Cosplay: Diesel Punk Captain America

24 Mar

Last month, I headed out to Joshua Tree for the afternoon with some of my friends to take fun photos of cosplay we had been hoarding away but never got good photos of! Here’s my first set, appropriately just in time before the opening of Captain America: The Winter Soldier! I did a Diesel Punk Captain America costume for San Diego Comic Con 2012, wore it for about.. oh… 3 hours before I deemed it too hot and uncomfortable and it was ruining my life, haha! That’s what I get for making shorts out of upholstery-thickness vinyl! I handmade the corset, shorts, straps, armbands, and gloves. A lot of rivets, and a lot of D-rings went into this, haha. I hand painted the “A” and Capt America wings on the hat, and dyed and distressed the straps and harness. It wasn’t terribly hard to make, but a little warm in the butt, which I’ll have to be careful of for next time, haha! Anyway, I’m glad I’m able to share these photos with you guys now, thanks to the wonderful Laurie of Lauren Elisabeth Photography. I hope you all appreciate how TOTES PATRIOTIC I am trying to be in these photos, haha. GO AMERICA!

One of my photos was used for this event that’s coming up this Thursday in Los Angeles! Stan Lee just retweeted it, so I’m sorta psyched for that, too. Hope to see you guys there!

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Stay tuned for more photos from our Joshua Tree shoot, coming soon!

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Engagement Photo shoot: Mini horses, whiskey, manga, and games!

19 Mar

I suppose my blog has become a haven for my wedding stuff, but OH WELL! I think more people are reading it now that it’s sort of nerdy-wedding themed, haha.

For our engagement shoot, we had no idea what we wanted to do, and didn’t want to do the full cosplay option of Sailor Moon (I’m more of the cosplay fiend than my fiance), but after chatting with my resourceful friend and amazing wedding photographer Shannon Cottrell (www.libramint.com), she suggested that we feature things we like. The list I came up with was… pretty dumb, but very us: whiskey, games, manga, and tiny animals. Since we don’t currently have a pet, Shannon kindly offered up her cousin’s mini horse as a buddy to play with during the shoot! A MINI HORSE. His name was Lil Henri, but in my head, he was LIL SEBASTIAN (If you don’t watch the show Parks and Recreation, you do not understand my excitement).

Anyway, we combined all these things and had a really nice afternoon shooting these fun photos. I think they really represent us as a couple, and aren’t TOO mushy mushy haha.

See more after the jump!

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A Sailor Moon Bridesmaid Proposal: Will you be my Sailor Soldier on my wedding day?

28 Jan

The “Bridesmaid Proposal:” In the flurry of having to pick out every little detail for my wedding,  I knew I wanted to put aside some time to make a special moment of asking my friends if they would accept the position of being my bridesmaid.

As important as things like linen colors, appetizer choices, and wedding dresses are, your bridesmaids are really the last line of defense against total meltdowns on your big day. I’ve run interference as a bridesmaid a few times, and already know that…. I will DEFINITELY need some linebackers (sports analogies, ugh I know, sorry!).  It was really, truly, hard to just pick four girls, so after sitting on it for 3 months, I finally got up the nerve to ask my ladies. I wanted to say thanks-in-advance and mark the day that I asked my friends to be bridesmaids with something special, so crafting a “proposal” gift sounded just about right.

I googled some ideas online, and combined a few together, while adding a little Sailor Moon nerdiness to the design, using Illustrator (since yes, my wedding will have something to do with Sailor Moon… more on that later!).

Sailor Moon Friendship Power… MAKE UP!

I got these cute pink holographic boxes at Daiso (everything $1.50 store), but they only had different sizes, haha. WHATEVER!

Each box had a personal letter (not pictured), a Sailor Senshi key chain, a scroll of “bridesmaid’s duties” I Googled and print out, little cards that explain their role, their dress, and our day, and a little bottle of bath salts. The cute holographic and striped paper is also from Daiso, in their origami section. The bath salts I got from Target, and the little cards I just printed on thick sketch paper and cut down with patterned scissors or paper punches.

The lids of the boxes. Cut out some hearts on metallic star paper and mounted it on holographic paper.

FYI, these are the new Sailor Moon keychains they just released for the 20th anniversary promotion in Japan. You can get sets of them on eBay and Amazon.com! The tags say, “Fight for Love and Justice with me!”

Detail of the Sailor Jupiter box:

 

Sailor Mars box detail:

The little cards pull out and have descriptions of each item.. just gonna keep that under wraps since that info is private/a surprise/magical girl business only, haha.

Sailor Mercury Box detail. I added bubble scallops to these cards since… BUBBLE POWER! Also, I just happened to have the punch leftover from my last project, haha.

Sailor Venus Box detail:

The boxes didn’t really take too long to make, and I’m happy I made time for it! This is probably my last wedding activity for a little while as I get back to the real world for a bit (i.e. Cosplay, haha). If you have any questions on anything, please feel free to comment!

Also, if you haven’t seen it yet, you can check out my Shojou Manga Engagement Party post <3

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A Shojo Manga-inspired event: Our Labu Labu Sparkle Romance Engagement Party

26 Nov

Last weekend, my fiance Will and I celebrated our engagement with a shoujo manga (Japanese girls’ comics)-themed party, complete with manga DIY decorations, a magical cake, and all of our wonderful friends.

Will and I met in Japan, while we were living there teaching English for a few years. Our friends joked about how our relationship was like a corny shoujo manga story, which is where we got the idea for our theme! We are nerds through and through, and wanted to celebrate that along with our friends! (BTW “Labu labu” is a Japanese onomatopoeia word for being in love… la—bu.)

Like many brides-to-be, I spent a ridiculous amount of time scouring the internet for ideas on how to decorate our small venue on a non-existing budget, as well as incorporate our nerdy little theme. Luckily, there are already plenty of photos of vintage book crafts online, that I adapted to fit the size of the smaller manga books I was using. Here’s a little recap of the decorations- at the very bottom are some links on how to make a few of the items and descriptions. Some items are sort of straight forward if you look at them though! Enjoy!

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Closeup of artwork by ZambiCandy!
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Invites designed by YumeNinja!
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Gordon Ramsay and MasterChef Junior cast attempts World’s Largest Cupacake… well.. sort of..

26 Sep

Yesterday, I popped out to see the media event for MasterChef Junior at The Grove, which boasted that Gordon Ramsay himself and the cast were going to unveil the World’s Biggest Cupcake in an attempt at a Guinness world record.

There was a decent amount of media there, and crowd of tourists.

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I guess the cupcake was supposed to be int his giant box??

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Some members of the MasterChef Jr cast came out (And Dara wore my red Hello Kitty x Chubby Bunny bow! <3), with Gordon Ramsay popping out right after.
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He gave a little speech thanking guests, then revealed that… oops… they tried to make a giant cupcake, baked it for 36 hours, then found it had been leaking and weren’t able to complete the cupcake….! How sad! Instead, he revealed a very tiny cupcake that they were able to salvage from the big one…

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(Photo from DailyMail.com !)

After the reveal, Gordon flicked it into the crowd… haha.

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I snapped a quick photo of Dara during one of her interviews wearing the bow, but had to run after that…!

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But not before grabbing one of the free Sprinkles cupcakes they gave to the crowd! Were they FOX-flavored? haha.

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Hope you enjoyed that senseless Gordon Ramsay post. I love his shows, and am stoked to see the premiere of MasterChef Jr. tomorrow!

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MasterChef Junior Contestant <3s Hello Kitty x Chubby Bunny!

25 Sep

Soon you’ll be able to see the iconic Hello Kitty Bow popping up on your TV screens every Friday! This Friday, September 27, 2013, MasterChef Junior will premiere on FOX, and contestant Dara’s signature look are her Hello Kitty x Chubby Bunny bows! <3

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The show follows kids aged 8 – 12 in a cooking competition being mentored by (MY FAVORITE GUY EVER) Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich, and Graham Elliot. Make sure to check out the premiere this Friday!

You can purchase all of the bows she wears in the show here: http://www.iamchubbybunny.com

 

Henshin yo! Sailor Moon Biker Gang Photoshoot

18 Sep

Holy cow, it’s been SO long since I’ve last updated my blog! I’m not sure if I have any readers anymore? Well, I thought I’d pick it back up again since I’ve been doing a ton of fun projects with friends lately!

For my birthday party last May, I made the theme MOON BITCHES, based off of Babs Tarr’s Sailor Moon Bosozoku Biker Gang art below:

Bosozoku Sailor Scouts!

But the party wasn’t enough for us- we wanted to really splash out and do a proper photoshoot with all 5 characters!  My friends and I got together and DIYed our own outfits, and styled our characters in our own little ways… Hope you all are ready for some awesomeness… because here it comes!

 

Photographer: Greg De Stefano, http://www.gregdestefano.com

Photo Editing: Greg De Stefano (Group) & Yume Ninja (Individual)

Sailor Moon: Michelle “Chubby Bunny” Nguyen, IamChubbybunny.com

Sailor Mercury: Mandie Bettencourt, GeekyGlamorous.com

Sailor Mars: Ruby Rocket, www.rubyleighyoung.com

Sailor Jupiter: Yume Ninja, YumeNinja.com

Sailor Venus: Jennifer Newman, instagram.com/jennernugen

 

Some notes on this set up:

We have all been cosplaying for waaay too many years- since back in the early 90s if you can even imagine that far back (yeah we’re kinda old). This project was a great chance to actually properly photograph and document a fun side project of ours, and I’m really grateful we did!

We all DIYed our own outfits out of various things we had laying around. My vest was a remake I did of a plain black one, adding Sailor Moon patches, safety pins, star shaped studs, and gradient painting the bottom blue and pink.

Some examples of the patches:

Vest Details:

Some tattoos:

 

 

We hiked around downtown Los Angeles for the outdoor shots on a sweltering day this summer, and I’m pretty pleased with the shots! We have plenty of blooper shots that didn’t make the cut, like us holding cute cats, walking (falling) on train tracks (near where they filmed parts of The Dark Knight! haha), and chugging 40s. Maybe some of those will creep up if we feel like people would want to see the blooper reel, haha.

We also majorly FAILED at getting good detail shots of our styling. We had a ton of cute Sailor Moon temporary tattoos emblazoned all over us, which you can kind of peek in the first 3 photos. You can buy some of the Sailor Senshi temp tattoos on Yume’s shop here!

Let us know what you think, and comment below! We had so much fun doing this shoot and hope to do more like it in the future!

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