Fandom Friday: New Years Blogging Goals

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Happy Friday! I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanza/etc. Today is a join Top 5/Fandom Friday post. We’re barreling towards the end of the year (and my birthdaaaaaay huhuhu), so today I’m talking about my 2015 goals for the Geeky Seamstress. The older I get, the more I dislike the term “resolution.” It feels so finite. I always start off with with the best intentions (“I’m going to get to the gym six days a week!”, “I’m going to read 50 books this year!”), but then I inevitably stumble and it feels like the year is a waste. How silly is that? Instead, I’m focusing more on establishing habits that will lead to my larger goals.

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So, here are a few goals for this blog and The Geeky Seamstress as a whole:

  • Establish myself as a business entity and open an online store: I’ve spent the last few months researching the ins and outs of owning and operating a one-woman business, and I feel like I’m finally ready to take the plunge. I’ve been working on building inventory for the last few weeks and I hope to share the final results with you soon.
  • Create more on-going tutorial content: You guys really liked my Spandex 101 series, so I’m looking into creating similar content. I’ve been working on another series which will be ongoing. The first post will be up on January 5th!
  • Improve my photography skills: I feel like photography has been a bit of an Achilles heel for me. I’d like to learn more about photography for product photos and so that I can bring a bit more interest to my cosplay and me-made photos.
  • Explore advertisement opportunities: I’ve been putting this one off for a while. For a long time, I thought my blog wasn’t “big enough” to warrant blog ads. And yeah, my overall reach isn’t Earth-shattering, but the more I look into it, the more an ad service like Passionfruit makes sense. It’s a great opportunity to increase exposure and have more flexibility to create content. Obviously, I care about what you guys see on this site, so I’m focusing on ads that I think you would care about.
  • Focus on quality over quantity: This is applicable to both my posts and my sewing projects. It’s easy in our information saturated culture to feel the need to post CONSTANTLY. Next year, my big goal is to step back and focus more on quality.
  • Bonus: Keep an open mind to new opportunities. I’ve been approached by a couple of outlets recently to write content. I was hesitant at first, but I’m going to try out these opportunities and see how they work out. I’ll keep you posted!

Also, I’d really appreciate it if you would take just a few minutes to fill out this quick reader survey. I’d love your input on this blog and things you’d like to see more (or less) of. If you can’t see the survey below, you can fill it out here.

What are your goals for 2015?

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Year in Review: Cosplay

15343108663_0fbe099154With the end of the year quickly coming up, I thought I’d take today’s post to look back at my cosplay creations from 2014. This was a big year for me in terms of cosplay growth. I completed 14 full costumes for myself and others, plus a few smaller pieces. That’s huge when you consider that I made only 4 costumes in 2012 and 5 costumes in 2013.¬†I feel like I should be concerned about the amount of time I spend sewing ūüėõ

Here are my 5 favorite costumes from this year:

2014-06-07 11.37.30Bombshell Wonder Woman: I’ve gone over my love of Wonder Woman before. Her classic outfit is super intimidating, but I fell in love with the Bombshell designs the moment I saw them. I was pretty pleased with my first version of this costume, but I kept tweaking it until I got it to the point that I felt like it was officially “complete”. Of course, now I’m about ready to either retire or remake it and I still haven’t done a real photo shoot with it! Oops. That may have to happen during my vacation.

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Photo by Aperture Ashley

Sailor Jupiter: This has been a dream costume for years, but I didn’t feel like I was ready to tackle it until a few months ago. Getting to cosplay Jupiter was incredible. I love how strong I feel when I cosplay her. I poured a lot of time and love into this costume, and I feel like it shows. Of course, now I want to make her Super and Eternal fukus!

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Photo by ACCosplay

Ms. Marvel gown:¬†After spending a lot of time reading the Ms. Marvel and Captain Marvel comics this year, I knew I wanted to make Carol’s outfits. I really enjoy cosplaying regular Ms.¬†Marvel, but my gown variation¬†is one of my favorite costumes to date. Hanie Mohd came up with such a gorgeous design, and I absolutely love wearing this dress. It’s very flattering and surprisingly comfortable!

Photographer: Aperture Ashley
Photographer: Aperture Ashley

Kotobukiya Rogue: You all know how much I absolutely adore Rogue. This costume is really special to me, partly because I spent a lot of time upgrading it and partly because I just love Rogue. Each version of this costume got just a little better. I’d still like to go back and remake the jacket one of these days, but I’ll also need to make¬†a new wig since I chopped it up to make Marvel Now Rogue. More than likely, I’ll just make Rogue’s Shi’ar uniform! Because shiny pink goodness.

ewoksSupergirl: This costume was a HUGE learning curve in regards to spandex appliques and manipulation, but I am so proud of how it turned out. I still want to make one for myself!

And an honorable nod to the costumes that tried really hard, but just aren’t going to be worn again:

Photo by Neither Noir.
Photo by Neither Noir.

Korra:¬†In my original post on this costume, I mentioned that I only finished this costume out of stubbornness. I got frustrated with the Korra series during season 2 and wound up only half-heartedly finishing this costume. I’m less frustrated with the series now (I REALLY need to watch seasons 3 & 4), but I still feel meh about the idea of wearing Korra again.

20140314-093007.jpgFluttershy:¬†I really like this dress, but I’m just not a good Fluttershy.

Overall, I’m pretty pleased with this year’s makes. Sometime in the next few weeks, I’ll go through the things I’m not planning to wear again (and the billion wigs I ordered for costumes that never happened) and put them up for sale on Storenvy (along with a few other things ;). While I am happy with my makes this year, I’m definitely planning to cut back on personal makes for next year to allow for more commissions and more complicated project (*cough* Lulu *cough*). More on that in a future post.

If you cosplay, what was your favorite costume from 2014? If you don’t, what were some of the coolest you saw this year?¬†

Top 5 of 2014: My Wardrobe

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I¬†took on a huge sewing endeavor in 2014. This year, I participated in the Goodbye Valentino’s Ready-to-Wear (RTW) clothing fast, meaning that I didn’t purchase a single pre-made garment this year. Not going to lie, this challenge was tough, especially in addition to my costumes. I’ve gone through some weight fluctuation this year, and my professional wardrobe at the beginning of the year was in pretty dire need of an update. Also, I missed out on some seriously adorable geeky t-shirts. Boo.

But before I get into that, here are my top five makes of the year:

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Clockwise from top left: Tofino pants, Mabel skirt, Bombshell swimsuit, Lady Skater, and Lady Skater-frew.
  • Lady Skater: This dress gets worn at least once a week. Love it.
  • Lady Skaterfrew: Another dress that gets worn at least once a week. It’s been perfect for my winter wardrobe.
  • Colette’s Mabel: Another wardrobe staple. I wear either my grey or navy one at least once every other week, though that’s been a little less since the weather has been cooler around here.
  • Bombshell Swimsuit: While I didn’t really wear this much, it’s one of my favorite makes this year. It’s absolutely gorgeous and oh-so-flattering.
  • Sewaholic Tofino pants: My go-to pants pretty much anytime I get home. Super cozy.

Bonus mentions to my Captain Marvel dress and Moogle hoodie. Because I love them.

And an honorable mention to the makes that are going into the recycle bin:

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Clockwise from top left: Cambie conference dress, McCall’s 6754, Alma blouse, Sorbetto blouse, Gertie’s pencil skirt.
  • The Conference Dress: I like a lot of things about this dress and I always get compliments when I wear it, but it desperately needs a FBA. I may cut the bodice off and just wear it as a skirt.
  • Colette Sorbetto: This just isn’t my style. I feel really bulky wearing it. But it was useful for learning how to do FBAs!
  • Gertie’s Pencil Skirt: I really should have muslined this one first. In hindsight, I’d nix the waistband and use something with a little bit of stretch.
  • Sewaholic Alma Blouse: This was a fabric issue more than anything else. The cotton voile was just so iron prone that it drove me crazy. I’m lazy when it comes to ironing, so I think I’d go for something with a bit of poly next time.
  • McCall’s 6754: Funky pattern (seriously, why do all the middle pieces have seams?) and bad fabric. I think I’ve worn this all of 3 times since making it.

This challenge revealed a lot about my wardrobe, including how many clothes I simply don’t wear. Despite feeling like my professional wardrobe is underdeveloped, I realized that I mostly wear the same 5-8 outfits with various cardigans: slacks with a knit top or skater dresses with tights and cardigans.

My home wardrobe really is just PJs/comfy pants and t-shirts. I would like more weekend wear, but I feel like my sewing is slightly out of balance in that realm. I have several fun, campy makes, but not a lot of staples. Not unless you count items like my skater dresses. The ever present conflict of too much icing and not enough cake.

Next year, I’d like to focus more on knits and simple makes for my home wardrobe. This is partly to allow for more commissions, and partly because some items like my more fitted dresses just don’t get a lot of wear (much to my chagrin). While I love these makes, I have to allot my time and funds wisely next year. Here are a few things I’d like to add to my me-made wardrobe next year:

  • Tailored coat (working on this now!)
  • More knit dresses and skirts! This one would be perfect for both work and fun.
  • Leggings to go with knit dresses
  • A pair of slacks just for the experience and practice of fitting pants. I’m still not sure what pattern to use. The Juniper seems like a good choice, but I’d definitely need to take the pants in a bit.
  • A self-drafted A-line skirt
  • A maxi skirt, specifically this one. Because some days, I really don’t want to wear tights/leggings to cover the fact that I haven’t shaved in a few days.
  • A few decent blouses. I have had a horrible time with blouses (both in terms of fabric and patterns), but they’re what I need the most for my work wardrobe. I’m open to suggestions!
  • A work-friendly Cambie with a FBA. I will conquer the conference dress, dammit!

This is a pretty long list, but really my goal for next year is to slow down and enjoy the sewing experience, hence projects like the tailored coat project. I doubt that I’ll participate in the RTW challenge next year, partly because there are some things I need to update that I simply don’t want to sew (*cough* jeans *cough*). Still, this challenge has been a great experience. Plus, I’ve gotten so much faster at sewing. Seriously, I made 14+ costumes (I’ll review those later this week) and 20+ garments. How did that happen? I can’t wait to get started on garments for 2015!

What are some of your favorite looks from 2014?