Friday, April 15, 2022

A Little Bit of Fluff ~Part 1: My Princess~


My name’s Sara.

I’m a sweet lolita and I work part time at the Ang☆lic Pr☆tty store in ☆☆☆☆ City.

I’ve been a member of the ☆☆☆☆ branch staff for about two years and usually work four days a week, but recently I’ve been thinking about quitting. For the past two months or so, I’ve been feeling the sparkle of the fashion being worn away from my soul, like someone rubbing the glitter off of M☆lky Pl☆net with a scouring pad. The colours of our releases seem duller each week, and the giggle of joy I used to feel at trying on a new dress has turned into a sigh of obligation.

It’s hard to put into words why I’ve been feeling this way these last few months. Most people would think I’m the luckiest lolita in the world, getting to work at my favourite brand. Plus, our customers are really nice, and even the tourists we sometimes see are polite. The problem is deeper than that. There’s a lot of pressure recently from above to push sales numbers higher and higher. No matter how busy we are, we never seem to meet the ever-increasing sales goals.

We’re doing our best, though. Our customer service is on point. Polite. Professional. Perfect, even. When I see our latest customers to the door and thank them for their visit, they always wave. My co-worker and I bow. They depart. It’s an interaction that happens dozens of times a day, and one I can perform blindfolded. But one day, as I hung the dresses our customers decided not to buy back on the rack, I found myself thinking about that morning’s staff meeting: We can’t let B☆by win.

Our shop manager thinks that the nearby B☆by, the St☆rs Sh☆ne Br☆ght is stealing our fans away.

Is that where the sparkle I used to feel for lolita has gone, too? Is B☆by stealing my shine?

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Kumya Sizes and You - Finding the Perfect Companion

After getting a Usakumya Rucksack Mini (40-ish cm), when I thought I bought a Usakumya Rucksack (50-ish cm), I decided that I wanted to try and collect all the different sizes of Usakumya bags. While working on this endeavour, I realised how often sellers would list the Rucksack Minis as "Rucksack", and the Rucksacks as "big(/large) Rucksack" (70-ish cm). Pair that with the fact that there are 2 sizes of purses, both of which are named “mini purse”, and the confusion is complete.

I’ve now managed to collect all sizes of Usakumya full body bags (there are also a few face/head bags) and I wanted to share the knowledge I’ve gained in the process! Knowing what differentiates all the different types of Kumya and how they look will help you make sure the second hand listing you’re looking at actually has the one you want. Also, it will help you know if a listing is wildly overpriced or not, making it much easier to bring home the Kumya of your dreams.

So first of all, how many different sizes are there? When I ended up with a Rucksack Mini, rather than a Rucksack, I went looking and came across a very handy chart compiled by Azuki, in her post So You Want to Buy a Kumya

I also checked Lolibrary and added one size that is Kuma Kumya only, so this chart now should have more or less all the different sizes of full body Usakumya/Kuma Kumya bags:


Approx length (cm)

Approx retail price inc tax (JPY)

Little Rucksack (Usakumya only)



Mini Purse (Usakumya only)



Mini Mini/Bag Mini-Mini (Kuma Kumya only)


4000 - 4300

Rucksack Mini-Mini


4400 - 5500

Smart Phone Pouch



Purse/Mini Purse

25 - 27




10500 - 26200

Rucksack Mini

40 - 42

9500 - 14100


50 - 56

15500 - 16300

Big Rucksack


30300 - 36300

The retail price paired with the approximate size can be a good starting point to make sure you’re getting the correct size, and not overpaying. However, be aware that some of these sizes have only been released once, many years ago. The most notable one being the Usakumya Rucksack Mini, which was (as far as I know) only released once, in 2007. For some sizes, you will find that Usakumya is much more common than Kuma Kumya, and vice versa.

The most common mislabeling of sizes that I see, is people selling a Rucksack and calling it a “Big (or Large) Rucksack”. This in part may stem from the fact that before the Big Rucksack was released in 2017, the Rucksack would often be labelled “large” by the Western lolita community (see these two Livejournal posts). I also have a pet theory that it might in part stem from the fact that the Big Rucksack is ridiculously huge and that people who don’t own one or haven't seen one in person have difficulty understanding just how big it actually is.

This picture compares the Big Rucksack (at the back), Rucksack (second from the back), Rucksack Mini (third from the back), Pochette (left front) and Rucksack Mini-Mini (right front).

And this picture has the Big Rucksack on the left, and the Rucksack on the right:

As you can see, the Big Rucksack is substantially bigger than the Rucksack!

So! Outside of the size, what differentiates all these Kumya bags? Below is a list of the defining characteristics of all of them:
  • Little Usakumya Rucksack
    • Can't actually be used as a bag; the zipper is just embroidery
    • Posable arms and legs
    • "Smooth fur"
  • Usakumya-chan Mini Purse
    • Coin purse opening at the back
    • "Smooth" fur
  • Kuma Kumya Bag Mini-Mini/Kuma Kumya Mini
    • 1 strap that fastens in 2 points on the head
  • Rucksack Mini-Mini
    • 2 detachable rucksack straps that fasten at the neck and hips
  • Smart Phone Pouch
    • Vinyl window at the back
    • 1 detachable purse chain that fastens in 2 points on the head
  • Purse/Mini Purse
    • Coin purse opening in the back of the head
    • 1 detachable purse chain that fastens in 2 points on coin purse metal frame
  • Pochette
    • Zipper in the head, underneath the hood
  • Rucksack Mini
    • 2 detachable rucksack straps that fasten either at the neck and hips, or in 2 points on top of the head
  • Rucksack
    • Usakumya version has stuffed ears
    • For Kuma Kumya, you'll have to look for the absence of the hallmarks of the other sizes
  • Big Rucksack
    • Has a BTSSB heart logo charm on the neck bow
For more details on the characteristics of these bags, consult this handy table!

A couple of notes for the table:
  • * I don’t own any of these, hence the “probably”/”probably not”, based on lolibrary and the seemingly similar Rucksack Mini-Mini.
  • ** Pochettes are sometimes released with special outfits, or a pochette outfit is released on its own. I’ll cover these more extensively in another article
The three largest rucksack sizes are the ones that are most often confused for each other, so in the table I’ve marked the main characteristic of each one in italics. These three points are the ones that have helped me most of all in my journey to collect all sizes of full body Usakumya bags, so they’re worth repeating on their own:
  • Rucksack Mini has 5 points where the straps can fasten, as opposed to 2 for the Rucksack and Big Rucksack
  • Rucksack Usakumya version has stuffed ears.
    • Kuma Kumya has the same ears all over, so you’ll have to check for the absence of the hallmarks of the Rucksack Mini and Big Rucksack if Kuma Kumya Rucksack is what you’re looking for
  • Big Rucksack has a BTSSB heart logo charm on the neckbow
    • Because of the size of the Big Rucksacks, the charm can sometimes be hidden by their chin or their neck bow
    • The Big Kuma Kumya Rucksack has also (as far as I know) only been released twice. A Sapporo limited white one, and a regular release that only came with the classic brown ribbon. So if anyone is claiming to have a Big Kuma Kumya Rucksack, but the ribbon is a different type, they’ve switched the ribbon or they’re confused about what size they actually have.

And there you have it! The main differences between all the Kumya full body bags! Although before we go, I’d like to remind you that Usakumya took a while to find their final form. There are a few versions out there that differ from the “modern” version that is most common. There is the Usakumya ancestor, that was released in 2001 and 2002, of which there are patterns you can use to make your own (GLB 3 and GLB Extra 1)!

And in 2005, Baby released the Usakumya Rucksack and the Boy Usakumya Backpack, which are much closer to how Usakumya looks today. Although It would still take a couple of more years for Usakumya to get the “modern look”; that happened with the release of Embroidery Usakumya Rucksack in 2007. Older versions of the “modern” Usakumya will also differ in that they had embroidered noses for a while, and shorter fur than the more recent ones do.

Newer Usakumya, with a felt nose, on the left. Older Usakumya, with a embroidered nose, on the right.

Newer Usakumya with longer fur on the left. Older Usakumya with shorter fur on the right.

Kuma Kumya did not appear until 2013, but when they did, they already had the look we all know and love. In later years, Usakumya and Kuma Kumya have had a few more members added to the Kumya family, namely Neko Kumya and Panda Kumya. And in 2020, Alice and the Pirates got their own mascot, Captain Chris.

Thank you for reading, and please look forward to my next article, where I’ll go more in depth on the different special Kumya editions, Kumya clothing and the “Sweet Mates”: Sophie, Judy and Lillian (and Michelle).

~Green Tea