Category Archives: Cosplay

Post-con review: Long Island Retro Gaming Expo 2017

My committee wasn’t able to man our table due to lack of staff (weekends have been kicking our butts lately!) but I still wanted to enjoy the Expo anyway and attended on Sunday with a friend. We made like bandits! The selection from these collectors was amazing, and in incredible condition on top of that. These are no ordinary vendors who just pile in bargain bin GameStop fodder regardless of what state they’re in. If you’re on the hunt for something to start, continue, or complete your gaming collection, this is a perfect spot to go to without the hassle of navigating the boroughs and NYC.

 

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Shoutout to the Tuxedo Mask for our quick ‘skirmish’! 

Since there’s a lot of long-awaited Persona standoff titles coming out next year in Japan (I am excited for all of them!), I decided to be Mitsuru for the day and had no idea I’d get stopped so much for photos! Unfortunately I only have the one on my phone here above, but I’m still trying to find ones from CTCon, let alone from Sunday. (Over the years I’ve realized I will never get to see most of my cosplays online, so I don’t bother digging too much anymore. The fun is in the experience with friends and making new ones anyway!)

I’ve had bad experiences with Eternalcon at the Cradle of Aviation a few years ago, and was relieved to see their floor plans at the Expo here made way more sense of the space. (I know that the Cradle is a museum and was not really meant for stuff like this when it was designed, but still.) To this day I still kind of cringe when I hear an event wants to use the Cradle as their venue of choice, but I’m happy the Expo didn’t fall in that trap. Compared to its first year when I attended it briefly at the Upsky out east, there was way more room for them to really show what they had to offer.

Aside from navigating everything and checking out the selection of goods, I also appreciated that there was actual music playing throughout the Expo that weekend from live bands covering tracks of popular game themes. It made me a bit nostalgic for Video Games Live (which every fan should attend at some point in their life!). I still hover their tour date list for when they’re in New York again.

As a wrapup, I definitely will be returning to the Long Island Retro Gaming Expo! Hopefully they stay within the county since it’s centrally located for me and I know that area well (which means food isn’t an issue at all; the towns nearby all have really good restaurants). But even if they return out east it’s still only a drive away :).

 

Another fabric update and my adventure!

So I guess us Spoonflower folks stirred up quite the feedback, because the other day in my inbox I saw this:

Haldo to you too!

So I guess Poly Crepe is staying after all! Please disregard my other update regarding the Etsy inventory then (still doesn’t apply to the twill change). Hooray!

That aside, I was able to go to CTCon this year and it was a ton of fun! Nowadays I feel like these weekends don’t last long enough anymore :(. All that work prepping and traveling to the destination, just for 3 days out of the whole year! (Though if it was longer than 3 it would just assault my bank account, and that really wouldn’t be fun.)

Besides Nick, a few other friends also cosplayed (some stick to western animation, others like me gravitate to games). I was able to attend the cosplay meetups I wanted to go to this year, and also won a Judges’ Award in the Masquerade for my Reapfield puppet.

I ended up moving his body frame into a more solid build (literally a small beachball and an Easter bucket), which meant his head had a full range of motion while still fitting in a small duffel! All my costumes did better than I expected though, so I may bring back the puppet at some point in the future just to waltz around with. I’m gonna give Phasma a break though, as I really do want to fix my armor next time I be her. Mitsuru will be my new redhead mainstay for a while though!

This year, I also plan to return to the NY Ren Faire, so hopefully I can do a fun little review of that too. Not sure when that will be though, as after the opening weekend is the LI Retro Gaming Expo, in which I will be helping my library conference committee with a free outreach table on the Sunday. (Yes I will be dressing up!) Since I’ll be there a full day this time, I coud write up a review for that too? (I dunno how I suddenly got into the business of writing reviews, but people keep finding those posts so they must like them!)

Master* of Puppets

*Maybe someday I will carry this title but honestly I just needed something witty to name this post. Then again, it’s no different for the rest of this blog!

Oh hey wow it’s June! That sure went by quick. Sister’s wedding was amazing and I’m so happy everyone had a great time! Not a dry eye in the house either.

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I’m on the left as her Maid of Honor, and the bride is on the right! (But you probably figured that out already!)

(I really want to upload one with Nick but he’s super camera shy for such a handsome fellow! In case you’re wondering why he’s always under some helmet or mask here.)

For shop news, the Etsy has been back up and running. Thank you for your patience and understanding! It will still be open while I’m at CtCon in July, so no worries. Speaking of other expos, I finally checked out BookCon with a few friends on Sunday in NYC! I’ve always wanted to go, but other plans kept popping up at that time of year. It was funny to see the Javits so quiet, but it was such a lovely con! I plan to come back next year for even more free loot! I think I will be going to it more often than NYCC at least.


Anyway, I meant to do a tutorial for my puppet, but then realized that I forgot to do progress photos, and also had no idea what I was doing half of the time so I was pretty sure I would mess up a lot. I also really did not have time to finish it properly – this year, CtCon wanted photos of submissions including events like the masquerade, and then announced a deadline at a ridiculously short notice. (Apologies on the rough build!)

I never had done any sort of puppetry before, but I have made plushies, and noticed that the steps are similar to a degree, just hollow, lighter, and mobile. Since I will be the only person operating him, I had to keep some parts and functions in mind.

Reapfield’s head tilts around, and he can also hop/jump and move slightly to indicate more emotions easily. Due to the view of the audience, I only had to focus on one arm to operate. Right now it’s a simple sewn glove over a dowel, but later on we plan to not only give it better range of motion (joints), but he will also get a second paw.

I couldn’t figure out how to rig better facial expressions at the time (I wanted his brows to move), but when he gets angry or upset his eyes light up like in the photos! This was probably the one step I knew what to do already, because I had rigged simple LEDs before for Ultra Sword Kirby’s hat. I was so happy I upgraded to a AAA battery pack this time for 50 cents extra, as the coin battery setup was a little loose for Kirby at that time. I buy my kits from Model Train Software, no soldering required! They’re amazing and I highly recommend them.

Best of all, I wanted to make storing him a breeze, also to make traveling with him easier. His body is made of cardboard, and is assembled in a way where it’s fast and easy to put together, and then folds back down neatly. His body is simply a fleece cover with the mask attached already to save time. There are also holes for his arm and LED eyes. Eventually I want to give him a proper and more permanent body with the green high-density foam.

What’s New in the Shop? (May 6 edition)

Things have been busy here between work, other life events and projects, and then me being sick for two weeks on and off ^^; but I am fine now! In the mean time, I was waiting for Tracer swatches to come in from Spoonflower, so now that they’ve arrived, I can show them to you!

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Cavalry’s Here in yellow and orange! These would make super fun athletic leggings!

Tracer will be up on Etsy in a few days as well. My Etsy will also be on Vacation for two weeks starting May 15 due to my sister’s wedding, so during that time I will not be available to process or make any orders. If you want a gift for graduation, birthday, etc, contact me ASAP if you need it before June!

Aside from everything, I experimented with notebook-making lately and I love it! My current planner was getting too messy and I needed to go back to something cleaner and smaller. (I think the larger sizes make me go crazy with decorating, which makes things illegible and defeats the purpose of being organized!)

I switched months ago to a bullet journal format for my personal journal/diary and loved it, so I decided to investigate traveler’s notebooks to migrate my lists (minus the diary stuff) together with said planner into one smaller, portable book.

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These are my insert booklets I made in B4 size! The patterns I printed are from Vecteezy – Chinchilla and Floral. The rainbow one seems to be gone unfortunately :(.

These ones have dotted grid paper inside and the covers are cardstock, saddle-stitched (aka staple-bound). They came out so well that I plan to make a few more samples using my patterns for Etsy! Of course, they can be used as inserts for traveler’s notebooks, but they also stand up well just fine by themselves as a jotter for school, notes, etc.


I never announced my cosplay lineup for CtCon, did I? Well, here it is so far:

  • Friday: Mitsuru Kirijo (Persona 3)
  • Saturday AM: Cheongsam Mei (Overwatch)
  • Saturday PM: Off-the-Clock Phasma (Star Wars: The Force Awakens)

This probably is going to be shuffled around when I hear more about my itinerary, and the Masquerade will also dictate this. So far Nick and I are planning an Overwatch skit and I may be rigging a puppet. We’re still brainstorming but otherwise I’m excited for the idea, and I think more skits need more puppetry anyway.

What’s New in the Shop? (April 7 edition)

I was hoping to make this post earlier a few days back…but a certain game came out 3 days ago.

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Feel that hype, it’s Persona 5! (This box is gigantic, Atlus practically spoiled us silly!)

I can go on for ages about how amazing the game is though, as well as my Mitsuru cosplay progress, but that will be later. First, let’s get down to business! (To defeat the Omnix!)

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Zarya fabric is now available thanks to popular demand, in magenta and navy!

Since I was requesting the swatch proofs, I finally was able to check out Spoonflower’s new twill fabric as well, and I love it! The weave is tighter than the cotton canvas I currently use for the zipper pouches, which allows the designs to show details much crisper (and is just as durable). So over time I will be phasing out my cotton canvas for future zipper pouches, and also integrating the twill for purchase as fabric yards on Etsy. (Spoonflower already offers it, in case you can’t wait any longer :).

Now that I have a decent inventory, and basically have ordered every swatch type, I think a helpful post on reviewing the quality and pros/cons of Spoonflower’s fabrics will be necessary. I’ve been adding photos of the proofs in the mean time for the listings, since it can be difficult deciding from just the sample graphic from the screen. But I’m sure many will agree that any insight on how your order will turn out can help you be a smart shopper! (According to G.I.Joe, knowing is half the battle!)


(Don’t you love line breaks? I love line breaks. Only took me 10 years to figure out what the heck they actually do.)

With the new Persona title out now, I thought it would be fun to sneak in what my Mitsuru outfit is looking so far. For the most part she basically is all done; I just need to tailor a skirt I got from Goodwill, and find a water gun to paint up as her Evoker. I normally would love to make her rapier from scratch, but time isn’t on my side for CtCon this year, so I have a toy musketeer one on the ready for some new paint.

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Psst…My workstation is never this tidy…

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My stencil bombed so I ended up freehanding and scared myself.
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Commensing Operation! To play more Persona 5!

On Sunday, this blog will reach its 2nd birthday! (Yay woohoo confetti party!) I will have news on the relaunched giveaway, so keep an eye out for it.