Gypsy-like Fashion of the East: Dolly Kei

This is the part two of the previous post in the original article.

Now we will define Dolly Kei.

Dolly Kei is a new fashion in Japan that had appeared simultaneously with Mori Girl. It is a fashion line under Hitomi Nomura, who in turn, had the style inspired from Tasha Tudor, an American illustrator. Notably, it also takes inspiration from movies such as Narnia, Alice in Wonderland and Harry Potter in which these movies have somewhat an eerie spooky air in them.

The origin meaning of the style name only had vague hints on why it was named like that. mentioned that the word “kei () in Dolly Kei, just means “group” or “style” – and the English word “dolly” could be applied to a large range of styles” which can somewhat considered true; Dolly Kei itself is a ranged and is often seemed to be derived from various styles including Lolita itself.

Countries that heavily influence this style are the Eastern European countries and can be associated with the Romanian gypsy, Russian Matryoshka dolls and Norwegian bands.

Similarities between Dolly Kei and Mori Girl are that both fashion styles makes use of vintage outfits and both are inspired from the European countries. Make-up in the style is kept to a bare minimum and in a natural contrast, although sometimes blush and lipstick accent the whole ensemble, but not all the time.

What sets Dolly Kei apart from Mori Girl is its colour pallet. Dolly Kei is noted to have used jewel tones such as emerald green, ruby red, brilliant gold and sapphire blue in its ensembles. It somewhat gives a regal look but at the same time the air of being natural and simple. Also Nomura had said that this style has a “stronger image, more unusual with a special appeal”.

What you could see in Grimoire, a shop dedicated to Dolly Kei. Photo from:



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