Saturday, April 27, 2013

Cosplay Buzz wig review

So I noticed that Cosplay Buzz sponsors cosplayers if you email them and send them pictures.Their wigs are inexpensive and I was curious about the quality.  I did have one other wig from them, and it was nice, so I emailed them and asked if I could have one of their lolita wigs.  They responded with yes, as long as I paid for shipping because the lolita wigs were really heavy.  I was kind of skeptical- but it was still an awesome deal- so I agreed.  I decided to ask for this wig...Here

I received it in about 2 weeks- and when I got it I understood the weight issue.  It was HEAVY!  It came in a hairnet crammed in a plastic bag in a shipping envelope, I would've preferred a box but no deal breaker so far. 
I took it out and the first thing I noticed was how thick it was.  The wig itself was very thick and then there were the ponytails- they were also super thick.  This was A LOT of hair. (Below photo was taken with flash)
 The wig was also nice and long and made with nice real looking fibers.  (below photo without flash)
The wig cap was bigger than I expected- which I liked because small wig caps really drive me crazy- but if you have a small head- this would be too big for you.
Being worn :)
The quality and fibers reminded me of an Arda wavy wig I have- they look realistic and are easy to style, but can tangle easily.

The ponytails were also nice and thick and long and made of the same nice fibers. (below photo with flash)

Being worn with wig...
Here is the back-
and with the ponytails pushed close together- this made the wig really back heavy- and with the not tight wig cap it almost fell off- so you'd have to bobby pin it a lot to make sure it stayed in place if you chose this style.
After getting this wig I promptly wore it to a lolita meet up- I got lots of compliments on it and it seemed to hold up pretty well.

I also wore it a few weeks later at a con with a simple school uniform cosplay- it was really windy and after that the front pieces of the wig got tangly and kind of frizzy.
I was kind of dismayed about that- so after the con I washed it and tried to comb out the tangled.  it got better- but it still seemed to have lost some of the curl and still seemed a little frizzy.  I have one other wig from them- this one and I had no problems washing and detangling that one.  I sprayed some wig conditioner and still frizzy.  I am annoyed about that- but the wig still is wearable and I can't complain too much since the price was so low.  I will still buy wigs from them, but I think I will stay away from their super longer wigs.

Hope this was helpful :)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Sabaku Con 2013

Sabaku Con 2013

     April 12-14 was Sabaku Con in Albuquerque New Mexico.  I was invited to be a guest there, the first time ever, and host their fashion show, judge the masquerade and do a few panels.  I love helping with Monkey Paw Conventions (Saboten Con, Con-Nichiwa) so I was definitely happy to be a part of this new convention.  I wanted to do a run down of my experience, because...well...I just felt I needed to document it.

Friday- After a long drive being cramped in the car we got there at about 11:00 a.m. and was able to set up the Poison Sugar table pretty quickly.  I wasn't in cosplay and I just didn't want to get dressed since the fashion show was coming up and I was just really tired from driving since 3 A.M.  So I went to my first panel at 1:30, Beginner Sewing for Cosplay.  I think this panel went really well, and I crammed a lot of beginner info in there.  Even though the panel wasn't full, I think that the attendees really learned something :)  After that I went and helped judge the Iron BJD competition.  I was amazed at all the cool outfits people made for the BJDs in like 45 minutes.  It was so hard to judge!!  After that I went straight up to my room and started calling models up there.  I had about 9 models from New Mexico that I had never met before, and some of them were completely new to modeling and wig wearing and lolita!  I was so nervous that I would seem silly to them, or not like a designer should, but I think they had a great time (at least they told me they did).  It was very humbling, they wanted pictures with me and gushed about how fun it was. It really made me remember why I love this so much, and how making people happy is the reason I do this.  The models all did super on stage,and I was really happy with how they looked.  Kittywood Designs supplied awesome accessories for them!  I met a local lolita, Carol,  who helped out so much too, I am so glad I made those connections and I really look forward to doing this next year and making it even better. 

Saturday- So Saturday I was Queen Beryl all day.  I know I am not a super skinny cosplayer, and I never will be, but I wanted to be able to be a sexy Queen Beryl and I think I accomplished that.  I don't think that all cosplayers need to be tiny- and Queen Beryl is a curvy lady.  I still have some improvements to make on this costume- I am remaking the black pieces (they drove me crazy) and the staff still needs to be made.  Those will be done for Fanime.  I felt happy and confident and had so much fun with my fellow judges. I think we made memories for years to come. I also loved seeing how happy the masquerade contestants were, I was surprised there were no skits (not like AZ) and there were so many Journeyman!  But it was great to make people happy with awesome awards and recognition.
Kawaii Judge fusion!!!!

 After everything on Saturday, while sitting in the bar, watching everyone talking, I actually started crying and just felt so overwhelmed.  I don't know if I felt so happy, or worried I wasn't a good enough guest, or just overcome by all the excitement or what.  I just know I had trouble for the rest of the night knowing what the heck I was feeling.  Stupid feels.

Sunday-  Today was lazy day- I did a lolita shopping panel- which I couldn't really get onto the hotel broadband because it was really slow- so it was kind of boring- but still good info for those who went.  Then I wanted to change into Chinatsu from Yuru Yuri, but alas!, the wig showed too much of my hairline and I forgot pink paint to cover it up.  So I threw on a black wig and just wore the uniform.  It was really comfy.  I snapped some pics outside, it got really windy, I may have accidentally showed some people my behind :O Then we went back inside.  I bought an autographed Kazhua CD (FINALLY) and got to see them in concert.  They are so cute and awesome and amazing!  I also got to speak at closing ceremonies, which I was very nervous to do, but I really enjoyed.  So many people were applauding and saying nice things to me.  It felt like they really cared about me and wanted me back. 

All in all this was an amazing experience, and I am so happy I got to do it.  I hope that I can continue to be a guest at conventions so I can keep sharing my passion and knowledge with others.

So there you go, I know I don't post journal type entries often, but I really wanted everyone to know how appreciative I was and how happy I was to be there. 

See ya round

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Q and A #1 , Patterns, wigs and more

     Our First Question and Answer Post

     So I really wanted to make a video to answer the Q and A questions- but when I finally sat down to do it, I realized that the web cam was on my old laptop, which is broken :(  So I decided to do a blog post instead.  You don't get to see me face, but hey- you still get your questions answered.

     Our first question was from Hope and she asked "Where do get your patterns?"   There are a lot of answers to this.  I draft some of my patterns completely by hand with a design ruler and sloper patterns.  I plan to add making a sloper pattern to my list of workshops for the next Saboten (so you can make your own).  A sloper pattern is a basic pant or blouse pattern that is custom made so you can alter it however you please and you already have a base pattern that fits you perfectly.   I also sometimes use Vintage patterns or Japanese patterns and then alter them to my own design idea.  I did this with some old overall patterns to make salopettes.  You can really see the 50s in some lolita after looking at the patterns from back then.   
First of the new series
     I also use some Japanese patterns as a base- like those from Gothic Lolita sewing books.  I used to use these all the time when learning to sew- and I love them so much.  They printed 16 of the old ones, and just started a new run of only lolita patterns (no gothic).  They are in all Japanese so you have to know your way around patterns, but they are a lot of fun to look at and be inspired by. The patterns are laid out all over each other too, so you have to have a keen eye to differentiate them. 
Many pattern lines overlap.
You can purchase these books on Etsy and Ebay and Jlist and other places that sell Japanese craft books.  I create patterns on this stuff called Pattern Ease (like trace paper except not stiff) and then label all the pieces and save them together for the next time I use them.  

layers and longer bangs
side part with longer bangs
     The second question came from Allison, " I feel my jaw line is far too square to wear curly pigtail wigs and I look more like a boy then a kawaii lolita. What would you suggest?"  Don't worry Allison, pigtail lolita wigs aren't the only wigs out there.  The feeling you are getting is probably from the straight across bangs that are typical with that style wig.  It creates a very square feeling, which most people attribute to masculinity (strong square jawline kind of thing).  Try something that doesn't have such strong bangs, like a longer bob, or something with longer layers with the long side swept bangs instead.  Also wigs that part on the side and not the middle.  I think there are a lot of options when it comes to wigs, so don't feel that just because it isn't "typical" lolita that it won't work with your outfit.

     Our third question comes from Holly  "Do you feel there is an age that lolita becomes inappropriate? and how do you feel about chunky lolitas?"  I get these questions a lot, maybe because I am one of the older people in my local community.  First, I personally feel that the only time you need to give up lolita is because you don't care for it anymore.  Second, it's an eccentric hobby, and eccentric hobbies get harder and harder to explain as you get older- especially to bosses and coworkers.   But I don't feel that getting older means you should give up what you love, that's just silly.  If lolita makes you happy than you should keep it up.  I've seen plenty of older lolitas that look fabulous and are very involved with their communities.  I've even seen mother daughter lolitas and it's adorable. This same statement goes with being curvy.  I have seen some of the most amazing coordinates on plus sized girls. I don't think that being skinny makes you a better lolita, and it's kind of a silly notion. It makes it easier to get brand- that's for sure- but it doesn't mean much else unless you let it.  Sloppy outfits on anyone look bad, regardless of size.  And amazing outfits look good on anyone- in my opinion anyway.  Just stay away from the hate, and love your hobby and yourself.

     Our last question comes from Amanda: "I'm a woman of 25, and also have been a model for 8 years. I would like to try to find companies to model for, but am broke and cannot so much as buy the most inexpensive lolita items without saving up for almost a year (too many bills to pay). I can sew a little bit to make items for myself, but I would like to model for designers (they can even be just starting out) and not only get them, but also myself, more well deserved exposure. What suggestions would you have for me? Do you know of any places looking for models that are willing to trade items for photos?"  There is a site called Model Mayhem- you can register there as a model, specify what kind of work you want and message other designers and photographers in your area to set up a shoot.  A lot of designers will do something called TFP (you probably already know this, but I'll explain for others)  which means a trade for prints or portfolio (whichever pertains to you).  It basically means you will trade your time for a shoot for someone to put the photos in their portfolio or the designer will send you outfits, you wear them for a shoot, then return them and exchange the prints to the designer to use for their advertising purposes.  As long as no one is making money on the trade, it works out.  I've done this a few times before and it is always fun and worth it AND you make some great connections as well.    I can tell you to be careful when you meet with people, and always bring someone with you and protect yourself, you never know who is out there.  I don't know what state you are in, so I don't know who to suggest to you, but Model Mayhem is a great place to start and search. 

Thanks to everyone who submitted questions.  I hope to do more of these as time passes.  Hopefully is was informative ><

xoxo Mikki