Clothing for BJD is similar to clothing for humans, in that there are many different styles that are used to express a certain personality, and that there are a large number of sources and means with which to accumulate a wardrobe.
When purchasing clothing, there are a number of things doll owners must consider. Style, size, quality, availability, and price are all important thing to consider when searching for clothing. While some doll owners are comfortable owning hand-sewn, secondhand, poor-quality clothes, others will accept nothing less than company- or artisan-made clothes that are custom made and one of a kind.
Prices for BJD clothes are often comparable to the prices for human-scale clothes; despite the much lower material cost, the tools and skills needed to create a detailed, miniature piece balance it out. Clothing availability runs from standard (always available for order), limited (to a time period, location/event, or quantity), or one of a kind (aka OOAK).
Styles of Clothing
- Casual - an 'every day' style of clothing; t-shirts, jeans, skirts, etc
- Trendy - fashion matching what is considered trendy in the modern industry; suits, cocktail dresses, high fashion
- Elegant/Romantic - feminine, flowing, and elegant items that often have a historic touch; lace dresses, delicate fabrics and floral notions
- Historical - based off of actual fashion from human history; uniforms, formal wear, cultural wear
- Bohemian - a natural, earthly style with loose articles and natural tones; halter tops, long skirts, headbands
- Gothic - moody, dark clothes, generally black, generally accompanied by a very stylized faceup; corsets, striped stockings, dresses
- Punk - generally a 'corroded' casual style, with items bearing custom alterations such as rips, patches, references to pop culture; animal-print items, mini skirts, leather jackets
- Fantasy - clothing that consists of elements not common to regular wear, often inspired by artwork, video games, or literature; for example - "Lord Of The Rings"-style clothes, cloaks, loose flowy robes
- Asian/Oriental - traditional or influenced by traditional Asian clothing; Japanese kimono, Korean hanbok, Chinese cheongsam
- Lolita - a broad genre of clothing that generally includes lace and frills to create a childlike appearance, with many variations (Gothic Lolita, Hime, Kodona, etc); dresses, petticoats, bloomers
- Steampunk - referring to a style derived from fiction that relies heavily on Victorian style, with influences from technology (gears, watches, cogs, etc); spats, waistcoats, top hats
- Emo - a style that is common amongst teenagers, consisting of clothing that is either black and white, very colorful, or a combination of both, accessorized with bright, gaudy hair-bows/socks/etc; leg/arm-warmers, tight clothing, excessive belts/zippers
- Cosplay/Costume - clothing that is copied from characters in anime, video games, manga/comics, etc; in the case of costumes in general, it's simply dressing as someone or something else.
- Wa-Lolita - the same as lolita, but has an Asian (usually Japanese) influence in the style
- Sporty - clothing that are geared towards active or fitness wear; can also be actual sports uniforms
- Uniform - styles based on actual uniforms, whether they are school, sports, job or military related
- Furry - outfits that are made to look like some kind of animal
- Seasonal - clothes that are styled by holidays or seasons (swimsuit-summer, coats-winter, Santa Suit-Christmas, etc.)
- Sexy/Sensual - outfits that are more on the risque side. This can include revealing, form fitted or styles that emphasizes the body's more appealing aspects
- Mori Kei (Forest Style) - looks natural, earthy, and it is not body conscious style. It uses layers of soft, loosely fitting layers of garments such as floaty dresses, skirts and cardigans. It places an emphasis on the layering of natural fabrics (cotton, linen, wool) and hand-made or vintage accessories with a nature theme, and in earthy tones to obtain a soft and slightly billowy silhouette.
You can use anything without color, however users recommend dish soap or shampoo instead of clothing detergent, as detergent tends to make air-dried clothes less soft. Pick any normal one (without added lotion, oils, ect) with white color and the smell you like. If you would prefer using usual washing detergent, it is advised to use a fabric softener afterwards.
It is not advised to machine wash doll clothes as they can be very delicate and not meant to resist heavy wear. Instead hand-washing is ideal. Fill a clean container or bowl, large enough for the clothing, with warm water. Add detergent and mix well. If the clothes have tiny details or prints on them, turn them inside out. Submerge the clothes, you can do many pieces at once for an average clean, or wash single pieces for a more careful deep clean. Gently squeeze submerged clothes to work the soap into the fabric. Rinse until no soap remains in warm water.
You should not machine dry doll clothes because the fabric is unlikely to be preshrunk and will shrink. If your washer has a spin only cycle, (no soap or water), this is one way of draining excess water from the clothes. Place in a lingerie bag and choose the slowest setting. If you do not have this access, gently squeeze the excess water from the clothing. You can hang dry, or flat dry on paper towels after removing the excess water. Let them air dry, do not try to use any heat such as a blow dryer as this can cause shrinking.