Monday, September 23, 2013

Fall Equinox!

Yesterday was the fall equinox! Yay! I love fall!

And you know what this means, don't you?

It means that Halloween is coming! Yay! I love Halloween-it's my favorite!

In honor of the equinox, I brought out some decorations to scatter around my dorm room. Our condo is in a state of upheaval because of all the repairs. Poor Isaac has been doing all if that himself with little help. But that means little to no decoration at home. Sad face.
My cute little Halloween mice! I got this figuring at a Hallmark store a couple years ago.
There will be plenty more Halloween posts to come. Feel free to look back at last year's! There are some good ones! Also, if you follow me on Pinterest, I am constantly scouting for Halloween stuff! 

Fall means beautiful colors, crisp air, apples, pumpkins, and sweaters! I am super excited and happy! Welcome to my favorite time of year!

So happy autumn everyone! What are you looking forward to?

Monday, September 16, 2013

NDK 2013: Finishing Touches and the Main Event!

Yesterday was the last day of NDK 2013. Sad faces.

This year's program. Pretty, yes?

First things first, I had to finish my costumes! Namely my Jareth costume.

My wig! Starting to put in the blue. I used a sharpie. They seem to work fine.
Coming along!

Before I put rhinestones on, I sprayed the whole thing with fabric glitter spray (which I actually used on the wig as well). It added a general sparkle. Then I created a paste with mod podge and lots of glitter (like I did for the lace cuffs) and painted it on the lapels, shoulders, and back where the rhinestones go.

Dried glitter paste.

Rhinestoning! (That's a word now). I got tons of blue, black, and silver ones and just rhinestoned (see, it's a verb!) until I achieved a 1980's level of tackiness.

It had to look tacky from the front, too. I watched a lot of Sailor Moon during this time.
Nan Desu Kan 2013!!!

Unfortunately, Colorado had some pretty major flooding the week before NDK. I couldn't get down to Denver on Friday to join in the fun. The roads did open back up so I could make it there on Saturday morning.

My first cosplay was Nausicaa:
How it turned out!
How it is supposed to look.
I think it came out alright! Plus, my good and talented friend, Cat (here is her little company page: Addict Outfitters) made me a plushie Ohmu! I love my Ohmu!
Aww, Ohmu!!

Here was our big group cosplay this year:
The whole gang! (Minus our Totoro)
This was a fun one. Not everyone really realized that we were there as a group, but people kept noticing that they were running into a lot of Ghibli characters.

Saturday was when my friend, Jhenn, held her NDK panels. Her first one was on Japanese book binding. I know they were short on time, but she managed to gather a large group of interested people, which was wonderful! It was too full for most of us to sit in on, sadly.

I was supposed to wear my Jareth costume on Friday evening, but since I didn't make it, I wore it Saturday evening. Cat, my Sarah, wore her beautiful Sarah dress Friday by her lonesome. Sad. But here she is looking absolutely beautiful in her home-made ball gown:
So pretty!
Here is my Jareth costume. There are actually a few floating around on the internet, too. That's cool, right? It's OK, most people won't know that it's me.
Trying to glare in a menacing fashion.

How it's supposed to look. Not too bad a job, right?

I bought colored contacts that were not prescription nor were they fitted to my eyes so they were very uncomfortable! But here they are with my makeup that my friend, Katja, did much of.
I also have a decent amount of glitter on my face, which is difficult to see.
On Saturday night, Jhenn had her second panel: Ink! This one I managed to sit in on. Which was nice because she sketched a picture of me with my rat babies for an example. It was a good panel and very educational. Jhenn is a good teacher. Go to her panels! Plus, she is a great artist. She had some art pieces up for the art show that they hold every year. Both were beautiful. People bid on both! So proud!

Saturday also held many of the main events of the convention. The AMV contest and awards are always highly packed. The costume contest happened this day, as did the "Mask-a-rave." They had so many events going on, it is impossible to keep up with! The best strategy is to pick panels that you want to see and make sure you hit those and do anything else in between. Oh, and for future con goers: get to your panels early! NDK has gained a ton of popularity since I started going. They offer so many things, but it is very crowded and space is limited!

And remember, there is always Artist's Alley where artists gather and sell their crafts. This is a favorite spot for me--people are so creative and talented! I actually bought a couple of beautiful dragon prints from an artist. I highly recommend checking her out: Little Wings Dragons by Carla Morrow.

They have two different gaming rooms, one for live games and one for video games, both of which can attract quite the crowd. You may have to wait a while for your turn at the games, but it is fun!

They always invite many, many guests who participate in panels, interviews, and autographs. It is always great to connect with the people involved in the anime and manga industries and hear what they have to say. This has always been a base for NDK. They have been very successful and lucky with participation from the greats out there!

And last, but certainly not least, is the Dealer's Room. It's a hot spot! The lines to get in are almost always long, but they move fast! My advice though? Watch what you are buying. Some of the venders mark their prices up quite a bit, which I think is unfair. Be aware of what is good pricing and what is oddly high. You can probably find these at a shop for a reasonable price. That's not to say that they are all there to rip you off, that's not true at all. Just be aware. Really though, you can find SOOOO many cool things here! It is crowded, but worth waiting and browsing.

And just sitting and watching people is part of the fun. Lots of cool and creative costumes to see. There are several sites where you can find costume pictures. I was pleased by the numbers of people doing female versions of strong, male characters. Represent, ladies! Speaking of which...

Sunday, Katja and I did our Lady Doctor costumes.

I probably shouldn't be smiling... And Katja lent me that hat.

The fourth and tenth Lady Doctors!
I did get many, many compliments on my scarf! Which made me happy because I love it! It is probably 13 feet long or so.

Every year in the past (since NDK has been held at this location, anyway) we have taken a picture of our group in the reflected ceiling windows at night. We actually forgot this year so we used this conveniently dark wall art to take our reflection picture in. You can kind of see us.

Our annual picture!
That's the end of NDK 2013! If I happen to stumble upon anything interesting that relates to this, I will be sure to post it for those who are interested.

Here is the official NDK website: Nan Desu Kan. Check it out! They are already starting registration for next year! And, yes, they do sell out.

Next year, our big group cosplay is going to be a cross between Sailor Moon and Disney heroines. Yes, you heard right. It might sound weird, but it will be fun! Maybe the boys can be Disney heroes crossed with Tuxedo Kamen. Who knows. I don't know what else I will do. There was talk of Power Rangers, so maybe I will be the pink ranger. We will see.

But, if you ask me? The best part about NDK is that it is a tradition for me and my friends (apparently we've been going for about 11 (or so?) years, though I know I missed a couple in the middle). We get to see each other and hang out together all weekend. We get dressed up, we eat our meals together, and we just hang out! I always look forward to spending this time with some of my best friends. I love you guys! You are the ones that make NDK fun for me. I look forward to next year!

Friday, September 6, 2013

NDK 2013 Costumes Part Nine

I am pleased to announce that my Nausicaa costume is pretty much finished! It may be a little rough around the edges (for instance, I didn't feel like adding buttons so it buttons to the top so I will be using safety pins), but it is ready to go! I just need gloves!
Not shown here are the leg warmer things, yellow tights, and belt. And the shoes.

My Lady Fourth Doctor (that's awkward to say... how are you supposed to say it??) is nearly finished! I have made all of my necessary alterations to coat and capris! I just need to finish the scarf, clean off the hat, and find a silly broach. Don't you love the progress? And the scarf is oh-so-close! It is about 12 feet long and just needs another foot or so and then the fringe on the ends!
Not shown are the capris, white shirt, and shoes. The scarf is nearly finished!

I wish I could say that I had progress on my Jareth costume. I left that one at home this past week because I'm scared of it. It still needs to have a lot done. But now I have this weekend and all of next week to finish! Yay! And keep your fingers crossed that my wig makes it in time. I still have to put blue in it and spray it with glitter. Oh, and I need to finish his broach! Don't let me forget!

Monday, September 2, 2013

NDK 2013 Costumes Part Eight

Nan Desu Kan 2013 is fast approaching! Who is getting nervous?!?

Being up in Fort Collins most of the time has really put a dampener on my costume progress. I may have to drag my sewing machine and supplies up here.

I did bring supplies to glitter the lace sleeves for my Jareth costume.
Necessary supplies

I mixed some modge podge, blue fabric glitter paint, and dark blue, blue, and silver glitter into this paste.
What it looked like at first.

It looks light because the modge podge hasn't dried.

After the first coat. I decided to do a second. And while it was still wet, I put a little more glitter straight on.

The finished product! Pretty right? If a little stiff. That's OK.

All pretty and sparkly!

I also brought all my yarn up for my Lady Doctor costume. My scarf is about half-way finished now! Though that's difficult to really tell from this picture:
I have actually added at least another foot since this was taken.

I'm excited about it!

And I started to make Nausicaa's leg warmer things. That's the technical term. I may end up having my Nausicaa costume finished first. I will feel better if I can knock at least that one out.

With some help from Krissy, I started to fit my baggy clothing for my Doctor Who costume, but I have yet to actually sew anything.

I did order my Jareth wig which will hopefully be here just in time. I also ordered contacts for Jareth:
One hazel and one blue!

Cool right? They are non-prescription so I won't be able to see well, but they were much cheaper. We will see how they work out!

Because NDK is less than two weeks away, I finally broke down and brought my sewing machine and some of my stuff up to my dorm room. Otherwise, I highly doubt I can finish everything. Wish me luck! I hope everyone else is getting ready!