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Jan. 28th, 2010


A project aborning...

A project aborning...

Yes, there *are* things in the works, despite my long absences. Stay tuned.
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Nov. 24th, 2009


Venturing back into the light

Oh look, I fell off the map again. It's been a challenging few months of work and personal issues, including RSI problems that have meant trying to limit my time on the computer, along with a bit of an existential fog that significantly demotivated me. This is a step in trying to come back from all of that.

There's a backlog of personal projects that I'm working up to posting, but I figure I'll start small just to get back in the habit of posting. And so, here's an interview with costume designer Colleen Atwood, probably best known for her work with Tim Burton (without her, I couldn't have done this, as the gown is based on the one in Sleepy Hollow), but highly sought after in Hollywood in general. The interview does focus primarily on her work with Burton and in particular the upcoming Alice in Wonderland, but also talks about some of her other projects and how she works in general. I particularly like this quote:

Actually when I do period work, I really like to read about the period as much as I like to look at pictures, because sometimes the written word is much better at conveying what their lives were really like and how much they had, and where their clothes came from.

I get where she's coming from with this, as I tend to think in a combination of images and words as well--while images are incredibly valuable in costume, sometimes, the words are more helpful in conveying details and specifics about how things are made and the context they existed in. That has a lot to do with why I often write out my ideas as I'm working through them. This is not to claim that I am in any way in the same class of ability as Ms. Atwood, but more to express that it's reassuring to see that the creative process sometimes works the same no matter the level.

That said, hopefully I will be back here documenting my own creative process in less than four months this time.

Jul. 14th, 2009


The wages of indolence

My biggest problem--in costuming and in many other areas of my life--is that I'm a pretty high-grade procrastinator. All in all, I'm a rather lazy person, and getting stuff started in a timely manner has long been a difficulty for me. Aside from the general issue of not giving myself enough time for things, procrastinating leaves pretty much no room to account for the unexpected. In the case of the plans I'd made about my outfits for C15, I waited even longer than usual, and the result of that bit me in the butt, hard. Read more...Collapse )

Jul. 6th, 2009


Standard pre-event wibbling

Less than two weeks away is Convergence 15. This Convergence (not to be confused with any of the various other events with the same name) is a party for gothy sorts, originally started as a sort of "reunion" for people on the alt.gothic.* hierarchy of groups on Usenet, back in the mists of Internet prehistory when Usenet was all the "social networking" anybody had. ;) Anyway, this year's edition is not far off, and I'm going this year.

Convergence isn't, strictly speaking, a "costume" event. But particularly for those of us who came up through alt.gothic.fashion, it's definitely an opportunity to wear fabulous, extravagant things. As I am all in favor of wearing fabulous, extravagant things when given opportunity, I plan to do so for C15. The problem, as usual before such an event, is that I have to decide what fabulous, extravagant things to wear. Read more...Collapse )

Don't get me wrong--I'm thrilled to have all these ideas and all these options for things to wear. It's just that such a bounty of riches makes choosing difficult, because I like them all. We should all have problems of this magnitude. ;)

Jul. 5th, 2009


A one-off

Okay, so I haven't gotten around to any of the other NWC stuff I said I'd be posting about. I shouldn't really be surprised at that, and honestly, neither should you. Follow-through is not my strongest skill. ;) I do have a few new things to write about and I'm trying to get to those over the next day or two.

This is the first of those: a one-off outfit I put together for a friend's birthday garden party last week. Her theme was "anything fitting any period between 1750 and 1950," which certainly left a lot of leeway. I fussed over what I was going to wear for several days, having to deal with issues of weather and temperature, logistics of outfits, and just plain "what do I feel up to wearing?" What I finally ended up with, completed and decided on just that morning, surprised even me with how well it worked out. Read more...Collapse )

May. 5th, 2009


NWC32: Saturday evening

So, as part of the general theme-o-stripes, I planned to wear my black and white striped Georgian gown from Azrael's Accomplice (the one in this userpic, in fact). I've had this gown for several years and worn it at several conventions, so I felt it would be a good idea to do something different with it if I was going to wear it again. I do have some plans to modify the trim, but (as with everything else this year) I didn't give myself time to do that, and I was initially feeling rather uninspired about what to do. Then, as I posted a few weeks before NWC, I found myself drawing inspiration from a photo of a Galliano show: a sort of "Incroyable," punk-tinged notion of how to make something dramatically different and yet still in the period spirit with an outfit I'd had for quite awhile.

This costume was the last one to be conceptualized and put together, and it was due to sheer laziness. I had to scramble to get all the pieces I wanted, and some of my ideas failed and had to be changed. I was still sewing pieces of it together the night before the convention, and the wig wasn't even finished until Saturday afternoon at the convention. The potential for failure was very high, but I think in a way that was part of the appeal--if you're gonna break rules, might as well break a lot of them, eh? I literally had no idea how it was going to look, and to some extent no idea how it was even going to logistically work, until I put it on. Read more...Collapse )

Since this is such a huge production of an outfit, with multiple detailed steps, I'm going to break the description into segments with their own cuts, so you can choose to read it in pieces if you wish.

The gownCollapse )

The wig, hat, and accessoriesCollapse )

The makeupCollapse )

The conclusionCollapse )

Whew! If you read all the way through that ordeal, you deserve a medal.

I do have a Sunday outfit, but I'm not sure if I'll detail that one--it's mostly just a toned-down version of the Vampires Ball outfit. However, I think I will highlight a few costumes from other people that I enjoyed at NWC this year. And I would like to give my husband a sort of "guest post" about his showpiece costume, which required electronics and was every bit as successful in its way as was the one I just described. (For that, though, we'll need to take a couple of additional photos of the finished project, and find the time for him to write, or describe to me so I can write, the process of making it, so no promises about when it'll happen.)

May. 1st, 2009


NWC 32: Saturday daytime

Because I was planning to get very extravagant for Saturday evening, I went with a (relatively) simple getup for the daytime outfit: an 18th-century influenced sorta-piratey thing that carried through the stripey theme. Read more...Collapse )

Apr. 24th, 2009


NWC 32: Friday evening

Because I'd done a Victorian-styled outfit for daytime, I decided to stick with the theme and do something Victorian for evening as well. Read more...Collapse )

Apr. 16th, 2009


NWC 32: Friday daytime

Our next entrant: The striped Victorian nightmare that I wore on Friday during the day. Read more...Collapse )

Apr. 13th, 2009


Norwescon 32: aftermath and Thursday's outfits

Well, due to my extreme procrastination, I didn't have time to document (in photo *or* text) the work I ended up doing over the last week of preparation. So no in-progress accounts of anything else. However, all in all, my costumes for this year were successful--it's just that they almost all would have been *more* successful if I hadn't half-assed it all and made more time to do the work. Most everything could have used more detail, more attention to detail, and definitely more refined work; sometimes my hacking was a little too obvious, at least to me. I can do better work. Too often I don't bother, and I feel like I should take more pride in what I do on this front.

In any case, the photos are all processed and it's time to start the agonizing detailing. So, let's jump on in with Thursday's outfitsCollapse )

So that's one day down. Three more to come.

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