Tuesday, March 15, 2016

March Update

---Edit: Due to work reasons, I will be switching to attending Toronto ComiCon on Sunday March 20th, instead of the friday.---

Salutations! It's already March!?

I'm officially announcing my first convention appearance of the year: Toronto ComiCon. I'll be there on the friday night only (March 18th)--fingers crossed something doesn't come up with work. I haven't been to Toronto ComiCon since the days when it was still called MTAC. I have a photoshoot planned with Elemental Photography that I am excited for. Currently the plan is to wear my new lolita outfit or Presea. My original plan was Jack Frost, but that was decidedly too much work to finish on top of my current schedule. The costume is getting much closer to finished, but the high temperatures and lack of snow is really uninspiring. At this point I may get it as done as I can this year, but I will probably shoot it next winter.

In other con news... I haven't booked any yet except Anime North. Currently I am waiting to hear back on some job opportunities out of province, which would mean I would be missing most of the cons I normally attend (including Anime North). I obviously don't want to drop money on cons I may not be able to go to, so until I know for sure, I won't be booking anything. I am, however thinking of attending AdAstra for the first time in April this year, as it doesn't conflict with any of those job opportunities.

In blog news: all my posts on Vaporeon are finally up! Be sure to check those out. That write-up took ages. Splitting it into 6 parts just made it way more manageable to write. And with that completed, I am officially caught up on documenting costumes I made in spring/summer 2015. Coming up next are a few random projects that I haven't got around to posting yet--including my newest hat I made and some DIY projects.

There has been some progress since I announced my costumes for this year. Jack Frost as you know has had some serious work done on it. And I have also made the base structure for Sakura's hat. Presea has been pulled out of storage and I am currently fixing it up.

I have also taken on a few commission pieces over the last two months that have been pretty fun. Nice to finally get some paid work again. I can't share too much about them but I got to make a coat and a hat.

I have also been working on some product samples, as I plan to start up an Etsy store. More to come on that really soon!

That's all for now guys!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Vaporeon Gijinka - Sandals & Accessories - Pokémon

The 6th and final instalment of my Vaporeon building quest: Sandals & Accessories! This costume was all about the details and finishing touches. Beading, painting, trimming, gems, accessories, props--all elements that helped give this costume the extra wow-factor. It's not often I break a costume down into 6 posts, but this one is certainly worthy of that.

Links to Part 1: BoleroPart 2: Under LayersPart 3: Wrap Skirt TailPart 4: Wig & Hairpieces, and Part 5: Wraps & Bracers!

Thanks to Elemental Photography for the fantastical photoshoot! Credit for the original costume design goes to Cowslip!

Firstly I would like to thank my friend Harriet for lending me her fan! She does Chinese fan dancing and allowed me to borrow hers for this shoot. Thanks muchly!

For the sandals I started by buying a plain pair of cheapo flip flops from Ardene's. Which is a great place to buy shoes you don't care about.

I patterned my base cover shape out of paper, then cut out my pieces (making sure they were mirror images) in leather. Using acrylic paint, I painted these leather pieces navy blue to match the costume.

These pieces would wrap under the bottom of the shoe, with a single seam in the top. The long tails would be used to make a buckle strap around the back of the heel.

Once I was happy with the fit, I machine stitched that top seam.

Next step was to create ruffle bit. Using leftover navy fabric from the bracers I created the two pieces. Each is made of two layers, sewn right sides together along the outer edge, then flipped inside out and top stitched. 

These were then gathered and stitched onto the top of the leather part of the sandal. I also tacked them down with a hand stitch in a few places on the outer edge, because the fabric was super stiff and didn't want to lie flat. 

Next I sewed a buckle into the back of each and punched holes to finish the closure. 

The last step was to glue the leather piece to the sole of the shoe to keep it in place/stop it from rotating. I used e6000 to glue it and it worked quite well. 

Another step in the detailing process for this costume was creating the gems for the center front and the edge of each bracer. 

I sculpted them using apoxie sculpt and then I painted them using a few different shades of nail polish. I did a splotchy application of my dark blue and light teal. And then went over that with a translucent shimmery blue, before finishing it off with a coat of clear gloss.

I applied the same paint to my toenails later! Details are important!

All of the gems were glued onto the costume with e6000. 

My last accessory was a brooch I created for the front of the costume. It was based on the very faint squiggle in the illustration. I got to interpret it how I wanted and this was the result. (I think I sewed beads to  the center later?)
Overall I am very satisfied with how this project turned out, and look forward to starting my next complicated fancy project.

Once again thanks for all your support! Now that this is done I can move on with my life! Hooray!