Welcome to Straywind.com!

Welcome to my Cosplay home on the net. My name is Rebecca (aka Stray Wind online). I've been Cosplaying since late 2001. I love the fellowship, challenges and creativity involved in making costumes. My forte is Cosplaying from survival horror video games as well as characters from Anime and games that I grew up enjoying. Since I began Cosplaying, I have worn over 70 costumes and I've attended over 65 conventions and major events. Cosplaying is an exciting journey and I look forward to future projects and events as my journey in the world of Cosplay continues.

-+- Updates -+-

January 27th, 2017
We're almost one full month into 2017 now and I've actually made quite a bit of progress with my Madoka school uniform costume. I've nearly finished making a dickey shirt to go underneath the blouse. It's nearly done because I'm not sure if I want it to be attached to the blouse or not, but I haven't made the blouse yet. I did just finish making the box pleated skirt and I'm super happy with how it turned out. I started it on Saturday and finished it on Wednesday after work. Next up I plan to start the blouse, which is the major part of the costume. All the detailing like the fake pockets, the puff sleeves, the lace and bias tape trim and the back bow will definitely take some time, but I hope it all comes together. I'm still aiming to get it done for the March Toronto ComiCon and with just under two months to go until the con, it does seem likely that I'll be able to get it finished. Knock on wood of course! I'll update here again once I start to make serious progress on getting the blouse done.

-+- Past Updates -+-

January 1st, 2017
It has only been a few days since my last update, but I just wanted to make a post regarding my Cosplay and convention experiences of 2016. I already discussed in my last update about my hopes for things to make and wear for this new year, but I forgot to discuss my overall Cosplay experiences of 2016. It's kind of nice to reflect on the year so here goes.

It's been a few years since I've had a busy con schedule for the year. Ever since I stopped going to US cons in 2012 and travelling to Montreal for Otakuthon in 2013, I haven't been attending a lot of events. Mostly I would go to Anime North and Atomic Lollipop, but in 2016 Atomic Lollipop was cancelled. That left a gap in my con year. Anime North went pretty well last year. It was a big improvement over 2015 when I was sick for part of the con. The Nominoichi (despite being a sauna) was a lot of fun and I sold a big chunk of what I brought. It was a really hot year overall so it was bit tough to Cosplay. Still, it was a nice con. Last year was the first year that I attended Fan Expo for multiple days since 2011. It was also my first time volunteering at the convention and working the masquerade. That was a fun experience especially since the masq wasn't too long. It was nice to see how the backstage worked and how everything came together to make a great show. I also attended the JCCC and Anime North's Halloween event and Fan Expo's December con (now called the Toronto Fan Days Holiday Show). It was like a blast from the past attending those events because the last time I went to a December con or a Halloween event at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre was practically a decade ago. Both events were great. I didn't Cosplay for the Holiday show and I remixed an old costume for the Halloween event, which was a nice choice.

Cosplay wise, 2016 was a pretty productive year, especially considering I only made one costume (Bulma's Battle of the Gods dress) in 2015 (and I didn't really get around to fixing up and re-wearing Dilandau in 2016 after debuting it in 2015). I worked on my Inkling Kid costume from Splatoon early in the year. It was mostly store bought clothing with some alterations, but it was fun working on the little details like the writing on the shirt and the mask. My friend Sierra did an amazing job on the hair tentacles for that. I debuted the costume at AN and it was really well received. Plus it was a great costume for the sweltering heat of the Nominoichi. My big costume for the year was Sakura Haruno from Naruto Shippuden. It looks like such a simple costume, but trying to get a decent fit on the shirt and make the skirt was really tricky. I spent the tail end of winter and most of the spring finishing that costume for Anime North. In the end I'm pretty proud of it and it was great to wear (even though the boots were murder on my feet). XD

My other two costumes for the year were Barbara Gordon's casual outfit from DC Super Hero Girls and Hermione from Harry Potter. I made Barbara's costume over the course of the summer for Fan Expo. Sadly the outfit was too obscure for people to recognize at Fan Expo. It was a pretty comfy costume besides the wig, which was super not comfortable. I had fun getting photos of that from Amanda and I love Barbara so I enjoyed Cosplaying her again. I do dream of one day Cosplaying Batgirl properly! My final new costume, Hermione, was mostly just a re-wear of my old Harry Potter costume. Pan and I bought new Gryffindor sweaters at Fan Expo to upgrade the look and I borrowed her Hermione wig. I have a new wig and a skirt coming this year so I can Cosplay Hermione again. It's a pretty comfy costume and it was nice to have something warm to wear at the Halloween event.

I also did a wonderful shoot of my Shinku costume in early October with Amanda so I made a small dent in my Cosplay photoshoot backlog. Hopefully I'll have more luck getting photos of some of my older costumes in 2017!

That pretty much covers the year. I did finish off the year by finally working on the pattern for my Madoka Kaname school uniform costume. I feel like the number of times I've mentioned wanting to work on or attempting to work on that costume in this website diary are too numerous to count. XD This time I hope it sticks and I actually get it done. So far the mock is looking pretty good. I was attempting to craft the sleeves on the 30th and they look alright. I want to work on the undershirt next to solidify the collar line on the blouse. I hope it works out! If all goes according to plan hopefully I can start working on the blouse for real by the end of the month. At least I'm already starting off the year with sewing. It definitely bodes well for 2017!

December 29th, 2016
It's been a while since my last update and it's been both an eventful and yet quiet end to the year. We're in the thick of the holiday season now with Christmas behind us but New Years still to come. I had a goal of actually working on costume things over the holiday break and I've been a bit productive. I've been searching through my patterns for ideas of what would work best for that long delayed Madoka school uniform costume that I've been putting off working on for the last couple of years. I think I finally found something that will hopefully work. I'm trying to modify the New Look pattern that I used for my Sakura Haruno Shippuden costume earlier this year. I have to fiddle with the bottom of each pattern piece to match the way Madoka's jacket cuts up and down and meets at the front. I'm also tinkering with the collar line. There is a lot to plan out for with Madoka such us the undershirt, the puff sleeves and the bias tape and lace covering over all the bottom seams. I'm hoping it will all come together. We'll see if the pattern will work out. So far I cut out a mock with the new collar line and bottom and it might work. I don't quite have the fit worked out or the sleeves. I'm kind of hoping to get this costume done for Toronto ComiCon in March. If that doesn't work out then I can still aim for Anime North. We'll see. I'm trying to be productive but my patterning skills are still a little iffy. At least I'm actually working on a costume for a change! XD

I visited with Ammie yesterday in London. I haven't seen her since the summer of 2015 and I've really missed her this year. We usually Cosplay together from series like Sailor Moon and Resident Evil and she's a great Cosplay partner. We discussed some costume ideas. I might try to go to the Sailor Moon celebration event next June and finally Cosplay as Super Sailor Chibi Moon to match with her Super Sailor Moon costume. I've had Chibi Moon (a present from her) ready to go for 3 years now so it would be nice to finally wear it. (^^);;

We exchanged Christmas presents and Ammie gifted me a Wendy Darling costume from Disney's version of Peter Pan. She made it to match with her future Peter Pan costume. It's a super cute dress! I really didn't think I could look nice in an empire waist dress, but it's really pretty. I need to let the seams out a bit and get a wig, but I'll definitely be wearing that as well next year. Such a fun surprise costume!

I did attend the Holiday Fan Days Show earlier this month. I didn't Cosplay so I don't have photos to share from that. I did have fun checking out the vendors area and seeing some friends. I got a photo with Santa, some Storm Troopers and Darth Vader. Just your average holiday snapshot! XD I did a bit of shopping and bought some fan prints and a cute Vulpix Pokemon plush. I topped off the evening by having dinner with some friends at Jack Astor's. It was a nice way to start the holiday season!

I hope everyone had a nice Christmas and that everyone will have a wonderful New Year's Eve! I got a couple of weeks off of work which is why I'm finally getting started on costume stuff, but I spent the first week off sick with a cold so I haven't achieved as much as I would have liked. I did have a very nice and calm Christmas with my family and I really couldn't ask for anything better. 2016 has been a rough year for my friends and family and the world in general. We're entering 2017 in a bit of a state of flux, but there have been a lot of unfortunate things that have happened in the last couple of months so it feels like 2017 can only be an improvement honestly.

I do have a lot of costume plans for next year. Definitely finishing up Dilandau and I'll wear it for a shoot at least. I've already mentioned Wendy and Chibi Moon. Madoka will hopefully finally get done for next spring. I also have a silly costume project that Pan and I plan to get done for Anime North. I'm still waiting for the new wig and skirt that I ordered for Hermione so I want to Cosplay her again in 2017 for sure. Seems like 2017 will really make up for the fact that I've been slacking off at Cosplaying and making new things over the last couple of years. (^^) Hopefully I'll also get photos of Sailor Mercury, Saki, my Inkling Kid and Celia too. That might be expecting too much but even photos of two or three of these past costumes would be making great progress. It'll be nice to get through some of my costume backlog so in late 2017 and into 2018 I can approach making costumes with a clean slate. I am looking forward to an exciting new year! Let's see if I can accomplish some of my goals!

November 26th, 2016
Just a quick update as my wonderful friend Amanda posted the photos from the private shoot that I did with her last month of my Shinku costume. I have posted them in the gallery for that costume. You can view them here. I culled the gallery and removed some of the old photos of my Shinku costume as I was squinting in quite a few of the photos or my wig was a mess. I did leave up some of my favourite older photos including a couple of photos from Youmacon 2011 when I wore my Shinku costume to match Ammie's gorgeous Suigintou costume. The bangs on my wig were super messed up then, but I just had to save some of the photos of Ammie and me. The photos from last month that Amanda took turned out very nicely. We shot around a dining room table with a tea set as well as in a home library. I got a few shots outside with the greenery that was still hanging around then. I even posed with a beautiful Venetian doll. Definitely felt the Rozen Maiden vibe and I'm super happy to have new photos of that costume. Sure is a joy to have a wig that looks nice! Can't believe I went through 4 wigs for that costume!

Next up will be a bit of a lull. I may have a few more photos from the AN Halloween event to post in the coming weeks, but otherwise I won't have much to post about here. I am debating about going to the Holiday fan event Fan Expo is holding early next month. If I do go I'll probably go with Pan and we would re-wear our Harry Potter robes. I am in the process of buying a new wig for Hermione and a skirt for the costume. Hopefully they'll suit the character, but I doubt I would get them in time for the fan event. Over the Christmas break I do hope to get some costume work done so we'll see if I can stick to that goal.

November 6th, 2016
Another Halloween has come and gone and it was a pretty exciting Halloween weekend. Friday the 28th was the Anime North Halloween event. I keep referring to it as a dance, but it's really called a Halloween and Doujinshi Festival. It sure has changed from the last time I went in 2007! Back then it really was a dance and the dance floor was usually at least half full and it was in the largest room of the venue. Now the dance floor is in the entrance hall area, was always a ghost town and there were so many other things to do at the event. They had a dealer's and artist alley room (where the dance floor used to be). They had a screening room, panel room, crafting, video and board game areas. My favourite part was the booth selling desserts! I loved the soda jelly and the pumpkin pie crème brulee. I totally didn't expect to see anything like that. I had a really fun time! Pan and I hung out for most of the evening and made craft items. Well, I mostly watched Pan make bracelets and little pom pom and pipe cleaner spiders. It was tons of fun to Cosplay as Hermione with her as Harry! I borrowed her old Hermione wig and despite finding a skirt, in the end I wore black pants which was a much more comfortable choice! I loved the artist alley! I got a couple of cute hair bows.

I added a costume page for Hermione here. The costume breakdown mostly covers my experience at the dance. The photos are mostly candid shots from the event when Pan and I were goofing around at the craft table. I kind of love that. It was pretty relaxing and the hours really flew by! Hopefully I can attend it again next year if the event happens. I could definitely go for more of the desserts! Hopefully I'll have a few more photos to add to the gallery of me with Pan. I'm already looking forward to updating this costume and wearing it again. I would like to get a wig to do movie Hermione. Maybe a better skirt to Cosplay her first year outfit. I'm definitely happy Pan and I splurged and got sweaters at Fan Expo. It really added to the grandeur of the costume (and the warmth)!

The rest of the weekend was pretty busy and fun. I carved pumpkins with my friends on the 29th. We then watched What We Do in the Shadows which is a hilarious vampire documentary movie. I highly recommend it! We had a little party on Sunday and played VR games on the Vive and the Betrayal at House on the Hill board game. We kept the spooky theme going! Then was Halloween. Took me all day again to set up my decorations, but the kids in the area enjoyed my house. It was popular for parents trying to get Halloween photos of their kids. I go all out with lights, candles and tombstones. It took all day on November 1st to put everything away. I had to use two vacation days to put up and then take everything down. XD It's always fun though! I also found out on Halloween that my older brother got engaged to his girlfriend of a year and a half in late October and they're getting married next spring so 2017 is already shaping up to be a busy year!

Next up for me is a lull between events! Gonna have to start working on plans for next Anime North. I'm already gearing up for another year of selling at the Nominoichi, but the important thing is to figure out my costume plans. Still aiming to get a silly costume done with Pan and to make Madoka's school uniform. Hopefully that'll happen. Then my slate will be clean to pick up more projects in the summer. Let's see if I can stick to my plans or if life will throw more curveballs my way! Either way 2017 is looking to be a busy year.

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