for tracing. Time consuming but really worth it to have something to wear that doesn’t come from a cookie cutter. Anna (another German magazine) also had patterns – more of the crafty sort, mostly knit and crochet. Lovely stuff!

    • Thanks, Elaine, for your insight! Really helpful. And it’s nice to know there are other magazines of that same caliber. Even if they’re German. In the Lolita fashion world, it’s really the only way to find official patterns. I’m happy to be sharing my skill so that it makes it a little easier for others.

  2. I think you are doing a beautiful job, the idea of tracing patterns for others who do not have such access these magazines and books, for whatever reason, is admirable.

    One thing: where I can buy the Lady Boutique Lolita Collection Spring 2012? I found only here http://www.amazon.co.jp/%E4%B9%99%E5%A5%B3%E3%81%AE%E3%82%BD%E3%83%BC%E3%82%A4%E3%83%B3%E3%82%B0BOOK-%E3%83%AC%E3%83%87%E3%82%A3%E3%83%96%E3%83%86%E3%82%A3%E3%83%83%E3%82%AF%E3%82%B7%E3%83%AA%E3%83%BC%E3%82%BA-no-3376/dp/4834733769 but I have never bought anything on amazon Japan :(

    and another thing:
    I see that you are an excellent seamstress :) i like your work! I made a post about your work on my website ♥♥♥

    • Hi hi, Ana! And thank you! I’m sorry it took so long to reply. I’m in Japan right now. I bought the Lady Boutique book on eBay – however, I’m here in Japan and maybe I can find a copy for you. :) I intend to go to Nippori where they most likely have such things. Thanks for checking out my website! :D

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.