Things I Love Thursday

I love Downton Abbey, even though it regularly puts my heart through the wringer. I love Mary and I love Cora and Daisy and Carson and well, all of them, let’s be honest. It’s lovely and I have very much enjoyed watching it with Bryn and Chelle.

Best of the Best whiskey tasting, Sophie got us tickets and we managed to sit at a table with some lovely Weta people. I got to drink some fantastic whiskey, talk with some friendly people, and chatted with an older gentleman in the line about haggis and neeps (sp?) and Scotland. And of course I tried my first bit of haggis and it was delicious.

The pirates and hookers larp was pretty fun, but I’m mostly just pleased with how cute I look in these photos XD

The weather is warming up! I wore just a T shirt and no merino layer! I’ve worn dresses this week, it’s amazing. Warmer weather and sun give me so much more energy, I love it.

Honourable Mentions: crafting, the universe working things out for me, Korean snacks, people who get me, turkey dinner, cheese and crackers, T shirts and chocolate.

A beautiful, dark, loving and ultimately optimistic song that I have been listening to quite a lot:

Rain don’t change the sun. Jealous is the night when the morning comes, but it always comes.”

Kapcon Day 1

First round I was facilitating in the Games on Demand room. I ended up with four people keen to play Fiasco and we quickly decided on the “Toil and Trouble” Harry Potter -based playset, which I can safely say is one of my all time favourite sets to play. We decided to be one generation on from Harry and his friends.

We had Morag Malfoy, who’s father Draco had died and she was desperate for a new father figure. Larry, Barry and Albus Potter, who were identical triplets and all player characters. Oswald Blaze, the head of Sytherin House and my character Gertrude’s father. Gertrude was in Ravenclaw and therefore a disappointment to her father and romantically involved with Albus Potter, the most jock-like of the Potter triplets.

Morag and Larry were in a secret society looking to do away with the House system and accept all students. They were called the Hatless Few. Morag was in love with Larry and trying to adopt Oswald as her new father. Albus was trying to find the truth about the week he couldn’t remember and there was some drama with Larry being a cold hard bastard.

Gertrude had a contraband pensieve which was used to show the Potter triplets that they participated in a cross-species orgy in the Forbidden forest, which Oswald was somewhat responsible for. He was possessing people and using the imperious curse. Apparently it was all to get Getrude a lizard pet, but I can’t recall how it happened.

The Potter twins awoke in the Severus Snape Memorial Storeroom, having lost *another* week. In the end it was Gertrude, Barry and Albus vs the other PCs with time freezing spells and some kind of ritual to destroy the Sorting Hat once and for all. Gertrude ended up happy with Barry (they’d made out when she thought he was Albus), Albus sad and alone, the Potter Triplets estranged from each other, Oswald relatively happy and an average result for Morag.

Everyone seemed to have a good time, and although we were a bit rushed with some scenes I was very happy with how the session went.

Round 2 I was meant to be facilitating in Games on Demand but I ended up playing instead. Basically I forced Simon to run Monsterhearts for me, James, Nick and Cat. I played a Mortal called Timothy Deacon. He was quiet looking with sad eyes and he was Cassidy’s boyfriend. His true love was Cassidy, a weirdo unstable werewolf boy. Cat played Celene, a fae cheerleader who was interested in Timothy and Nick played Gabriel, a Chosen new kid in school who was a total bad ass.

I had a lot of fun throwing my character directly into conflict, like standing up to the two demonic jock bullies, sleeping with my boyfriend to trigger his darkest self, getting injured and sleeping over at Celene’s (well, not quite…) Gabriel and Tim had known each other as kids so we got on pretty well.

Gabriel: I’m kinda glad you’re on Tim’s side and all.
Cassidy: Yeah, someone threw him off a building tonight, so I have to find them and do something about it.
(The two of them walk out of the party, leaving the injured Tim in the tender care of the fae Celene)
Cassidy: I should let Tim know I’m going
Gabriel: I think Tim knows.
Cassidy: He does? How?
Gabriel: Well, you totally left the party and we’re like, twenty minutes into the forest now.

Meanwhile in Celene’s house a much more feral fey called Hound has arrived, and he is also rather taken with Tim.
Hound: He’s pretty, I want him.
Celene: He’s mine.
Hound: Yes, we’ll bring him back to Faerie and we’ll all take a turn.
Celene: But…I don’t want to share him.
Hound: You’ve been in this world too long. You’ve forgotten the fun we used to have.

Hound intruded on Tim in the bathroom and Tim ran away into the forest and straight into the demon jocks (escape into something worse! oh yes)

Demon!Chad calls Gabriel: I have your little fag friend.
Gabe: Oh really? Because I have a werewolf.

The game climaxed with the demons holding Tim over a waterfall, threatening to let him drop if Cassidy didn’t back off and let them kill Gabriel. Cassidy broke the stand off by pushing the jock holding Tim (and Tim) off the waterfall in a slam tackle. Celene opened a portal to Faerie and they all fell through. Gabriel killed the last demon jock. Tim and Cassidy are then trapped in the Fae realm, apparently forever.

Third round I played in Sophie’s excellent Hamlet meets Gossip Girl game “Kin is Less than Kind”

I don’t want to say too much about this LARP except that we all looked fabulous, I had a great (frustrated, hard, upset, emotional) time playing Serena Van der Woodsen/Hamlet/Harri Markden and thanks very much to Sophie for writing and running it!

^ Me as Harri

Kapcon 2011 day one

I started the convention with Anna’s mini-LARP Dead Man’s Chest. It was a pre-generated ‘murder mystery’ evening style game but much more LARPish and the level of costuming was pretty darn high. I was cast as Elizabeth Swann Stanforth, the Governor’s daughter. I went for an anachronistic-but-got-the-idea across costume of a knee length shiny tiered skirt, pink tights, black boots, the top of my Victorian dress and a delicate silver charm necklace. Spoilers for the game follow so don’t read on if you think you might play it some time…

My character had just one secret: she hadn’t been kidnapped by pirates by accident, she had made a deal with Captain “Saucy” Nancy to be kidnapped so she could escape the engagement to the Spanish Don that her father arranged. My character goals were get out of the marriage, figure out if you want to be a pirate and try and get engaged to the naval captain instead.

I had a good time in this game, arguing with Scott who was playing my dad, my sister who had run away as a cabin boy on the other pirate ship, making friends with Captain Jack Sparrow Black, who unfortunately got thrown into a volcano at the end of the game, and arranging things so that I could have my cake and eat it. I got engaged to Captain Overy of the English navy and made an arrangement to meet up with Captain Nancy and go privateering with her when he was out of town. Nice one.

I was actually a little surprised at how much everyone seemed to want to help me, but this was probably helped by the fact that I forgot to play Elizabeth as a complete brat. I could have really ramped that up… There was some trouble with my sister running off with the Spanish to be a pirate and possibly getting blown to pieces but well, I wasn’t going to stop her living her own life.


That’s me, Daddy (without wig) and Captain Hal, my fiance.

We finished a little early and were roped in to being armed cops busting up a drug den very briefly. I’m not actually sure what that was about.

Second round I was running in the Games On Demand room and I got a group together to play Silver Kiss of the Magical Twilight of the Full Moon. Continue reading

December 5th

Last night was Debbie and Donna’s excellent Regency Magic LARP Betrothals and Betrayals, in which I played Miss Anne Baxter, a kind of Lizzie Bennett equivalent. It was excellent fun, although like any LARP there are a couple of things I’m kicking myself for not doing (trying harder to speak with Mr Delaney for example).

But there is one thing that I am extremely pleased with myself for doing. I got up in front of everyone and sang a song. I sang a capella in front of rows of people in seats, politely watching. I sang “If it be your will” by Leonard Cohen, using the Webb Sisters version as inspiration. First two verses and the bridge to end it. I was so freaking nervous. So. Nervous.

When I performed my knees were shaking and I’m sure my hands were too. I held my hands together in front of me, so that it wouldn’t show. I worked hard to ennunciate the words correctly and hit the high notes without losing power. And it went really well. After the first verse I settled into it a little and I managed to even enjoy it by the end. A little.

Anyway, I’m chuffed at myself for daring to do it. I must thank Regan for her helpful tips and for whichever movie/book/TV show I got this quote from: “Let’s not be frightened of things that can’t really hurt us.” It’s a good mantra.
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Catwoman

All credit for costume creation goes to the lovely Michaela. I just bought it off her.

I was nervous about wearing this one. Face paint aside, the Hell Girl costume was very comfortable -loose pants, soft T shirt, leather coat to hide behind. Catwoman on the other hand, is all skin tight all the time. Lucky for me I have some very lovely friends. I was putting the finishing touches on my lipstick, all suited and corsetted up, when Sam and Nasia came in and told me I looked good. Seriously, thanks guys! It was just what I needed to hear and the stomach butterflies vanished.

Unfortunately my pictures are all from inside at the party, so not very evocative of Gotham City. I will get suited up again sometime and prowl the city, get some photos where it all looks a bit more bad ass. But here’s what I have, enjoy!

meow

The corset was purchased off Trade Me, and is a little big. I was going by my measurements and the measurements on the site, forgetting that it’s all right to have a corset which is too small. On the other hand, I was very comfortable in it and perfectly able to draw breath so I count that as a win!

More pics after the cut.
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Hell Girl

You may recall that I had a big plan to become Hell Girl for my work Hallowe’en party. Well it happened.

After this the pants were tucked into the boots to show them off and I think that worked well. This costume is made up of (in order of awesomeness)
Sawn off foam latex horns made by Bryn and attached with spirit gum
100% authentic HB2 merchandise Hell Boy Hand from The Costume Shop. (Worth every cent.)
Leather coat bought second hand on Waiheke Island
Leather biker boots bought second hand off Trade Me aaaaaaaages ago
Black pants from Paper Bag Princess
Red long sleeve T from Farmers
Lots of red face paint.

The face paint was a bad idea. It was just cheap stuff from Whitcoulls and it started itching after about an hour and then it started peeling. Particularly on the parts of me that move a lot such as my neck and next to my mouth. The effect was good though and I won the prize for best dressed female. Yay!

Walking through town to get to the party was pretty funny. Lee was dressed as my FBI ‘minder’ so he looked relatively normal. I didn’t have my glasses on so I couldn’t see too many reactions but I did make some little girls scream. They saw me coming out of a mass of people crossing Taranaki St and shrieked. It was hilarious. Also ran into Steve and someone Lee knew. Even walking through the bar to the private function room was a bit of a trial.

More pics after the cut…
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Hallowe’en costume 1

I’m debuting my Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman costume (made by M) at my Hallowe’en party but I recently was invited to another Hallowe’en party on the 29th. Well, there’s some cross over in the people who will be going to both parties and much as I’m looking forward to being Catwoman I don’t want to wear it twice in two days. Hence I have to find another costume, that I will wear earlier.

Yesterday after talking about rule 63 I came across this gorgeous image:

From here.

The image struck a chord with me. It’s so pretty! Also Hell Boy is cool! Also I could use my own hair, and the costume isn’t so hard to put together. I don’t have to go topless under a coat if I get a red top to wear underneath it right? Basically it stung me right in the costuming gland and I went out at lunch time and bought red face paint, a long sleeve high necked red T shirt and some DAS to make the sanded down horns.

Wish me luck people! I’m not sure if I’ll pull this off or if I’ll just fall back on my Victorian dress and vampire fangs instead. I already have those after all…

I’ll post photos if I manage to get it together. I quite want to win the (possible) costume contest.

Other posts about costumes here.

American Magee’s Alice

American Magee's Alice

Ants had an A themed party for his birthday and I kept thinking to myself ‘eh, it’s ages away, I don’t need to worry about my costume yet.’ and then it was suddenly that week, and I had a very busy week being ill and having no energy and then it was actually *the day* of the party. I slept in, got some food and then wandered around town trying to find something appropriate.

I had been worried that the party would be full of Alices in Wonderland, given the movie coming up earlier in the year, so I wanted something dark and Gothic like American Magee’s Alice. I found the perfect dress *on sale* at Jay Jays. It’s even official Alice movie wear, possibly designed by Avril Lavigne. It was pretty 80s, with the lace inserts at the neck line and the puffy skirt so I was definitely doing my own spin on the costume.

I got home and made myself an apron. I went with a little half-apron, since I knew I could do it quickly and without thinking too hard. I did the pockets though, and drew the symbols on with water resistant sharpie pen. I whipped it up in 45 mins, ironing, hemming and making a nice hidden hem waist band. I’m really happy with how it came out. Then I needed blood stains, so I took my red food colouring and the apron out on the balcony and had an excellent splattery time. It looked very effective when it dried!

I had a pair of black and white striped tights from ages ago and I paired these with my fairy-tale knee highs from Sock-dreams and my mary janes to simulate the boots. I dug out my seldom-worn ethereal arm warmers to compensate for not having puffy sleeves, stuck on a head bow and a bunch of dark eye make up and I was ready to go.

People got nervous about my knife. Can’t think why…

The necklace is from Jay Jays also, they have heaps of cute key themed jewellery at the moment. I looked around the $2 shops and 2 Cheap but no one had a fake plastic knife, there was only swords, so I had to take a knife from our very own kitchen. I used the most blunt one we have.

You can see the socks better in this one.

Thanks to the lovely Hannah for the photos.

Strawberry Shortcake and Friends!

This is a very late costume entry, but I don’t mind. You shouldn’t either, because you get lots of neat photos to look at.

This year’s Wellington Armageddon happened back in Auckland, right in the middle of Easter.

So, we wanted to follow up our astounding Jem and the Holograms cosplay with another vintage 80s icon group. We needed something that was easy enough to wear and recognise and also was ethnically inclusive. Strawberry Shortcake and Friends was our solution. Giffy is Almond Tea, Michaela is Strawberry Shortcake, Ange is Orange Blossom and me, well I’m Lime Chiffon.

My reason for choosing to me Lime Chiffon? Well, I had the doll as a kid and she was my favourite (after Apple Dumpling but I think it’s wrong to cosplay a baby), plus she’s the ‘ballet dancer’ one and also…well, look at her. Her outfit is completely obnoxious life size. This choice would come back to haunt me when the whole group looked adorable apart from freaky old me. But anyway.

I made the dress from one of those generic ‘sexy Halloween costumes for women’ patterns that Giffy loaned me. You know the ones, the same pattern could be a sexy nurse, sexy Little Red Riding Hood, sexy waitress, etc. I made it a bit on the large size, because Lime Chiffon should not be sexy. She should be IN YOUR FACE! So yeah. I picked up the perfect colour green (read: eye burningly bright lime) cotton at Arthur Toyes and made up the dress with help from Giffy and her sewing machine (mine broke down during the making of this costume. Almost like it was trying to tell me something.) It’s actually a circle skirt with a wide waist band and a billowy gathered shirt. Super easy to sew.

Michaela suggested we do fancy ‘EGL’ inspired versions of our characters, which let me add in some details and fun stuff to the costume. I added a pale pink ribbon around the top of the waist band, a big old bow in the back (I don’t think I got a photo of it, unfortunately), and some fancy ribbony bits on my sleeves. For the first day of Armageddon I didn’t have a hat, as you can see above. I looked more like a freakish clown than a cute dolly.

Heaps more including photos after the cut…
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Masquerade on Fleet St LARP

OK, so this entry is full of spoilers for the fantastic LARP by Anna K, Masquerade on Fleet St. I’m writing it up like an actual play report, but if you think you might ever play this game please don’t read it!

Mystery is everything in this game. Secrecy and intrigue. Set in 1900 at the prominent judge Rex Solomon’s house, the game is a masquerade ball to celebrate his daughter Bella’s 16th birthday and the reopening of the long closed opera house. We played it at Turnbull House on Saturday.

Sam and Sophie came over before hand and we got ready together. Sam made her dress, isn’t she talented? Mine is a hired skirt and cobbled together top from stuff I found on sale at Supre and Equip. I’m a big fan of Sophie’s mask. It’s epic.

Still with me? Don’t care about spoilers? Here we go: Continue reading