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 -+-
May 18th, 2016
Quite a bit has happened since my last entry. Anime North is just around the corner now. The last few months have really flown by! Guess that's just how life goes as you get older. I wanted to make a quick update to discuss how my costumes have been coming along and how things are looking for Anime North and beyond.
Both my Splatoon (Inkling Kid) and Sakura (Naruto) costumes are done now. Sakura took so much longer than I expected. XD It took me 3 months to finish the costume and I only just put the finishing touches on it on Monday. I even used up all of the thread that I bought for it. I've never run out of thread before with a costume. Really didn't expect that. I ran into so many issues with various parts of the costume. Had to resew so many things including the collar on the blouse and the skirt openings. Deciding to use a knit fabric for the skirt and armbands was really problematic. It was not the easiest thing to work with for the skirt. I probably should have interfaced it as the fabric is quite finicky. It's hard to smooth out, the excess in seams can show through the fabric and it was a pain in the butt to sew down for the skirt front and back openings. I re-sewed the openings at least two or three times. In the end I had to abandon machine sewing top stitching on the back seam and I had to do it by hand. I'm not totally happy with the shaping on the back opening for the skirt. I might treat AN as a test run for the costume and if the skirt is frustrating me I may re-do it over the summer. I wasn't totally sold on the colour of my fabric to begin with. In the Anime her skirt and armbands are more of a lilac colour and in the Manga it's more of a white. My fabric is a light pink so it's a bit of a middle ground between both versions. If I'm not happy with the look I could re-do it. I already had to abandon using zippers for the openings because the fabric became bunchy with the lightweight zippers I bought. Nothing went smoothly with putting together the skirt.
I'm pretty happy with the costume otherwise! The blouse fought me over the fitting, but turned out pretty well. I made my own pouch for the back of skirt and I modified a pair of gloves. I also made a new band for the headband after buying a Konoha headband through Aliexpress. Pan helped me cut off the fabric and I glued it to the new band that I made so the fabric would match my blouse. I poured my heart and a lot of time into this costume. I hope in the end that it shows! I feel like most people would have finished this costume in just a couple of weeks. I'm so slow at sewing and I often have to backtrack and re-do parts. In the end I'm usually quite happy with the final results. I hope that I'll be content when Cosplaying Sakura at AN. She's such a kick butt character so I hope that I'll do her justice! I definitely have to thank Pan for helping me tame my wig for the costume. Without her help the wig definitely wouldn't remotely resemble the character.
I mentioned finishing my Splatoon costume. I know I said that I did that months ago, but recently new official images of the shirt design that I based my costume shirt on were released and I realized I messed up the design. XD I was missing a chunk from the bottom of the final letter in the front lettering and a small logo on the front of the shirt. I tried to heat 'n bond and sew in a piece to cover the missing part of the letter and Adrien helped me craft a logo that I used iron on transfer paper to add to the design. So I should be good to go now for Anime North!
Speaking of the con, the last few weeks have been going by way too fast. Between finishing sewing and sorting stuff for the Nominoichi, I've been running around like a chicken with my head cut off most evenings. I've been trying to label things I'm selling, wash any clothing pieces and of course, get things boxed and ready to display on the table. I have been offering pre-sales of the stuff that I'll be selling at table N133 and so far the pre-sales have been tremendous. I didn't realize it, but as long as people actually show up, the reserves that I have are about double from last year. I definitely appreciate the response. The more that I sell this year, the more shelf and basement space that I free up so I can feel a little less cluttered. XD Definitely trying to scale back on buying. I love interacting with people through the Nominoichi so I'm really excited for Friday night even if it is going to be very hectic and stressful.
I know the important thing about AN in terms of this site is Cosplay, so my plans for the con are to wear my Splatoon costume on Friday and Sakura on Saturday. Wearing my Splatoon costume on Friday should make my table very easy to spot. My friend Adrien (who will also be selling at table N133) will be Cosplaying as a blue Inkling Kid as well. My friend Kevin will be running his own table (N132) and will be selling a variety of prize figures, gashapon goods and lottery items from his recent trips to Japan. He'll be Cosplaying as a purple Inkling Kid. Should make for a fun little group. (^^)
Sakura is my Saturday costume. I'm hoping that the weather will be nice for the weekend given that I'll be wearing shorts and short or no sleeved costumes all con. I don't plan to Cosplay on Sunday so I can just be casual on the last day. I'm debating about bringing an old Lolita dress to wear in case I want to change at any point or if the weather is really cold. The other interesting thing is that I'll be purchasing my friend Quantum Destiny's old Madoka Kaname wig. I know I've been posting about it for ages, but I swear I'm going to get that costume done in 2017 and getting her old wig will give my costume a huge boost! I bought a wig for the costume in the fall of 2014, but I really wasn't happy with it. It would have taken a ton of work and it wouldn't look half as nice as Quantum Destiny's wig. Honestly, she makes an amazing Madoka! I really lucked out because she also included the red hair ribbons so that's one other thing to not have to worry about! I really appreciate her giving my costume a huge boost and hopefully the wig will motivate me to make the rest of the costume. (^_^)
Anyway, I'm really looking forward to Anime North. I hope it'll be an exciting year. I know the goal of the Nominoichi is selling things, but I hope that I meet a lot of people during the event. I look forward to wearing my Sakura costume during the con. I'll definitely have to make the most of AN since Atomic Lollipop has been cancelled for the year. If I don't pick up another con or event during the summer, the year is going to be a bit bland. I'll have to think about it after Anime North. Honestly, I'm not sure what I'm going to do with all the free time that I'll have once AN is over, but I'm really looking forward to relaxing! XD Getting ready for this con has really dominated my life for the last couple of months.
I hope everyone that's attending Anime North has an amazing time! Given that this will be my 15th year going, I sure hope that it's a memorable experience! (^_^)
-+- Past Updates -+-
April 30th, 2016
I've been meaning to update this site as I progressed with my Sakura costume and I really neglected it. For a costume I figured I would finish in
a month or two, it sure has dragged on. I set a goal of finishing it by the end of April, but I felt like that was more of a worst case scenario
and it was more likely that I would have the costume done well before then. Well, we're at the end of April now and it's not quite done. (~_~)
It's pretty close to being done. I probably would have finished it sooner, but I keep going back to fix or replace parts. It took me like 10
tries to properly finish and sew down the collar. I had to go back and add more interfacing to it. I made 3 versions of the Haruno circle for the
back of the shirt and after finishing the shirt, I went back and had to re-sew 2 of the seams. I've also struggled with finishing the splits on
the skirt part of the shorts. I've sewn the back part together three times and it took me a couple of tries to place and sew down the buckle
loops. XD This costume has often felt like I'm taking one step forward and then two steps back.
As it stands, the shirt is done, I've modified the gloves I bought, the armbands are done and the skirt/shorts are nearly done. I'm currently
fixing up the belt loops. There is a chance I might redo the entire back panel of the skirt because I've been having trouble getting the split in
the back to lay evenly and not look crooked. I actually originally made the skirt parts with zippers. I finished the front with a zipper, but the split
was curling up. I'm using a knit fabric that's quite flowy, somewhat thin and stretchy so it was not reacting well to a small zipper that's not very heavy weight. I scrapped
the zipper idea then, which worked ok for the front. In a lot of merchandise and some of the Naruto video games you can see the zippers in her skirt,
but it was not drawn in for the Anime so I'm going to roll without the zippers. XD I'll stick with my skirt as it stands for now, but I might
look for some advice to maybe replace the back later. I still need to make sure the leg bandages sit properly. I'm trying to make them stay up on
my leg using snaps mostly with part of the bandage being sewn to my shorts. Crossing my fingers that it will hold! My final project for this costume is to make a back pouch. I bought a pouch from eBay for a few dollars that I was looking forward to using, but because of the length and tight fit of my shirt, the pouch is too big and would sit too low on my skirt. (>.<) I'm trying to make up a new pouch on my own now that's about half the size of the one I bought. Hopefully it wil only take me a couple of hours, but it's still another example of how I step forward with this costume and then step back. I know for a fact I wish I had made my shirt about an inch shorter. I can't fix that without changing the zipper so I'll have to see how it goes at AN and consider maybe getting a slightly shorter zipper and replacing it after the con if I really dislike how the costume looks.
Anyway, when all is said and done, I should have the costume as it stands done by early next week. If I decide to replace the skirt panel I might do that later in May. My wig does need to be trimmed. My friend Pan is awesome and has agreed to help me cut it. Maybe she'll help me with my skirt problem if I still find it annoying. I might also replace the ribbon on my Konoha ninja headband. I bought a cheap one from Aliexpress. My red fabric might not be the best for a headband, but I'll see if it really makes the costume look nicer for the reds to be consistent.
My main reason for finally updating here, however, is to just comment about how sad I am that APOP won't be happening this year. It was just announced that the con has outgrown the Science Centre and they have not been able to find a suitable alternate location. They do intend to hold the con again in 2017. It's just too bad that it will never be at the Science Centre again. It was an awesome location for photoshoots and just such a cool place to explore. I know I can just pay to go there anytime, but it was pretty awesome to experience the Science Centre outside of normal business hours and in costume. APOP does still have some interesting draws like the crafting workshops, but it's not really my scene overall so I'm not sure if I'll bother attending it again. I guess I'll have to see what venue the con goes with next year if they are able to secure a location. As it stands, though, I do morn the con as it was. The last two years of APOP were such a blast! APOP being gone does leave a bit of a hole in my year. The only cons I have on the horizon are Anime North and one or two days of Fan Expo. Seems like a very bland year. I feel like I want something else to fill that gap. I might seriously try for Otakuthon this year or maybe actually take a vacation. I definitely want to do something so I'm going to have to start planning to get out of the city.
In the meantime, AN has been on the forefront of my mind for weeks. I did get a table for the Nominoichi. My table is N133 this year. I have plenty of figures, wigs, video games and fun goods for sale from various series like Sailor Moon, DBZ, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Resident Evil and Vocaloid. I posted a list of some of the things I'm selling on the AN forum and already a lot of my stuff is spoken for through holds. I hope everyone shows up to get the stuff they reserved! XD I know the next month is going to fly by so I hope I can get my costumes together and get everything packed up and ready to sell. I definitely have to squeeze a lot of fun out of Anime North knowing that I have fewer cons to look forward to this year. Hopefully it'll turn out to be a great year for this classic event!
March 9th, 2016
It feels a little weird to be writing my first post of 2016 and it's already March! I took a bit of a break from costuming towards the end of last year, but since my last post at the end of December, I have been working on a couple of projects. Firstly, my Splatoon costume is now done! I worked on it back in January and finished it at the end of the month. I didn't have that much to do for the costume. I had to add the pink stripes to the shorts, add lettering to a shirt, make a mask and attach the tentacles to the wig, but everything went smoothly and I was able to get it done fairly quickly once I found the motivation to work on things.
After finishing that project, I started brainstorming other ideas for the year. My Madoka costume is still on the back burner due to issues with patterning the blouse. I'm determined to finish it for Anime North 2017 so you can definitely expect that costume for next year! I'm not going to put it off for a 3rd year. In the meantime, I decided that I wanted to do something for AN. I started looking at my list of favourite series and characters and Sakura from Naruto kind of jumped out at me. I think she's underappreciated and she's a character that like Bulma, has a lot of talent and strength. She seems like a fun costume option for the year. I settled on working on her Shippuden outfit because it looks like one of her easier outfit designs. I have an old New Look Juniors pattern that I discovered while doing a pattern inventory. It has the right overall shape for the character and with minor alterations versus standard patterns, the fit is actually really great on me. I wish New Look still offered this pattern line! I have yet to find other patterns that fit anywhere near as well right off the bat!
I've already finished modifying a pair of boots for the costume. I performed Cosplay surgery on my old Maria and Batgirl boots. I haven't worn them in a couple of years and parts of the material was starting to degrade so I thought it would be ok to use them for this costume. I cut off the upper part of the tip of each boot. I crafted a new insole for the boots using felt and a comfy insole liner and I used electrical tape to hide any raw edges. It turned out really well and hopefully it will hold together.
I'm currently almost done a mock of the shirt using the New Look pattern. Just trying to set the separating zipper and draft a new collar. Hopefully it will come together and work on my first try! If it turns out then I can start on the real shirt in the next week or two. After that I need to make armbands, the skirt, the bandages for her leg and modify a pair of gloves. I'm going to reuse the pouches from my old Sasuke costume so those are already done. I already purchased all the fabric, notions and a wig so I have everything already although I am still waiting for contacts, the headband and gloves to arrive from online sales. The wig also needs some trimming work, but I'm pretty happy that I was able to get a wig with a skin part!
I need to draft a pattern for the skirt as well, but I'm hoping since the shapes are simple it won't be a problem! I guess we'll see if I'm right. My hope is to get the costume done by the end of April. I'm also still amping up to tackle another year of the Nominoichi at Anime North. I have plenty of Anime figures, video games, old wigs and other random Anime goods that I'm looking forward to selling. Every year I figure that I'll finish with the Nomi because I won't have much stuff left to sell in a future year, but I'm always surprised by how many old goodies that I dig up that I'm willing to part with. I've been trying to ease back on collecting figures and goods these last few months, but I still buy or pre-order the odd thing. A collector's collection is ever evolving! Anyway, at the moment I'm gathering the items, taking stock of their condition and taking photos for a pre-sale listing so that's been keeping me busy on the side.
It's still a little outside of the convention season. I am a bit excited for getting out and about with conventions again. I haven't Cosplayed or been to any sort of Cosplay event since Fan Expo last year. This year I definitely want to get some photoshoots done. Dilandau is still on the agenda and Sailor Mercury and Super Sailor Chibi Moon too. Dilandau still needs a bit of work. I'm going to be working with my friend Adrien soon on fixing up the belt. I kind of put that on the backburner until now as well.
My next convention is Anime North and I'm getting pretty pumped for it. I'm definitely going to be wearing my Inkling Kid costume probably on Friday of the con and Sakura Haruno would be my Saturday costume. I would consider bringing something else like Dilandau or Super Sailor Chibi Moon, but I'll see how ambitious I feel about costume changes. Friday is going to be super busy with the Nominoichi and Saturday always goes by way too fast! Sunday is my casual day so I try not to Cosplay so I can take in the dealer's room and artist alley quickly before they close for another year. I'm even hoping to make the trek over to Doll North this year. Anime North is definitely a con that you want to have a game plan for!
I am debating about attending more conventions this year. Another one day of Fan Expo is likely and if APOP is at the Science Centre again, I will most likely give it another shot for this year. I would like to go to one other con. I've heard whispers about the potential of a new con called YetiCon so I'm looking into that and with the dollar still being weak, I am highly considering taking another look at Otakuthon. Again, it's all very much up in the air, but I would definitely like to do something exciting this year so we shall see! I do like that I have started working on costume projects so hopefully the enthusiasm and energy will carry forward into the rest of the year!
December 29th, 2015
Popping in again with another quick update. Nothing really new to add to this site in terms of new costume galleries or new costume news. I have started outlining what I'm going to do to finish my Splatoon costume. Shouldn't take that long once I get started on it. Just breaking out of my sewing funk has been a bit tough though. I've kind of lost my motivation to sew. Not that I'm in a bad mood or anything is weighing me down. I did my second attempt to pass my final road test to become a fully licensed driver back at the end of November and I passed it with very few errors. The only really frustrating thing is that I probably would have passed no problem back in October if I had been able to take the test then and I could have avoided another 6 weeks of stress. It's over and done now, but getting back into the swing of my hobbies after all that pressure and stress has been tough. I am really glad that it's over though!
The current plan is still to get my Splatoon and Madoka school uniform costumes done for AN and finish the adjustments to Dilandau for the con as well. Getting Dilandau and the Inkling Kid costumes done shouldn't be a problem. I am concerned that I'll have to postpone Madoka again and honestly it's mostly because of a lack of interest in sewing. It's a bit of a long and complicated sewing project to get it done. Still definitely hoping to make it for 2016 but maybe just not the spring. A bunch of my friends have been talking about getting Costume Quest costumes done for Halloween every year for the last 2 or 3 years. I'm kind of hoping for Halloween next year we can all get our costumes done and so I'm hopefully going to have something new for that. Probably going to make either the pumpkin or the candy corn costume. We'll see if that gets done as well! It does look like 2016 will shape up to be a moderately busy year for me costume wise.
Reflecting back on 2015, it was a fairly light year for me regarding Cosplay. I didn't travel for any cons so I just stuck to the local events: Anime North, Atomic Lollipop and one day of Fan Expo. I didn't really do shoots or anything outside of cons either. I did debut one new costume that I made; my new Bulma Briefs costume
. That was a fun project for the spring. I did also wear my Diladau costume during AN that I commissioned from my friend Ammie. That's been a dream costume of mine for my entire Cosplay career (over a decade) but unfortunately it had some fit issues and I wasn't feeling well so I didn't really wear it for very long at Anime North. My friend Pan wants to make a Merle costume so eventually we'll Cosplay from Escaflowne together and it will be awesome! I'll definitely do a shoot of the costume in 2016!
My aim for 2016 is to have a fun year. Hopefully finally travel (be it for a con or just for a trip). I don't really take vacations so I'm thinking I should start doing that while I'm still relatively young. A trip to see the coast of British Columbia would be awesome. Don't really want to venture back to the States or US conventions until the dollar improves, but maybe the stars will align and I'll give Otakuthon another try next year. 2015 was a bit of a challenging year for me and some of my friends so I just hope 2016 turns out to be exciting and adventurous. So best wishes to everyone in these last few days of the holiday season and for the upcoming new year!
November 2nd, 2015
Just a quick update as a follow-up to events of October. I had mentioned that I wanted to do a basic version of my upcoming Splatoon Inkling Girl costume for Halloween, but I ended up facing some difficulties that really put me off from working on any costumes. I ended up being disqualified from my driving test on October 19th. The horn on my brother's car wasn't working so the car didn't pass the safety check just before I started the test. I had worried so much about doing the test so it was a tremendous disappointment. I didn't really have the heart to put work into a Halloween costume so I just re-wore the scrubs from my Lisa Garland (Silent Hill: Shattered Memories) costume. I do plan to work on my Splatoon costume, but I'm probably not going to start it until I feel a bit more energetic. I feel a lot better these days, but I wasn't able to book another test until the end of the month so driving practice and fretting about the test is going to keep me plenty busy until then.
I did have a fun Halloween, though, and I hope everyone else enjoyed the holiday! I decorated my family's house again and hung out with my friends Pan and Adrien giving out candy. I received quite a few compliments on the decorations. I have plenty of light up decorations, hanging ghouls and a lot of fun candle holders so I pretty much lit up my front porch and created a spooky atmosphere. It's nice to bring a little bit of spirit to the neighbourhood. At least it cheered me up.
When I feel motivated I will start working on my Splatoon costume. Shouldn't take very long to finish it once I get it started. Then Madoka is next on the drawing board although I might not start that until after the holidays. Hopefully my plans will work out better than the last time I tried working on Madoka. I definitely want to have it done for AN next year. Hopefully November will be fairly stress free. I'm still getting the house in order from the renovation so once the clutter is a little more clear I will bring out my sewing machine and get cracking on costume work.
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