Saturday, October 29, 2016

Spooky Scary Sceletons: Halloween Tag

Hello everyone! Since it's almost Halloween, I figured I'd get into the festivities by doing a Halloween tag. Halloween is always a fun holiday for me, what about you? Have you done this tag before? Let me know in the comments below!

1. Favorite Halloween movie?
 To be honest, I don't really watch a lot of horror or Halloween movies, so I don't have a lot to choose from. (Don't worry, I'm getting together with one of my friends for a movie marathon to amend that.) From what I've watched though, I enjoyed Corpse Bride quite a bit.

2. What age did you stop trick-or-treating?
 I honestly can't remember. Sometime in my mid-teens.
3. Favorite Halloween Costume you have ever been?
 Hmmm, this is a hard one. I've had a lot of cool costumes over the years thanks to crafty and creative parents, though one of my favorites was when I got to be an astronaut. My dad made the helmet and backpack and they had LED lights and switches and it was really cool.

4. What are you going to be this year?
 Well, so far I've been a circus ringleader and Etzio from Assassin's Creed, I might do Ryuko from Kill la Kill if I have another opportunity to dress up.
5. Do you like haunted attractions?
 Yuppers. I try to visit my favorite haunted house every year, though this year's been pretty busy, so I might not make it to one this year.
6. Vampires or werewolves?
 Vampires. Not those sparkly ones though.

7. Favorite Halloween Candy?
 Reeses Pumpkins.

8. Do you decorate your house?
 Somewhat. I had a lot of fun the last two years, but I've been super busy this year and haven't gotten around to decorating my apartment normally fully much less adding Halloween decorations...
9. Least favorite Halloween costume?
 Well, going off my parent's memory, the year I was a shark. I wanted to be a friendly shark, but everyone was acting all scared and it made me upset, so I changed into my old bunny costume that fortunately still fit.

10. Have you ever repeated a costume and what was it?
 As I just mentioned, I dressed up as a bunny twice when I was younger. More recently, I've dressed up as Harley Quinn multiple times for Halloween. I've also done a couple of cosplays for Halloween in addition to wearing them to a convention.
11. Do you believe in ghosts?
 Vaugely, yes. I believe that spirits do visit this world, but generally not in the same way that ghosts are usually presented. Also, I feel that malicious "ghosts" are something different from a typical spirit.

12. Scariest Halloween?
 I honestly can't really think of a Halloween I considered scary overall. I remember I used to be terrified of the haunted houses my church used to put together when I was little, but now I love haunted houses (as long as someone else is with me, that is).

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Lolita 52 Challenge: Why I Wear Lolita?

Hello everyone! Today we have another topic from the Lolita 52 Challenge: Why I wear Lolita?
 I'm going to break this into a list of sorts so I don't just ramble on endlessly about how frilly and cute it is.

#1: Aesthetic
 I've always loved the cute, frilly dresses that porcelain dolls wear and so being able to dress like that myself is like a dream come true! I generally prefer dressing modestly and Lolita is great for that as well as for situations where it would be more respectful or appropriate to dress modestly while still dressing up such as church and weddings. (I'll be honest, I haven't been to a wedding since I started wearing Lolita, but I hope I'll get the chance to put together a nice, simple coordinate for one in the future.) In addition to the frills and more modest cut of Lolita clothing, it's also very nice to look at even when not worn.

#2: Dressing for my shape
 I have a figure that many modern styles with super short skirts, tight form fitting pieces, and oversized pieces don't work well with, so having Lolita as an alternative is great for me. I like that Lolita emphasizes my waist while minimizing the appearance of my hips with it's higher waistlines and poofy skirts. In addition to that, I enjoy wearing heels and platforms which go very well with Lolita in the right styles. The only complaint I have is trying to find sizes that fit me well and aren't too small for me.

#3: Quality
 As many seasoned Lolitas know, inexpensive Lolita clothing used to be horribly ita with its scratchy lace, weird cuts, and inappropriate fabrics. Over the years however, getting good quality Lolita clothing without having to pay brand prices is a lot easier than it used to be. I like having pieces that last for a good long while without developing holes or wearing out and Lolita generally is much better quality than many typical fast fashion stores such as Forever 21 and H&M.
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Saturday, October 15, 2016

Lolita 52 Challenge: My Favorite Lolita Brand

Hello everyone! We're back to the Lolita 52 Challenge this week with the topic of My favorite Lolita brand.

 So my favorite Lolita brand is hand's down Baby the Stars Shine Bright. I got into Lolita back in the old school days and still very much like the old school style over more modern print-based styles. As I talked about in one of my previous posts several years ago, I am not very big into prints. My tastes have changed a fair bit over the years though and I don't dislike prints as much as I used to. Many of Baby's pieces have lots of detailing with pintucks, lace, ruffles, bow placement, etc. which I generally prefer over prints. This is because even though the print may be different, a lot of dresses with prints use the same general bodice and skirt design since the print is the main focus. This is not to say Baby doesn't have any prints, because they do have quite a few with different designs or their various characters on them. Baby's prints tend to be less over the top sugary than Angelic Pretty's prints from what I've seen though, which I prefer the look of more often than not. (Granted I do love many of Angelic Pretty's prints.) I've only had one piece from Baby, so I can only vouch for that particular piece's quality, but I've heard good things about Baby's quality as well and their pieces always look like they're good quality in the pictures I've seen and the few pieces I've seen in person.

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Movie Reviews: Zootopia, or How I Learned to Embrace my Inner Furry

Hello everyone! As promised in my Lolita movie recommendations post, here's a full review of Zootopia! I will admit, I have watched this movie entirely too many times and could probably quote a few dozen lines verbatim... With that being said, let's get to the review!

 Zootopia is the story of a rabbit named Judy Hopps that lives in a world where animals have evolved to a human-like state. They have complex emotions, walk on their hind legs, have towns and cities, and generally all get along and have limitless possibilities available to them. Judy as a young rabbit decides she wants to change the world by becoming a bunny police officer in the great big city of Zootopia where anyone can be anything, as the tag-line goes. Despite the doubts of others surrounding her, Judy follows her dream as a young adult and joins the police academy where she studies and trains hard to be able to graduate as the very first rabbit police officer and gets stationed right in the center of Zootopia. Thinking her childhood fantasy will now be complete, Judy's hit headlong with reality when she doesn't get to do "real cop" work, which for her is catching bad guys and making the world a better place by doing so. However, due to an interesting turn of events, she soon gets to take on the case of a missing otter, enlists the help of a sly fox named Nick Wilde, the closest to a witness she can find, and soon uncovers a much deeper secret than she or anyone else ever expected.

I really enjoyed Zootopia. The story was very engaging and has a lot of moments that hit me really hard emotionally, such as when Judy leaves her family to start her new job and the ending (no spoilers, I promise!). The world of Zootopia was very rich and had so many small details to it that I had to watch the movie (erm, chose to watch the movie?) more than just once to catch more of them. The world of Zootopia is so rich in character and scenery as well as background characters who bring life and depth to the world around the main characters. It feels like a real city with people going about their daily business and jobs all throughout the story. In addition to the world, the graphics were amazing. As someone who grew up with two graphics designers, I've really come to be a bit of a stickler for aesthetic as well as details in computer generated graphics. (I'm going to be going into a bit of geek speak here, so if you aren't familiar with computer graphic terms, you may get a bit lost here.) The algorithms for making fur act realistically have definitely come a long way since Monster's Inc. and that combined with the texturing and shading tools made the fur look absolutely amazing. I also was really happy with how they skinned and boned the models, they both looked and moved pretty realistically. The particle effects for the snow and water looked really nice too! Now to the layman's translation of what I just said: Everything looked really detailed and realistic in the movie! I can tell the graphics department put a lot of work into everything. In addition to the visuals, the music and sounds for Zootopia were very interesting and definitely added a nice ambiance to each of the scenes. It was interesting seeing the sound and music department's creativity with making some of the sounds when I watched the special features. I definitely loved just about everything in this movie from the story to character design to small details (though the mice didn't look nearly as cute as I would have liked them to be). I would highly recommend Zootopia to my friends (the ones who haven't watched it 200 times already like me, at least) as well as anyone looking for a cute and fun movie to watch.

Now, you're probably wondering "Didn't the title say something about furries? Did she forget about that?" And the answer to that is no, no I didn't forget. So, as part of Zootopia's promotion, it appears that word was spread to Furries or Fursuiters, people who enjoy dressing up as anthropomorphic animals, asking them to spread the word by dressing up in their fursuits and sharing pictures promoting the new movie. There's been questions as to whether this is accurate or not, but the fact of the matter is, a movie portraying anthropomorphic animals appealed to the furries and I've jumped on the bandwagon. As of now, I am not in possession of a fursuit of my own though I am highly considering making one off of a character I made years ago or potentially a new character. I have several friends who themselves wear fursuits to conventions and occasionally for fun and they've given me a different perspective on the furry subject than when I was younger. Like many non-fursuiters, when I first learned about furries, I was under the impression that fursuiting was all about adult stuff due to misconceptions about the community as well as certain aspects of the community. (Granted the first time I SAW fursuiters I thought they were pretty cool and kinda got interested in them, but later backed away due to misinformation.) In truth, there are adult aspects to the furry community involving fetishes and such, just like there is with many communities, but that isn't everything that the community is about. While there are also separate communities that use items such as animal ears, tails, and accessories in their fetishes that are completely unrelated to fursuiting, fursuiting in-and-of itself can be a completely innocent hobby, albeit misunderstood by many onlookers. As an example, in Lolita, it's commonly advised to avoid mentioning the name of the fashion first  as many associate the name "Lolita" with the book by Vladimir Nabokov and automatically assume the fashion is based around some kind of fetish when in reality the two are completely unrelated outside of sharing a name. Fursuiting is similar in the fact that it is often assumed to be revolving completely around fetishes involving animals and bestiality when this isn't 100% true. While I admit that there are fursuiters who are involved in fetishes, not everyone in the community is. With that being said, my personal stance is that fursuits are adorable and fluffy and I want to hug all the cute fursuiters in the world and maybe make my own fursuit so I can look cute and hug people too. :3

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Saturday, October 1, 2016

Lolita 52 Challenge: My Wardrobe Turnover

Hello everyone! Today I'm back with another Lolita 52 Challenge post: My wardrobe turnover. I was a little confused about this topic at first and thought it might be referring to how one's wardrobe changed after Lolita, but after finding another post on this challenge topic I saw it meant how fast you get new items and get old, basically at what rate your wardrobe changes. So, now that I understand what this topic means, let's get started.

 So, rather than just focusing on the turnover of my Lolita wardrobe, I want to go over how my wardrobe turnover has changed over the years, starting with my pre-Lolita days when I still dressed in "normal" clothing. When I was a young teen, about 12, my parents were buying my clothing for me still, so I didn't really have a very high wardrobe turnover. I pretty much only got new clothing when the old ones wore out or I grew out of it. I didn't get much hand-me-down clothing from my sister because she was a stingy little booger. (I love you, Sis. XD) My outfits mostly consisted of a T-shirt and jeans. When I was 14 or so I started adding some more variety to my wardrobe and started layering tees and camisoles or camisoles and jackets with my tees and jeans. I pretty much never wore skirts or dresses except to church on Sundays. My wardrobe turnover stayed about the same, though I did add pieces a little more frequently. (Wardrobe additions at the rate of every 6-8 months and losses at about every 1-2 years.) When I was 16, I got my first job and had a bit more disposable income and thus discovered the wonders of thrift stores. My wardrobe turnover went up a bit more around the time I was 16-18 as I had started to develop my style more and was somewhat regularly bringing new pieces in and getting rid of pieces I didn't like (about once every 5-10 months). Then, everything changed when I moved out.

 At about 19, I moved out on my own thanks to my full-time job and education and had even more disposable income than I'd ever had before since I didn't have to worry about bills or rent yet. My wardrobe turnover was about the same as before at first, then changed to me getting new pieces every few weekends. My addition rate went down after a few months and I learned the joys of online selling, so I started getting rid of pieces somewhat frequently by donating or selling them. For about two years, I had a fairly high turnover rate (new pieces coming in/old pieces going out every 2-5 months) while I experimented with different fashions and looked like a hot mess in the process (a kinda cute hot mess sometimes). In the last 6 or so months, I've settled down on a set of styles I liked and have a slower turnover rate. I got rid of pretty much everything that doesn't suit my style except for a few pieces I'm unsure about or trying to sell, so I was able to focus more on building my wardrobe as opposed to just adding random things to it. My current turnover rate is somewhat low again with items coming in to my wardrobe maybe two to five times a year in smaller purchases and maybe one large order from Bodyline a year. I don't have a lot of items leaving my wardrobe right now since I did a massive closet cleanout several months ago.

What's your guys's closet turnover like? Are you constantly adding pieces, getting rid of everything, buying things as you wear them out? Let me know!

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