Archives for March 2017

The waiting is Killing Me!

Hello my Costumer and Cosplay Palls!

So I’ve been continuing my goal of trying to loose weight. Last we left off, I’d decided to get medical help with this. Well, I’m still waiting for them to get back to me.

I want to get started right away, so I don’t want to wait to start something. I know there are steps I can start now, to help keep me motivated.

One, I have a FITBIT, so that helps keep track of my activity. I’ve had one for years now, but to be honest they aren’t always perfect. They are a tool, and helpful, but not 100% accurate. I like having a goal for the day and being able to track my progress. I have the Aria scale, but haven’t used it in years because I’ve been using the scale for the Omada/prevent program my work was using. I’m going to switch back to the Aria scale today.

One reason when I was moving that we decided to get this apartment was they had a pool and fitness room. I have access to both the indoor pool, which makes it a lot less painful to work out, free weights, and elliptical/treadmill/bike machine. My fiance and I have made it a goal to try to do SOMETHING for at least 30 minutes a day. I’m better at it than others, I find on weekdays its hard to stay motivated. I’m always so tired I can never get out of bed earlier than I have too so I can’t work out then. We’ve been doing okay about working out as soon as we get home on days we go strait home from work. I pop dinner in the oven, I have the workout clothes laid out so its a quick change. Then come back, quick shower, eat dinner, and still have some free time. Shower is needed because even though its not a lot of time to many people, it is a LOT of sweat for me! Nights we don’t get home till 9 or 10pm? Well… not so much. I’m trying to do it that I go for a walk at lunch when working but lunch is only so long. I also have the option of doing a standing desk, but my ankles and legs hurt so much from that, and it’s hard to work when you are distracted by the constant throbbing pain.

Food is the hardest change of course. At this point, we are already changing so much, it feels overwhelming to thing of a giant change to food. I can push chicken and veggies and thats great, if we are going home. Again, it’s those nights you aren’t. Those nights you are running over to a friends house playing Pathfinder for from 6pm to 2 am. Or going to play board games at another’s friends house all day on a saturday, you can’t always cook in their kitchen. Though my friends are very supportive and are willing to let me.

At this point I’m going to try to keep up with the little physical changes, try to encourage myself to pick the healthier option of whats available, and keep logging what I’m eating. I bought a little book on amazon to try. I’ve used LoseIt, MyFitnessPal, and the Fitbit food tracking program and I just hate having to look everything up and all the little details. I’m eating food quickly because I don’t have time for food. Why would I have time for logging it? Writing it down and how much is a good start I figure, so I’m going with that.

Hope you all are doing well in achieving your dreams, little step by little step.

The Ever Expanding Vocabulary

This isn’t official, this isn’t perfect. There is probably a lot I don’t have listed. I’ll add more as I learn more, or you tell me more.

Here is a LIST of the Vocabulary, the Jargon, of Cosplay

Anime: Japanese animation

Artist Alley: a place where artists set up booths to sell their artwork, but they don’t have enough to be in the dealers room. Tends to be newer artists.

Carmell Dansen: A swedish song that people dance to by mimicking flopping ears and swinging their hips from side to side.

Chibi: Japanese for short, short often implies cute. Often anime characters have Chibi versions with shortened bodies and larger heads and eyes.

Convention/Con: A gathering of people for the purpose of learning/enjoying more about a like minded thing.

Cosplay: To dress in costume and play as a character

Costumer: To design/sew/make costumes

Crossplay: dressing in costume as a character of the opposite gender.

Dealers Room: Room were goods are sold that relate to the focus of the convetion

Fan Service – Things/actions made to please fans.

Furry – a person in full body ‘fur’ costume complete with mascot head

gijinka = cosplay style for anthropomorphising )human representation of non human)

Glomp: a Tackle/hug

LARP : Live Action Role Play – playing as a character not yourself, often in a group.

Original Costume: Costume based on original character design.

panel: event at a convention which focuses on one topic

WIP: Work in Progress. This is generally pictures of the progress of costumes as they come along.

Tutorials

Here I will post Tutorials on how I make different costume’s. I’ll go into props, materials and so much more.

However, I am NOT a master. I’ve been doing this for over 10 years and I’d still say I’m an amateur. There is ALWAYS more to learn, many different materials, techniques and designs to get to a costume. Each one has a different price point and style.

However, some basic starting points:

If you want to start making your own costumes, look into joining a costuming Society. There are many around the country, and they can give really good advice.

Try to get a machine you can afford, but remember you have to live with it. READ THE MANUAL. Do research online. For most costumes you are going to want something that can do a Straight stich, a zig zag stitch, and you may want a couple of extra feet types to help you out too. A foot that will work with the type of fabric you are using.

When you get your fabric, make sure you get thread that goes with it, and use a needle in your  machine that works with the fabric. If you are using a pattern, make sure you get a fabric that WORKS with that pattern, and cut the fabric the way the pattern says. Fabric is very different depending on how its cut and which way it is sewn, so you might have something that seems to match but it pulls or twists or has other problems.

I learned a LOT of how to use my machine, thread, needles and how to cut fabric from Sew it Out Loud, a podcast by the SewHere Studio. They are a great source of information.

If you want to make props, there are a million different materials and tools you can use. What you want to buy first totaly depends on the type of prop you want to make, and the style you want to make it in. You can use craft foam, expanding foam, warbla, resin casting… There are A LOT of different ways to go with this that I do wish to go into later on.

So for props, I would recommend doing some research. I like to go to Cosplay Tutorial  for ideas and alter things. Or even just wander through the hardware store to see what looks like a part of what I want to make. Paint changes many things.

I have so much to say, way to much for one spot.

OH! another great source if you have a smart phone is the Cosplay Amino App. It is a great place to work with other cosplayers/costumers on techniques, WIP’s and so much more.

Podcast

Hello my Costumer and Cosplay friends!

I am and have been working on a podcast about Cosplay. It involves not just costuming and cosplay, but the society we live in. A large culture has developed with rules, expectations, and it’s very hard to enter this world knowing nothing!

I hope to be able to answer people’s questions about what it is like to cosplay, what it is like to costume, why those are not the same thing, what conventions are like around the country and world, and so much more.

Getting Into Shape

Hello all my Costuming and Cosplay friends!

So I’ve been overweight pretty much since 5th grade. I don’t have a lot of memories of not being at the very least chubby, and I remember in 7th grade learning about BMI’s and being told I was overweight. Physical Activities were never the fun thing for me to do.

I’ve had multiple attempts at weight loss in my life.

First, in college (probably around 2007) I got up to 240 and I tried doing the South Beach Diet and working with my doctor to try appetite suppressant pills. I started loosing weight but failed to keep it off after I got off of the appetite suppressant, which was causing my blood pressure to skyrocket.

Next, I’d graduated from College in 2009 and was working full time at a customer service job. I played world of warcraft, made cosplay, but didn’t feel too bad about my health. Well, the not active at home not active at work, eating a LOT of ramen, caught up and back to 240 I was. I started looking into options to loose weight, halfheartedly worked on stuff, got to 260, and then in 2012 moved to South Korea to be an English Teacher.

Being healthy was both easier and harder in South Korea. I walked everywhere and took public transportation. Eating good food I cooked was easy because there were grocery stores and little shops everywhere. However, there were also TONS of little restaurants and, loving Korean food, I tried out a fair share of them. I ate a lot of Kimchi, Ramen, Bibimbap, Chumchi Joomokpop(Tuna riceballs, probably spelling them wrong.) I joined a gym, and came back from Korea in 2013 at close to 210.

I lived with a friend when I first came back while I job hunted, got a car, and apartment searched. I steadily gained weight during this stressful time. Eventually got a job, got an apartment, and a car. I settled into Staywell, a place that helped create healthy plans for employers who wanted to give their employees incentives for being healthy. I was up to 280 lbs at this point, in the summer of 2013. This helped motivate me and I joined Medifast in 2013. I worked out, ate on plan, and lost over almost a year 80 lbs. Slowly the weight loss stopped, I struggled.

I changed jobs in January 2014, started working for the State of Minnesota, I got a boyfriend in May 2014 (first ever in my life). He didn’t like the food I ate. My roomate’s boyfriend wanted to move in with her, so I needed a place to live. I moved in with a friend temporarily while I tried to figure out what to do, my boyfriend and I weren’t ready for that step. He lived at a place our friend group called Geek House. It was Dan, Ben, and my Fiance Mike all living there. Eventually, I convinced Dan to finish the basement of the house so that I could move in, and Angie, Ben’s girlfriend, convinced him to let her move in too. I continued to gain wait and had given up on Medifast at this point, and we started construction at geek house.

Eventually we finished the basement, summer of 2015. I moved into Geek House very slowly, and started  a very happy, but not healthy life. I didn’t eat right, I didn’t work out. I loved to cook, but it wasn’t healthy food. Slowly, the weight started pilling on even more. I wasn’t even thinking about it. I realized I was heavier, I noticed gaining weight, but… It just wasn’t as important as the other stuff going on. I Loved my roomates and boyfriend, but I didn’t always like living with them. I felt food distribution and chores were not always fairly shared. I was possibly more dramatic. So home was a little stressful. I got engaged to Mike, then my mom got cancer, then his father died, and his mom got cancer. It was a LOT all at once. We decided to move in 2016, and started apartment hunting for a place of our own. We moved, and then there was a large fire and my cousin and her son died, her mother and nephew were seriously burned.

After all this, I gained and gained, and finally stepping on the scale in January of 2017, I realized I was… oh god this is hard. I was 350lbs. It’s so … stark seeing it there. Knowing. I’m only 5’2″. That’s a lot. I have to be on blood pressure medication. I’ve talked to a lot of doctors and they haven’t all been pleasant about my weight loss. I changed clinics but tried to not really open up to them. Doctor’s make it so hard to trust them when they treat you like crap over and over again.

So, Feb 1st I started trying again. I started meal planning, tracking my food. Trying to find meals Mike likes. Our apartment has an indoor pool and a gym and we are working out, trying for 3 times a week at least.

Then, at the end of Feb, I realized I hadn’t lost any real weight. I was still yoyoing. In previous diets, I’d dropped like 10 lbs in water weight the first week. I realized, I really needed more help. So I went to my doctor at Health Partners, called my insurance, and looked into what I could do. I setup a physical for 3-1-2017, got a referal to Park Nicollet Weight Management program, and got sent a GIANT packet of papers to fill out.

Those papers asked me every little detail of my life. It was a lot to think back on. A lot to try to grasp. I felt like I was reviewing every time I had failed in the past, failed to get and stay healthy.

I’m not trying to loose weight for other people, I’m trying to do it for ME. I want to live, I want to be healthy. I don’t want to be in pain, I don’t want to have to take medicine to keep living if I can avoid it. I want to try to be healthy for me. Mike said he would be willing to go to the doctor too so we are working on getting that setup, his appointment is in April.

I’ve sent back the large packet of paper, so I’m waiting for Park Nicollet to message me at this point to setup an appointment. I’m going to try to keep a record of my weight loss to keep me motivated.

 

Squee out – Gossie

Cinderella

Cinderella and Fairy Godmother Convergence 2016

 

Hello my lovers of costuming and cosplay! Its really late in coming as we are closer to Convergence 2017 than 2016 at this point, but finally I am making a post. Before last convergence, as I was trying to get my podcast started, a lot of things happened. I interviewed people, I was getting all setup up then… My mom was found to have cancer. Well, I set aside a lot of things, and went to help with that. My fiance’s Father died. I got sick. Then we moved. Most recently some of my family members died in a horrible fire. So it’s been a rocky couple of years. During all this, I haven’t put a lot of time into the thing I truly love, creating costumes.

The only real costumes I made for Convergence were Cinderella, worn by the lovely Heather Logan, and my Fairy Godmother. The Fairy godmother was my old prom dress, and a skirt I had purchased at a sale from a theater, and an old costume wig I owned that I had never used.

The Cinderella though… that took some time. Heather has always wanted to do Disney, and I’m sure there will be many more Cinderellas to come. She found a base blue dress that fit her, and we altered it. Changed the back to a corset, added on the sleeves, puffy sides, added in tons of layering into the skirt. I had to do a LOT of hand stitching on this because I was adding onto an already made dress. In the end, I did the white side puffs as a separate removable piece in case she wants to reuse the dress or side puffs for alternate costuming or change their shapes.

We also did a found costume theme of the Muppets, using Items we already mostly owned. I was Rawlf, Heather was Miss Piggy, and my lovely friend Motavia was Animal.