Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Merrily we roll along

 Things have been happening since I last updated.

Star Command Season 2 was filmed and is now into post-production. The season is absolutely brilliant and I cannot wait to see the final product! I have some shots of costumes up on my deviantart and of course there are lots of fun goodies and such on the Star Command facebook page.

Started at Southern Polytechnic State University (SPSU) for New media Art. So far so good, as you can see.

2nd highest! #likeaboss
Taking Intro to Drawing this semester and it is making me a better drawer. I mean I am starting to actually like the things I am drawing, which is pretty freaking sweet.

charcoal on newsprint 

I am once again stage managing for NFDC. We are about a week and a half into rehearsals for King Lear. This time I am slightly more put together than normal and have added to my duties some things that I have not had to actively due since UWG (aka rehearsal reports).

The cast is really sweet and I am really looking forward to diving ever deeper into this play with them. I am also excited to have an ASM this show to teach my ways. Then she can combine her ways with mine and be ever better and more awesome.

All for now. I shall try to not fall off the face of the earth for so long but I make zero promises.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

DragonCon 2013: Seriously, Bro Edition

DragonCon 2013 was a blast. Ran around, crashed a couple photo shoots, worked the Gamer Concepts booth, meet some amazing new people, managed to find a dance party, and had a Disney sing-a-long. I also managed to bust out a bunch of fun costumes last minute!

Here is a pictorial recap of all my outfits and some of my favorite moments.

Party Aquaman

L to R: Jesse Quick (me), The Flash, Reverse Flash, Weather Wizard, Captain Boomerang

Punk Batgirl (Stephanie Brown)

L to R: Spock, New Friend Dave, Scotty (Me)

Double the Scottys, Double the fun!


It's cool guys! Velma has the booze!

Jesse Quick and Speedy

Scotty and Mockingbird (aka Partybird!)

Spock and Scotty

Gender Bent Photo Shoot Group Shot

The Rogues capture the Flashes!

Star Trek Photo Shoot Group Shot

Friday, October 12, 2012

Dragon*Con Has Come and Gone

So Dragon*Con has come and gone. I managed to get all of the costumes I had wanted to do done and had a fun time flaunting them about the con. My costume line up was:

Sasha ran around as the Tom Riddle to by Ginny Weasley. We even decided to enter the Yule Ball costume contest and managed to snag ourselves the prize for Judges Choice! Pretty good for thrifted clothes and some store bought blood.

Over all Dragon*Con was amazing fun good times and I’m already excited for next year. My costume list is getting longer by the day and I am going to need to start shortening it pretty soon. Either way I already have everything for my Lady!Captain America costume becuase you have to start somewhere.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Finding the perfect fabric on the sale rack

You are browsing the fabric store looking for something for your new project. Just for kicks you decide to check out the sale rack, and there it is staring right at you. The perfect fabric and it's 50% off.



Monday, February 21, 2011

Cutting for the first time with newly sharpened shears

Admit it, you got used to fighting with dulled fabric shears. We all do it but when we finally take them to get sharpened, our eyes are once more opened to how easy life can be in our sewing room. That first cut with newly sharpened shears and the ease with which we render fabric helpless to our whims is a bliss unknown to non-sewers. We vow then and there, as we enjoy the ease of cutting, to never let our shears get so dull again.

But we do; and the joy of the first cut with newly sharpened shears lives on as the cycle continues.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Finding a tool you thought lost

Be it as small an item as tailors chalk or a seam ripper all the way to that pair of pinking shears you hadn't seen since 2001; finding something helpful you thought lost is always a good feeling.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Inspiring quotes

I love quotes. I collect them and ponder them. I use them to break in a new journal so I know the first page isn't weird or wasted. Most of all I love sharing them. So here are a few that I love and find inspirational.

“You don’t have to burn books to destory a culture, Just get people to stop reading them.”
-Ray Bradbury

“A book is a version of the world. If you do not like it, ignore it or offer your own version in return.”
-Salman Rushdie

"Man is least himself when he speaks in his own person. Give him a a mask and he'll tell you the truth."-O. Wilde

"I think that's what's wrong with the world; no one says what they feel, they always hold it inside. They're sad, but they don't cry. They're happy, but they don't sing or dance. They're angry, but they don't scream. 'Cause if they do, they feel ashamed. And that's the worst feeling in the world. So everyone walks with their heads down and no one sees how beautiful the sky really is."

-Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

"Grown-ups love figures. When you tell them that you have made a new friend, they never ask you any questions about essential matters. They never say to you, "What does his voice sound like? What games does he love best? Does he collect butterflies?" Instead, they demand: "How old is he? How many brothers has he? How much does he weigh? How much money does his father make?" Only from these figures do they think they have learned anything about him."
-Antoine de Saint-ExupĂ©ry, The Little Prince

"You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend."
-Paul Sweeney


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

An open letter to...

Dear Steampunks and Convention Costumers,

Corset ca. 1864 via The Victoria & Albert Museum
I know we all love the corset. It's fun to wear sporadically, give your body a lovely shape, and can even enhances a costume. I also get that modern corsets come in very lovely colours, patterns and fabrics; historical corsets also came in fun colours with lovely trims. I get all that as I myself love corsets but here is where I have a problem with you.

You never take into account the "character" you are dressing as or being. Steampunks love to create a character complete with backstory. I have one for my steampunk character as well but I have also done what any costumer should; I have taken into consideration what my character does (hunter), the historical fashions of the time period I am based out of (Victorian) and the implications behind it all.

So for this arguments sake, we are going to deal with Steampunk based very heavily in the Victorian time period and for a woman.

The first thing you need to know is that every woman wore a corset. Yes, every woman and all the time. This caused many physical problems (like rearranging your organs) and health issues, especially concerning childbirth. Yes, corsets are the cause of so many miscarriages and deaths during childbirth.

Langdon, Batcheller & Company, c. 1887.   
The second is that the corset is considered an undergarment which would only be seen by the lady wearing it, her female family members, her ladies made or her husband. No proper society lady would ever, EVER show her corset to society or, for the love of a bearded man in the sky, wear it on the outside of her clothing!

The third is that the corset is made to mold and shape your body to fit the styles and clothes of the time. The busk (aka the metal closure on the front) was curved, the boning was made out of whale bones and the lacing in the back pulled it all tight. A corset should not be tied by yourself or by someone who does not know what he or she is doing. A corset can bruise or break ribs if you are not careful. Also, you should never try to tight lace on the first wearing of a corset. You should tighten to where you are still comfortable, able to breath easily and can sit and stand without difficulty. After about an hour or two you can then go in and tighten a bit more. Alway stop tightening when you get uncomfortable or it's painful!!! DO NOT PUSH YOUR BODY INTO A TIGHT CORSET WHEN IT IS NOT READY FOR IT! YOU WILL HURT YOURSELF! Ideally the process to be able to tight lace (which I absolutely never recommend to do) should take weeks or months to do but this requires wearing a corset daily, which is a horrible plan.

Now that you know a bit about the corset lets talk about wearing one. As I mentioned before, when designing and creating a costume that requires a corset, try as hard as you can to not fall into the typical fashion trends of the people who are costuming in the same area you are. For Steampunk, this means that you need to make a conscious choice about how you wear your corset and don't just go right for the corset on the outside of your clothing because that's the trend.

Original hand-coloured antique engravings
Published for Bureaux du Journal Paris, 1872 - 1883 
Let's pretend you want to be a high society Steampunk lady, complete with rich colours, expensive fabrics, bustle, ruffles that could swallow the world and plumed hat. You know what you would never do for this outfit? Wear your corset where others can see it and I don't give a damn how pretty your corset is either. A high society woman would NEVER EVER show her corset. I don't give a flying fig if it's Steampunk or post Apocalyptic or whatever other excuse you want to give me about your corset fashion choice. If you are setting your character in Victorian times (which if you're Steampunk you most likely are), your high society character would never do that no matter the setting. It was a fact ingrained into the culture which would not change after a big bomb, or whatever you have decided caused the apocalypse, destroyed life as they knew it. In all honesty, it would probably be something they cling to in order to preserve some sense of normality in a strange and ever changing landscape. Moral: think it through the next time!

Woman with camera - albumen print cabinet card
 - A.J. Davison - c. 1880
I think I've made my point when it comes to society ladies but I understand that there are many other occupations people pick for their characters. There are hunters, trackers, spies, seamstresses, bakers, officers, clerks and the list keeps going. I hold all these positions to the same standards as the high society ladies. More so really as they are working positions and the people who they interact with would judge harshly upon a woman who showed her corset in a professional environment. A working woman wants to make the best impression she can and making sure her corset is safely tucked away under her garments, like it should be, is a top priority. However, here is where I will also make an exception to the "all women wear corsets" fact. If your character is a working character, she might not even need a corset. If she is a hunter or tracker or spy, then she is probably crawling around and trying to fit through small spaces. She would not want to be bound and immobile at any part of her body. She would not wear a corset. She also would most likely wear pants and other practical garments, which can still be pretty and fun and very much not boring. Moral: think outside the box and look at the practical end of your costume!

Not Victorian but I wonderful show of
what I mean.
Now let's take look at a position I would a) love to see someone costume/cosplay and b) would actually wear a corset for the world to see. That position would be a prostitute or whore or lady of the night or whatever you want to call it. But let's face it, she would be in search of business and her goods are what she would need to display. In that case she would want her corset, chimess and stockings seen. The corset puts your goods on display and, as I said before, shapes your body into a very pleasing shape. So if you are costuming as a courtesan, go hog wild! Wear that corset for all to see like it's nobodies prerogative but your own! Own it! Dress it up! Hell, make it gold and red with matching short bloomers and 4 inch heeled boots! You have my infinite blessing, especially if you are doing this at a convention as you never know what pervy boys will be there. Moral: if you're "selling your goods" then wear your corset for the world/"customers" to see.

So, in the end, there are some factors you really need to look at when it comes to designing your costume.

1. If you are basing it out of a time period, do some research into that time period. read articles, look at pictures, search for patterns. There is so much information out there and at your fingertips, use it.

2. Try and avoid the conventions of costume design that are out there and strong. If you turn the convention on it's head or utilize it in a different way then everyone else, you stand out more and people remember your costume.

3. Think through what your character does and what she needs in a garment. Does she need a corset? Would she show it off? (Most likely the answer is always no) Would she wear pants instead of a skirt? Is she formal? Is she rich/poor/middle class? Is she Steampunk or post Apocalyptic or historical or cyber punk...etc...? Does she care about societies rules? Is she proper?

Really, just take some time and use your brain. Don't be like everybody else and blend into a crowd.


Monday, February 7, 2011

Fun Buttons

You're wondering through the fabric/hobby store, shuffling down the aisle of a thrift store/antique store, trolling the internet or at a garage sale and you see them. They're cute, fun and make you smile. They're buttons.

They come in all shapes, sizes and colours. You can buy them new or used and they never go out of style. Eventually, you might even find the perfect thing to put them on but until that day, they'll sit in your craft room putting a smile on your face.


Friday, February 4, 2011

M6246 finished

I finished my cousin's jacket. She sent me the pattern, fabric and buttons like a month or so ago and I just now go to it. Just in time too as I will be seeing her in about a week. It turned out really well and I got to make thread chains, which I haven't done since UWG.

The pattern was McCall's 6246. The outer fabric was a wonderful suiting and the lining was red flannel. 

All finished

Close up on buttons and sash

Thread chain
There is a thread chain on each side of the jacket so that the sash stays attached to the coat. Thread chains are so much fun to make and are very simple to do.

The inside

The shoulders which are pleated.
I am not sure if i like pleated shoulders or not. I enjoy not having to deal with gathering fabric but pleated shoulders always make me feel like I have linebacker shoulders without the shoulder pads. Maybe I'm just too self conscious about my shoulders.

What do you think? Do you like pleated shoulders?