Originally posted on a previous co-venture, We Love AiStars! I was the site owner as alias Haneno Sora. This post is of my composition. I removed screenshots and modified other things; the coords can be readily found on the Aikatsu Stars! wikia.
Spring 2016: Romance Kiss
I was attending Anime North, so let’s return to AiStars fashion with Romance Kiss and its theme for spring, Arabian Jewel.
As someone who grew up in multicultural settings, Romance Kiss’ brand concept appeals to me. Beginning with this version of Middle Eastern inspiration, let’s see the world through lens of elegance!
A note before we begin: Foreign designs that claim Arabian inspiration are likely to be based on well, harems. If there are real examples where women of royalty went out in public dressed like this, let me know. But hey, that’s no slam to the brand, just a note since Arabian harem fashion is quite popular in media.
Kasumi Yozora, may I have this coord?
The Arabian Sparkle Coord, worn by Kasumi Yozora of 25th S4, sparkles with depth, luxury, and dark radiance. I know “dark” and “radiance” aren’t typically depicted as a correlational relationship, but the sexy appeal here speaks of forbidden times under the night sky. Yes, a pun. Yozora is my favourite from 25th S4!! >D
Gold is staple for sexy-type coords, gives the alluring look and a promise of an exciting performance. The gradients remind me of the remaining light in a darkening sky, as if Yozora is about to slip into the shadows when she is through.
Purple has been considered the colour of royalty for centuries, again another staple for the sexy-type. Purple and yellow are also complementary, so pairing purples and gold really catches my eye. The red lends warmth – more specifically, passion – so ‘heat’ would be a better word choice here.
We’ve got a tiered skirt but with two layers, and it’s asymmetrical. Chains on the skirts further add to the sexy appeal, instead of a rebel look that Spice Chord flaunted. I like that Yozora has a complex bracelet on her left arm and not also the right, giving the top more than just the gradient to fascinate. Wow, is that top high in baring her midriff, but the gold chain and pendant tone it down for me.
Now, in the model shot, the shoes are identical to each other if my eyes are perceiving correctly, but the actual design has her left taller than her right. I’d rather opt for that, because again, the point is to capture and hold attention – especially for Premium Rares.
They’re Premium for a reason. They are the ultimate coords for a brand, you want them to stand out above the rest and inspire people to wear your brand and promote its ideals.
Happy Nile Ruby Coord, Happy Nile Amethyst Coord, Happy Nile lolite Coord
When we hear “Nile,” we tend to think ‘Egypt,’ with understandable reasons. Have you looked at those shoes? However, the theme is Arabian. Let’s not forget that the Nile is Earth’s longest river. It travels further than Egypt. In this coord, I’m seeing the brand already on a caravan, extending its empire past what we today consider to be ‘pure’ Arabia. The traditional region isn’t called Arabia any more, but I digress.
Back to fashion.
This design brings in some cute elements with a short puffy skirt and a ruffled layer under the top. That’s where it ends. A first glance would tell you this is sexy-type, but I wanted to point out the influence of cute-type. Roses could be considered cute too, but the way they’re presented here, it’s sexy-type. The bracelets are extremely simple, but in this case, the temporary leg tattoos make up for them.
Again we have gold, but this is elegant fashion we’re talking – gold has to be in there. Silver is more of an ethereal or cooler in feeling, gold is used for more earthy looks. Not to say that silver can’t be used in sexy-type, it sure can and I’d love for Romance Kiss to experiment. It would evoke a different feel that can be sexy as well.
The brief hints of lolita charm bring in cool-type, yet the emphasis is sexy. A cute kind of sexy, like a little girl beginning to mature into her self-concept, which is perfect for Koharu at that point in the AiStars anime.
Sapphire Sinbad Coord, Emerald Sinbad Coord, Citrine Sinbad Coord
When I first saw this coord, I was like, “Eh.” After seeing and reviewing the previous two designs, this one isn’t grabbing me. But let’s be fair and give it a chance.
Sinbad, famous figure in the tales of legendary Queen Scheherazade. Famous male figure. With ‘pirate’ and ‘man’ in mind, the concept makes sense, yet it’s still feminine (traditionally – recall that I’m using these terms in context) for the female idols. Come to think of it, what do the male idols wear as brands? AiStars has males, though so far we haven’t delved into their idol career details.
The skirt echoes the Premium Rare in shape, but has this interesting pattern. I’d like it dressed up a little more, but the concept is based on a seafaring legend and I want to keep that in mind. Although the skirt is not as catchy, the sparkling puffed pants underneath will keep me entertained longer with its gradient enhanced by sparkles.
I prefer the Emerald and Citrine iterations. Sapphire is too similarly coloured within itself to appeal to me for wearing. One could argue that Citrine does the same, and I’d counter with the observation that Citrine’s gradients stand out more.
This design is simpler than the previous two and cleaner. Less flashy, which may be a good choice to help the brand be well-rounded. Not every performance will demand a dress that forces your attention. I think this coord is more suited to a secondary role in a show unless I was attempting to emulate the high seas. If so, bring on ALL the flashy.
I know I rambled somewhat about history and geography, but when it comes to cultural designs, I feel that it’s important to be aware of some context. ~_^