Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Sword Frustrations

I am currently working on Ginryu, Kurogane's sword from Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle.  What a pain in the bootay.  The head is actually turning out well for me, I'm super pleased about it, but the actual sword...  Ugh.
I started off following a tutorial from James H. Fullmer because I really liked the idea for the basic structure of the sword - a pvc pipe and a pool noodle.  I used the Level 1 Sword tutorial because I already had a pool noodle on hand, but I probably should have done the Level 3 Sword tutorial.  To adjust it to my needs I left the pipe bent for a day to give it the curve of a katana.  During that time I started cutting down the pool noodle, hoping I could make it more slender.  Since I couldn't get it as slim as I wanted I decided, fine, it'll just be "sheathed" the whole time.  Kurogane's not supposed to kill anybody anyway.  Of course, who cares about accuracy at this point, Kurogane gave the sword away at the very start of the series and should be using a completely different one anyway.  But Ginryu looks so cool...
After cutting down 90% of the pool noodle it still looked too bulky.  So I started duct taping it 1. To squish down the foam and 2. To hide how choppy my cutting was.  I was pretty happy with it at first but now I'm feeling it's still too big.  It's supposed to be a katana, not some amorphous club!
So now I've cut strips of upholstery foam and am wrapping it tightly around the pvc pipe, tying it down with shoe laces to hold it in place while I glue it and wait for it to dry.  If this works then next I'll take a strip of craft foam and fold it in half over the upholstery foam for the blade.  It may still be too bulky and might still have to look infinitely sheathed, but it's got to be better than my pool noodle monstrosity.
Of course, then my hilt will also probably have to be reshaped to match the size of the blade because it too, was cut from the pool noodle.  And if I do that then I'll probably have to completely remake the dragon's head as well since I sized it to fit with the hilt which was the same size of the pool noodle blade.
Holy hecktolata.
Then I have to figure out a way to shape all the individual scales, which I'm saving for the very end so I don't have to do those all over again.
All because I don't want to buy a wooden katana because I want it to be foamy and soft so I can smack people with it.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Happy Pi Approximation Day!

My amazing husband is a math teacher, and that's great because I'm a math geek, too!  A tradition in our family is celebrating Pi Day.  But today is Pi Approximation Day, we couldn't have real pies, so we went to Walmart and bought cup-pies instead.  The total cost could not have been more perfect.
How amazing is that?  The only way today could be better would be to watch Pushing Daisies, but dang Netflix took it off instant watch.  So we're watching Harry Potter instead.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Well, it's been a week since my last post, time for an update!  Last week I gave a hint for what I was working on for my cosplay with Caj.  If you guessed Mokona, you're right!  I just finished making him today, too.  Can you say super cute?  Well, you'll just have to believe me, he is flippin' adorable!  Unfortunately I left my camera at my in-laws so I can't post any pictures yet.  I promise I will get some as soon as possible.

This was my first time making a stuffed animal, so I'm really pleased.  If you want to make a Mokona for yourself, I used Artflower's pattern found here.  The instructions are in German but I was able to figure it out without them for the most part.  If you need help, she does speak English (I had to ask her a couple of questions, myself) or you can ask me.  I also made a pocket and inserted it into Mokona's body with a zipper so I can put in essential items for conventions.  Functional cosplay props, ftw!

I hope you all are having a lot of fun, I know I have been.  Now it's time to get back to work.
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Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Earlier this year my friends had twins!  They were all over having a dinosaur theme so I wanted to make a couple of dinosaur blankets for them.  Well, I couldn't find any dinosaur print I really liked, so a lady at Creative Pursuits suggested I use her dinosaur quilt design.  I can't say no to people when put on the spot like that, so I said "Okay!" even though I have never made a quilt before.  I'm so glad I did!  It was really fun, challenging, addicting, and extremely therapeutic.  I'm already starting to create my own designs now.  Look for some wonderfully geek-tastic designs from me in the future!

Now, without further ado, here are the finished dinosaur quilts~

Design (c) Rita Standage

Also, we've decided on what our first official cosplay together will be, hooray!  I won't tell you what it is yet, but I'll give you a little hint from part of the cosplay I'm currently working on ~ "Puu~!"

Friday, July 1, 2011

Future Cosplays

Going to Comicon has really motivated Caj and I to get more serious about cosplay.  We have so many ideas we want to do and can't decide what to do first.  I'm excited to share with you our current Future Cosplay List:

Custom Robo - Hero and Marcia
Final Fantasy VII - Rude and Reno
Legend of Zelda - Ganondorf and Zelda
Tsubasa - Kurogane and Fai
Hetalia - Germany and Italy; Russia and Belarus; America and Canada

Of course I will get around to making all of these cosplays but what will I do first?  I guess it'll be a surprise!