Kitai Fuku Ga Aru/着たい服がある by Tsuneki Netarou is a new manga published by Kodansha featuring a lolita as the main character. The title has been loosely translated as I Show My True Colors Shining Through or There Are Clothes I Want to Wear. Author and artist Netarou Tsuneki started publishing the first four pilot chapters on Twitter in 2018. The physical edition of volume 1 was released earlier this year and the series is currently on volume 3.
Summary: Mami is a college student seen as cool and mature woman, but in reality, she just wants to be seen as cute by wearing lolita fashion. After she graduates high school, Mami buys her first lolita dress. Now in college, she faces insecurities about her height and others’ opinions about herself. One day, a new co-worker appears in an eccentric outfit and inspires her to be more true to her real self.
What drew my attention to this manga was its realistic portrayal of the lolita fashion. A good number of the clothes the characters wear are based on real pieces. As seen in chapter one and the first volume’s cover, her dress is from Baby, the Stars Shine Bright. The art style is also drawn nicely; his style is very clean and easy to look at, but also emphasizes the details of the clothing. The story delves into the subculture aspect of the fashion as well. Mami shows interest in lifestyle aspects such as attending tea parties, following the latest lolita updates through KERA, and participating in street snaps. She also has to deal with real lolita problems. Some of her challenges include being judged by her peers, knocking things over with her petticoat, dealing with harassment from strangers, and finding the self-confidence to wear lolita in public. Whether you’re new or old to lolita fashion, the start her journey into is a story many lolitas can relate to.
Back in February, KERA hosted a tea party celebrating the first volume’s publication. Tsuneki spoke about his work and a fashion show featured each brand that has appeared in the manga thus far: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright, Alice and the Pirates, Angelic Pretty Metamorphose, Queen Bee, and SouffleSong. Featured guest models included Midori Fukasawa, Misako Aoki, Kimura U, Sakurako Hoshina, and Yura. Read the report on KERA’s site!
New chapters are released digitally through Kodansha’s reader site D Morning. The latest chapter will be available to read for free for one week, but after that, a subscription will be needed to access past chapters. The digital subscription service is currently only available in Japan. Buying the physical copies through Amazon JP or another manga retailer is pretty straightforward though. The manga is currently only available in Japanese with no official English translation planned. The best way to keep up with the series is to follow Tsuneki-sensei’s social media. I would love to support an official translation and I hope Kodansha considers an international release because of how globally spread lolita fashion has become!