Going from Osaka to Kyoto is much simpler than I thought it would be. There are a variety of train speeds, but as long as you get on one that gets off at your stop, it should be fine. We took a faster train which skipped many stops, and then alighted and switched trains (on the same track) to one that made more frequent stops as we approached our final destination. Really, I find the maps quite self-explanatory, but if you have trouble, you can ask the station staff as they are quite helpful.
|Wearing the BABY dress I got at Near|
Both the Angelic Pretty and BABY, THE STARS SHINE BRIGHT shops are in a department store called OPA (see map) on the seventh floor. Unfortunately, photography is forbidden in the entire department store!
However, it was still a fun experience to go line up before the department store even opened! I was third in line and there ended up being a long queue of Lolitas in front of the shop. Because it is a tourist-heavy area, there were many people trying to take photos of us :o
When the doors opened, everybody filed in in one line and headed up the escalators like a Lolita train. If you are not queuing for something, you can also just take the elevator ^_~v
Once we reached the Angelic Pretty shop, the shop staff (same shop staff from Osaka! She must be a manager?) counted the number of customers and cut up number slips for us. It turns out you do not get to shop and check-out based on the order you arrived in, but in the order you draw your number. This could be either good or bad. It may seem unfair if you've arrived especially early (I arrived at 10:30 for the 11:00 open, which is not terrible) and drew a late number, but doing it this way also prevents people from trying to cut in line or push out of order to try and get an earlier spot in the line.
Anyway, the first round of drawing was messed up somehow. I think it could be that a couple more Lolitas (my friend and her friend, actually) arrived right after the shop staff did the original count so they redid the drawing. I drew number 3 the second time around ^u^
The shop staff then announced the times for certain number groups, so numbers 1-9 were recommended to stay and later numbers could come back at 11:30. It actually ended up taking much longer for the check-outs to happen. Though I picked through the Tops Set and Accessories Set for quite some time, in the end I gave my number to Laina so she could buy the special sets she wanted without needing to wait around for ages.
Instead, I headed over to BABY, THE STARS SHINE BRIGHT which is back-to-back with Angelic Pretty and had a look around. The shop staff was very kind and let me try on the BABY Border Usakumya Set on Taiwan Teddy
It ended up costing too much, however, so I bought the BABY icing cookie brooch instead.
Afterward I wandered to a nearby street on my way to find the Metamorphose shop!
(((Side note: you may have seen on the map I created that I labeled a shop called WeGo. It sells both secondhand and new clothing, and has lots of mainstream and vintage fashions and accessories, however the shop staff was rude and I generally did not have a good experience there)))
At the end of the alley with these two forests, there is the Ninja theme restaurant, Ninja Kyoto
It looks much more impressive on the website, but I'm sure inside looks amazing as well. In daylight it seems not as spooky or mysterious!
I took a quick snap but got a terrible pose of the staff managing the front ^^;
I was originally worried that Meta would be difficult to find as it is not on the ground floor, but they've got a street-level display mannequin to help you find it!
You must take the elevator to 5F
I've never purchased anything from Meta before either, so I ended up buying a jabot with the intention to wear it as a veil.
I was a bit disappointed in Meta's jewelry, though. Seeing things like the the Glorious Ring in person, it looked a lot cheaper than something like BABY's jewelry. I believe Meta's are not 925 silver, though. It didn't look so bad as costume jewelry, but also not as elegant as I'd imagined...
Lastly, not Lolita-related, but there is the Disney store!! Note that it is NOT where Google Maps will display if you search for "Kyoto Disney" on Google Maps (as of this post.) It will tell you it has permanently closed. The new shop is right outside Exit 3-A of 河原町/Kawaramachi Station
|To the left side of this photo you can actually see the Disney store|
|Heaven for TsumTsum fans!|
|Which of the above bears seems to not fit in....|
A shop staff came to see what I was doing and was very nice and helpful trying to find clothing for Teddy haha.
The Halloween edition goods are super cute!
After that I just went through some old streets with my friend and looked at souvenir shops as well as open-market style food sellers.
Overall, there are fewer (Lolita) shops in Kyoto, but it was still a lot of fun! If you are more interested in shrines than shopping, Kyoto has just tons and tons of shrines. I visited several in the morning before heading over to Angelic Pretty, actually!
We headed back to Osaka the next day and I stayed at a bnb out in the middle of nowhere O_O;; But on the 19th I went to Universal Studios Japan on a whim with my friend (I'd originally had no plans for that day) so I'll post about (Halloween edition) USJ in the next part!