Thursday, August 11, 2016

OMG I have an interesting blog that I don't even update

I'm such a sad entity for trying to keep a blog, really.

Almost two years ago when I started I thought it was an amazing idea and I'd have the enthusiasm to update soooo often. Then I got lazy and made a cosplay Facebook page for when I'm too lazy to write a novel (like a good blogger would) but have some photos to post and some thoughts to share. Then after a while I got even more lazy and made an Instagram account for when I'm too lazy to open my (stone-age old) computer for an optimized Facebook updating, and have some photos of my costumes in-making or selfies from conventions or such interesting content... That's what I thought. But it all came back to the one truth: I just suck at having any social media accounts!

So yeah it's totally normal for me to have a small hiatus of a year and half with no updates, no nothing, and then come back and be like "Hey everyone, remember me? Oh, you don't really? How come..."

Well, never mind that though, I'll just have this as my personal once-in-ten-years-I-might-want-to-write-an-entry journal. For fun and all that crap.

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...For the minimal chance that someone actually follows my updates here, I'll post some fabulous yearly collages of my cosplays through 2014 up to this point.

Madoka Kaname, Yukimura Kusunoki, "Boob-chan" violet/blue-haired ver., Koyomi Araragi, Toby, Yuzuru Otonashi, and Levi. Six completely new costumes total in 2014 and one reused from the earlier year. This year I started to (learn to) pattern myself and sew all the clothes for my costumes. It was a year among others, but my real cosplay life began from there, I like to think.

Angela Balzac, Junpei Iori, Meme-chan, Kirino Kousaka, Yusuke Urameshi, Noda, King. Also the main dude of P3 and Yukiteru Amano. Five completely new costumes and two variations with the costumes I already owned, and photoshoots of these older characters. It was a year of melancholy and discontent towards my costumes due to the rushed finishes most of these got. I didn't enjoy many of the conventions this year as much as I wanted because I was so tired...

Katherine McBride, Kureha Tsubaki and Michiru Kaioh. 2016 has been a year of very few new costumes this far, but nonetheless, I have lots on my mind and planned cosplays list! Too much.

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For other news...

I have finally made the great decision to buy a new computer-companion to be my aide on my "updating the social media" adventures, and with editing my cosplay photos, and maybe with some school work too. My old computer was, frankly, soon ten years old PC with WinVista, and I'll tell you that our relationship was not the most peaceful. There were times when I planned many ways to destroy that devil's advocate. In ten minute intervals. Each time I had to use it.
I've also bought a new TV just recently, but that's beyond the point. It's great for watching anime though.

I began studying for a dressmaker in a college for adults in January this year, it's a 1.5 year long vocational studies program. It's been taking most of my free time that had already decreased with my new job I got at the turn of the year.
So I've had to drop many and many of my cosplay plans for this year, but it's all right with all the new things I've got to experience. It's been a great opportunity, a new beginning of sorts. I've found lots of new sources for inspiration and motivation, and thought about why I cosplay in the first place and deep stuff like that. I really needed that after last year's burnout with the hobby that was supposed to be fun.

And pretty much a year ago, in August 2015, I moved to live alone in Tampere, mainly to search for a job and new things in my life, and I've sure got those now! I'll aim forward from here and see what the near future holds.

I'll keep this page informed just as well as before, so don't look forward to anything, right?
Thanks, bye! 

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Why in the myriad gods' names are you here? Go spend your life on some better bullshit. My content won't get any better, that I can promise!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year! Photoshoot + other stuff (picture heavy!)

Hello and happy new year everyone! I'll post a lot this year, hopefully.
So, now it's time to post some photos!

Me as Yukimura Kusunoki from Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai! It's my second self-made costume and I wore it for the third time on this day. Photos taken by my friend, we had fun (I guess?).
It was about -10 degrees Celsius outside back then in it was a bit chilly if I say so myself.

More photos of this shoot can be found from my dA

Oops an accidental panty-shot.

Okay, stop right here. There's a story to this photo.

We went inside one market hall to warm up and think about a plan after taking photos outside, and figured there was some kind of exercise biking contest going on so we couldn't possibly just walk through the corridor like we had thought.
We then just hung around for a while because neither of us wanted to go back to the freezing weather again and then a man with a big camera noticed me. He was like "Hey, can I..?" and took his camera and I was like, "Why not?" and tossed my jacket away. Then his dog ran there, it was running freely in the area, and the man asked if I was afraid of dogs, which I'm not, and if I'd hold the dog. He snapped a photo of us and asked if it's okay to publish on the biking club's website too.
And so, my cosplay photo just happened to get to my hometown's biking club's website photo album, taken by some professional photographer!? Like, how often does this happen? Wow, I was kind of special glad and didn't care about not getting any café setting photos at all (a superb idea to try and find an empty café on a Saturday afternoon in the city centre, not), and we agreed to call the photoshoot quits after that situation.

Shopping in style(?) It was embarrassing lol
*Le me tossing empty rice box at my friend*
Oh, snap! Evidence!
Aaaaaand finishing off with some fan service.

And then a few fuzzy selfies.

No costume + full make-up and contacts = GAY

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Next comes the "other stuff".

I made a bunny pillow plushie for my friend for a Christmas present and I thought to share how I made that, too. It was fun and different compared to the normal clothes sewing I've only ever done this far.

Sorry for the "tutorial" part of this is kind of vague and lacking, I was being lazy with taking photos when I made the bunny in the first place and I wrote the tutorial in the dead of night and just wanted to go sleep before I even started, surprisingly.

This happens every time I open the computer at home...

Okay, enjoy, and feel totally free to ask about any part of this! Zoom in the page if the text is too small.

A few things not mentioned in the tutorial:

In the photo showing my patterns, notice the dashed line on the body pattern? That kind of shape was better than the original shape, and really, five narrower pieces would've been better than four wider.

The sizes for my patterns were as follows (approximately): body piece height 18cm, width 20cm; bottom diameter 25.5cm, circumference 80cm; ear height 16.5cm, max width 6.5cm; tail height 5cm, width 3cm.
I used seam allowances of 1cm in everything except for the tail where I used 0.5cm seam allowances.

Sewing pieces together: right sides facing each other! Use pins to help keeping pieces in place. Turn sewed pieces around so that the right sides are out.

I guess that's pretty much it.

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I wish everyone a great time this year 2015, and of course hoping for more people to tune in for my blog haha. I'll keep you updated.

Have a festive toilet selfie.

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Cute photos of animals and stories about food and saving the lives of Seychelles' citizens.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Futayo Honda WIP no.1 & more plans

So as promised, a WIP-post about making the costume of Futayo Honda from Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon, Horizon on the Middle of Nowhere being its English translation.

I watched the first season of the anime god knows when... Wow, actually, just about one year ago in the beginning of December, 2013. (Yeah, I cheated, I checked my MAL.)
I liked it a lot, and not just because of 70% of screen time consists of boobs, no, the story was actually good and there were a few interesting characters among others. So what would be a better way to commemorate a great series than cosplay from it, and of course I would now pick Futayo in my newborn crossplay enthusiasm, as she was my favourite female character in the series!

With no longer ado, let's start with the photos!

First off, some of my reference pictures put together.
I like her design so much! It's like, so inconvenient for someone whose fighting special skill is speed. Um, air resistance, anyone? Of course enormous boobs are a great bonus...wait, did I just say that? And then there's Tonbokiri, the spear, which is a very unique weapon.

A bit challenging hairstyle, great! Also, a cool face is always a bonus.

A screen capture from the anime, showing her going off to a fight...
And then some other photos Google had to offer me.
Yea, yea, boobs, irrelevant old man touching her ass...

So, Futayo's the first really big, most challenging, time-consuming costume I'm making. Thus far I have bought all the fabrics I will need for her, gladly, and started on at least three different parts of the costume, but nothing is even near finishing yet.

I figured it would be interesting to keep an eye on how much money I spend on the whole costume from head to toes, and also how much time I waste of my life making it.
After it's finished, I'll list an accurate calculation of everything here, but the numbers at the moment say something along the lines of 110 € and 62 hours.

I think it's much better to split the WIP-post in parts, making each "bigger" part of the costume its own post. This one being the references and what is my current situation with it post.

62 hours for these? I suck.
I'll give more specific information on each part of the costume in their own respective posts...

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Okay, then the part where even more of my (not so) surprising, extempore cosplay plans get revealed!

It all began a few weeks back when I was floating around the internet and somehow ended up thinking about how Gen Urobuchi is the guest of honor in Desucon Frostbite, and thanks to that, there will be a "Urobuchi category" in the convention's hall cosplay contest.
And that truthfully speaking, I'd really want to get chosen into the contest now that Yukicon was a missed chance (I'm a bit of a sore loser, I know...), so I'd need to have something from an anime he's made and that should be both recognizable and cool. And then I started to think about Rakuen Tsuihou, the new anime movie from Urobuchi, which will also be introduced in the convention on Friday...and began searching. And what I found was Angela Balzac.
Boobs, ass, what else does a character need to get me interested?
Well, in this case, at least horribly difficult shoes to walk with and such hair. Much tangle.

So now that my plans for Frostbite are finally crystal clear, it's time to get working!
Exactly how I've spent last few weeks...

The next post will be about the photoshoot from November, see how I'm falling behind? I'll never be able to update about something a few days or a week after something's happened!

For the season's greetings, I'll include this photo from tonight.
The first anniversary of making my own costumes is near, and (most probably) this was the last time I'll ever wear this costume that was my first completely self-made one.
It's time to move on in life...
Merry Christmas everyone!

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Oh, come on. Check the tags and get out of here!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

My life during past three months or so...

Like I wrote on the last post, after Tracon was over with, I started almost immediately working on some other costume stuff. Cosplay really is a damn lifestyle...that I'm happy of. (Though sometimes it's good to have some time off and I've sure done that too.)

Okay, so, what actually have I used my time on? Let's use photos, as a picture is worth more than a thousand words.
I wanted to start making something new and I figured it would be easy to make the suspenders for Ryuko Matoi. Well, guess who made them too short and had to take them apart again for later redoing?

Then it was time for serious business, something that was originally planned for Desucon Frostbite, but later put aside because my friend said she couldn't make Makoto after all. We'll see more of Noel Vermillion surely later, though!
The NOL Academy suit on Noel Vermillion, from BlazBlue.
So I started with what I could do right away: the skirt. I had lots of black cotton fabric left from earlier costumes and that was just the thing for this too.
I actually did the maths and made a pattern for a pleated skirt. WTF, you'd like to think? I wanted to try if it would be easier to make beautifully equal-sized pleats this way, and to learn how one would actually measure the need of fabric and other things for such a skirt.
Well, what I learned from this was that the pleating is easier (for me) when there are marks to follow, but overall the process was slow. I like making patterns though, so it was nice and there was no rush so I had time to do it as well as possible.
Next time I'll only mark the top and hem and pleat according to those, not in the middle too. Too much hassle for about the same result.

Ironing the pleats one by one took a long time, I even got bored while doing it... I had marked the pleats with a chalk through the patterns (four marks per pleat edge) before turning them over according to the marks and ironing.
There's the other half of the skirt ironed to its right position and the hem is sewn.

So then it was time to make the white stripes. I bought a 7mm wide satin tape for this. Because I suck at sewing tapes, I had decided that I would use two-sided fusible interfacing of some sort to attach the tape before actually sewing it on. There are the 5mm strip pieces on the left that I cut and used to "glue" the satin tape on with the iron.

Almost ready!
After sewing the tapes on I ironed the pleats once again and sewed them together a bit from the top. I had some kind of blackout in my brain and did it totally wrong. The result looks the same but I used twice the time on it in vain!

Then I sewed the zipper on. I'm happy about the outcome, as I was trying to sew it so that it doesn't show, though the pull is too big for such an occasion... Well, it doesn't really matter, because it won't be visible on the finished costume.
After this the only thing that was missing was the waistband.
And it's done! I like the results a lot, though there are a few mistakes on it yet again. Nothing visible, though, but something to keep in mind to doing "right" next time!
And the zipper doesn't quite give enough width while open to let me put the skirt on without slight problems, but what's a costume without some wiggling around while dressing up?

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I also started planning the costume of Futayo Honda from the very boob-tastic series Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon (Horizon on the Middle of Nowhere) somewhere along the line.

My great masterplan was to go to the cosplay competition in Yukicon with her (and to win it).
And as much as I hate crying about things like this in the internet, I'll now do it myself: I had used a lot of money buying all the fabrics and worked for one month already, modifying a wig for her and starting on the shoes at least. And I was so fixated on going to the competition that when I actually didn't even get through the enrollment it hit me so hard.
How could the competition enrollment get full so fast? I mean, I surely understand the international preliminaries getting full in minutes but that was just an ordinary competition. Which Finland hasn't seen that much anymore in the conventions this year, which then again eventually explains it all, but I really wasn't all that prepared for that happening to me right there.
I was appalled, dumbfounded, and ultimately disappointed. Shit, that totally broke me! It took maybe a few days to finally collect all the pieces back together, and I'm not saying I'd have been totally depressed for days, no, just sad for missing out on something I really had planned so much.

What I decided after that unlucky turn of events was to skip Yukicon, that would save me some money, and to keep making Futayo anyways, of course. Heck, she's amazing, I wouldn't suddenly drop one of my favourite crossplay characters just because one thing didn't go down like I wanted to - that's what life is about, you just have to get back up after disappointments and setbacks and keep going.
If we were to go into this kind of deep stuff more, you would find one of my own principles being that I don't generally plan much into the future because the more I do, the more nothing goes like I had planned initially. But, guess what, we are not going into that, because I don't want to seem like a depressed, whining bitch right out of the blue. No, I'm more of an optimist and I'm totally in terms with this thing now as I quickly realized that grief is useless. There will be many new opportunities in many, many conventions after one missed chance, and I will be there.

This leads to the present one way or another, like one thing mostly leads to others, and to the question: what have I actually done since my so-called resolve? Well, heck. Nothing much Futayo-wise. Or cosplay-wise, anyways.
Why does it always happen that when you're the most vulnerable with one of your projects, a new inspiration hits you like a lightning from a clear sky? No, I'm still not dropping Futayo, never. I just am -ahem- delaying her finishing deadline. Not much! Just that much that I won't make her to Desucon Frostbite either, which was my first Plan B.
This is also all thanks to things leading to others, good-looking figures demanding to be bought and characters demanding to be crossplayed, and anime series to be watched. So, I present you my new (partial) plans to Frostbite, thanks to the also very boob-tastic series Medaka Box: Medaka Kurokami, alternative version (from episode 9)!

Damn, Medaka was like love at a first sight cosplay-inspiration. All I needed was to see a cheap-ish figure sold online and suddenly I had a lot on my mind. It could have been my way to deal with the sadness but more than that I feel like that's how I have picked up my latest inspirations anyway... Hahaha(?).

I'm totally looking forward to making the costume. I've already started with the shoes, and I will make WIP-post about that costume too when the time comes. Eventually...

This has been kind of a heavy post, both by lenght and content. To not make it all so gloomy, I have also a bit of a brighter news to share!
On the 15th of November I had a photoshoot session with my friend, I wanted to give some more love to my Yukimura Kusunoki (Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai!) crossplay of which I had too little photos before. Fun times. Cold weather to be out in a little more than one really thin layer of cotton though! I'll make its own post for that sometime later when I get the photos sorted out, and before that I'll also give you some Futayo-WIPs! But, to end this one cheerfully, we'll need a compilation of...stupid faces!
Do I ever even try...?

That's all, folks. And that's how the cookie crumbles.
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Ramble, some cosplay plans, a few pics. Nothing to miss, really.

Monday, November 17, 2014

(Super late) Angel Beats WIP & photoshoot post

So I've been pretty much working on my next cosplay projects lately so I never stopped to write this post, as I assumed this will be a really long one and time-consuming to write.
However, now's the time for this one (finally), so grab your *insert preferred snack here* and seat yourselves comfortably...

Okay, let's go!
This jacket was patterned by my mom because it was supposed to be made earlier (=I wouldn't have had the time to pattern it myself) but the cosplay group was moved to another convention. After that I was too lazy to do it myself anyway and it was so easy to just start working on a costume with ready-made patterns!

Some ready-cut fabrics like the back bodice parts and inner pockets. Messy desk as usual...

Mom wanted to take photos of me when I was working and here's a compilation of some. Notice the violet hair and awesome shorts.

The breast pocket. It's a fake, just a small folded piece of fabric sewn onto the bodice. It was a bitch to work on because the fabric wouldn't fold even with heavy ironing and I had pretty small seam allowances already. And I'm bad at doing clean top stitches.
I'm happy with the result though.

Front parts of the bodice, now with darts and the actual pockets of the jacket.

Making of the collar. It was more difficult than any I've sewn before. I had practiced once how to sew that kind of seams before making the real one. I think I survived pretty well.

The sleeves, the other pinned together.

Progress! The bodice, added the collar parts, added the sleeves! In the last photo I have pinned the bias tape to both sleeve ends and pinned the jacket closed to see where to put the bias tape on the hem so that it matches equally on each side at the front.
(Bookshelf is a good place for hanging clothes.)

Many pins... Clever me puts the sharp ends so that I will surely hurt myself while sewing.
I had to redo parts of the hem bias tape four times or so because there were many parts where it wasn't attached on the reverse side. I kinda hate bias tape for some reason hahahaha...

All the sewing is done except for some things that would be hand-sewn later and the buttonholes. The jacket looked better on the dressmaker's model than on me even though it isn't even the right size for it...

Then started the making of details! This time it was the SSS badge on the left sleeve of the jacket (thank god only one). Because I'm a sucker for templates and painting details, the "only option" for executing the badge was of course nothing but fabric painting with a template. Two of them, actually.
So I measured a preferred size, printed out the picture, drew the templates to contact paper and started cutting with a paper knife.

Progress of the painting. It might look neat and stuff but it really was not that all the time. I painted this on two or three days (? I don't remember so well anymore, but I didn't have much time left at all) or better said, one whole night and the days prior and following that. The paints dried pretty fast, gladly!
I had to mix three different colors (dark red, red orange, pink orange) from my paints and I really had to make them good before starting to paint anything because I wanted to be sure that they're about right in natural light. I'm not all that fond of the resulting colors because I had to paint more layers than I had tried the colors on so they differ some, but there was no going back so I have to accept it.

Almost finished...not.
Painted using two really small brushes and a toothpick for smaller details. <3 Toothpicks for life as a painting tool! This (plus two black lines around the brighter white area in the middle) was how the badge was at the convention. I decided not to finish the smallest details in a rush because black paint is my arch enemy, I really didn't want to mess up 10 hours worth of shitting bricks at this point. AND I still had things to do and time was running usual.

Well of course I would make my own necktie, who do you think I am? The answer: a person who couldn't find a plain dark blue tie from ANYWHERE and I had searched many places (well except for an actual shop for men's clothes, who would want to pay 20€ for a cosplay necktie anyway?). So as a last resort I made my own with a velcro fastening and it sure did its job.

About 1,5 months after the convention I finally kicked my own ass and decided to finish the badge. The black outlines around the S-marks are done with a toothpick again and for the text I cheated a bit, I used a 0.05 super fine tip marker and dipped it to the fabric paint, using the tip as a brush.

Overall, I'm super satisfied with the painting result. The colors on the left side are closer to the reality in natural light. They are a bit off but not too much to make me fret on it.

I could list some positive and negative memories about making of this cosplay here... let's dig the back of my memory a bit more...

+ Ready patterns (thanks mom)
+ I learned new techniques in sewing (the collar, attaching the sleeves)
+ The fabric felt and looked nice and the color was good
+ Fabric painting ftw
+ Details
+ I'm overall very happy with my work on the jacket

- The fabric was some kind of a blend of polyester and it didn't fucking fold!!! Ironing the seams took lots of time
- The bias tape was too narrow as it was so I had to cheat a bit with it on the reverse side and had to sew the tapes many times because of that
- Of course some mistakes happened and the most visible one is with the pockets. (Fixed with snap fasteners on the way to the convention...)
- I started "early" but still had to compromise five night's sleeping time for working on it
- ...As usual!
- I'm slow in general

But, after all this, I can still say I'm proud of it as a whole. It was a nice piece of clothing to make and I learned a lot.

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Okay, so that's that for how I made my jacket, it's time to move on to our Tracon Sunday's Angel Beats! group and the small amount of photos we were taken of.

This far we were still trying...

But not anymore! Whooop!

This might have been the "omg there's a bee!" moment, don't know...

We sure had fun.

Trololololooo. 100% accurate character action.

This is pretty nice except for I'M IN THE FRIGGIN' TREE I should've moved that plant...
Thank you guys, it was awesome!

Otonashi Yuzuru - me
Hinata Hideki - Kimi
T.K. -
Tachibana Kanade - RiyoRing
Yui -
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I think the header says it all.