The Hothidays are here which means it’s time to deck the halls with all things Star Wars! For this year’s festivities, I was inspired by The Force Awakens newest droid, BB-8. Whenever I see that little ball whizzing across the screen, it always brings a smile to my face. BB-8 kind of looks like Frosty the Snowman, which makes him the perfect decoration for this holiday season. To make your own BB-8 wreath, here’s everything you’ll need!
Okay, okay. So I’ve only joined the dark side for the fashion but how could I resist when they have beautiful cape dresses like this? This dress is part of the new Her Universe collection at Hot Topic! They also have a BB-8 and Boba Fett bomber jackets, a sleek Darth Vader faux leather jacket, and a gorgeous Princess Leia dress coming in December. Thank you Ashley Eckstein for giving female Star Wars fans a way for us to express our love for that galaxy far, far away. ♥ Check out the full collection HERE!
What’s wrong with the Star Wars Holiday Special? I tackle that question in the first episode of my new podcast, The Jedi Beat! I’ve always been a fan of the wackiness that is the Holiday Special but I wanted to learn more about the history of how it was made. What were thinking when they decided to make half of the special in the Wookiee language, Shyriiwook? Joining me on this episode is my hilarious friend and writer/author, Bonnie Burton! She wrote a fantastic article in defense of the holiday special and she also brings a special insight since she worked at Lucasfilm for 10 years. Join us on this journey back to the summer of 1978! Listen to the episode HERE!
There is nothing like Star Wars Celebration. Where else can fans gather once a year to experience all things Star Wars? From panels with Star Wars heroes like Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher to having a seat at the Mos Eisley Cantina, Celebration is heaven for any Star Wars fan. One of my favorite aspects of the con is seeing all the epic Star Wars costumes. It’s truly a place where creativity, craft, and originality abound! I couldn’t capture them all but here are some of my favorite costumes from Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim!
EMPEROR PALPATINE AND HIS IMPERIAL WALKER
This cosplayer glued foam pieces to a walker, thus creating this clever Imperial Walker.
A ferociously cute take on that infamous creature from Hoth.
BOBA FETT & TRANDOSHAN
Apparently bounty hunters don’t like having their picture taken…
LYN ME AND GREEATA JENDOWANIAN
Jabba’s dancers bask in their moment of freedom from the Hutt.
By the end of Star Wars Celebration, I felt a little like this guy.
WICKET THE EWOK
This cosplayer took a more feminine approach to her Ewok costume. It’s Yub Nub chic!
In other Endor news…you can’t repel cuteness of this magnitude.
This costume was operated by two cosplayers on stilts inside the AT-AT’s legs. It was pretty incredible watching the AT-AT slowly walk through the crowd. The best part was when a tiny Luke Skywalker (attached to a tow cable) lowered from the belly of the AT-AT!
HARLEY LEIA AND JOKER FETT
A fun mashup of Star Wars and Batman’s villains, Harley Quinn and the Joker. The only person who doesn’t seem to be enjoying himself is Bat-Jabba.
RAINBOW DASH TROOPER & PINKIE PIE IMPERIAL OFFICER
Even in the Galactic Empire, friendship is magic.
BABY REBEL PILOT
The Rebel Alliance’s secret weapon? Adorable baby pilots.
THE SOLO FAMILY – HAN & LEIA (RETURN OF THE JEDI COSTUMES)
Because it’s never too early to introduce your child to the awesomeness of Star Wars.
LUKE, MINI LEIA, ARTOO MAMA
Families that cosplay together, stay together.
LEGO WICKET (EWOK)
Ee chee wa maa! This giant LEGO Wicket is going to haunt my dreams.
The Justice League, Star Wars style.
Move over Buzz Lightyear, there’s a new “space ranger” in town and he wields the power of the Force.
The Mos Eisley Cantina set was well-guarded thanks to the awesome, Amanda Jean.
I first saw the Muppet Troopers at Star Wars Celebration in Orlando. Needless to say, I screamed like an Animal.
BARF FROM SPACEBALLS
Actress Milynn Sarley is so beautiful, she makes Barf look good!
Doesn’t everyone deserve the chance to join the Empire?
GEEK CHIC MOM & DAUGHTER
If you don’t feel like wearing a costume, this is the perfect way to make a Star Wars fashion statement.
A stylish and original take on Han Solo’s costume from A New Hope, complete with a Chewie backpack!
PINUP REBEL PILOT
Clothing Designer Linda Heredia fights the Empire in style! She handmade her Rebel pilot jumper and her helmet purse was custom made by a friend.
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been obsessed with the macabre. Skeletons, taxidermy, Edward Gorey, and of course, Tim Burton have fascinated and inspired me. I guess that’s why my favorite holiday has always been Halloween! So for this year’s Halloween, I did a slightly different take on a Día de los Muertos costume…
Día de los Muertos is a Mexican holiday, celebrated on November 1st and 2nd, where gatherings are held to remember family & friends who have died. It’s a beautiful tradition that includes building altars for loved ones. Shrines are often decorated with sugar skulls, which are meant to represent the departed souls. And while sugar skull makeup is more of a rare occurrence in Mexico, it’s become quite popular in American pop culture. As a Mexican-American gal myself, I guess you could say my costume is a blend of both my cultures!
I love sugar skull makeup but for my costume, I opted to go with a more traditional skeleton look. I found a fantastic tutorial on YouTube by Promise Phan that was the perfect guide. Promise makes the application process simple, so even if you’re a makeup novice (like me) you’ll be able to do it. All you need is white and black makeup, and some black eyeshadow for shading!
I found my top and skirt at a local shop that specializes in traditional Mexican clothing. I was thrilled to snag this beautiful orange skirt, that is actually a child’s baile folklórico skirt!
For my hair, I paid homage to my hero Frida Kahlo, and created a flower crown around my head. I used craft flowers (from a party store) and then bobby-pinned them into my braids.
To complete my skeletal look, I hand-painted my tights with leg bones. Here’s the DIY I used on how to make your own skeleton tights!
I had a lot of fun creating this look and I especially enjoyed not smiling in pictures! Ha! The best part? Having Jaime Lannister from Game of Thrones as my Halloween date. 😉
Hope you had a spooktacular Halloween! (ﾉ◕ヮ◕)ﾉ*:・ﾟ✧
Heisenberg lookalikes walked around the cemetery as Aaron Paul happily took photos with fans in front of that famous RV. The DJ spun Motown hits and classic rock tunes. As the sun began to set, I looked out at the sea of fans who sat anxiously on their blankets and lawn chairs. There was excitement in the air but it was tinged with a bit of sadness—though it had nothing to do with the tombstones lurking in the distance. For many fans, like myself, we were sad that our beloved Breaking Bad was finally coming to an end. It was time to say goodbye—goodbye to the characters we had grown to love (and hate) over the past 5 seasons.
So on Sunday September 29th, I, along with hundreds of other fans flocked to the Hollywood Forever Cemetery to bid farewell to Breaking Bad and watch the final episode of the series. Aaron Paul and Cinespia hosted the special event, with tickets sales benefitting the Kind Campaign, an anti-bullying non-profit founded by Lauren Paul, Aaron Paul’s wife. The event sold out in just 32 seconds and had people selling extra tickets on Craigslist and eBay for $700-$1000. In fact if it hadn’t been the kindness & generosity of my dear friend Aimee (who gave me her tix), I wouldn’t have been able to attend! As Bryan Cranston later joked about the cemetery screening, “people are dying to get in here!”
When we first arrived at the cemetery, I couldn’t believe the line of people that wrapped around the block. People had been waiting for hours before the gates opened at 6:30pm. I later found out that a group of people at the very front of the line had camped out all night for their precious spot! While we waited in the bike line, I spotted this awesome group of cosplayers.
Whether they were dressed as Hank or the Pink Teddy Bear,** I loved seeing all the fans cosplaying as their favorite characters. My boyfriend even brought out his Heisenberg costume for the night!
Once inside, we immediately made our way to the show’s famous “Krystal Ship” RV, which was parked for photo ops. As we got closer to the line, I gasped with delight—it was Aaron Paul himself posing for pictures with fans! He seemed very gracious and happily posed for several photos. He then thanked everyone, said goodbye, and as he quickly tried to exit, a swarm of fans and photographers followed him.
A few minutes later, I spotted two other familiar faces…Skinny Pete and Badger!
I was really excited to meet Charles Baker, who plays Skinny Pete. He and Badger bring a great energy and comedic sensibility to the show. Baker is also a talented pianist and accomplished theatre actor. There’s a fantastic article in the Hollywood Reporter on how different he is from the character he portrays.
If you’re wondering why I’m wearing a blue wig, it was my homage to the “Blue Sky” on the show. I didn’t have enough time to put together a costume so I threw on the wig and turned a plastic baggy into a hair bow. I also didn’t have any blue rock candy on hand so I filled the baggy with blue jello mix. The consistency looked nothing like rock crystals but at least the color looked accurate!
Larry Hankin, who played Old Joe the junkyard owner, was also there for the screening & party. When he saw my boyfriend he exclaimed, “Hey, it’s Bryan!”
At around 8pm, a screening of the pilot episode was about to begin. Suddenly, an RV (just like the Krystal Ship) drove up to the side of the stage and parked. With smoke billowing from it’s top, the RV door opened and out came Aaron Paul, RJ Mitte (Walt Jr.) and Giancarlo Esposito (Gus Fring)! All wearing yellow hazmat suits, they took the stage to thunderous applause. Aaron Paul thanked everyone for supporting Breaking Bad and the Kind Campaign. Then he perfectly commenced the screening by saying, “yeah bitch. Yeah science. Yeah Breaking Bad. Let’s do this!”
I hadn’t seen the pilot episode in years so it was really interesting to see how much the show has evolved and how far these characters have fallen. At around 9:30pm, Aaron Paul and Vince Gilligan (the show’s creator) took to the stage to introduce the final episode of Breaking Bad. Paul then welcomed Bryan Cranston, who had just flown in from Boston!
Cranston thanked everyone for attending the screening and for supporting the Kind Campaign—which raised $1.8 million dollars for the event. “With 1.8 million you can take a helluva a trip to Belize!” Cranston joked, in reference to the “Buried” episode from Season 5.**
It’s clear that both on and offscreen, Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul have incredible chemistry. (No pun intended.) Cranston shared that Paul is, “a man who always understands the blessings in life and how lucky we are.” Regarding Paul’s work ethic on set, Cranston said, “he is a person who is always willing to do the extra work. Always willing to be there for you and to give 100%, even when he’s off camera.” Cranston then looked at Paul and said, “as good as you are an actor, you’re an even better person. I love you.” Cranston and Paul hugged as the audience cheered wildly.
Then the final episode of Breaking Bad began! I won’t share any spoilers for those of you who aren’t caught up on the season yet. I will say that watching the finale with hundreds of other Breaking Bad fans was a fantastic communal experience. We all cheered, gasped, and got weepy at the same key moments in the episode. And as the final credits began to roll, we leapt to our feet for a standing ovation. The show’s finale truly delivered and after 5 epic seasons, Breaking Bad ended exactly as it should have. Bravo!
The night ended with a Q&A session led by Jimmy Kimmel, featuring Cranston, Paul, Vince Gilligan, RJ Mitte, Giancarlo Esposito, Bob Odenkirk (Saul), and Jonathan Banks (Mike). All the actors expressed how lucky they are to have been a part of such a special show. “This is as good as it gets,” Jonathan Banks remarked. Cranston spoke about the experience of working with the same cast and crew over the course of 6 years. Spending 13-14 hours a day on set, “you can’t help but get intimate with these people. These are family members to us.”
Since a lot of the Breaking Bad cast and crew were in the audience, Jimmy Kimmel invited them all onstage. Before long, the small stage was packed with people hugging and chatting. I even spotted Tuco and one of the Salamanca twins, Luis Moncada, who I worked with years ago on an independent film! I got a chance to say hello and it was pretty cool seeing him surrounded by fans and signing autographs. Congrats, Luis!
And with that, the night was over! At least for some of us. The cast and crew headed to the after party, which was already in full swing at another part of the cemetery. All in all, it was a night I’ll never forget. It was fitting that my Breaking Bad journey ended at the cemetery that night. I would have liked for the show to continue and I will miss spending my Sunday nights with Walter White, Jesse, and the gang. I could go on and on about how sorry I am to see this amazing show end but instead…I’ll just shut up and let it die in peace.
**The Pink Teddy Bear is a recurring motif in Breaking Bad. It first appeared floating in the White’s pool in Season 2, Episode 1.
**As a euphemism for killing Hank, Saul asks Walt, “have you given any thought to sending him on a trip to Belize?”.
When it comes to awards shows, there’s only one place you can see the Joker fighting Hawkeye and R2-D2 rolling on the red carpet—The Geekie Awards! The 1st annual Geekie Awards was held on August 18th at The Avalon Theater in Hollywood. The multi-talented Kristen Nedopak created the show, “to give indie ‘geekmakers’ a place to shine and be seen by leaders and experts in their respective industries.” I was honored to have been a Geekie judge for both the Arts & Crafts category and the Epic Cosplay Contest that was held online.
When Kristen first told me about the Geekies, I had no idea the mega-awesome show it would become! Throughout the pre-show process, Kristen’s passion, enthusiasm, and genuine love for all things geek was admirable. With her superhero work ethic and the help of a talented team, Kristen made the Geekie Awards show a huge success! I attended the sold out live show and had an absolute blast. This was an awards show unlike any other. The stage featured the Starship Enterprise D Bridge, where guests before the show could sit in the Captain’s chair! 3D Cube printers served as table centerpieces and printed rockets & robots throughout the night. The show itself was fun, entertaining, and a celebration of many talented artists & creators. So without further ado, here are some of my photos from the festivities!
Thanks Kristen Nedopak and the entire Geekie team for a night to remember! For more photos and video from the show, be sure to check out The Geekie Awards Facebook page!
2013 Geekie Awards Winners:
Best Geekie Arts & Crafts: “One Pumpkin to Rule Them All…” by The Pumpkin Geek
Best Geekie Comics & Graphic Novel: COLONUS
Best Geekie Crowdfunded: The Goon (on Darkhorse Comics)
Best Geekie Podcast: A Podcast of Ice and Fire
Best Geekie Retail Store & Website: The Nerd Machine
Best Geekie Short Film: Undying Love
Best Geekie One Shot: The Record Keeper for
Best Geekie Web Series: Cosplay Piano
Best Toys & Games: Takenoko
It’s amazing how quickly San Diego Comic-Con comes and goes. In the months leading up to the epic convention, I’m always filled with excitement, anticipation, and sleepless nights from costume preparation. This year was no exception and just as quickly as it came, the whirlwind weekend was over! There are so many things I love about SDCC. Where else can you see George R.R. Martin enjoying a cocktail in the Hyatt bar or Robert Kirkman checking out collectibles on the convention floor?
Thankfully this year I was able to take time to hang out with friends. Even if it’s a quick hug and hello as you’re running off to a panel, it’s always nice to see someone you know. There were many highlights from my SDCC 2013 experience so here are some of those moments in picture form!
I was super excited to finally meet the woman who inspired my Miss Death Star & Millennium Falcon costumes…Robin Kaplan! Robin (aka The Gorgonist) is an amazingly talented artist and after meeting her, I adore her even more!
I couldn’t resist buying Robin’s Star Destroyer Girl print.
And this Tea Rex print. I love how delicately the T-Rex is holding the cup!
Right behind Robin’s booth was my friend Just Jenn! While hanging out at the Hyatt, Jenn and I spotted George R.R. Martin sitting with a table full of women. I tried not to be a creepy fan but I did find myself staring at him as he ate a delicious-looking sandwich.
(Photo via Denise Vasquez)
I also got a chance to meet up with some of my fellow Star Wars fangirls! (And fanguy.)
(Photo via Ruark Dreher)
Me with friend Ruark Dreher. Ruark is wearing his awesome Imperial Officer uniform and I’m wearing a custom made Star Wars dress by Cake Shop Couture!
Speaking of Imperial Officers, I loved Elisa Teague‘s stylish twist on the uniform.
(Photo by Mishal Samman)
Elisa was one of my fellow “Tricks of the Trade” panelists along with Bonnie Burton, Ashley Eckstein and several other talented artists. Many thanks to Denise Vasquez for having me be a part of this awesome panel!
I spotted a Han Solo in Carbonite cosplayer at the Steampunk meetup on Saturday! To see all of my favorite Star Wars Costumes from SDCC 2013, check out my post on the Official Star Wars Blog!
Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!
What’s this? What’s this? It’s Jack Skellington!
From the satin hood to the Police Box corset, I love everything about this Tardis dress.
Luigi’s nemesis, Waluigi, took his cart around the con.
Move over Ariel, this Ursula is the most glamorous sea witch under the sea.
I was surprised to see a Manny Pacquiao cosplayer walking outside the convention. Random? Perhaps. But his resemblance to the famous boxer is uncanny!
I also got a chance to hang out (and interview) my hilarious YouTuber friend, Andre Meadows!
This year I decided to pay homage to Comic-Con by making a dress from comic books! I used countless panels from my Star Wars comics to create this skirt and corset top. All my accessories (bracelet, ring, & clutch) were decoupaged. To complete the look I made a belt from blue duct tape. No comic books were harmed in the making of this dress. I used color copies instead!
Thanks for all the nerdy fun, San Diego Comic-Con! Until we meet again next year! | (• ◡•)|
Let it be known—I’m not a dancer. At least not a professional one. But I never let that stop me from dancing around Los Angeles! So when this year’s Star Wars Day approached, I knew I had to take another shot at dancing in honor of The Wars. I danced in Union Station for last year’s Star Wars Day and it was a little crazy but a lot of fun. A couple months ago, I came across an amazing remix of John Williams’ “Binary Sunset” by a group called Coyote Kisses. Their “Binary Suns” is an incredible song and after listening to it nonstop, I knew that this was the track I had to dance to.
It was a Saturday night and the JapanLA store on Melrose was packed with people. The DJ was mixing beats, the grilled cheese truck was serving cheesy goodness, and I was wearing my Black Milk Stormtrooper dress just for the occassion. 😉 The event was the Geeky Glamorous Art Show, a celebration of geek girls through art & fashion. Mandie Bettencourt organized the event and is also the creator of the Geeky Glamorous brand. Mandie is super sweet, has incredible style, and is a strong supporter of her fellow artists/crafters. So when she asked if I wanted to participate in the show, I was honored and so excited!
When I walked into the gallery on opening night, I instantly fell in love with every piece of art I saw. If only I could collect them all!
Geeky Pamyu Pamyu by Chingyi Liu
KaMeow by Locketship
Wonder Woman by Hanie Mohd
Nostalgia by Lazarus
The frame was decorated with action figures & toys!
In addition to the paintings/prints/sketches, there were also wearable pieces on display as well!
Pinup Peach BitRom necklaces by Okeegu
There she is! Miss Millennium Falcon. I decided to display the skirt (which I made for last year’s SDCC) and create a few new accessories for the show. I wanted her to look as geeky and glamorous as possible!
I also created a glitter resin Millennium Falcon necklace and matching bracelet. These two pieces are part of my Glitter Galaxy Collection, which I’ll be selling in my Etsy shop soon!
It was neat to see how many people came out to support geek girls, Mandie, and all the artists!
Stephanie aka @zilla308 (and her uh-mazing hair) cast a spell on this muggle!
The ever stylish Chrissa Villanueva modeling Lazy Oaf‘s Batman dress
Me with Mandie, the hostess of the evening
Cassie & Keith (who decorated his tie with glow in the dark stickers!)
Angie as Link (The Legend of Zelda)
The lovely Set to Stunning team, Victoria Schmidt & Lindz
Ashphord Jacoway & my favorite YouTuber Andre Meadows!
Thank you Mandie for all of your hard work and for organizing such a special event!! (And be sure to check out LA Weekly’s awesome article about the show!) The exhibit runs though the month of February, so if you’re in the LA area, stop by JapanLA to check it out! And if you’re a fan of Hello Kitty, you might just leave with a few trinkets as well. 😉
Geekette out! *
*Who says Ryan Seacrest can be the only one with a signature goodbye?! I want one too. Let me know what you think of this one or if you have any suggestions!