Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Post-con thoughts

Call me jaded, but Otakon is actually getting less exciting year after year. I've only missed two since 1999 (.. derp) and things have changed. My con group has changed, I'm getting older, my focuses and costumes have changed along with it.

This year was still fun, though, aside from some incidents such as nearly missing our early as hell flight to Baltimore, last minute but manageable costuming, terrible lack of respect from one member of the room group and last but not least: my friend getting pick pocketed.

Not freaking cool.

We've decided that we're going to to check out the scene on the west coast next year and see if people on that seaboard are more classy.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Mare's Leg, Part 3

In Part 1, we found a toy Mare's Leg gun, filled in the gaps, and created a two-part mold.
In Part 2, we resin cast a solid Mare's Leg.

Now for the finishing details!

Lots of pictures after the jump.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Last Minute Progress

Here's a quick list. I'll post pictures when I get a moment to breathe.

Kaylee's jumpsuit, pouch and belt are all complete and distressed.
Wash's jumpsuit just needs to have the patches, pocket and shoulder details hand-stitched on.
Wash's harness needs to have one more area stitched, then all of his details glued on.
Zoe's vest and pants are all done. All the pleather pieces are darkened and weathered, but I need more snaps for the shrug and to attach it to the vest. The holster is mostly complete, it just needs the parts where the gun holds on.
Zoe's gun needs one or two more coats of paint and all of the bullets are painted and drying.

18 hours until Goose, Madhouse and I are on the road. Still need to shop for supplies, do the laundry, make the apartment ready for the weekend for our fur-babies, and pack!
Running on less than 5 hours of sleep today, but it's all worth it in the end.
Can't wait for Otakon!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Mare's Leg, Part 2

In Part 1, we sourced a toy Mare's Leg gun, filled in the gaps, and created a two-part mold.  Let's see how it turned out...

Lots of pictures after the jump.

Mare's Leg, Part 1

Part of Akira's Zoe costume is her signature Mare's Leg gun, which we have been working on for the past couple weeks.  Not having to worry about Ilo Milo means a lot more work has gone into it.

Lots of progress pictures after the jump.

Another to do list...

I really should be sleeping right now, but I think the coffee I had earlier in the afternoon kicked in oh.. about two hours ago? This is normally where I would say FML, but I'm not complaining.

Brain dump, because I will forget x_X:

To buy before Otakon:
- New foundation. So Akira and I have the same sort of awkward problem: the skin on our faces seem like they have a different color base than our arms/wrists/where ever we compare colors for our foundations because colors don't work :| Plus I blush really easily/stay flushed for some bizarre reason. Anywho, thanks to Nave dragging me outside more often in this ridiculous heatwave, my needing to throw out my liquid foundation from years ago, and disliking using the mineral foundation that I have now because it's so drying here where we live.. I need a new liquid foundation.
- Lip plumper for Akira. Do I need to say more?
- Potentially a new make up carrying case/travel bag. The one I got as a free gift from Lancome a few years ago (and not supporting them anymore. Animal testing bastards.) is getting kind of groady.
- If I can find an affordable hard side suitcase.. that would be fantastic. Or I may end up taking the chest plates on my duffle bag carry on just to make sure that the plastic doesn't get bent/damaged/tossed out of shape. I only have a soft side suitcase and I'm worried :|

To do before Otakon:
- Make sure that the armor, a special package and whatever random other thing I need to have fit actually can fit into the suitcase with padding. If not, maybe something will go into the overhead bins...
- Garment bag everything and anything for each of the costumes. Having two almost identical but size costumes for the two of us this year will be.. well, interesting to say the least..
- Charge my Nook for the airplane
- CLEAN. My sewing loft is a freaking explosion right now.
- Find a kitty sitter for the princess, or someone who will check in on her at least twice while we're gone.
- Laundry.
- Give myself a manicure/clean my nails properly. Working in a lab that generates a lot of dust in the sample processing, painting(!!!) armor pieces and being so busy means that I haven't been keeping my nails as clean as they should be.
- Actually sit down and clean my new make up brushes. And swatch the MUG shadows I got. Initial impression of the latter is pretty good! Full review to come.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Brain dump/to do list because my white board isn't big enough and Nave keeps his homework assignments there

Inara -
- Finish painting designs on the vest
- Add fastners and hem the vest
- Paint the damn skirt 
- (check the wig and make sure it doesn't look too derpy. Bring curling iron and hair spray just in case)

Malcom -
- Hem the coat
- Add cuffs to sleeves
- Add eyelets to belt and weather
- Seal, paint and assemble the holster
- .. weather boots, but that's Nave's job.

Lanfan -
- Finish hemming gloves -DONE
- Seal and paint the glove decorations - DONE
- Seal and paint boot decoration - DONE
- Add fastener to leg greaves (redo leg greaves in wonderflex? - DONE and painted >>) - DONE
- Add edging to chest and back plate  - DONE
- Paint shoulders, chest and back plates -DONE
- Add final ties to chest and back plate and fasteners - holes are drilled? needs to be assembled at the con because of fitting issues
- Finish and paint mask -DONE
- Attach boot and glove decorations
- Tack hood in place
3 of 10 remaining

Old Man Fu -
- finish hakama.
- Hem gloves - DONE
- Seal and paint the glove decorations -DONE
- Seal and paint boot decoration -DONE
- Add fastner to leg greaves (redo leg greaves in wonderflex? - DONE and painted) - DONE
- Add edging to chest and back plate -DONE
- Paint shoulders, chest and back plates -DONE
- Add final ties to chest and back plate and fasteners
- Finish and paint mask -DONE
- Attach glove and boot decorations 
- Make headband -DONE
- Buy a ridiculous mustache and powder it white.
3 of 12 remaining

All in all, maybe a little less screwed than I think I was going to be. I hope to have all of the bolded stuff done before the weekend is over (.. between my part time desk shift on Wednesday nights and a Harry Potter party on Thursday...). The necklace isn't going to be too bad, but I need to have time to sit down and do it all at once.. this may be the last minute thing at the con ;;

The plan is to get white school glue and seal everything that I need to seal tomorrow night, and add some more apoxie sculpt to the bridge of the nose and shape the brows. (Edit: while glue sealed craft foam may be a good idea at the last minute, you're almost better off just making it out of the wonderflex you have lying around.)

OH OH. Keep an eye out for two reviews and a "what's in my kit" post next week before we leave for the con. I finally bit the bullet and got a set of quality make up brushes and a set of neutral eyeshadows that I'm fairly excited to play with (and using for Inara). The "what's in my kit" is a basic convention prep and make up advice for a newbie cosplayer/non-make up user.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Changing Plans AGAIN

With all the progress Goose and I are making on our Firefly/Serenity cosplays, we feel bad if we sacrifice quality for quantity. I don't know why we try to plan more than one costume to build per year. Maybe if we get more diligent next year we can plan more, but for now, it would be better to stick to one costume each to work on. We are going to hold off Ilomilo for another con (especially since the weather looks like it will be very warm at Baltimore next week) and make our Kaylee, Wash and Zoe that much better.
Goose and I will post soon about our progress!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Massive Productive Weekend!

This past weekend was the only full weekend that Goose and I had for cosplay, so we made the most of it by working from 8 am to 10:30 pm on Saturday and 7 am to 10:45 pm on Sunday. Here's what we did!

(Warning! Image heavy post after the jump!)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Never Enough Time!

Once again, Goose and I are hurrying to the finish, despite goals of starting and ending sooner. I love reading the Otakon and cosplay.com boards, but since everyone is counting down to Otakon, it makes it hard to read. Just reminds me of my crunchy deadline.

This past weekend, I have finished the base for my Zoe capris. They still need to be fitted, hemmed and the details of the boot cuffs added. Goose has finished the frames for Ilo/Milo and the foam has been cut to size. They just need to be shaped and the pockets for the fabric made to fit in the foam. After that it's stamping the Ilo/Milo fabric, making the face, arms and legs, and Goose finishing the support system. I started working on Goose's Wash jumpsuit and have finished most of the torso base. I need to sew on one more sleeve, sew the pants, attach the pants and put in all the zippers. Goose is working on the patches for Wash (which is proving difficult without a proper drawing software).

What's left to be done: (Because I love lists...)
-Capri Details and fitting - Akira
-Vest (pleather for the vest, shrug and holster should arrive this week) - Akira
-Shrug - Akira
-Holster - Akira
-Mare's Leg - Goose
-Knife - Goose
-Darkening and distressing leather - Akira

-Jumpsuit - Akira
-Harness - Akira
-Patches - Goose

-Dye the fabric for the jumpsuit - Akira
-Jumpsuit - Akira
-Teddy bear patch (furry fabric should arrive this week) - Akira
-Details - Akira

Ilo and Milo
-Finishing securing the frame and supports - Goose
-Shape the foam - Akira
-Make the pockets for foam - Akira
-Sew together the skin - Akira
-Attach the skin to the frame - Akira
-Hands and Feet - Akira
-Face - Akira

If I'm really diligent, I'm sure I can get most of the sewing for Firefly done this week, depending on when my shipment of pleather arrives. And Goose has really been stepping it up for the mascots. I think we can get it done if we work really hard every day until the day we leave for Otakon. (*knock on wood*)
I'll post construction pictures if I remember to take them in the blur of the next few weeks.
Wish us luck!

Progress update (AGAIN)

- Finished gluing the base of my chest and shoulder pieces for Lanfan (must buy heat gun for wonderflex shaping around the edges)
- Gloves 25% done
- Bracers about 50% done (still need to make the outer sleeves for Old Man Fu, attach the clips to that one, add the decorative wrist piece on one of Lanfan's and both of OMF's)
- Finished one gold tie for the Lanfan mask
- Carved out the excess stuff that I don't need for both masks (must get more fine grit sand paper to start sanding..)

Tomorrow, I plan on finishing the sleeves for OMF's bracers, make the lycra leg sleeves to go over our shoes (once I find it in my bins of fabric..) and draft the beginnings of the greaves as well as finishing my other glove.

And we both need a hair cut at some point. I need bangs and face framing layers again, and Nave needs to have about 2 inches of his hair chopped for Malcolm. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

FMA progress, an Inara vest and a Malcolm coat!

So ever since I got this new phone, I've been taking a lot of my progress shots on instagram and posting them on twitter.


Here's what's been happening: