Posted in Questions, woes, and concerns

Cosplays to look forward to…

I will be uploading blogs for the following works SOON! Thank you for waiting patiently. I have been on vacation!

  • Poison Ivy – cloak, shirt ideas, etc.
  • Shiratorizawa Academy uniform from Haikyuu
  • Aobajosai High uniform from Haikyuu
  • Karasuno GIRLS uniform from Haikyuu
  • Fukurodani Academy uniform from Haikyuu
  • Date Tech High uniform from Haikyuu
  • Nekoma High uniform from Haikyuu
  • Queen Amidala – skirt/dress illusion, cloak
  • Sylveon Cosplay Construct from Pokemon

I am also taking cosplay commissions at this time! Message me if you are interested!

Posted in Queen Amidala Cosplay, Uncategorized

Queen Amidala, Stage I: the headpiece

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In order to make it you will need the following:

  • Styrofoam Ball
  • Knife
  • Paint brush – any size
  • Red acrylic paint
  • Gold puff paint
  • Red and gold sticker jewels
  • Hair clip
  • Hot glue

Step One: Cut the Styrofoam ball in half. I found this more difficult than I assumed it would be and it took a lot more cutting than I thought it would. If you have something high powered that can cut it (such as a chainsaw), then you will save some time. I do not have one so I suffered through cutting it with a knife. Prepare yourself and BE CAREFUL!

Step Two: Paint each respective half with the red acrylic paint. You will need two coats. I also found that painting in a circular motion helped because of all of the bumps and cracks in the Styrofoam. Wait for it to dry. Luckily, acrylic paint dries quickly.

Step Four: Slowly squeeze the gold puff paint out in random lines across the headpiece. This is based on how much gold you want. I like a balance of the red and gold which you can see in my creation. If you like more of one color then determine that before you start putting the gold on. Do not brush the puff paint. If you do this then it will dry flat. Leave it as it is. It takes almost an hour and a half for puff paint to dry!

Step Five: Wait twenty minutes and then start adding the jewels. Be careful because the puff paint will still be wet. I spaced the jewels evenly over the headpiece and used an equal amount of red and gold. Once again this is up to your discretion. Personally, I thought Queen Amidala would have quite a bit of jewels but that may not be your take on it! Do what you wish!

Step Six: ONCE THE PUFF PAINT IS COMPLETELY DRY, flip the headpiece over and hot glue the hair clip to the back of the Styrofoam ball. The type of hair clip I used is pictured below. You do not have to use that type of hair clip. I have very thick hair and that is the only type that will keep the headpiece in place with my hair type.

Posted in Haikyuu Uniforms, Uncategorized

Karasuno Uniform DIY

Karasuno Uniform DIY

Hello! I have been making Karasuno Uniform orders all week and I would like to share my process with you.

What you will need:

  • Hanes Men’s CoolDri Performance Polo – Black (Link) (If you are making number four’s jersey, his will need to be orange, in which case you can buy the white one and dye it orange)
  • Orange Jersey Fabric (polyester, lycra, jersey) (If you are making number four’s jersey you will need Black Jersey Fabric)
  • White Ribbon 7/8 in x 5 yd (2.2 cm x 4.5 m)
  • Fabric Scissors
  • Black, White, and Orange Thread
  • Sewing machine (Optional, this is something than can be hand sewn)
  • Seam ripper
  • Iron-On Number – player of choice
  • Printer with the Iron-On Fabric Paper
  • Premade design to print on to the Iron-On Paper of the Karasuno High symbols on the front left and right of the jersey
  • Performance shorts the same color as the base jersey you bought

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Posted in Effie Trinket Cosplay, Uncategorized

Effie Trinket @ A-kon 27

1,300 feathers, 100 butterflies, a lot of hot glue, and a million tears later I brought Effie Trinket to A-kon 27.

Things I want to fix

  • I want to put a huge zipper all the way up the back of the dress. The Velcro wasn’t as effective as I hoped it would be.
  • I want to put more feathers and butterflies on the back of the dress.
  • I need to make her hat.
  • I want a wig that has more volume and is a little bit longer.
  • Find a better adhesive for the butterflies. The hot glue was not doing its job.

Things that were perfect

  • The front of the dress
  • The shoes were comfortable and the exact style they needed to be
  • The gloves – comfortable and perfect
  • The make-up, it stayed on all day and looked awesome
  • The feathers, not a single one of the 1300 fell off!

 

Effie Trinket was a lot of fun to walk around in. She had a lot of positive reviews and people were astonished that I hand painted all of the feathers and butterflies on the dress. I think that once I fix the items listed above I will submit her in to a cosplay contest.

10/10 WILL do again.

Posted in Convention Reviews, Questions, woes, and concerns

The A-Kon 27 Bananz and Shenanz

In summary, A-kon 27 was a big ol’ shit show. Like damn. It has been accurately labeled “drama con.”

Here is the day by day summary of Mission: A-kon 27.

Thursday, June 2, 2016 – Arrival

In essence, the Hilton Anatole Dallas is a hot mess and f’d up my reservation. Originally I booked two rooms with king-size beds for eight people, four people in each room. However, when I arrived my reservation was under “Ashly Lake” instead of “Ashly Blake” and I had two separate hotel reservations one of which had been cancelled prior without my consent. Throughout the week I called Hilton customer service and continually asked what the total amount for BOTH rooms would be. Each time I was told $714. When I actually made it to the hotel to check in it turned out that the $714 was for ONE room, because the customer service agent was only quoting the one reservation I had made instead of the two reservations created. Well, I pitched a fit and finally the attendant contacted management. Management advised that I would receive free parking for the weekend and she could find me a bigger room to fit eight people in. I was still mad but I was tired of arguing and satisfied with a room that could fit eight people. I paid and went up to said hotel room.

Surprise! The hotel room was NOT big enough for eight people. In fact, it was a double bed room meant for four people. I would like to point out that the hotel staff KNEW I had eight people and that eight people were going to be shoved in to this room (I’m about 90% sure that’s a fire hazard). I was too upset to go downstairs and argue more so one of my roommates took the lead. After a lot of arguing she managed to get us a suite that was still too small for eight people but was much better than the current room we were in. The catch? She had to pay 90 dollars for it even though the HOTEL messed up the reservation. Needless to say, the Hilton Anatole Dallas is an awful hotel to stay in. Don’t do it.

It was also a nightmare trying to get extra towels, blankets, pillows, etc. for eight people. The staff insisted that we couldn’t have extra yet crammed eight of us in to a room that could comfortably fit six people.

Good things? I went to get my badge on Thursday and the scan & go concept was awesome. I wasn’t in line for more than five minutes. I literally scanned my barcode and went. The convention is less packed on Thursday but I imagine it made the Friday/Saturday lines more bearable than past conventions.

Friday, June 3, 2016 – What ever happened to Cosplay and Chill?

I had a lot of fun on Friday walking around the convention floor! It was definitely packed because it was raining outside and the outside gardens were under construction so there weren’t a lot of places for people to go. It will be a lot better next year when people can go places outside and walk around.

The people at A-kon have never impressed me. There is simply a lot of unnecessary drama that goes on. I think it is important for people to know and understand their temperament. If you know you have a form of social anxiety, then you shouldn’t be out on the convention floor for hours at a time. Take breaks! Go upstairs to your hotel room and hide for a little while then come back down. Another thing that really gets me is the people that get angry that you have a good cosplay. Don’t turn your nose up at people because of jealousy. It is annoying. The whole point of cosplay is to enjoy your costume as well as appreciate other people’s art work. I think costume play is absolutely beautiful and I am amazed at what people’s imaginations can help them create.

Saturday, June 4. 2016 – Still a hot mess

I did not stay Saturday night because I ultimately could not handle the hotel’s shit and the drama anymore. I walked around the convention floor Saturday and that was fun for a bit. The scheduling was horrific and kept getting moved around so I wasn’t able to go to any of the panels. I am not sure if the scheduling was the hotel not allowing the convention to use the rooms or the convention as a whole. Either way it was awful. My biggest issue though was they closed the Dealer’s Room at 5PM… on a Saturday? What? I was going to buy something but I guess not…

That night someone apparently walked out of a fire exit and caused the fire alarm to sound. Seriously, not impressed. How old are we?

Ultimately, I will not be staying at the A-kon hotel until they switch venues. The Hilton Anatole Dallas is not a good place for the convention and only makes it worse. Plus, A-kon has been doing this for 27 years, you would think they would have figured it out by now.

2/10 would not do again.

Posted in Questions, woes, and concerns

What is Cosplay?

I’ve been asked by friends, family, and strangers the following question: “What is cosplay?”

My first answer is something along the lines of “the most worthwhile circle of Hell.”

My second answer is the textbook definition from dictionary.com:

noun
1.the art or practice of wearing costumes to portray characters from fiction, especially from manga, animation, and science fiction.
2.a skit featuring these costumed characters.
verb (used with object)
3.to portray (a fictional character) by dressing in costume.
verb (used without object)

4.to take part in cosplay:
He cosplayed as a Jedi from Star Wars.

         My third answer is usually the most accurate, which is simply this “cosplay is when you fall in love with a character so much that you feel the need to make a costume, wear it, and parade around a convention acting like that character.” Cosplay is not just a costume. Most cosplayers either make their cosplay by hand or they pay someone (me!) to make it by hand, because cosplay is not simply an exact replica of the character but instead an interpretation of the character from a movie, anime, manga, book, cartoon, TV Show, etc. Cosplay is a different facet of creativity and costume design.
          The cool thing about costume design is coming up with your own characters which is not cosplay. The cool thing about cosplay is thinking of original ways to replicate the designs of the character, especially an animated character. How do I make that pattern on XYZ’s dress? Do I embroider it? Paint it? Make it out of a different material? Cry? Each person is going to capitalize on their own talent too, so one person may paint it because they are more comfortable with paints and another may embroider it… which one is better? Neither. It will look different but it will have the same concept. Likewise, it will show different personality types.
          In conclusion, cosplay is a facet of the art form Costume Design.
          Let me know if you guys would like to know more about it or if you have any other questions. Maybe I will make a separate post about it if I have enough to say on the subject!

Picture Credits:

Poison Ivy: Me, Ashly Blake, costume designed by me

Batman: Unknown. It was a guy at Ikkicon in Austin that I took a picture with.

Catwoman: Linda Guthery, costume designed by Linda

Harley Quinn: Sarah Young, costume designed by Sarah

Blue haired Guy: Unknown, he ended up in the picture at Ikkicon in Austin as well