Tuesday, October 22, 2013

AWAcon 2013

For a belated anniversary trip, Sak and I decided to continue our convention trek by going to Anime Weekend Atlanta (Awacon).  We picked awa because we'd never been to Atlanta before, the con was roughly the same size as Fanime, and flights were cheap.

Like Fanime, Awa "started" on Thursday night with pre-reg and a swap meet.
We timed the pre-reg line, a healthy 45 minutes for us to get our badges.  Beautiful. I knew it'd be a great con just from that.

 The convention was held in a pretty interesting venue. Part convention center, part hotel, part shopping mall.

Hotel, with cosplay watchers lined all along the sides.
Small shopping mall
Giant main ballroom
On a whole, I really enjoyed this convention.  Since we booked our room late, we got "stuck" with a suite at the embassy suites a block away from con center, though the price of our suite was about the same cost as a normal room here in California! So we didn't mind :)
Our neighbor's room..
Soo let's go through the con-staple run down!

Dealer's Hall - large, many of the same vendors I've seen at other cons, but I found a few cutesy smaller business booths to buy some lanyards for my sister.
Loved all the lil' pikachus on display!
Eren-chu! Where's Levi? :P
Artist Alley - I didn't really like the layout of small circle clusters since it was hard to make sure you visited every booth.  I think we ended up going in figure eights to get to everything! What I did think was cool..the FOOD TRUCKS in the back of the hall. What! That's awesome.
We got some crazy hot dogs with Atlanta special - pimento cheese!

Arcade - Kinda on the small side. But it was cute, in a little rented out storefront in the mall. Free too, I think? We didn't stay here long, just to get streetpasses on our 3dses! :)

Panels - We only went to one instructional panel, on how to alter store bought patterns.  I learned that I should probably invest in a curved ruler. For what exactly I'm not sure, but it seemed important!
The rest of the panels we went to were more video based. One on anime openers, one on random funny clips, and one on rare DBZ footage (including public traffic safety messages from Goku, lol)
A badly laid out panel room. Look how tiny the screen is compared to the room size! Bigger screens please!
 Concert/Costume Contest - *ashamed* Can't say..since we didn't go.  We didn't go because..

AMVs (anime music videos). Sak and I looove these. Especially the funny ones.  Anyway, Awa had a room dedicated to amvs. And a lot of AMV editors come to hang out too! It was really cool. So we basically hung out in that room most the weekend.
Like Iron Chef, but with people creating AMVs right on the spot!
Super dark room so super bad image, but the speakers were Evanglion themed. 
Another random thing in the AMV room. hehe.
Anyway, Iron Editor was pretty interesting.  While the two contestants worked on their videos, the hosts played mini games with the audience, like guess the song in the AMV, sing-a-long AMVS (Let's get down to busssinnness, to defeat, the huns!), and an AMV Portal-esque mind test which I can't really explain. If I ever find it on Youtube I'll link it or something :P

In addition to AMVs and the AMV contest, we also did Anime Hell which was awesome as always. Not all of it was Fanime repeats either, which we appreciated.  Awacon is a 24 hour con, though we are too old to truly take advantage of this :P I think we were in bed by 1 or 2 am each night!

Karaoke was in the mall..haha.

I didn't take many cosplay pictures again because I am lame and too shy to ask most the time. But this Nobunaga Vader was pretty awesome. Two of my favorite people!
And we found one other Maou-sama! Co-worker!
And here's Sak in his uniform:

 We also did casual Vegeta (minus hair) and our casual Keroro from last year's Otakon.

Overall, it was a really enjoyable con, and the weather was really nice.  There were plenty of eateries within walking distance, con attendees were pretty polite (though I don't mind a riotious debacle now and then, honestly..), and the room and ticket price were very reasonable.  I wouldn't mind coming back! I think all cons should have an AMV room, in any case! Haha!

Monday, October 14, 2013


During Labor Day weekend, we picked up Penga-Sis and went down to LA again. Even though it was ridiculously hot, we wanted to try this public archery place in Simi Valley that Friend E was always raving about.

 Totally not where we we shooting. Our newbie targets were 5 meters away.  And even then we didn't even hit the paper every time. :P
Sak and Friend E.
But..we looked cool, eh?! Or at least Penga-Sis did.

For a five dollar donation to the Conejo Valley Archers, you get to rent all the equipment, and can practice quite a bit. The best part was the instructors though - they really know their stuff. They treated everyone seriously, as if everyone was there to be a future olympian...and not just to kill time on a weekend.

 Anyway, if you're nearby, it's definitely worth checking out! It was pretty fun!

Afterwards we took our sweaty selves down to find some sushi..from Sushi Stop! Haha! It was really cheap for sushi, and they had this amazing tempura green tea ice cream we shared for dessert, yum! :)

Friday, October 11, 2013

DIY Hataraku Maou-Sama MgRonalds Uniform Cosplay

Wow. It's been a while, blog. I think I've lost my blogging edge. Or something.  But I still have things to share and memories to write down before I forget, so I'll try to catch up!

Since tutorials are the heart and soul of this blog, let's start there, yeah?  There's a newer anime out called Hataruku Maou-sama (or, Devil is a part-timer).  It's a cute comedy about a not-so evil devil and his friends who escape to earth.  They are all poor, so Maou works at McDonalds.  Only that's a trademarked name I guess because they call it MgRonalds. :)
Perfect casual cosplay, right?

I bought two boy-sized red polos at Target for $6 each.  Then I ordered two red visors online for $3 each, hoping that they'd be similar shades of red. Luckily, they were.  I did some research and thought I'd try using heat transfer vinyl for the shirt decals instead of my more typical choice of printable iron on paper.  I bought two sheets of Siser easy weed, yellow and white, for $3.50 each. Vinyl is a little more pro that iron on paper, and hopefully lasts longer. I think it looks better anyway.

Now. First up, the collar on my shirt is red. It needs to be black.
First I tried coloring it with a tulip fabric pen I found at Michaels.
No bueno. The pen was too "dry" and not soaking ink down into the polo collar grooves.
The next pen I found at a fabric store during a trip to LA. The tee juice pen worked much better, as you can see on the before/after pic to the left:
Collar, finished. Easy!
Next up, the decals.  I cut strips of white heat vinyl to add the stripes to the sleeves.  Place the pre-ironed sleeve on a firm surface, and lay out your strip with the plastic side up.
Place a cloth between the plastic and your iron, and press down in 15 second increments.  Make sure the iron is on a dry setting, you don't want any moisture!
After you've firmly pressed it all down, lift off the plastic.  You can go ahead and press the vinyl down again after this, but make sure you use a cloth between the vinyl and the iron again.
See how it's lifting when I pulled the plastic off? I had to go back and press it down again.
You'll know you've got a good "stick" when you can kinda see the fabric texture through the vinyl.
Nice, eh? So pro feeling.
We did a similar strip in the middle of the chest, all 1/2 inch thick, in yellow.  Last up was the logo.
Sak found a picture of the MgRonalds logo online, and traced it in the silhouette software so we could cut it out. Remember to reverse the image.  One layer for white, and one for yellow.  Once cut on the machine, I "weeded" the parts I didn't want by peeling them off the plastic.
We pressed the white logo layer down first.
Then followed up by pressing the yellow layer on top of the finished white layer.  Yes, you can do layers with heat vinyl!
All done!
We repeated this with the visors, and we were finished!
Nice, huh? Oh. You're right. Maou's buttons are supposed to be black! *sew sew sew*
There we go. More accurate now :)

I think this is my favorite casual cosplay so far.  It's easy - just pair with black pants.  It's comfy, cause it's normal clothes, and it looks pretty good! I was proud enough of this "normalish" one to show my coworkers and boss my cosplay pictures this time even. HAHA. I guess I could only stay in the otaku closet for so long anyway >.>"

So...Maou-sama with Emi or Chi? Haha!

I vote Emi. Destiny! ;)