Friday, June 16, 2017

Mori Music Find: Jean Ritchie

Today's mori music find, Jean Ritchie, is a bit more vintage than usual. Jean Ritchie was an American-Appalachian folk singer who passed away in 2015, but her music is timeless. She sang all kinds of folk music, both American and English, and played many different instruments, such as the Appalachian mountain dulcimer which she is the most famous for, and the acoustic guitar. She also wrote some of her own works, such as the lovely song "Black Waters" which talks about about mountain top removal in the Appalachian mountains. I highly recommend her album "Mountain Hearth and Home" (which can be found on spotify to stream) that contains some of her best recordings.

Have you heard of Jean Ritchie? If so, how did you like her music? If not, I hope you enjoy!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Mori Adventures: Searching for a Ghost Town

Today I have a bit of a different post for you all. I wanted to share about a recent adventure that I had with my mom. As part of a completion of the 101 things in 1001 days challenge, I wanted to try and visit a ghost town. However, the nearest "wild west" type of ghost town is way too far for me to visit in one day, so I had to settle for the ghost town equivalent in my area.

Most ghost towns anywhere near my area are small towns of a few buildings that were abandoned in the early 1900s for various reasons. But, sadly, most of these towns have had all of their buildings leveled. So when I found out that there was supposedly a ghost town in my state that had a few buildings left, as well as being still officially on the map, I decided I had to visit. So, my mom and I took a road trip to see if we could find the town.

We drove around for about 3 hours, got lost a couple times (and had to backtrack to areas where we had any service to get GPS), but eventually we reached an area in the actual middle of nowhere where the town was supposed to be. Unfortunately it had been leveled at some point, which was disappointing, but we decided to get out and look at the sight where it had been. I'm glad we did, because we were actually able to find outlines of where the buildings had previously stood. And although the area was very overgrown with trees, we were also able to find bits of an elaborate 1920s fence, the remnants of the railroad that had once traveled through the town, and piles debris from where they had knocked down the buildings and left the rubble. There were bits of shingles, old pipes, and other things like that. It was a bit eerie, but also very interesting to see where an entire town had once stood.

The concrete in this picture was the outline of where a building once stood. You could even see some bits of sidewalk left in front of it.

These were the piles of rubble left over. In one pile there were even some bits of cloth and an old toy.

Even though there weren't any buildings left, it made for a fun road trip with some lovely scenery along the way, and it was a bit of a scavenger hunt. It was also great to spend some time with my mom. Besides, it's always fun to try new things, even if they don't work out quite how you planned.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Mori Music Find: Gabrielle Aplin

Today's Mori Music Find is Gabrielle Aplin. She is an English singer-songwriter who gained notoriety through her youtube covers, and later started to publish her own music. A friend of mine introduced me to her music a while back, and I love the soft, relaxing feel of her work. Also, her voice is quite unique, and lovely to listen to!

Have you heard of Gabrielle Aplin? If so, how did you like her music? If not, I hope you enjoy!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Mori Kei and Minimalism: A Moderate Approach to Fashion

Mori kei fashion and minimalism seems like exact opposites, I know. I've had so many people ask me how you can possibly combine the two. In fact, there are some who don't think it's possible. However, I believe that it is possible, and I'd like to propose to you just how to do it. I'm splitting this up into two options, which I'm calling the moderate approach, and the capsule wardrobe approach. This post will focus on the moderate approach, and in another post I'll take a look at the caspule wardrobe option.

So, first, let's tackle the elephant in the room. Mori kei fashion takes a lot of clothing to pull off. It's a lot of layers, and a lot of clothing to own. Even if you wear a casual mori kei style all of the time, you will still have more clothing than the average person. So no matter what you end up deciding to do with your clothing, as someone who wears mori kei you will always have more clothes than the average minimalist. There's no way around it. So please, don't feel like you can't call yourself a minimalist because you have more clothes than other people think you should have. If you love mori kei, and you love your clothing, then you shouldn't feel bad about that. But, despite the fact that you will likely always have more clothing than others, I still believe you can have a more minimal amount of clothing where you only have pieces you wear often and truly love. That's why I'm calling this the moderate approach. It's by no means an extreme option where you cull over 3/4 of your clothing, but it is a way to trim down what you own by deciding what is really worth keeping.

With this approach it isn't about having as little as possible, like with the capsule wardrobe approach (which I will talk about later), but rather to have only what you use and love. To make this possible, I have come up with a few points to guide you when deciding what clothes you should keep, and what kinds of things you should get rid of.

First, don't keep extra pieces. If you have two beige sweaters that serve almost the exact same purpose, get rid of one and keep the one you like the most.

Second, don't keep items that you can only work into a few coords. If the piece isn't versatile, and you can only wear it with that one specific dress, then get rid of it.

Third, keep a color scheme for your closet. By having a set color scheme, you're less likely to buy that one pink sweater that doesn't match anything you wear, and ends up sitting in the back of your closet and never worn.

Fourth, know what you do and don't wear often, and know which pieces you know how to layer with. If you have a dress that you feel is an awkward length, or a skirt that doesn't layer well with anything, or a shirt that looks good on a hanger but makes you feel uncomfortable, then get rid of these things. Keep only the clothes you are able to layer with and feel good wearing, and get rid of the rest.

Fifth, remember that mori coords don't really need 100 layers, and that you can function with less. It's very possible to create mori coords with 4 or 5 layers, all of which can be re-used for more than one coordinate. You can use the same underskirt, or sweater, or dress, for dozens of different coords. And you'll often find that most of your base pieces are useful for the majority of your outfits. You can check my pinterest board for some inspiration for mori coords that work with less pieces, and pieces that are more versatile. But, just quickly, here are a few coord ideas that work with less pieces, and versatile options.

This coord is for the winter season, and still manages to have only 5 layers. All of the pieces are neutral, and could be used again in other coordinates easily.

This coord use 4 pieces only, and again is all neutral items that could easily be used again.

There are 4 visible layers again here, but still a lovely mori silhouette.

This coord manages to use only 3 layers, and still look perfectly mori!

This coord uses a piece with lots of detail, in order to create a mori coord with only 2 layers. Definitely a more extreme example, and harder to achieve. But by no means impossible.


This coord has only 4 layers, but uses accessories to create a more complete look.

I hope that I've given you some ideas on how to have a somewhat minimalist approach to mori kei fashion. I'll admit that this is an area I still struggle with connecting to minimalism myself sometimes, and I'm still learning. Let me know if you have any tips or advice related to how you've connected mori kei and minimalism in your life! I'd love to hear your ideas. Until next time, my deers!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Instagram Spotlight: _cinnamontea_ + daughter_of_the_woods

I have another instagram spotlight for you all today! This time I'm looking at _cinamontea_ and daughter_of_the_woods.

To start off, I'd like to introduce my smaller user first, _cinnomontea_. Along with having a lovely instagram feed, she is also a lovely person overall. Her posts are a mix of pastel and mori kei inspired photos, and have a dreamy, soft, ethereal feel. I've followed her instagram for quite a while, and it never fails to inspire!

A post shared by 🌸 Laurie 🌸 (@_cinnamontea_) on

A post shared by 🌸 Laurie 🌸 (@_cinnamontea_) on

A post shared by 🌸 Laurie 🌸 (@_cinnamontea_) on

A post shared by 🌸 Laurie 🌸 (@_cinnamontea_) on

The next user I'd like to showcase is a larger user, daughter_of_the_woods. Her feed is full of beautiful nature photos and quaint rustic cottages. In addition to having a instagram, she also has a blog you can follow.

A post shared by ↟ M i c h e l l e ↟ (@daughter_of_the_woods) on

A post shared by ↟ M i c h e l l e ↟ (@daughter_of_the_woods) on

I hope you enjoyed looking at the pictures I've shared here from these lovely accounts, and I hope you've found someone new here to fill your feed with lovely mori things!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Mori Music Find: Misc

Hello everyone! Today's music post is a bit different. Instead of focusing on one artist, I chose to include a handful of songs from various places that all have a mori sound to them. I hope you enjoy all of them, and find a few new songs that you haven't heard of before. Happy listening!

Down Today by Jonathan Coulton (Live Version)

Follow On (Cover) by Broken Lens Productions

Animal Crossing, Rainy Day (Harp Cover) by Samantha Ballard

Rainbow Love Letter 虹色ラブレター by Isayama Mutsumi 諫山実生

Take Us to Lithuania by YeYe (Live)

La Jument de Michao by Nolwenn Leroy

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Mori Kei and Minimalism: Decorating Your Home

Hello everyone! I know I posted the intro post for this series quite a while ago, but life seemed to keep getting in the way and I was unable to get this post finished to my liking until now. Anyways, better late then never. Right? ^^;

For this first post in my Mori Kei and Minimalism series, I want to talk about decorating your home. The standard idea for a minimalist's home is all about living with only what you need. Don't buy unnecessary stuff, don't hold on to clutter, etc. This can be a hard concept for mori folk. I see a lot of mori folk who have large collections of nature things, or lace-y things, and or other things of that nature. The general idea that one thinks of when referring to a "mori home" is one that is filled to the brim with old, homey things, like an old grandmother's cottage, or an eclectic relative's apartment. And while that does fit the mori aesthetic, it is pretty much the opposite of what minimalism is. It's all about extra, instead of less.

In addition to this cluttered idea of a "mori home" being opposite of minimalism, people also have a lot of ideas about what the decor of a minimalist home should look like. The typical minimalist home, in most people's minds, probably looks something like this:

Generally, people think of blacks, whites, and grays. Large areas with no decorations are common, and overall it tends to be a more industrial look. So, if this is the "standard minimalist home", does that mean that a mori folk can't have a minimalist home and a mori home at the same time? I don't think so. Because although, typically, a minimalist's home looks one way, it doesn't mean that it always has to be these set colors and styles.

It is important to note that a minimalist's home should reflect their personality. If your personality is attracted to the natural and rustic look, or quaint cottage look, or anything else, your home can still reflect that while being minimalistic. There's a lovely quote from becomingminimalist about this idea, which states, "find a style of minimalism that works for you... that is not cumbersome, but freeing based on your values, desires, passions". So with this definition in mind, I think it is very possible to have a mori kei minimalist home.

For instance, take these pictures here:

All of these spaces are clean and comfortable, while still portraying a natural feel. They are both mori and minimalist. It's all about purposefully picking pieces for your home that have natural materials, and the homey feel that you are looking for. As long as your space is not cluttered with things, then it can be considered minimalist, no matter what kinds of things are left in the end.

So if you're looking to create a minimalist home, but still love the mori aesthetic, it's entirely possible. Hopefully these pictures here will give you some inspiration on your minimalist journey. And if you need a little help, this guide by Miss Minimalist may be able to help you out a little. 

My next mori minimalist post will be talking about a harder topic to tackle; clothing. So it could be a little while before I get it finished. But until then, thanks for reading, and good luck minimalizing!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Recent Outfits

Here's another quick recap of my recent outfits posted on my instagram. As always, almost everything is thrifted. I hope you enjoy!

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

A post shared by Kathryn Elaine (@forestsandtea) on

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Mori Music Find: tricolor

Today's Mori Music Find is tricolor. This group is a bit different from the groups I normally share, but I think that you will all enjoy them just the same. They are an instrumental group based in Japan, mostly focusing on the fiddle, guitar, and occasionally accordion type instruments. They play original works along with the occasional traditional jig or reel from England, America, and other European countries. If you like Irish music or fiddling, then this group will probably be to your liking. I find their music to be fresh and happy, and it never fails to bring a smile to my face and get me tapping my toes!

Have you ever heard of tricolor? If so, how did you like them? If not, I hope you enjoy! Happy listening!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Instagram spotlight: puellasilva + quietblessings

Hello my deers! It has been a while since I last posted any instagram related posts, but today I'd like to resume that series by highlighting two more instagram users. As usual, I will focus on one smaller instagram user, and one with a larger following.

Today, I'd like to start out with a smaller instagram user named puellasilva. They have a lovely feed that consists of many pictures with the mori aesthetic, from nature to home, as well as occasional outfit posts, which are all quite lovely. I've been following them for quite some time, and I'm always pleased to see their posts on my feed!

A post shared by Homa ❀ (@puellasilva) on

A post shared by Homa ❀ (@puellasilva) on

A post shared by Homa ❀ (@puellasilva) on

A post shared by Homa ❀ (@puellasilva) on

The next instagram user I would like to feature is quietblessings. Her feed is not really mori per say, but rather has many mori-esque themes. Mainly, her feed consists of pictures of her home, nature, and of course her lovely cat. Every one of her pictures always feels so relaxing and cozy, and I always enjoy scrolling through her feed.

A post shared by Ana (@quietblessings) on

A post shared by Ana (@quietblessings) on

A post shared by Ana (@quietblessings) on

A post shared by Ana (@quietblessings) on

A post shared by Ana (@quietblessings) on

I hope you enjoyed looking at the pictures I've shared here from these lovely accounts, and I hope you've found someone new here to fill your feed with lovely mori things!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Mori Room Tour

Hello my deers! I just posted a new video on my youtube channel giving a tour of my mori inspired room. Check it out if you'd like! Have a lovely day!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Big Dipper Wax Works Candle Review (Not Sponsored)

I recently starting diving into the world of Zero Waste living, so I've been spending some time looking up different alternative to things I already use. So when I finally used up all of my old candles that were made up of synthetic materials, it only made sense to look for a new, natural, zero-waste alternative. That's where this post comes into play. I thought it might be fun to share the purchase I made with you all, and give you my honest opinion. This is in no way sponsored, and I bought everything here one my own. But without further ado, here is my experience with the company Big Dipper Wax Works

Firstly, I should note that Big Dipper Wax Works uses all natural beeswax to make their candles, natural cotton for their wicks, and essential oils to create the fragrances in them. Normally, the candles they sell are sold either without any container, a glass container (which is recyclable!), or tins. I chose to purchase the tins myself. Although they are not as easily recycled, they are made up of mainly recycled materials, and can be reused by buying new votive sized candles to replace the old candles with when you are done. So that's pretty cool. I chose to purchase tins because they were cheaper, and I thought they would be bigger than they are, but I'll get into that more later on.

I purchased two tins, scented Harmony (lavender) and Enlightenment (Bergamot and Mint). They came packed in a small box filled with cardboard shavings. Both the box and the shavings were able to be recycled. It also came with a small informational card (which can also be recycled), a small package of matches made out of natural materials, and two honey sticks. The honey sticks were in plastic, which was a bit disappointing, but everything else was fine and I was able to dispose of it properly.

The tins themselves were without any packaging, which was amazing. But they were a lot smaller than I was expecting. You can see by the picture below how small they actually are in comparison to my hand. However, candles do last me a decent amount of time, so it doesn't bother me too much. I just wish it would have been a little more clearly stated how small they are. It does give the ounces on their website, but I guess I missed that the first time. Whoops!

The candles themselves smell great. If you like essential oil smells, you'll love these. They do have a slight hint of a honey smell when you sniff then, but once they're burning that goes away for the most part. They're also not overwhelmingly scented, and it's a soft smell that is very relaxing.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with these. As far as being natural goes, these candles are perfect. If you're looking to go zero-waste though, I would suggest getting some of the candles that are in glass, or package-less. But as a whole, I am pleased with my purchase, and I will definitely be considering purchasing a candle from them again in the future.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

I can't wear mori kei because...

If you've been involved in mori kei for any period of time, you've probably met people who have excuses why they can't wear mori. You may even be that person. The one who has every excuse under the sun why mori is a nice thing, but they can't wear it. It's honestly one of the things that frustrates me the most. This is because I am of the opinion that anyone can wear mori. Anyone at all! And so today, I want to address some of those reasons people give, and debunk them.

So without further ado, here are all the reasons why you can wear mori:

I'm too tall...
I'm too short...

Mori girls come in all heights! From short little forest fairies, to tall ethereal elven figures. Both are beautiful, and both look great in the fashion! Besides, you can wear any style and look great, as long as you wear it with confidence!

I'm not asian...

The majority of those who wear mori nowadays are not Asian, so you've come across mori at just the right time. Browse the Mori girl/mori kei tag on instagram, and you'll see a lot of non-asian mori folk. Or just look at me. I am definitely not asian, and I wear mori. So boom. Debunked. *air horns play in the distance*

I'm not light skinned...

Although the majority of mori folk today seem to be asian/white, that doesn't mean all are. There are mori with all colors of skin, and they all look beautiful. A few good examples are miagers or c4tbus.

I don't want to wear skirts...

Check out my pinterest board for mori boy fashion or mori girl fashion that centers around pants. Problem solved!

I like bright colors...

No problem! You could wear a mori-inspired style if you like super bright colors, or you could look through the different variations of mori to find one that works better with the kinds of colors you prefer.

I still want to wear other styles...

Most mori folk aren't full time mori. A lot of them dabble in other fashions, such as lolita or dolly kei. You can still call yourself mori and wear other styles as well!

It's too "out there" and people will think I'm weird...

Yeah, they probably will. But let me tell you a little story. I live in a smaller town, where the majority of people wear leggings and sweatshirts, and where fashion is almost non-existent, and I wear mori almost full time. Sure, I get some weird looks, and yes I get asked if I'm from some weird religious sect, but the majority of people tell me they love my style and that they admire my confidence to wear it. I can guarantee that the positive reactions you will receive from wearing mori, coupled with loving the clothing you are in, will outweigh the few weird stares and odd remarks you will receive.

I'm to heavy...

There are plus sized mori too. And they look great. So sorry, this one isn't an excuse either! (Also, more plus sized mori folk need to post their coords. You guys are the cutest, and I need more of you in my life. Just sayin'.)

I have big boobs/curves/other "un-asian" features...

See all above answers...

So I hope by now I have made my point. There are a ton of other things that people will bring up as to why they can't wear mori, but these are some of the ones I see most often. Just know that, no matter what excuse you are thinking, the answer is always the same. You can wear mori! Anyone, literally anyone, can wear mori! No matter what you look like, what colors you prefer, or anything else. All it takes is for you to love the fashion, throw together some pieces, and go out into the world confidently and rock the clothes you love. So go out there and be the best forest folk you can be!