Friday, December 26, 2008

Online superhero generators

I can't draw well at all and I tend to rely on the City of Heroes character creator interface inside the video game to muck about with costume ideas; however there are some online creators that are free and fun. I like the UGO hero machine but it actually doesn't have the one thing I'm looking for which is a basic bodice like Wonder Woman.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Top 2008 Baby Names

I'm happy to say that some of our traditional though slightly boring American names have dropped in standing from the Top Baby Names lists though they still appear. See for yourself, the influence of comics and pop culture on the new 2008 lists for Boys & Girls (Logan appears on both). Apparently the name Isabella may be due to the popularity of "Bella" from Twilight and Britney Spears may be responsible for the upsurge of both "Jayden" and "James" which is the first & middle names of one of her sons. It's fun and exciting to see "Luke" and "Grayson" on the Boys' list! I actually know a little boy named Grayson (the Robin in my Wonder Woman Day pictures) and he is named after Dick Grayson.

While I first the name "Brooklyn" used for a baby girl on General Hospital many moons ago, it's one of the sons of David & Victoria Beckham which probably explains its popularity on the Girls' & Boys' lists; not to mention "Peyton" which is on the Boys' list though I've heard it for girls too long before I knew who Peyton Manning is.

"Sarah" probably doesn't have a single thing to do with the Terminator as it is a classic, but we can always say that her kick-butt attitude is a driving force for any young girl to grow up and aspire to; since "Connor" is on the Boys' list... well, we can piece those together as a significant correlation.

There are plenty of others obviously, given the many decades of comics and television we can pull from. "Micah" for example was a character on Heroes though he barely appeared in volume three. See what others can you find.

Top 50 Baby Boys' and Girls' Names of 2008

By the editors of

We've rounded up the hottest baby boy and girl names of 2008. See what names our readers love -- and get inspired.

Top 50 Girls' Names of 2008

1. Isabella

2. Ava

3. Emily

4. Elizabeth

5. Abigail

6. Madison

7. Emma

8. Addison

9. Madeline

10. Olivia

11. Chloe

12. Hannah

13. Sarah

14. Sophia

15. Avery

16. Riley

17. Jessica

18. Hailey

19. Ashley

20. Samantha

21. Makayla

22. Arianna

23. Mia

24. Mackenzie

25. Nicole

26. Dylan

27. Logan

28. Aaliyah

29. Zoe

30. Alyssa

31. Ella

32. Rachel

33. Brianna

34. Kaylee

35. Hayden

36. Michelle

37. Lauren

38. Jennifer

39. Leah

40. Bailey

41. Brooklyn

42. Allison

43. Isabel

44. Teagan

45. Alexis

46. Taylor

47. Amanda

48. Layla

49. Rebecca

50. Megan

Top 50 Boys' Names of 2008

1. Aidan

2. Jayden

3. Jacob

4. Michael

5. Ethan

6. Caden

7. James

8. Caleb

9. Andrew

10. Matthew

11. Ryan

12. Joshua

13. Avery

14. Grayson

15. Riley

16. Jordan

17. Peyton

18. Christopher

19. Daniel

20. William

21. John

22. Alexander

23. Dylan

24. Logan

25. Nicholas

26. Zachary

27. Anthony

28. Aaron

29. Hayden

30. Cameron

31. Bailey

32. David

33. Brooklyn

34. Elijah

35. Taylor

36. Connor

37. Brayden

38. Noah

39. Tyler

40. Joseph

41. Micah

42. Robert

43. Benjamin

44. Jackson

45. Kendall

46. Jack

47. Gavin

48. Luke

49. Tristan

50. Brandon

Baby Name Finder: Search 1,000s of Names Here

This list is based on the names receiving the most traffic on between Jan 1 and Dec 10, 2008. Copyright © 2008 Meredith Corporation.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Firestar wip - 99% complete

I am just about complete with my Firestar costume which I'll be wearing to NYCC '09! I am working on the mask right now. This suit has a collar which matches the illustration above which differs from the costume usually seen in the cartoon, Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends. Once again, I'll say how much I love this wig. It's New Look brand and I have been very pleased with all of their wigs (only need to trim the bangs on them when they arrive but they're good right out of the box).

My gloves are little bit too short and that's because I'm using some of the fabric to cover the mask so that they match.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Firestar wip pics

Ok, I found the camera and here are some close ups of how I created the signature flame designs on Firestar. I decided to go with two layers: a spandex layer and the accessories layer. The spandex layer was tricky.

I had traced the flame pattern from the boot cuffs I bought onto the orange spandex including the portion that would be the lower leg. I put in a basting stitch just to hold the yellow to the orange about an inch below the flames (top picture). I tried stitching from there but all the curves of the flames were not cooperating so I had rip out the stitches, glue down the flames and wait a day to stitch over it; this did cause a lot of jamming which I was expecting. You can't stitch successfully through glue but I wanted stitches not just glue. The reasons are because 1: I didn't have the neatest cut edges and 2: the dried glue is visible through the fabric so I wanted to try to cover it with wide zig-zag embroidery stitches. I also wanted to do two lines of embroidery stitching, one in orange (2nd picture) and one in metallic gold (3rd picture) to outline the flames.

I was worried that the height of the boot toppers would cover the spandex layer but it came out just right. Since the cuffs aren't attached to the boots, I can lower them to the right height. (bottom picture)

League of Heroes honors

I couldn't wait to share the news. The community members at the League of Heroes (LoH) were nominating members at the 2008 MVP and my name got brought up. I was surprised and in awe quite frankly that I was mentioned in the same forum as other folks who really know what they're doing. I'm an experimenter. I just wing it and see what works. I ask a lot of questions along the way but essentially, I'm not trained in any of this. I do love to search for the best tutorials and online shopping deals which can help other people putting together costumes too. 'Lo and behold, the community members think I'm doing a good job at that and awarded me the MVP honors!

Meanwhile, back in the Wonder Cave, I've gotten a considerable amount done on my Firestar costume. I wanted to post some progress pictures but I can't find the camera. We took Caico to see Santa last night so I suspect the camera is in Ron's coat or in his car.

Friday, November 28, 2008

WiP - Twilight Guardian, Firestar

I was so excited when I got my mail today because a bunch of costume goodies were in all kinds of packages. To start, here's a trial shot of Twilight Guardian with her kitty companion. I didn't have the mask on so I was just balancing it on my face. The vinyl suit is just really loud when I move! I might just switch to my workout pants which are matte with a black shirt; it won't be right but her suit isn't supposed to be so shiny. It's supposed to be a black cat suit that zips up the front with a grey hoodie over it - pretty darn simple. But I'm not sure about this catsuit. I'll ponder it and take some other test photos some time. I also have a wig on order too.

I also got my Firestar boots, gloves and flame cuffs. The gloves are quite bad - very big and baggy so they'll need to be modified. The cuffs for the boots are better than I thought because the inside is shiny whereas the outside is more matte finish; by wearing them inside out and upside down so the flames go up, they'll actually match the boots better. The boots are not comfortable at all. Hopefully I'll be able to walk around in them.

I got a couple of sweet critter companions for certain suits. The black kitty for TG as seen above and this wild african dog that's going to work as a hyena for Harley Quinn. Just ignore the peanut butter in the shot. I snapped this in my kitchen.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Joker Alert

For all you Jokers out there, I found a treasure for you. A couple weeks ago in our Diamond delivery was the replica Joker cane and for a mere $250 it can be yours. And don't forget your Joker socks are available at Sock Dreams - look for their "Midnight Mosaic" design.

NYCC is just around the corner (are you sick me saying that yet?) and I'm so anxious that I haven't been sleeping. One Tylenol PM was just not enough to get the costume excitement out of my head. My husband is concerned over my increased addiction to coffee but as I say, it could be worse and I've been hooked on worse so coffee it is!

I'm experimenting with different materials to create the mask for Firestar. I've been posting my experimentation process at the League of Heroes tutorial forum. Once again, I'll reiterate that this is the best place for costuming advice even if you're not into the Superhero genre; got Sci Fi costume questions - doesn't matter, post them and people will help. There are experts on Predator and Halo costumes there as well. Now getting back to Firestar, I have the wig now too and it's gorgeous! The last several wigs that I've purchased have been New Look brand and it's the best I've had so far. The best prices have been with The boots (Pleaser go-go boots) and firey cuffs have been ordered as well but have not arrived. I'll be shopping for the spandex this weekend during my first NYC "rag district" shopping trip. Hopefully the stores will be open as I've heard that Saturday many of them close for Jewish Sabbath; and it's "black friday" weekend which may be insane.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

NYCC costumes in progress

With the decision to construct the Firestar (Marvel) costume from scratch, I was debating a lot about what to do for Twilight Guardian. She's a lesser known character whose new book has not even come out yet; it's the winning Top Cow Pilot Season 2008 series so there has been one issue to introduce the character.

For Firestar, I'm making the bodysuit, the mask, and modifying the gloves & boots from store bought pieces plus a wig.

So for Twilight Guardian, I decided that since it's just a very plain costume, I'd easily find all the components. A black pleather catsuit and grey sweatshirt (gave up looking for mine which disappeared months ago) plus kitty of course. I already have the black domino mask (as seen in my Harley Quinn pictures). I spent several hours online comparing prices and quality and decided to go for the more expensive Lip Service brand vinyl stretch catsuit which is setting me back about $100 through ebay; that's actually the best price + a coupon used to save 10%. Then I found a cute girls large grey sweatshirt with an interesting "inside-out" design and won the 99 cent auction + $6.95 shipping. Kudos to me. Hopefully I will manage to squeeze into a girls large. Then I decided to search for the right all black stuffed kitty cat companion and found one for around $7 + shipping, so around $11. I'll complete it with my black ankle boots. I also saw an appropriate wig on's marketplace for $17 but I'm not sure if it's necessary.

For anyone interested, that Lip Service catsuit looks perfect for Marvel's Black Cat. It's the only one I've seen on the market with the appropriate collar - just add fur to the collar, arms (or gloves) and legs.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Checking in personally...

I need to get going on deciding what to wear for NYCC and that means I also need to get my butt on a fabric shopping trip. That's plaguing my mind at the moment.

I also now have one pink eye to compliment my half purple hair (yay, love me new hair!); I have no idea what I did to my eye but I think walking about with an eye patch is just asking for more trouble then answering a hundred people asking what's wrong with my eye. I have no idea what's wrong with it so I'll just say I scratched or allergies or something.

So, once again to remind you... I'm considering the following characters to be for NYCC and feel free to post your vote(s) so that I can see what fans are looking for:
1. Star Sapphire from JLU animated
2. Ace (Royal Flush Gang) from JLU animated
3. Twilight Guardian (Top Cow's newest blockbuster)
4. Firestar from Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Kick-Ass: the suit

The good folks at Newsarama have procured images from the set of the Kick-Ass movie based on the hot selling comic book by Mark Millar. It's an entertaining read for sure, though in true comic's fashion has unrealistic events spurned from what could easily be your real life.

What is realistic about it is the basic premise -- a nerd gets fed up with life and decides to be a superhero so he dons a scuba suit and beings patrolling his neighborhood; rather then finding success, he gets his ass handed to him repeatedly while trying to help out a stranger. He ends up in the hospital with a truly long recovery period and vows never to go crimefighting again. But then... a witness to the brutal event had been recording the fight and posted it to YouTube for the world to see. This act of heroism inspires other people to become vigilantes including a petite nine-year-old girl who easily hacks drug dealers to tiny bits with a katana and help from her huge dad.

I suspect that the 2009 comics convention season is bound to have one or two brave souls donning the neoprene style of the teen vigilante, Kick-Ass.

BlizzCon coverage

Sadly, I was not there to produce a synopsis myself of BlizzCon but Yahoo has done a fine job gathering photos of the of the annual World of Warcraft gathering. There even seems to be a little steampunk flare among the medieval warriors.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

NYCC: What should I wear?

I have an informal poll at my Live Journal about what I should construct to wear to NYCC in February. It will be cold. That's a given. But inside, there is a coat check of sorts; it's not really a coat check as it is a huge open space where people pay to have their stuff "watched." Why can't they have lockers or a more closed off room? *sigh*

I've narrowed my choices down to Wonder Woman which I already have completed, Justice League Unlimited "Ace" from the Royal Flush Gang, another JL villain "Star Sapphire," Marvel's "Firestar" or Top Cow's "Twilight Guardian."

You can post your vote here but to see pics, just click over to the LJ link. I'm pretty sure I'll get one Twilight Guardian vote here ;)

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

GEN pumpkin contest

I submitted the two Geek pumpkins which I still have in my possession, Black Cat & Captain America to a contest. I give most of my carvings as gifts or prizes so I don't have them on hand to take additional photographs following guidelines. So with my two beloved pumpkins, I entered the Girls Entertainment Network Geek Carving Contest and won!

Since I know the Girls of GEN are into cosplaying Black Cat, I had a feeling that particular carving would go over well. I won a prize pack from Top Cow and some goodies from GEN; don't know what they are yet but I'm squeeeeing like a complete dorkfish!

To see my entire gallery of carvings, visit my comicspace gallery. Now I definitely have to up my game for next year! It'll have to be DC, don't you agree?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Bloggers Choice Awards

This blog has been nominated for a Bloggers Choice Award for "Best Hobby Blog." If you've enjoyed the costuming tips and feedback as well as the progress photos please head over to the BCA site, register to vote, and cast a click for Hero Fashions!

My site was nominated for Best Hobby Blog!

AND, being the attention whore that I am, I've also nominated my YouTube channel of comic book reviews for "Best Video Blogger" -

Monday, November 03, 2008

More pics from Wonder Woman Day

Our new friend Leonard took some stellar shots of us at Wonder Woman Day at Comic Fusion in Flemington, NJ.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Another Marvel Entry

I couldn't resist trying to submit a second costume for the Marvel contest even though I don't stand a chance of winning against Allen as a Super Skrull or Troy's Green Goblin. Nonetheless, I had decided to dress up as Black Cat for work today so I had Ron take a few seconds of video in our driveway. I have some dorky photos too of me working the new espresso machine.

In the Halloween Spirit

Last night I had the pleasure of working at Teaberry's in Flemington for a very rare nighttime tea event celebrating Halloween. Though I ended my work evening exactly when I wanted around 11:30pm, I ended up an extra hour talking non-stop with owner Susan who is a fascinating woman to talk to.

Today, I'm thinking of dressing up for work at my regular job. The boss said she would be dressing up but I'd hate to get there and be the only one, then have to schelp cappuccinos dressed as Wonder Woman.

Even ESPN sportscasters, Mike & Mike are in the act of celebrating in costume:

Monday, October 27, 2008

Best Superhero Weekend Ever

I'm home recovering today after having the best superhero weekend! We raised over $4,000 in NJ for our local domestic violence shelter. Overall it was really incredible with only one moment of creepiness; a townie kept trying to get me in his apartment to pose next to his motorcycle engine (not even an actual bike just the engine). I don't mind requests for photos and I even obliged this man's brother by posing on his Harley but seriously, no means NO and I shouldn't have to say it a hundred times and call for backup.

My Harley Quinn suit suffered from a couple of seam separations but nothing major and they were on the back so it was easily overlooked. My new Wonder Woman suit held up rather well and I got the chance to work some fun photographers.

Honestly, I've been blogging my heart out all morning so you can read all about it on Comic Fusion's blogger.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Coffee Corsets

There's cute. There's functional. There's creative. Then you mush them up together and you get Jenn Gee's coffee cup corsets on Etsy! Toss your dull zarf in the trash and dress up your travel cup in one of these.

A crafter since 1995, Jenn experimented with a more traditional coffee cup cover at first but was unsatisfied with the seam. So according to her Etsy profile, she decided to try laces and the rest is history.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Accessories online

I was surfing around and came across these dandies at Target's website:

* Jonathan Saunders red neoprene belt (there's also a bright blue one)

* Women's stilletto gangster shoes for only $30

* Mizrahi tailored jacket.

Red & Blue belts are staples for any superhero wardrobe. The stillettos and jacket might help out any of the femme fatales of the steampunk culture.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Super Hero Steampunk

I'm working on steaming up several comic book characters. Technically I guess I'm trying to Ren them down but you know what I mean. You'll have to please pardon the rather quick/sloppy photo. The corset is not quite positioned on me where it should be but the misalignment is probably also due to my poor posture (my shoulders are very uneven). I use zippers on my corsets for now because grommets and I do NOT get along. I figure for steampunk, zippers work fine.

I tried to make it reversible with having Rogue's green in place of the black on the other side but my lack of reversible zippers of the right length made it difficult; then I nicked a tiny hole on the Rogue side so for now, it's just fancy lining. I'll make a separate Rogue one later on.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Effing EBAY! @#&^%^%$@@^#!

For some reason, the all mighty Powers That Ebay decided my account was associated with some other ID which has been shut down; therefore, my account was suspended. Luckily, it appears that my order for theatrical white makeup has already gone through and shipped. Why? Because I pay as soon as I "buy it now" or win a bid. I think I'm a damn good customer and a decent seller. I have sold things at a loss because I donate portions of sales to charities which is a service through ebay that has a $5 minimum. I'd say that's pretty damn nice of me.

If anyone has ever had some sort of issue which they believed was with me, please let me know! I have one ebay ID (scotchbroom) and one email account associated with it (njcabot at yahoo dot com). If you believed you were dealing with me and screwed, contact me and ebay.

I realize the ebay interface for contacting them is not the most user-friendly but please do what you can if this involved you.

I will be continuing to grow my shop through Etsy since they have opened up to vintage items as well as home made. I don't know if things like beanie babies are considered vintage though. I'm always open to conducting private sales through Pay Pal and avoiding all the fees anyway.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Harley Quinn slippers

I have bragged about my addiction to before. I'm sure I'm not the only one either. Etsy is such a wonderful place that I opened my own shop there ( Well, I'm so excited that I'm practically jumping out of my chair about the new Harley Quinn slippers I just ordered.

Designer Laura was sweet enough to work with me to get one black and one red slipper from her collection ( and make them a custom order just for me. She got them done so quickly that it makes me feel a huge amount of relief as I am scheduled to appear in my Harley Quinn suit on October 25th at Comic Fusion's Superhero Weekend. It will be my suit's debut and after having a lot of trouble with the ruffled cuffs and diamonds, I was worried that I'd look just terrible. I didn't want to invest any more money in the suit and my two attempts at booties were a disaster. Laura's prices were great, especially for it being a special order. Thankfully I didn't have to resort to buying a pair of ankle boots and painting one or worse, buying two pairs of boots to get the two colors I need.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Looking for Photographer

I help organize fundraising events at Comic Fusion in Flemington, NJ. I appear in costumes for these events and would to have some nice pictures done. You don't have to be professional just someone who knows how to take a decent shot. I bring my own camera and we have one for the shop (both are point & shoot). We can't pay for this but do provide lunch to anyone volunteering.

Charities that have benefitted from our events: S.A.F.E in Hunterdon (local family services shelter) and Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Cool online shop

Thanks to the arduous bloggers of steamfashion at LJ, I just had the pleasure of perusing the Fabric Horse website. I'm pretty sure I've stumbled upon this before but it's a lovely sense of renewed interest now. There are the spunkiest variations of accessories that will truly make anyone stand out from the pack. Why carry stuff in a bag when you can strap on your own urban utility belt? Be like Batman! It's cool.

The plastic astroturf backpack isn't really my thing but you sure would be the only one to have one. I'm more partial to the adorable spats! Thanks to steampunk for causing a resurgeance in the spats (and goggles) market.

Monday, September 15, 2008

A very different Wonder Woman

An interesting product of the 70s is this version of Wonder Woman that I have never seen before. I was just alerted by a friend of mine about this nice website, Wonderland, which has information on a blonde non-superpowered Wonder Woman. Her outfit isn't bad considering that it does seem more "practical." She was played by Cathy Lee Crosby and according to the site, was an all around bad production with awful scripts and direction making it a complete WW failure.

I have seen writer/legend Denny O'Neill speak a few times and one of the subjects of his discussions are more like confessions. He not only "killed Robin" (aka, Jason Todd which was left up to the readers, not him) but he also depowered Wonder Woman in the 1970s comics. At the time, he believed that it would make more relatable to the female comic book audience and actually show her as being a powerful woman because she was just human with major martial arts abilities. His experiment failed miserably and feminists like Gloria Steinem were outraged by the depowering of our Amazon Princess.

In today's comics, Wonder Woman has a choice (sort of). Her nemesis Circe, a powerful sorceress, cast a spell on Wonder Woman so that she has to actually transform into her WW persona to have powers; otherwise, she is able to remain in human form as Diana Prince, with only top-notch human abilities like martial arts, fighting, marksmanship, etc.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

CGS Supershow

I just wanted to extend a quick thank you to everyone for making the Comic Geek Speak Supershow a wonderful success! Sales were decent. Lots of fun! It was a relaxing comic show where I felt safe to leave the table unattended if I had to but that didn't seem to happen as was sharing the table with a lovely and very talented artist, Eliza Stockfisch (

Thank you, Geeks!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Coverage at ComicVine

One my favorite websites is I quickly became a contributor there because it's just so damn addictive! Once you start surfing around getting tangled in the vine (a wiki for comics), you'll definitely agree. It's better than your average wiki in appearance. You really feel like you've tapped into a comic book.

That being said, I was SO excited today when I was notified that main man Red L.A.M.P. actually gave me some props regarding my geek crafts. Red and G-Man really keep things running over there so having them take a few minutes out of their schedules to put up a blog post about me and send a note really meant a lot.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Ohio museum exhibit

One of my friends from the League of Heroes tipped me off to another great museum exhibit; this one in Ohio so I am unable to attend to it sounds fantastic. The Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage is hosting "ZAP! POW! BAM!" highlighting the Jewish community's contribution to comics, and hence all American folklore.

From their website:
September 16 - January 4
Zap! Pow! Bam! immerses visitors in an interactive world of Super Heroes, and illuminates the creative processes that drove their originators to provide America with timeless icons such as Superman, Batman, Captain America and Wonder Woman.

In addition to rare, never-before-displayed comic book art and memorabilia, Zap! Pow! Bam! features 1940s serials, video interviews, a vintage, child-sized Batmobile ride, an interactive phone booth, a drawing studio, and costumes for visitors of all ages to enjoy.

The Maltz Museum presents this exhibition with a proud nod to the prominence of Jewish artists and the importance of Cleveland (home of the creation of Superman by a pair of Glenville High School students) in the development of comic book art.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

My Etsy Shop is now open!

This week I launched my latest endeavor to expand the exposure of my handmade creations. I have opened an Etsy shop which is a huge online shopping center for people like me who are small scale creators, designers or collectors. Some of the bags that I have been blogging about are now available through

After my appearance the Supershow this weekend, I'll update the listings because I do have a few that utilize quirky fabrics. Hopefully I'll just sell out of all the bags and have to create a new listing for everything.

Friday, August 22, 2008

GL, Legion & Other Awesome Rings

I remember finding really great silver rings on ebay and then they stopped getting listed. Luckily, a regular over at the League of Heroes posted a link to Arroba Silver which is just what I originally bookmarked. The right GL ring is obviously vital if you are going to dress a Green Lantern; cool thing is that now there are other color Lanterns too and Arroba already has their logos available.

Also essential to rings would be a member of the Legion of Superheroes where rings and communicators are given when you are asked to join up. So for all the Phantom Girls and Beast Boys out there, you'll be able to find affordable LoSH rings now.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Rogue's yellow boots

I get asked about X-Men's Rogue a lot. The reason I love her is because her vast wardrobe reflects different periods of her life and therefore personality. Her classic yellow & green suit is by far the most popular of her collection.

Making the bodysuit and jacket are easy enough. With Rogue there are also a decent amount of accessories to consider too. To get the perfect "double" belt where one is thin and one is thick, you can either buy two brown belts and create an X-logo buckle to hold them together or have one custom made.

Boots can be tricky to have custom created because if you're like me and spend all day in your costume, you really want them to be as comfortable as possible. That means going shopping for yourself. Having someone who is not a boot-maker or cobbler create your footwear can be a hit or miss situation. Many people will just refer you to a tutorial on how to make your own but not everyone who enjoys wearing costumes wants to go through all the trouble involved in making one.

With the yellow & green suit, Rogue wears over-the-knee (OTK) yellow boots with green straps. They flare open at the top around the knee and thigh. If you don't care about being dead on accurate there are a lot of go-go boots that come up the knee but not over it; still, it's not a bad place to start because they only cost about $40 and have a variety of heels to choose from. You can always try to create the flared top yourself out of yellow vinyl which takes a lot of the daunting construction out of the equation.

Yesterday I scoured the internet again looking for yellow OTK boots and found these options:
- White boots (expensive; might mean better quality but I don't know; for cheaper and in US dollars check here) that you can try spray painting with a shoe paint like Magix.
- Spandex boots/leggings are common from Chinese costumer designers and can be found easily on ebay. The thing is the prices are cheap but shipping is costly. One Chinese designer that I've heard good things about is Maggie at Cosfun. She'll also do customizations so if you need a bootie in a color not shown, you can always ask about it. Booties though are very slippery and offer no protection for your feet! You can get some leather, foam or even an old yoga mat to cut out some soles for yourself and glue it onto the stockings.

Tutorials on Armor making at GEN

I recently joined the community of GEN, Girls Entertainment Network (open to guys too) and have been slowly going through the forum posts on costuming. My friend Belle Chere answered someone's question about How to Make Armor. Check out her wonderful response complete with photos of her Ivy Valentine gilded clawlike gloves.

A while ago, I found this website dedicated to making Halo armor.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Rumor - Completed!

I got my boots (they aren't a perfect match but they're pretty nice) and finished the details on the jacket plus found my winter gloves for the final touch. Here's my completed Rumor from Umbrella Academy volume one for the Wizard Magazine Halloween Costume Contest. (Nothing like having a deadline in the middle of August!)

It feels really weird not to be completely covered in spandex.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Rumor 99% complete (Umbrella Academy)

Umbrella Academy's Rumor

I still have gloves, proper boots, and some embroidery on the jacket left to have this actually completed. I need to redo the red top and t-shirt at some point in the future but it's wearable for now.

Ebay Sales: Wizard of Oz

I have continued the major gleaning of my house and came across a couple of Bradford Exchange plates from the MGM Wizard of Oz collection. I had them listed on ebay years ago and for some reason two of them didn't sell. I still have the Tin Man and the Scarecrow. I have relisted them on ebay and have set 10% of the proceeds to go to Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.

Now - as for ebay - there is no minimum bid however even sales with 10% going to a charity have a minimum to pay to the charity which is $5. So I would really appreciate the best offers possible on these plates.

Both plates are listed as separate sales. They are in their original boxes and have all original paperwork including the important Certificates of Authenticity.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Day Glow Jester completed!

By the end of Day 4, I actually had a wearable costume! It took about 28 hours with taking only half hour breaks to eat or run to the store. At least now I have a suit to start from so I can make some modifications. I'll probably design my own booties for Harley. I have to adjust the diamonds especially on the butt. I'm still trying to figure out what to do for the white cuffs. In these pictures, I just used some spare white trim from my Harley inspired tote bags. I'd like to round the bottoms more on the white neck piece too. The horns ended up pointing backwards too far.

Things I was really happy about where how I actually got the 4 corners of alternating color to line up in the front and the back. The hood zipper was a pain but the back zipper is the best zipper installation I've ever done. Of course I couldn't find too many color choices though so I went with white. For the sake of speed, I appliqued the diamonds on this one but I'll give gluing a shot with the next one.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Testing the Harley/Jester

Day 4: I feel like progress is so slow on my test version of Harley Quinn. I've worked out some of the kinks and think I'll make a couple of small changes. I don't know if I'll ever figure out how to put in a damn zipper. All I have done so far is the hood, gloves (which need some patching repairs) and one bootie. I'm about 19 hours into the project.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Wonder Woman 2.0

I'm still waiting for my fabric to arrive in order to experiment with a new Wonder Woman design I have in mind. I already practiced with a new commercial pattern from New Look using regular cotton. It features built in boning and a side zipper. One of these days I'll get a zipper to actually look right but I'm not holding my breath.

Today after spending about 5 hours cutting out practice fabric for Harley Quinn, the Sherbert Colored version (my practice suit is lime green and salmon), I started making my new Wonder Woman armor.

I used thin plastic sheeting called EZ Quilting Template Plastic which comes in a small roll. Having it already rolled is a bonus in this case because I would have wanted curvature in the pieces anyway. I still haven't gotten the opportunity to get the adhesive metallic mylar; I have plenty of the gold PVC left over from last time so I feel the need to use what's in my overflowing fabric bin. And all I did was scotch tape the fabric to the plastic.

My old tiara is actually a fabric cover of a real metal tiara. This time I made a matching plastic one and tied a piece of elastic to it. I have to paint the stars I have for the tiara and bracers.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Supergirl Hits 5th Avenue

According to all the fashion sources, the designers of Lonstein Gruss have made a deal with WB to launch a Supergirl clothing line for high-end retailers. Forget spunky girlie tees and underwear. This stuff most likely won't cost less than $50 and probably more like $300.

racked NY

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

new Wonder Woman wip; more bags

Since I have unfortunately gained 15 lbs since the last Wonder Woman Day, my super suit is rather snug. When wearing it to NYCC, I busted some seams and one of the clear straps. I actually found a decent commercial pattern for a corset that wasn't too far off what I could use for a new suit so I picked it up (New Look 6480). I figured I had better try a new design for this year's event (end of October!).

I'll never understand math. Just let me say that off that bat. When I take a measurement with a ruler or measuring tape, look up said measurement on a chart, shouldn't the size match? I think I'm Measurement Deficient because even if it's something not sewing related, I could measure twice, cut, and still come up with the wrong size whatever it is. Now that my distaste for math has been explained, it should be no surprise that commercial pattern charts and I are not friends. I measure myself, look up the size on the chart, cut pattern to that size and inevitably, it isn't correct. So this new corset has some extra darts in it where I had to take it in and it's good enough for now. When my new shipment of spandex comes in, I'll actually remake it again which means I should be better and understanding the damn instructions too. Plus, spandex stretches. Oh, and the zipper! I bought a 12" zipper per the instructions and it's a good 3" too long.

When I make the final piece, I'll get a smaller zipper for one thing and cut to a smaller size. I really REALLY hate strapless looks for myself. My boobs hang down to my belly button even when properly "propped." That's actually what I did like about my old Wonder Woman suit - I used a body shaper with clear straps. I'll be making a completely different kind of chest logo too. I won't be appliqueing a piece on. Instead, I'm going to try and mold some plastic sheeting and have it attach with velcro. I'll be going for the newer WW logo instead of the golden eagle. The belt may be a challenge too.

This is a look at the new WW corset.

I also ordered Holly Messinger's pattern for Harley Quinn. I take a lot of pride in making my own designs but her suit looks incredible. I had to talk myself into buying her design. I had to make myself understand that buying from a top costumer like her shouldn't feel any different than buying McCalls or Simplicity. And in fact, the quality will probably be a lot better. I'm going to a test run with other spandex that I bought at a clearance sale just to get comfortable with the instructions and the pattern. So I'll probably have a pastel colored court jester costume for sale by September!

My allergies have been a real bitch and a half this summer. I actually had asthma attacks over the weekend (and here I thought I was misdiagnosed) so I didn't get much done. I did finally finish my Kitty Pryde/X-Men bags. In fact, after the first one, I played around with my software and redesigned the X logo. It came out so much better! I was so happy. Now I have unmatching Kitty Pryde bags (*headdesk*). Oh well. I simply won't display them on the table at the same time. I gave one a yellow lining and one a black lining anyway.