How to Create a Cute Kawaii Style
Are you in love with adorable “forever young” Kawaii fashion inspired by Japanese anime and seen on the hottest J-Pop and K-Pop stars? While you may not know how to create your own Kawaii style, it’s not as hard you think. Design your own Kawaii looks by putting together pieces and accessories that capture the signature Kawaii sweetness and also reflect your personal style.
Whether you want to cultivate a girly Lolita vibe, are more of a street-style Kawaii fan, or lean towards an edgy Goth Kawaii look, here are some trends and tips to help you rock your unique Kawaii style.
Kawaii Style Trends
Kawaii isn’t just ruffles and ribbons—though it can be if that’s the style you love! Once, the Kawaii look was associated exclusively with innocent baby-doll outfits. Today, many different Kawaii styles are trending across the globe. Here are the hottest this year:
The most common Kawaii fashion trend, the Lolita look is all about pastels and lace. Cuteness is key, so pieces are adorned with plenty of pretty ribbons, bows, and ruffles. Knee or ankle socks, chunky Mary Jane heels, and stuffed-animal bags complete the girly-girl vibe.
This trend takes the sweetness of Lolita up a notch with even more adorable accessories, including oversize bows, bonnets, and pastel hair extensions curled into ringlets. Fabrics printed with fruit, flowers, or sweets are popular when paired with lace stockings and gloves.
Rather than create a childlike look with pink flowers and bows, Decora is all about layers upon layers (upon layers) of bright multi-colored accessories from hair clips, bracelets, and backpack pins to rainbow-striped socks.
Kawaii Street Fashion
Combining the cuteness of Kawaii with the cool of hip hop, this trend is one of the most popular ways to add some Kawaii style to your wardrobe. Oversized and cropped hoodies or sweaters and boyfriend dress shirts paired with strap shorts or mini skorts make for adorable outfits with an urban edge.
Also known as “creepy cute,” Goth Kawaii takes all the lace and ruffles of Lolita and serves them in midnight black. The schoolgirl-style pleated skirts and knee socks remain, but in dark solids or plaids and paired with aggressive platform boots, chain chokers, and lots of punk-rock straps and buckles.
How To Rock Kawaii Style
If you want to work some Kawaii style into your look, keep these basic guidelines in mind.
- Kawaii is all about attitude. Childlike sweetness lies at the heart of all Kawaii styles, from the frilliest Lolita dresses to edgy black micro mini schoolgirl skirts. You want to capture the innocent, baby-doll vibe that makes Kawaii so unique. This extends beyond your Kawaii outfit to makeup, nails, and attitude.
- Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize! Kawaii-style clothes are important for creating your look, but the right accessories are what make it all come together. Pretty clips, bows, and headbands lend a girly flair, and pairing frilly ankle or knee socks with strappy closed-toe heels or platform boots is a must. Bags and backpacks are fundamental: choose playful styles and colors and dress them up with tons of pins, badges, and mini stuffed-animal charms.
- Get inspired. If you’re dipping your toes into Kawaii culture for the first time, look to familiar sources of inspiration like anime characters and pop stars to get some ideas for the Kawaii look you want to create. Though Kawaii is all about expressing your unique personality, it helps to bookmark pieces you love to get started with some simple Kawaii outfits.
Kawaii Pop Music Inspired Looks
One of the most significant sources of inspiration for putting together Kawaii outfits are J-Pop and K-Pop stars that have made the Kawaii look part of their brand both on and off stage. J-Pop stars like Kyary Pyamu Pyamu and groups Momoiro Clover Z and Morning Musume, as well as K-pop groups like Girl’s Day and Twice, are icons of the sweet baby-doll looks. Check out their frilly dresses, pretty bows, and extra attention to accessories like hairpieces and even circle contact lenses for anime-like eyes.
If you lean towards an edgier Kawaii street fashion or Goth look, you can also get plenty of inspiration from pop music icons. J-Pop’s Babymetal and Ladybaby groups are known for their Kawaii looks that combine cuteness with cutting edge, as are K-Pop stars like Blackpink and Everglow. These Kawaii fashionistas switch out ribbons for chains and Mary Janes for platform boots, but they still conjure up sweetness with mini dresses and shorts, crop tops, and rhinestone accessories.
Simple and Cute Kawaii Outfits
To create simple Kawaii outfits, you need just a few pieces and accessories to mix and match. Here are some Kawaii-style basics:
- Mini Skirt or Skort
For the schoolgirl look, choose a pleated style in plaid. A skort version with edgy straps or lacings is trendy in Kawaii street fashion, or you can choose strap shorts for an extra Goth look.
- Crop Top
Go hyper-feminine with a midriff-baring top. Choose an oversized cropped hoodie or turtleneck in the winter or a bustier-style or strappy crop top in summer.
- Knee Socks
Whether you opt for Mary Janes or platform Doc Martens, pairing them with cute knee socks will make your Kawaii outfit pop.
Don’t forget to bring out the cute with great accessories! Rock your girly or Goth pigtails, hair bows, purse or backpack, and other small touches to complete your look.
Kawaii Style Starts with Us
Looking for more pieces to help you create a cute Kawaii style that highlights your unique personality? Shop Lychee the Label’s Asian women’s streetwear and kpop fashion collections for trendy Kawaii-inspired pieces that combine sweetness with an urban edge.