Thursday, August 2, 2012

An Accounting of FaerieWorlds 2012

We took 2 days to drive out. Missed our turn at Pocatello, ID and ended up in Idaho Springs so we took Hwy 20 across to Mountain Home, ID. This route turned out to be gorgeous! We stopped at Craters of the Moon National Monument and oohed and ahhed over the lava flows for a bit. That day turned out to be 18 hours of travel time. I drove the last 2-3 hours and it was on Old Mackenzie Hwy. I failed to notice that my gps was set to avoid highways! This road is apparently stunning in the daylight. At night it was 20 miles an hour of hair pin turn after hair pin turn. I'm glad I was driving!

Day one of FaerieWorlds we set up our tents and I set out to make a few deliveries. I made a reversible hood for the Pandora Celtica drummer Shadow Cat (shown below) and a feathered unicorn horn for a fae friend's little girl :) I lucked out and found both of them as I traveled around the grounds the first time. 
For the first day I wore a chiton in watery teal with Mermaiden Creations flower hair pins, a brocade belt and a custom ivy torque created for me by Gypsy Moon Art Studio along with my el-wire wings (lights off during the day). 

After deliveries I came back for a nap. The 3 hours of sleep we'd managed was so not going to cut it. That night I got some video of my wings in action (embedded below). I was having fun until some old lady that was either crazy or on drugs (perhaps both) nearly folded my wing in half as she shoved to the front of the audience for the Niyaz concert. I eventually gave up my prime location for someplace where people weren't beating up my wings.


Day two I wore a black skirt, chain belt, snake skin bra/bustier, messy braids and my dragon Sprocket. I don't have any good pictures of that day yet though several were taken by people admiring my dragon. Bought a cotton pocket belt at a steal of a price and wandered around trying to visit all the merchants. And when I say all the merchants, there were a LOT. That night was Delhi 2 Dublin and they freaking rocked the house! The musicians jump and dance the whole time! I guess they have a new album coming out later this summer :)

Day three I wore my green velvet tied pants and leaf top with my manaed horns and my dragon again as I had a friend that wanted to meet him. I had to wear a turban under the horns because my hair likes to felt in evil ways around the water weeds :P 

I bought a custom maile necklace and matching earrings from one of the vendors that I had chatted with a few times. That night was Donovan on the main stage and I gotta say, I wasn't that impressed. Not my generation I guess. Lindsey Stirling had performed that day too and she was a kick in the pants :)

Overall I had a good time. I had great friends with me and the music was fantastic. It seems that all there was to do was shop or watch the music. It's become more commercial than I remember from 2009. Thankfully most of the merchants are still hand making their items. I would have loved to see some activity booths like mask making or painting or something. All these creative people with no opportunity to build! One of my travel mates asked many of the vendors how they were doing with sales and all said it was a slow show. She thought there were too many vendors for the number of people in attendance.

It was a very different place between day and night. Once the sun went down there were a lot of drugs :( People dropping acid and smoking pot and vomiting by the port o potties. Some dudes high on acid were tripping out on the solar powered rope lights I had around my tent. I was especially unamused as I was trying to sleep. This was in the outer grove were there wasn't supposed to be partying. I enjoyed my trip back to faerieworlds but I think I will seek out a new adventure for future trips. Maybe DragonCon or Labyrinth of Jareth. 

Friday, June 1, 2012

Confessions of a Hair Nerd

It's true, I lose hours to figuring out new braids and I turn into a pile of warm mush on the rare occasion when someone plays with my hair. On the off chance that anyone else out there is similarly obsessed I thought I'd share some pictures of various braids I've done and see if anyone has something new and fantastic to show me in return :D
 Here we have a 4-strand Dutch braid. Dutch means that it's braided under so it pops up away from the head as opposed to a French braid that is braided over and the borders blur into hair sections being added.
 This is a variant on a crown braid done with a 2-strand rope braid instead of the more common 3-strand braid. This is one of my favorite summer time hair styles and it also works really well under wigs for those of you who like that sort of thing.
 Here we have one 2-strand rope lace braid and then two of them in opposite directions. This is great for wrapping braids like a headband. In my case, having anything wrapped all the way around my head causes fierce headaches so I double them back like in the next picture. The rope braided 'tails' are folded up and pinned along the part between the lace braiding. It makes for lots of texture and it hides the part.
In this next picture I took the two opposing rope lace braids and used them to do a 3 strand braid with the remaining hair. Because the ropes are so thin, the main part of the hair tends to fall straight while they zig zag around it.

 This one is especially lovely and works very well as a romantic style. It can look very different depending on whether it is done neat and sleek or messy. It's called a waterfall braid and it's done like a French lace braid but you drop a strand after every braiding.

Another lace rope braid but this time ending in a side braid. I wear this style all the time.
 This one was a fun challenge :D It's a faux hawk for a metal concert. I parted the hair from temple to nape in three sections. The two side sections got tightly rope braided close to the part and the center section was hair sprayed, teased, looped and twisted to form the hawk.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Playing Catch Up

I realized while posting about my dragon that I never shared my Halloween costumes from 2011! I received a commission for a custom sexy Tron costume that consumed most of my creative time so I finished tweaking my Mord'Sith costume and put together Storm from the X-men.

First I'll show you Tron! So this was a long distance project with one fitting for pattern drafting and one final fitting. Not the ideal way to work, especially with something like this stretch vinyl!
Here you see the outfit laid out neatly on the bed:
My client ordered a Tron disc from Amazon that we used to conceal and carry the power source for the elwire used to light up her bra, waist cincher and thigh wraps. I drilled a hole through it for the power switch to come through.
She was nice enough to share some candid shots of her night out on the town :) One of these days we'll get together for a professional photo shoot and I'll be sure to share when that happens!
Now for the updated Mord'Sith with some new straps and other subtle stuff:

And finally my Storm costume :D I wore white contacts and gave a disclaimer for my super pale skin ;) No one seemed to hold it against me that I failed at looking like a proper Amazonian princess.

Taking Shape

So far so good! I had to modify the pattern shape for the 'tummy/tail' piece because I misgauged how the shapes would work together. I simply removed the tail portion from the tummy pattern and it came together fine :) As you can see above, I grew rather fond of my wing frames and was no longer willing to hide them inside the wing fabric so I've hand sewn them to the underside of the wing. I believe my next step will be to sew the head with ears and horns. At that point it should be time to draft the patterns for arms and legs and get them sewn up. Can you tell I'm stalling on building the armature? :D I honestly think it's necessary but I won't lie, it's the newest-to-me technique in this whole critter and I'm giving it lots of thought!

Obviously I did not complete my dragon in time for AnomalyCon, the steampunk convention in Denver. I knew I was pushing it and having to pick a large number of stitches when revamping the tail pattern pretty much doomed me to be off schedule. Nonetheless, I am having a blast with him and can't wait to see him coming to life!

I got new photos from Don Searle of FantaScenes photography with my author friend J.A. Campbell (check out her blog here)

Monday, March 19, 2012

It's Like a Messenger Pigeon

I've recently been bitten by the muse with inspiration from a fellow artist and suggestions from another to create a steampunk flavored shoulder dragon. I'm headed to AnomalyCon next weekend and thought he would make a perfect addition to my day costume. To give you a little background, the character I've developed for design inspiration is something like a Pony Express rider. A messenger of sorts. I chose to make Victorian underwear into outerwear using faux tooled leather, and micro suede. This year I'm adding to the costume with a lace and leather dust mask, proper message tubes for my satchel and my carrier pigeon. I mean dragon.

Here's last year's rigg:
This year I've signed up for the whole weekend, including a grand ball so I wanted two costumes and more detail than I had time to come up with last year. I'm a bit of a snob in that I cringe at gears for purely decorative purposes. I'd really like for them to at least LOOK like they might have a purpose. Unfortunately, I am not mechanically minded.

Here's the inspiration for my dragon:

He was built by Dragontry- find more like him at She is a superb artist and her dragons are not only one of a kind but meticulously built and very reasonably priced. Alas, I am a die hard do-it-yourselfer possessed of a huge stash of fabric and minimal funds for bribing other artists to do work for me. So with a giant nod to the brilliance of Dragontry, I am making my own pattern and my very own dragon *crosses fingers*.

Here's what I've got so far:

I've already decided the tail portion of the pattern will need to be modified. I'm waiting to draft the patterns for arms and legs until I have the body sewn so I can see what shape will best help my dragon to perch securely and also so that I may have a better sense of scale. More updates to come!