Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Side-Tracker I don't know if anyone reading this has seen "Inception" yet...but my god. That is a brain twister right there. Not gonna lie, I absolute adored the movie, but jeez. For a good while through it, I was so lost it wasn't even funny.

Seriously fantastic show though--good acting, good directing, good graphics, good overall--and I really enjoyed it! After it was all said and done for you're left with a good sense of understanding...and endless 'what-ifs'. And I love that. Nothin' like something I can be continuously dreamin' about. ;3

Anyways, a bit back to the anime realm, I've gotten really into Tegami Bachi:  Letter Bee. Its a pretty kick-ass series; bit of a heart-wrencher though. The artwork is clean and gorgeous, and the characters are loveable to a 't'...while annoying at times. I like that in a show. ;3
The outfits are droolworthy too. I've been wanting to make a Letter Bee outfit since I started watching it. The details that they show make it a dream come true for a perfectionist-seamstress. Details = <3

Look and drool!
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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Bit of Irrelevancy...

A few days ago I introduced my grandmother to the Steampunk genre when I was explaining to her my newest obsession with the Clockwork Quartet(seriously awesome steampunk band--go listen to them!), and ended up showing her a few images of the basic style as well as the music itself. She apparently took a bigger shine to it than I thought, or maybe she just thinks that my kid-in-a-candy-store stares at it are better than my drooling stares at anime/manga, and has actually been trying to get me to send her some links to clothing stores, as well as commenting on making some!

This kinda inspired me to go on a mini-Steampunk hunt, and well...I figured I'd share some of my favorite places to look and oggle. ;3

This is a neat place with a fair amount of clothing and whatnots. Their craftsmanship is very nice, and although it is a bit difficult to give a good quality scale without handling the material, it looks pretty good.

There isn't a lot of Steampunk things here, but their small accessories--a monocle, a ring, etc.--are intricate. Of course...I may be a liiittle bit corrupted by all the shiny weapons they have...

Secret time! I love going here and digging through the accessories to get inspiration for my doodles. They've got some nice stuff, and a friend and I almost put our limited convention-funds into this place for a neat get-up for a masquerade. ;3 Unfortunately our limited funds proved to be too limited and too precious. xD;

Not gonna lie, this shop is hosted by Etsy...and I can't stand the layout of Etsy. But, its well worth the annoyance to look at the gorgeous work here. Its all accessories--jewelry, goggles, cufflinks, you name it--and its all gorgeous. If you're gonna go anywhere for some what-nots, go here.

This is probably my favorite place. Its informative, its irresistable, and it has a lot of things hiding in it. Now, this isn't really a "shop" as in "buying things", so if you're hunting that next overcoat, I wouldn't look here as a first choice. But if you want to learn about the genre, see opinions about the genre, look at things that are drool-worthy of the genre, and other things...I'd go here. Endless amounts of information, in my opinion. 

My favorite Steampunk band. They have only two songs currently available, but both are addicting to listen to and tell interesting stories. They've got some amazing costumes as well, and their gallery is always fun to look through.

A more mainstream Steampunk band, these guys are really awesome. Their instruments are even hard to look away from, and their music is very unique. I personally recommend "Airship Pirates". ;3

So there you have it! A few of my favorite Steamy places...with only a little bit of diverting from the cosplay genre. ;D 
Shh. Don't tell anyone.

Monday, July 26, 2010

StalkMode: Gokudera

Hayate Gokudera.
The Tenth Vongola Boss's "Right Hand Man"
Volatile bomb-thrower / self-proclaimed genius.
Tendency to yell / alien-obsessor

This character is probably one of my favorites of all time. He's absolutely fantastic, what with the bomb-throwing, and the temper tantrums, and the angry faces...and the stubborn loyalty modes. And, like a good chunk of the characters in Katekyo Hitman Reborn!, his entire outfit doesn't have to be made by hand and patterns so modified that you've forgotten what normal sleeves look like.
Needless to say, I'm excited about working on this one. At the same time, however, I'm extremely sheepish about it as well. Its a fairly popular cosplay, and there have been some amazing Gokuderas. But I'm not here to lead the way to awesome-ness, nor am I here to follow the foot-steps of'm still determined to make it, simply because I love the character so much!

My biggest issue with Gokudera--aside from the accessories which I'm just not gonna think about for now--is the various versions of Goku. 

There's this casual version: 

 there's school version: 

 there's bandaged: 

there's future: 

there's this monstrosity:  

...he's like a line of Barbie dolls...only sexy.

I'm still pretty stuck on which one to choose...I don't have the money or the time to dive-bomb all of them, after all... xD;
Pretty sure Adult!Gokudera's a no-no though. Not only am I not nearly as tall as an adult, male Italian...I couldn't manage that "mature" expression...even if its Goku's version of mature. xD; 

We shall see! -fistpump-


So I'm not gonna lie, this bloggin' thing isn't my first attempt at getting into cosplay. ;3 I've tried before, and with help from my amazingly-talented grandmother, gotten some impressive pieces out of those attempts. However, there was something missing everytime, and no cosplay was finished 100%. Hopefully, this place will help me fill in that missing piece--a group.

I'm not expecting to find a whole bunch of people just by posting on something like this. That's a little ridiculous, and to be honest, if I wanted to do that, I would head on over to or one of the sites like it. Nope, this is for me, and maybe for the few people I've met along the way who have the same love and respect for cosplay that I have....who may or may not poke their heads in once in a while.

So let's go into a short flashback--one without pictures so use your imagination for the pieces themselves...

The first cosplay attempt was a modified Urahara from Bleach.

The only things to survive that attempt were the hat--bought by a parental and still a favorite accessory--a green shirt made from a karate outfit pattern...that actually fits really well. I just need to figure out how to get the thing to /not/ open at random, and the overcoat. The coat itself I'm very pleased with even now, although it does need a bit of stitching to keep the pattern on. Its basic design is similar to his actual outfit, although its considerably longer with different sleeves.
It billows out fabulously as well, and is great for wandering around in when its cold. The biggest difference is the insignia on the back--the flaming skull with a basic cutlass and Kisuke's zanpakuto crossing.
The whole design for that outfit needs a bit of modification. I think one day I'll get it right...but for a few years ago...I think it was a nice attempt. xD Failed, but nice.

The second attempt was Princess Snow from MAR.

This one was kinda last minute, a panicked--oh shat I didn't even think about anything--result about a month before the con itself. Surprisingly, however, it came out incredibly well.
The shorts are actually a pair of white denim shorts purchased from an Academy store that we dyed maroon. They fit well, look good, and look pretty damn close to the actual things(in an unrelated side story we stole and tie-dyed one of my grandfather's undershirts in this adventure and put two rubberbands on the chest so it looks a bit like breasts....).
The undershirt--not the tank top but the dark pink zip-up--was totally cheated on. Its made of a thin material that looks like the right stuff, but doesn't feel like it. Its lined with white on the collar so it looks like it is double-layered, but it ain't. It also is only a half shirt, so it comes to just below my ribcage, and sleeveless. When worn beneath the overcoat, however, you can't even tell. Its great...and so much cooler than it would have been.
The jacket itself is my pride and joy. My grandmother did a lot of the most advanced work--she has a bad habit of taking over if I ever ask how to do something--but I'm pleased to say that I did a hefty chunk of it myself. We didn't cut any corners with this one, and it is fantastic. The outside fabric is almost identical in shade to the color, and also of a perfect material. It is lined with a simple white on the inside, with as close to the right plaid as we could find for the sleeves and sailor-collar. It is tailored to fit my body, and looks really accurate at first glance. My favorite part? You can actually zip the sleeve off. That's right. They. Zip. Off.
Unfortunately, that's about all that got finished. I made some shoes for this one, but they weren't sturdy enough. I need to figure out how to do that better. >>;
The legwarmers didn't get finished either, namely because my puppy decided to gnaw on half of my fabric...and my they were hot-glued at the last minute and torn up the moment the con was over. xD Violently, I might add.
As for the ARMS...well, I actually had a pretty accurate set going...but something went wrong when we baked the polymer clay. Unlike the FMA chess-pieces I'd made previously kinda as an experiment, we made them in a different oven...and they didn't bake right. I'm assuming its because my crappy, from-the-dark-ages oven has nothing on the fantastic one my grandmother has. The clay was incredibly weird--varying from brittle to hard to strangely squishy--and no matter how many times I retried, nothing yeah. They all died.
I do hope to revive this one soon though; its definitely my favorite so far.

So there you have it--a less-than-brief "cosplay from the grave" history. ;P

Get the Ball Rolling Already! we are!

I've decided that the best way for me--an easily distracted student who forgets anything and everything that isn't written down--to keep track of my hits and misses in this "new" world, is to keep up a blog. Nothing too advanced, of course, just a post everytime I come up with something new and a post whenever an idea hits me. This will be my personal place for cosplays, with occasional non-cosplay things--because I can't resist, I tell ya!--slipping in on occasion.

It'll be a fun journey, and anyone who wants to come along is welcome. ;D So here we go!