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San Diego Comic-Con 2013 Recap

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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!

 

In honor of finally meeting Robin, I wore her Star Wars Cosplay Girls necklace just for the occasion.  To see more of Robin Kaplan’s art visit her website here or her Etsy shop here!

 

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.)

 

Amanda Jean looking beautiful as ever wearing Her Universe‘s R2-D2 dress!

 

 

(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!

 

 

YouTubers iJustine and her sister Jenna Ezarik did a signing at the So So Happy booth.  I was so excited to say hi and take a photo with them that I accidentally cut to the front of the line!   Oops!

 

 

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!  | (• ◡•)|

Why I Dance For Star Wars

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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.

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Geeky Glamorous Art Show

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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 

 

 
My Date with the Doctor by Misha (top)   Chikuwaemil by Virtual Girl (bottom)

 

 

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!

Geeky Glamorous Controller Necklaces

 

 

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 revamped the X-Wing hair clip and attached it to a sparkly headband I made.

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

 

 

Super Kawaii!

 

 

 

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!  🙂

 

My Etsy Shop!

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I can’t believe 2012 is almost over!   Wowzers.  The past few months have been a bit of a blur for me.  My sketch group DWG Comedy put out our first music video.  I also came down with the flu…TWICE!  But in between all the madness, I finally launched my Etsy shop.  Over the years people have asked me if I sell my handmade accessories, so now I can proudly say yes, I do!  The name of my shop is Rockets and Rainbows.

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WIWT: Halloween Edition!

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A week before Halloween, I spotted the biggest Hello Kitty piñata I had ever seen.  It was seriously almost as tall as me!  As it proudly dangled from the party store’s fence, only one thought popped into my head…I must make a Hello Kitty piñata costume!  I headed home and immediately began researching the idea.  What I found were a lot of crafty ideas and a very handy video that I eventually used as my costume-making guide.

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Star Wars Day of the Dead

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Whenever I think of Dia de los Muertos, I picture ornately decorated skulls and whimsical skeletal scenes.

Even though the holiday is synonymous with skeletons and skulls, Day of the Dead is actually a celebration of life!  On November 1st in Mexico, people gather to remember & honor family members & friends who have passed away.  The idea is that even though the deceased are no longer with us physically, they are with us spiritually.  For those who celebrate this holiday, the memories of past times are alive and well.

For artist John Karpinsky, the same can be said about his childhood memories of Star Wars.  His Guerra de las Galaxias prints are a “tribute to characters of my youth, an invitation to the celebration of that cultural phenomenon that shaped my life so long ago.”  I’ve been an admirer of John’s work ever since I first saw his prints on Tumblr last year.  I loved how beautifully he fused Star Wars with the traditional Dia de los Muertos artistic style.

So when my birthday rolled around this year, my boyfriend surprised me with the greatest gift of all—13 prints from John Karpinsky’s Guerra de las Galaxias collection!  What a guy.  When I opened the box and started looking through the artwork, I was amazed at the vibrancy of the colors, not to mention the incredible detail in each print.  As a lover of Star Wars and a Mexican-American gal, John’s art perfectly encapsulates who I am. Whether it’s the ornately tribal Stormtrooper or the X-Wing Fighter Pilot with roses in his eyes, I’m in love with all of his designs.  In fact, I’ve dedicated an entire wall in my living room to displaying his artwork!

There was also another little surprise in the box from John Karpinsky himself!  <happy dance>

I was so touched by this special birthday card John created for me!  I must admit, I got a little teary-eyed.  The detail in my Death Star costume is astounding.  He even included the tiny stars on my tights!  And the little Ewok piñata…I can’t repel cuteness of that magnitude!  Thank you John for making my birthday so memorable!!!

For more on John Karpinsky’s work, check out his store on Etsy.  The quality of his artwork is impeccable!  If you want to infuse your home or office with a little Star Wars magic, then these are the prints you’re looking for.  No Jedi Mind Trick necessary.  ; )

Star Wars Transmission!

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Cosplayers, crafts, and tattoos…oh my!  Check out my two segments from the Star Wars Transmission at Celebration VI!

 

Star Wars Celebration – Day 4

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It was the final lap of my Star Wars Celebration marathon and although I was exhausted, I was sad to be crossing the finish line.  I started off the day in the Digital Studio with vegetable carver and sushi chef Oki!  He gave me a lesson how to create a parsnip R2-D2.  Incredible!

 

Oki was such a skilled carver!  His creations only last a week and must kept refrigerated.  I asked him how he felt about throwing away his carvings after spending hours working on them.    He said that he has no trouble letting go because for him it’s more about the carving process than the end result.  In fact sometimes, he’ll boil and eat his creation!  I thought his perspective was really insightful and a good life lesson as well.  Here are some of his other Star Wars vegetable carvings:

 

After the craft demo, I got the chance to be a part of the Star Wars Transmissions wrap up show!  The wrap up show was taped in front of a live studio audience and featured Chris Gore, Clare Grant, Milynn Sarley, Casey Pugh, and myself talking about some of our favorite SWCVI moments.  Once the video is up I’ll be sure to share the link!

 

After the wrap up show, I literally ran to the closing ceremony.  It was a packed event and everyone wondered why they gave us 3-D glasses as we entered the theater.  To find out the answer (and the other big announcement) check out my post here!

 

After the ceremony, I finally got some time to go shopping.  Sine I only had an hour and half, I raced through that convention floor faster than the Millennium Falcon.  I picked up shirts, Micro Machines, a Yoda bathrobe, and the list goes on and on.  I wanted to buy these Leia headphones but I resisted.  Mainly because they wouldn’t fit in my backpack!

 

During my Star Wars shopping extravaganza, I happened to come across two Darth Vaders playing Star Wars Kinect.  I guess even Sith Lords like to practice their Force powers.

 

After 4 days of Star Wars heaven, it was time to go back to reality.  Star Wars Celebration was like living out my childhood fantasies.  Never would I have imagined that one day I’d be interviewing Chewbacca, seeing Mark Hamill in person, and meeting so many other fellow fans.  My bucket list is a lot shorter thanks to the epic weekend in Florida.  Many thanks to everyone at Lucasfilm, StarWars.com, and all the people I worked with at SWCVI.  Wookiee hugs to all the people I met—both new and old friends, you guys made the weekend extra special.  Until next Star Wars Celebration…that’s a wrap!

Star Wars Celebration – Day 3

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Day 3 of SWCVI was all about the cosplayers!  I got a little break during the day and I spent the whole time gawking at all the awesome costumes.  There are some seriously creative and talented people out there.  These costumes are on a whole other level.  There was a cybernetic Darth Maul, a screen-accurate Gamorrean Guard, and so many more.  One of the highlights of the day was getting to interview Chewbacca himself!  What?!

 

This Chewie cosplayer was seriously dedicated.  Not only was he on stilts, he also created the entire costume himself!  He even made a mold of his face for the mask.  Like I said, these cosplayers are on a whole other level of awesome.  I got inspired and couldn’t stop taking photos of everyone!

 

It’s a ghost trap!

 

Mini Boba Fett & Ahsoka Tano joined forces in the kids craft room!

 

I didn’t have the heart to tell Jar Jar I blew up his action figure.

 

Jabba captured Hello Kitty!

 

Mother Talzin made a dramatic entrance

 

This cosplayer is my kind of scum.  Fearless and inventive…

 

“Hey Greedo, can I get a shot?  Uh…I mean photo?”

 

Cosplaying kids is my kryptonite.

If you’d like to see more photos from Saturday, check out my Flickr page!

 

I also had a chance to meet my online friends Jon & Piggy in person!  Piggy is a little Gamorrean Guard action figure that travels to conventions and other Star Wars events.  Jon is Piggy’s owner and he’s such a kind person.  It was great to finally meet him and Piggy face to face (and snout).

 

Day 3 was perhaps my busiest day yet!  I definitely loved going around the con floor and interviewing all the cosplayers.  Being a StarWars.com field reporter and getting to talk about Star Wars all day was awesome and surreal.  I wish I could do it everyday!  Guess it’s good motivation for me to get back into vlogging!  : )

 

Star Wars Celebration – Day 2

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I must admit, I’m writing this post on the 3rd day of Celebration.  As you guys know, I’ve been doing double duty as both an on-camera host and a blogger for StarWars.com.  It’s been a lot of fun and it’s meant having an action-packed schedule this weekend.  Day 2 was all about panels, crafting, and a dash of cosplay!  In the morning on Friday, I headed to straight to the “Super Secret Star Wars Panel”.  Since the panel featured both Seth Green and Matt Senreich (of Robot Chicken fame) I figured they might be announcing a new Star Wars animation project.  And boy did they ever!  If you want to know what the super secret was, check out my post here!

 

One of the highlights of the day was getting to craft with one of my favorite geeky crafters, Amanda Jean!  I love AJ’s style and I’m always so amazed by the cool clothes and accessories she creates.  AJ and I filmed a craft video where she showed me how to make an Ewok purse!  Her design was so cute, the process was really simple, and it’s a craft that anyone could make.  Best part?  AJ let me keep our finished little Ewok purse!

After crafting with AJ, I ran over to the Costume Masquerade where they awarded the best costumes at SWCVI.  I caught the tail end of the Masquerade but got a chance to interview some of the winners.  There were some seriously incredible costumes.  One was a Bantha that required two cosplayers to operate.  I didn’t get a photo but hopefully you’ll be able to see the interview on StarWars.com.  I did however see some other great costumes on Friday.  Here are a couple of my favorites from the day:

 

This cardboard Stormtrooper won my crafty, little heart.

 

Cuteness.  Overload.

 

ANIMAL!!!!  Muppet Trooper FTW!

 

After a quick lap around the floor, I headed straight to the Mark Hamill panel.  Little did I know that people had been waiting in line for 6 HOURS already!  But I knew I couldn’t leave SWCVI without seeing Luke Skywalker.  It’s always been a dream of mine to at least hear him speak in person.  And thanks to the kind folk at Lucasfilm, I got in!  The thing that surprised me most about Mr. Hamill was how open and genuine he was.  He shared some hilarious stories including one about his audition for “Pop” in a Rice Krispies Commercial.  I could have sat and listened to him talk for hours.  He has such an interesting perspective about life and the entertainment business.  If you’d like to read some of his stories about Star Wars, I wrote a very extensive post about the panel.  I wanted to include everything he said!  ; )

 

As I made my way through the convention center at the end of the night, it was neat to see how empty it was.  As I walked by the giant AT-AT and hanging Death Star, I kind of felt like I was in Night At The Museum.  If spending the night at the convention center meant seeing the AT-AT come to life…you know I’d bring my Tauntaun sleeping bag.