Monthly Archives: November 2007

Costume Changes in Harry Potter and the Half Blood-Prince (2008)

It’s been awhile since we’ve said much about film costumes or Harry Potter, but we decided to get this one out there.

As you may or may not know, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is in production already and it looks like they’re hitting the ground running. Or wait, maybe they’re flying. On brooms. With dementors.

Anyway, a few days ago, this video hit the Internet showing some of the changes and highlights of the production process so far. Most notably, a specific change to the Quidditch outfits. According to costume designer Jany Temime, the dangerous nature and more prominent roles of Ron and Harry in the Quidditch matches calls for something “a little bit stronger”. By taking nods from more classic American Football padding, she hopes to create a costume that mimics the step up in intensity. The padding will be worn outside of totally new robes created for the match.

We like these changes. Harry Potter has always been intriguing because it mixes our world with the fantasy, making us feel like we’re not so far off from the objects of our imagination. The juxtaposition of Quidditch protective pads on wizard’s robes is equally as charming as it is ironic. One does have to wonder though, with all that finger wiggling power behind these wizardy students, couldn’t they conjure some magic spell for protection? Wait, is that against the rules? I don’t remember.

Temime has been around since the production of Azkaban and is well familiar with the world of Harry Potter. She was nominated in 2005 for the outstanding costume design Satellite award for her work in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and looks to make a big impact in 2008 with Half Blood Prince.

Posted in movies, video, world costumes | Leave a comment

Homebrewed! – The Living Severed Hand

Instructables is always a veritable treasure trove of awesome stuff. I love the clever crafts that people come up with and share. Some of them, I’ve nearly stood up from my computer and pursued crafting immediately.

That’s why I have to share the Living Severed Hand instructable with the bloggees today (does that word work?). This particular craft may seem a bit late for Halloween, but it’s fun anyway. The user who crafted this goes by the name a grain of alt.

Living Severed Hand

The basic gist of this is to get a matching pair of gloves but create one as a stuffed “dummy glove” to slip the hand into. If the glove is stuffed well, and attached properly, all you need is to make a semi-realistic looking stub and you’re set. However, if you’re running around with your fingers wiggling on the severed hand, we have confidence people won’t be looking at your stub so much as they will be running from it. Either way, it’s a pretty ingenious costume piece and deserves a good try.

Good Work!

Posted in DIY, halloween, how-to | 1 Comment

Thursday Cosplay – Final Fantasy XI Fan Festival 2007 Edition

ffxi.jpg

Not all Final Fantasy fans are Cosplayers, but a lot of them are. In fact, Final Fantasy boasts some of the most cosplay out there. The series has been going on for years and has seen numerous remakes with time. For the most part, the fanbase is strong.

In the early part of the decade, Square Enix released Final Fantasy XI, their online version of the game, to the world. Already a huge success in Japan, the game made some great leaps and bounds for the franchise. The game is still alive today, and is freshly awaiting an expansion due out just a short number of days. This will be the fourth expansion to the game.

As the game has had a steady pace of popularity amongst online gamers across the world, Square Enix has made a tradition of holding fan festivals to honor the gamers who keep the world of Vana’diel alive. Enter the cosplay. With some of the most creative art, Final Fantasy XI cosplayers are popular among the world of cosplay. This year, to honor the upcoming festival, we’re highlighting the world of Final Fantasy XI in our weekly cosplay highlight.

Red Mage Cosplay

This picture is of the Red Mage that clearly these players are quite fond of. The suits look, as all cosplay, totally hand made and are very cleverly done. Here’s a look at what the costume looks like in the game.

red-mage.jpg

I do say, not a bad job at all. Well anyway, there’s the cosplay for the day. If you’re interested, pop over to the Fan Festival site and take a look at what they’ll be holding this upcoming weekend. It looks to be like quite the event. Costume competitions? You bet. It wouldn’t be the same without it.

If you have any sort of pictures, ideas, stories, or things to add about FFXI, the upcoming fan festival, or anything FFXI cosplay related then go ahead and pop on in. We’ll be more than happy to host any user images!

Posted in cosplay, gaming | 1 Comment

The Coalition For The Appreciation of Random, Strange, Awful, or Ugly Costumes – He-Man, The Prince of Gagtasticness

He Man  Costume

I grew up with He-Man. At the time, there was just about nothing cooler I could have been doing with my 3-year-old time than making He-Man action figures kamikaze jump from my bunk bed. As I got older, I definitely graduated to the world of Ninja Turtles, but I always remembered He-Man fondly.

That is, until that wretched Masters of the Universe movie came out. It was like a putrid whirlwind of stink that crushed all that was cool about He-Man inside my head. Now, to be fair, live action adaptations of super heroes and the likes have come a long way with the graces of awesome special effects. However, I’m not sure there’s much redemption for the old cartoon after it was desecrated by bad movie disease.

So, what’s worse than the terrible He-Man film that we all changed the channel to watch Tremors in spite of? Well, He-Man costumes. I’d actually insert this beastly concoction into the category of ugly and awful all in one. Do I need to break it down. The equation of the late 70’s hairdo reminiscent of the stuff you’d see on Different Strokes, plus the armor made up of basically a few leather straps and a Speedo, all multiplied by the grossness of the fur that makes up the Speedo… /sigh. It’s a mess all together.

At least he has a cool sword and fierce pet tiger/lion/panther/something-from-the-same-species-as-cat friend. So tonight, the Coalition for the Appreciation of Random, Strange, Awful, or Ugly Costumes tips their hat to this stinking woofness that is a costume.

Hey, maybe someone could pull it off in a cool modern movie remake? Hmm, nope. Wait, robot He-Man? Yes! YES!

He-Man T-Shirt

Much more acceptable — I’d buy this for one of my kids maybe?

Posted in carsauc | 2 Comments

Virtual Holidays vs. The Real Deal – Part 1 – An introduction for the rest of us…

We’ve talked before about virtual worlds, and the value we see in them. Since we are into costumes, and all things pertaining to them, it’s no surprise that virtual worlds prove an interesting concept to us. Costumes and virtual worlds are means of escape. They’re means of taking on a new set of skin for awhile. Some of us do it for fun, others more seriously, still others for competition. Ultimately, the point is to get away from the drudgery of life and be something else for awhile.

I caught an anonymous tip of an article on Massively.com about the lamenting for a Halloween gone by. As I read it, I noticed that the writer was specifically referring to the Halloween she spent online. Come again?

A further read revealed that she misses the Halloween she celebrated in City of Heroes, a popular superhero online role playing game. I’ve never really experienced at full the concept of celebrating a holiday online, but thought I’d dig a bit deeper to find out what it’s all about. In my research, I found out more than I expected.

Popular games like World of Warcraft, Everquest, City of Heroes, and even the brand new Hellgate: London all represented the costume obsessed holiday with great detail. Each world takes on a different feel, and therefore has it’s independent story about how the holiday is incorporated into their celebrations. For example, in World of Warcraft, the holiday is actually called Hallow’s End. According to the website’s description of the Holiday.

Observed by both the Horde and the Alliance, Hallow’s End is the celebration of the break between the Forsaken and the Scourge. Adventurers can speak to innkeepers to get silly masks to wear during their adventures, and much more. This is just one way to celebrate Hallow’s End. Read below for more things to do during spooky season on Azeroth!

if-halloween.jpg

The dwarf city of Ironforge in World of Warcraft, all prepped up for the festivities.

Well, yeah it’s kind of a bunch of Warcraft mumbo jumbo if you’re not a player and don’t know the story. But what’s great is that there are stories that serve as launch points for these holidays that mimic the real life versions.  Each holiday is accompanied by specific lore that incorporates the holidays for the players. As stated on the website players receive rewards, participate in unique games, and experience accented changes in scenery to give the proper ambiance for the games they’re playing.

An important quality of these online worlds is that they cost to play. Gamers pay an initial price to acquire the game and then pay monthly, quarterly, or even yearly fees to keep having access to the game. The reasoning is because the games typically don’t have any defined end and tend to be regularly updated with new content. Players pay the fee for access to the game’s servers and developers can continue to deliver a living breathing world that changes with time and progress.

There’s one thing that virtual holidays do better than us. A typical online game like those mentioned earlier celebrates these holidays for often weeks on end. This gives players who may not have a chance to attend the celebration as much or on the actual day the chance to experience the events in their full glory.  In a perfect world, we would join this tradition, but a virtual platform is a great way to squeeze a bit more out of the holidays and see just how to keep the spirit of our favorite holidays alive.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be going into the ideas behind celebrating holidays in virtual worlds. More importantly, we’ll take a look at the relation to costumes and these virtual celebrations. With any luck, we’ll get some chances to pop in as well and see how it goes for us. In the meantime, stay tuned to the site.

-collinevan

Everquest 2 Halloween

In Everquest 2, players get to earn masks and candies that give them special powers for fun.

cox-halloween.jpg

You can’t really ask for much more in terms of costumes with City of Heroes, but they manage to put on a great Halloween celebration.

Posted in halloween, ideas, virtual worlds | Leave a comment

Web Gem: Project Rooftop

Batman and Robin by Daniel Krall

Batman and Robin by Daniel Krall

Dean Trippe is doing a service to the comic and costume industry with his blog Project Rooftop. It’s a blog with a mission to diversify the clever super hero costumes out there. The blog has numerous contributions from comic artists all over, and just about every bit of art that floats to the site is second to none. It begs the question, why costume redesign? According to Trippe’s site:

In the superhero market, the various character redesigns by superstar artists like Bruce Timm and Alex Ross have impressed upon readers just how versatile classic superhero iconography can be. Many characers, including Spider-Man, Wolverine, Green Lantern, and Supergirl, have had numerous costume changes, but have generally retained their visual identity. Redesiging classic superhero costumes has become an art which combines design skills, color theory, theatrical costuming, and fashion sense.

The superhero fashion industry seems to be a robust one. With superhero culture growing larger from Hollywood adaptations and the popularity of events like Comic Con, it’s no wonder comic artists gather to rehash their favorite do-gooder paragons into their own interpretations.

We absolutely love it! In the world of superpowers, costumes make the hero. This is a great place to get some wonderful ideas for clever DIY costumes, and really pay homage to the artists with the imagination behind the work.

Posted in blogroll, comics, websites | Leave a comment

Retrofit – The Old School Operation Costume

I try somewhat hard to not be a total segment freak when it comes to the blog. Alas, despite some of my best efforts, I have yet another segment to add to the blog. This time, we’re going to call it “retrofit”.

It seems these days that throwbacks are always in. I suspect it will always be the same. Take any good piece of pop culture and bring back fond memories, and you’re sure to have a hit. This year for Halloween, I was lucky enough to see a few good retro costumes to make me say to myself “self, you should write about retro costumes!”. Therefore, the birth of retrofit. Hopefully I’ll be able to find some really knock-out costumes, instructions, news bits, or anything else retro/costumes for y’all to read. Once again, I do have to stress that we’re all about the collaboration. If you have an idea or something, please submit and we’ll include it as always.

Anyway, here goes.

The Illustrious Functioning Operation Costume

I had a huge notion to do a piece on retro looking photos to get that creepy old horror movie feel when taking pics of your Halloween costume. While I was busy scouring for ideas, I stubbed my toe on this article

I didn’t ask permission to publicly praise this effort, but I will be contacting the admin at Avoision.com to hear more about his experience with making the Operation costume. It looks like to took a good amount of time, plenty of ingenuity, and a huge post activity mess to deal with.

For those of you who maybe weren’t alive during the eighties, Operation was a board game where you had to use endlessly steady hands to carefully extract the body parts of a sickly man. If you hit the sides of the openings where the tightly fit plastic organs were, you got buzzed at viciously like you just went out the emergency exit of a museum. Now, just imagine the same thing, except attached to a human body…

You have to give the guy credit for the work he did. And it’s fit to mention that there’s much more incentive in pulling a Reese’s from the costume than it would be to walk away triumphant with your own aorta. Everyone has their own thing though I guess. Either way, this is a classicly good retrofit for the blog, therefore it shall be the initial entry to this new segment.

Take a peek at the photos and please be sure to jump over to the actual article. The work is so clever, it needs no further explanation.

Operation Costume

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World Cosplay Summit ’08 Primer

World Cosplay Summit Banner

It’s been awhile since we’ve said anything about Cosplay. Meh, the lines are blurry, right? Either way, we want to get some cosplay goodness out to you. It’s time we start keeping an eye on the World Cosplay Summit for ’08. That way we can get a head start on all the action.

For those of you who don’t know, World Cosplay Summit takes place in Japan and is the cosplay event. It’s more than a convention, it’s a landmark moment for any serious cosplayer. As the originators of cosplay, the Japanese know how to put these events on right.

Vital stats? Here you go.

Event Time: Summer next year.

Location: Nagoya Aichi Japan

This is actually only the 6th annual summit to ever be held, so there’s something to be said for the popularity.

As the event is far off, there’s not much more to say than that. There looks to be around 14 countries already participating, and that includes the U.S. Each country sends a team of 2 to represent them and compete in cosplay contests. The event is huge, with the summit of ’07 already boasting around ten thousand spectators for only their fourth year. As the buzz around the World Cosplay Summit grows, so does the media attention.

Last year’s summit, the biggest ever in participation and attendance, brought some unbelievable competition with some of the best cosplay ever seen. France’s Damian Ratte and Isabelle Jeudy took home the prize portraying Tsugiri and Myōbi from Alichino.

In recent news, the New York Anime Festival has made a key partnership with the Summit in efforts to proliferate the importance of Anime culture even further across the globe. According to the Anime News Network:

Festival organizers note that the partnership will provide NYAF with the opportunity to stage the World Cosplay Summit’s Official USA Preliminary Round. The winners of the convention’s Masquerade will receive a free trip to Japan to represent the USA in the World Cosplay Summit Finals in Summer 2008. The New York Anime Festival is the only American anime convention approved to be part of the World Cosplay Summit.

The World Cosplay Summit joins existing Masquerade sponsor, Anime Insider Magazine, which will feature a photo spread of the Masquerade’s winners in an upcoming issue and also award the winners a complimentary year subscription to the publication.

If you’re not a resident of Japan and you plan on heading to the World Cosplay Summit this year, sit tight for more news as the year unfolds. We’ll be tracking this huge event as the info hits our inboxes so we can have you prepped and ready. Until then, hit up the World Cosplay Summit website for more details on the preliminary round qualifications and outcomes.

Posted in conventions, cosplay | 3 Comments