Count Down to Dragon Con – 4 Days

I know I over extended myself on the cosplay this year.  I think I could have managed one really good costume,  but not three.  I’m afraid that all my cosplay will look unfinished and rushed.   Oh well, might as well just keep working at it and everything else, because if you have to be alive one might as well be doing things.

Today I worked on Imperator Furiosa’s crest belt.

20160829_124941I haven’t done much leather work,  it’s been a hobby I’ve tried to stay away from because it’s costly and I already have enough hobbies.  However a little bit of leather working was necessary.  Since this piece is supposed to look a bit rough I decided that I might as well give it a try myself instead of asking my leather-working buddies for help.  My first step was cutting out a rough circle of black leather and using a rotary punch to make lots of holes along the bottom.

20160829_131133After enough holes had been created I started cutting chain to attach. I thought that her belt crest only had one type of chain, but I was wrong.  It is mostly silver/chrome colored and off a similar design to what I got a few days ago at the craft store, but there are a few different types thrown in. I had a gold look chain in my supplies, but I would like a few other types.  I’ll see what I can find tomorrow.

20160829_141015Polymer clay is always not one of my hobbies. Sculpting is something I’ve never had a knack for and to be honest I really sort of hate doing it.  I don’t like the feel of the clay against my fingers, I don’t like trying to shape it into the shapes I need.  I get easily frustrated working with clay.  I did the best I could and I came up with something similar to what Furiosa was wearing, but not very similar.  I’m hoping no one looks to close, and also that the flame points don’t break off.  But this is a pointless dream, I have never made anything of polymer clay that didn’t break.  One must accept impermanence, to do otherwise causes suffering.

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Some black and oil slick colored nail polish and a silver paint pin made it look a little better.  After cutting up a few belts I temperately attached everything with super glue and then started trying to sew it, using a big needle and waxed thread.  I had to stop before it was finished because my household is asleep and I feel an awl and mallet are needed to finish.

Hopefully I can finish this tomorrow before switching back over to the gin fairy.  Will I ever get back to working on Negasonic? Or is that one just not going to happen?

 

Dragon Con Countdown – 8 days

The Gin Fairy cosplay is coming together.   I spent a few hours today on the overdress.  I’m not much of a seamstress and I seldom make garments from scratch, but I’m pleased with how this is turning out.  I’m hoping to finish the overdress tomorrow and then decide if I have time for anything else on this one.  I love the sleeves! I might make several of this design in different fabrics just for these dramatic flouncy sleeves.

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Two blog posts in two days!  I’m a superhero!

Countdown to Dragon Con – 9

WTF!!!!!  OMG!!!!  OH NOZ!  

I’m over playing this for dramatic effect, as I’m actually not stressed yet.  Ok, I little stressed.  But not at all bad.

I have three new cosplays this year.  Which in hindsight might have been a tad ambitious, given that I’m not great at time management or finishing things.  Oh, what’s that?  Yes, I’m glad I pretended you asked that, I do have pictures of my progress so far.

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I’m specifically cosplaying her appearance in last year’s “Deadpool”.  She is so fucking emo!  I was in love with the look the second I saw her,  and in love with this version of the character just a few moments after she came on screen.   I have to be this character!

I guess you noticed, her head is shaved.  Yep,  I’m doing it.  Unless I freak out and can’t.   Nope, totally doing it.  Maybe….

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20160823_175823Two for the price of one on that head shaving thing.

Sorry about the super blurry picture.  She will be great to cosplay, if I can get  enough of the accessories done to make it work. I don’t even think I will get time to attempt the arm, not that I really have the skill set for that anyway, but I very much hope I can come up with something for the gear/skull belt.

I’m doing such badass characters this year, when normally I go for cute.  Maybe I’m finally growing up….

Gin Fairy

20160823_142043Seriously, don’t tell me you believed me for even a second on the growing up thing.  We are talking about my rather serious hobby of playing dress-up.  Of course, going to a fancy tea party is always in the cards for this sugary sweet lolita,  except this year the part of “tea” will be played by hard liquor and the “fancy party” will be a group of lovely ladies who want to be the anthropomorphic personification of their favorite booze.   Keeping it classy, bitches!

As you can see, not much done here yet.

I will post something new here every day until Dragon Con starts.  Mostly so I can stave off the guilt and shame that will descend upon me when I go to writer’s track sessions, where I will be forced to think about how very little I have written this past year.  I need the high of getting all pumped up listening to successful writers talk about their success, and being able to project that into my personal future for the coming year.  I can’t have the reality of my crippling self-doubt and rather epic ability to avoid work get in the way of my happy brain chemicals and delusions of grandeur.  When I hand out those business cards I will be able to say  “Oh, yes, there are so many posts on my blog, my own website isn’t wasted money at all, darling. I’m a professional”.  


Until tomorrow!

Building A Wattle Fence

It is the middle of  December and the weather is perfect for being outside.  I wanted to do something and also felt crafty. I made a long list of projects, but before most of them could be done I had to clear a bunch of ivy where we will be putting in a chicken run.  So since all the ivy had to go anyway, I thought I should do something with it, and that is what prompted this project.

 A wattle fence is made by weaving flexible branches or vines between posts, like making a giant basket. The posts can be very small like the ones I used for this, or much bigger.  The weaving material needs to be small and pliable enough to work with.  Saplings are great for this; many people use willow and it is supposed to be just about the best thing you can use. I don’t have any willow, but I would love to try it some time.  When I buy land for my farm one of the first things I will plant is willow.

This is an old practice.  If you have a hatchet and enough material, you can build fences, walls, or even houses using these techniques.  When building a house use wattle and daub. Daub is a mud type stuff put all over the wattle.  You should look it up, they can be neat.  Wattle can be pretty or rustic, and can last a long time.

The first step is to cut down some branches. I chose to cut them each 4 feet long.  You can clean off all the smaller branches on each or leave them for the weaving; I chose to clean them because I find that easier.  I left some forks and lots of little nodes to set the weaving on.

Once I had as many as I thought I would need, I made the ends sharp with the hatchet. Hitting things with a hatchet is fun; if you have never done it before you should.  After that I pushed them in to the ground and then hit them with a hatchet, so were really small at the top.  At this point I realized they would have been better a little thicker; I worry about them falling over. But they are what I have, so I carried on.  

Once the posts were in the ground I started gathering the weaving material and weaving it on.  This is the part that took a long time.  Sometimes the ivy would break while being pulled out, as it was such a tangled mess.  Some of this was here before we moved in, and we have not done much to keep it under control.  I took off the leaves and roots of each piece to make them easier to work with.  Some pieces were very long, as much as 8 or 9 feet,  some that I used were as small as 3.  It was pretty much random.  If I liked a piece I used it.  If not, I put it in the leaf pile.   This part took several hours of work over the course of a few days.   The hardest part is joining a new piece to an old piece; sometimes that can be really annoying, but before too long I had the hang of it.   As you can imagine, it  gets pretty complex.  I went around the fence 3 times on each level, wrapping, braiding and weaving the ivy.

This picture is of a first pass, but you can see the finished ones underneath.

This is fun alone or with friends.  It is much faster and easier when you have help, because often 3 or 4 hands are needed to make it work right.  The structure is all done now, if a bit wobbly, and I am happy with the results.

 If you don’t like old fashioned or rustic, it might not be your thing, but if you like free then it certainly is.  There is more I can do here if  I want.  I can weave the other direction, making it sort of chain link.  Or I can go diagonally from post to post, making a diamond pattern.  Or I can decorate it, which is what I am doing.  So far I have added on some ivy with leaves, and I am going to put on bows and maybe some white holiday lights.