I’ve never cosplayed a character as hated as Nora. 

Our photos got around the internet and even on fanpages of Noragami  that I myself follow (well, since I AM a fan after all). So it couldn’t be helped that I read comments such as the ones I screencapped here, some even worst than “fuck off” but I did not bother digging it up anymore.

It bothered me at first because I felt like it was an attack on me. But a few hours after I saw those comments my brain came back and realized I’m too old to get affected by this crap, and it’s not me who is hated at the first place/

But still, what crude and uncultured people!

There is more to Hiiro/Nora than her clingy psycho ex-girlfriend facade. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have bothered cosplaying her. 

Nora did not have a lot of chance to show her back story in the anime series but the Nora from the manga is a complex character. She’s cute, silent, deliciously devious, loves Yato very much,  likes visually beautiful things but above all,  a powerful weapon in a body of a 12 year old girl. She may be something I aspire to be in real life, minus malicious intents and murder. 

Though I admire Nora’s work ethics, I’d never justify the innocent killings that Nora might or might not have been involved in, but I find her “I’ll get it done” attitude admirable and beautiful. 

We need people like that. Someone willing to do the dirty job. 

Writing this now makes me wonder that perhaps my morals is a bit on the gray side too

Over all, this cosplay taught me to look beyond what I see on the surface and to watch what I say in public space.

Pretty deep experience for a hobby most people see as a shallow thing. 

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From the series Noragami (Stray God)

Yato : Jin

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Nora: Alittledecadence

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Photography: Resh

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Photography/Assist: Kat Langomez

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Assist : Dom 

  • Black Butler movie review

    I got a press screening ticket through a good friend’s friend and was able to watch Black Butler ahead of its public screening date.

    Special thanks to @SM_Cinema for bringing foreign films to local shores. This is something we, Japanese culture fans who are growing in numbers appreciate a lot. 

    Black Butler will be showing in SM Cinemas starting today, July 23. Catch it this week, okay? ;) 

    ——————————
    Event flow

    I’ve been to a lot of press, premier screenings. Pirates of the Caribbean, Harry Potter Deathly Hallows (where I cried at the flash of Warner Bro’s logo, that early in the movie…), Maleficent etc etc. Usually these are invites given to me by friends who work in media, my boyfriend’s mom who gets special tickets somehow or from friends who are event organizers as well. I am not new to this.

    I brought my boyfriend, who keeps a Sebastian nendoroid in his attic (not kidding) as my movie companion. We’re both fans of the manga series this movie was based on. And we watch a LOT of movies together if we bothered we can start a movie review blog. 

    Our invite says the movie starts at 7:00 PM.

    As we are both decent people, we try our best to arrive on time. We got there at 6:30 and thinking we don’t have time to eat proper dinner, we opted for what was available at Snack Time instead.

    We were ushered in the theater itself at five past seven and the movie started at 7:50. That amount of time, we could’ve spent eating a proper dinner at Kyochon.

    I was even asked if I can dress up as characters from Black Butler. I am thankful I did not, because

    1. It’s Monday after work. And I only knew about it 2 days before.
    2. There was no pre-screening program whatsoever. So why do they need a cosplayer there if there’s no program whatsoever at all? Time is essential to anyone. I’d hate to dress up for nothing.

    This is the first time I’ve been in a press screening where there was no program or host to at least introduce the movie or a visible event organizer handling the guests whatsoever at the start. I find that very, very weird. Not that I’m saying “hey, I’m a guest. Treat me like a god”. I’m saying this was poorly done and a waste of opportunity to promote the movie better.

    I even overheard the staff (since we spent a lot of time at the Director’s club lounge doing NOTHING) saying this, exactly:

    "May food ba na kasama yung tickets?"
    "Hindi ko alam bro, wala atang pupunta na event organizer dito"

    This was 5 minutes before 7PM. 

    For me, this was poorly organized.

    The movie

    I’m a huge fan of Kuroshitsuji.
    I buy stuff Kuroshitsuji stuff like any decent fan would. I grabbed a few just to make my point.

    Like the misc published/fan art (some doujinshi not in photo because..umm. uh…), character books…

    Art books. I still haven’t got the most recent one :<

    And of course, the tankobons as well. 

    I’m a huge fan. With high standards. I know Kuroshitsuji’s DNA which is maybe why I wasn’t happy with the adaptation. Some of the lines were lifted directly from the manga and anime which isn’t bad. But they could’ve done it so much better. 

    In my opinion, it was poorly written. There was so much loopholes, and the end was quite dragging as well. 

    And oh god. Don’t let me get started with the styling and wardrobe. Madamme Red (Aunt Hanae in this version)’s styling screams cheap ageha. The setting is in a modern world, but they did not bother to update the wardrobe in a tasteful manner. 

    This doesn’t mean I’m saying the movie was thoroughly bad. Hiro Mizushima did his best to portray Sebastian’s quirks (smiling eyes, sexy walk, smooth hand gestures) and Aya Goriki as well. I appreciate so much that they really tried to get Sebastian and Ciel’s facial quirks. The acting was superb. These alone are good reasons to see the movie. The fight scenes were great. I specially love Mey Rin’s moments. And the scenes with kittehs nyan! :3

    But, if you’re a big big Kuroshitsuji fan with high standards (like me)  you might squirm in your seats and murder someone via imagination while watching it.  If you plan to watch this, forget everything you know about Kuroshitsuji first for a more enjoyable experience. 

  • Lesson 2B : Introduction to Patternmaking

    Pattern is a blueprint for constructing clothes, or in our case, costume.  A pattern is divided to units needed to create a complete garment. It is usually in paper (personal use)  or cardboard (industrial use), and contains all markings and special instructions needed for cutting and sewing a garment together. 

    Patternmaking is the art and science of making patterns. It is what makes a fashion designer’s or costume designer’s sketch in to a functional garment by drafting 2 dimensional shapes plotted on a piece of paper and  guided by a body’s measurements which when transferred on cloth and sewn makes a 3 dimensional, functional unit of clothing (or costume, whichever). 

    For example: 

    image

    1. Shows the design I picked. It’s Elizabeth from Persona3

    2. Is the pattern I drafted for her dress, and since it is for me I used my own measurements as a guide in drafting. 

    3. Shows the pattern transferred to cloth. 

    4. Is the finished project.

    There are a lot of ways to do Pattern Making, but we’ll discuss only the mostly used techniques :  Draping and Flat pattern drafting. 

    Draping is the process of positioning and pinning in place pieces of cloth, usually muslin,  on a dress form or mannequin,  taking it down and laying it flat and tracing the shapes made to a piece of paper. 

    Draping = 

    Forming garment on a mannequin using muslin + pins -> Putting down muslin, flatten it -> Trace muslin on paper to form pattern -> Transfer pattern to cloth using tailor’s chalk -> sew

    Flat pattern drafting : as the name suggests, is drafting 2 dimensional  shapes which when put together forms a 3D structure that conforms to the human body’s shape and contours. 

    Flat Pattern drafting = 

    Draft pattern on paper -> transfer pattern on cloth -> sew

    Draping is advance, and in my opinion involves “instinct” . I don’t see a wide application of it in cosplay so I’ll teach flat pattern making instead

    Oh, before I forget!

    Pattern making softwares exists too but these are very expensive and sometimes not useful to those who do not know how to draft flat patterns at the first place. These softwares are for industry professionals, though some of my armorer or propmaker friends might’ve heard of Pepakura before? I haven’t tried this program with a garment but Pepakura can help you pattern for armors and the likes for sure. 

    Why study pattern making? 

    Yeah, why? It involves math, a good understanding of the human body and critical thinking! Why subject yourself to that?

    In my opinion, since I am at that age where I have to do grown-up stuff daily, if you can have someone make a costume for you - go ahead and do so. Time is very important. 

    However, knowing how to make clothes from scratch is a very valuable skill. Not just for cosplay but also in practical,day to day living. Learning Pattern Making will take time and practice, but you’d be thankful for it. 

    Besides, the rules and laws of pattern making for clothes can be applied to armor and props weapon construction as well as seen on my previous projects:

    Alicia : Valkyria Profile

    image

    image

    Ja’Far’s Balalark Sei : Magi

    image

    It’s a very interesting subject with lots of practical and not very practical applications, hahaha!

    Basic Tools needed for pattern making 

    1. Pattern Paper

    image

    You don’t have to buy a roll of pattern paper. Any paper which is wide enough for your project will do, like Manila paper. I’ve even seen other cosplayers use newspaper! As long as it is a flat, uncrumpled surface you can write on, you can use it to make patterns. 

    Personally, I like working with pattern paper because of its large surface. I don’t have to tape pieces of paper together to accommodate patterns for gowns and such. (Plus, it’s my profession so it’s just right that I take care of my patterns by using the best materials too ^^)

    Locally, pattern paper can be bought at Carolina’s Lace Shoppe, VC Trading, and Fabric Warehouse. They cost about 40-45 pesos per roll (10 pieces per roll). I live in Philippines, so if you are from elsewhere you have to do research on this by yourself. 

    2.  Rulers

    You’ll need all kinds of rulers. Starting with a 

    Yard stick : For making long continuous lines. Available at VC Trading, Kamuning Market and Carolina’s, National Bookstore.

    image

    Tape Measure : for measuring body parts. Available at VC Trading, Kamuning Market and Carolina’s, National Bookstore.

    image

    Armhole Ruler : For making curves for the neck and armhole. Available at VC Trading, Kamuning Market and Carolina’s 

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    Hip curve : For slashing stupid  students and making curves for the hips. Available at VC Trading, Kamuning Market and Carolina’s image

    (Optional) Styling design ruler. This is a hip curve, armhole ruler, grading guide, ruler in one. It is also quite expensive than most rulers. 

    I got mine in front of FIT in New York. It’s a gift from my boyfriend but I think we have this in Philippines too. I’ll edit this once I find out. 

    image

    if you can’t find an armhole ruler or a hipcurve, you can skip buying those for the meantime. You can freehand curves, but it’s still best to have a solid guide. 

    Of course you’d be needing your own body measurements too! If you haven’t read it yet, Lesson 1 is all about that. 

    Note : 

    Reblogging and linking this tutorial is very okay but I will be very upset if this tutorial is reuploaded to a different site. Or reworded then uploaded to a different site. 

    I want to turn cosplay to a productive and positive hobby and this is my way of doing it.

    Cosplay is a big part of my life and it has helped me be who I am today. This is my way of giving back. I am receiving nothing by doing this, so the only thing I’ll ask back is proper credit.