Sunday, March 17, 2013

March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  The weather feels like Christmas around here this year.  Last year at this time it was in the 80's.  I am glad that it is not in the 80 degree area as that was a little unsettling to have such warm weather (for long periods of time) in March.  A little moderation would be nice though.  How about some 50 degree days?

Anyway, St. Patricks Day around here means parades.  I did one last weekend...well...almost...and one yesterday.

Last Sunday (March 10th) the members of my Star Wars costume group was asked to march in the Southside Irish St. Pat's Day Parade.  We didn't have a lot of members signed up for the parade in the first place, and many of the members who did sign up, didn't show up.  The weather was terrible, it was cold and raining steadily. With only 4 of us present we decided not to actually march as only 4 people in costume would look more than a little pathetic, but we did suit up to the delight of the host family who opened their home for us to change in.  Next year, hopefully, we can get a bigger group as this parade is really a good time.  After we suited up for photos with the family, we did make our way to the parade route to hang out awhile.  I wore my Imperial Gunner costume to give it a "test drive" after installing fans and a hard hat suspension system.  The suspension system worked out really well...the fans...not so much.

Yesterday was the Naperville St. Patrick's Day Parade and the weather was just as bad.  Cold, drizzle, snow, and wind.  I parked my car at the end of the parade and walked the parade route back to the beginning.  It was then hours of stand around and wait in the cold.  That's the thing about parades.  They are fun...but all that waiting around to step off is usually mind numbing.  We were nearer to the front of the parade than we normally are, so that was a good thing.  I wore my Snowspeeder Pilot costume to this one and where I was not too cold for the first hour or so, it did start to get to me and my hands were numb.  But, as with most all parades, it is always worth it.  All you heard from the people along the parade route was "Star Wars"!!  I did get a few - "'s Luke Skywalker"
at least it seemed that some of the people recognized the costume.

I have been reading a LOT lately.  I saw a trailer for a movie coming out in August called "City of Bones" and found that there was a series of books called "The Mortal Instruments" and "City of Bones" is the first book.  I picked up all 5 books that are currently out and dived through the first three in a little over a week.  Another record for me as each of the books was over 400 pages.  I really liked the story but am taking a break from the series to catch up on another series I am reading called "The Vampire Diaries".   Since I have no television anymore, I do a lot more reading.

Today I will be a slave to the sewing machine as I work on the softcap for my second Endor Commando headgear.  I dread what else is new!  I also finished my Hoth Commander costume and it was judged as "informal" because of the color of the gaitered boots...meh...I have enough formal costumes and I knew that mine were the wrong color.  I don't agree that the boots should be gray instead of tan...but that's life.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

March 3, 2013

Lack of finances is keeping me home a lot the last couple of weeks, so I am diving in on unfinished projects.  Those unfinished projects include my General Riekeen costume, Bespin Luke pouches and belt, and duplicates of my Endor Commando and Hoth Trench Trooper headgear along with other displays for the Joliet Library Star Wars Day. 

Nothing seems to be going well in the costume department as I have been having no end of trouble with the General Riekeen jacket.  I had to sew huge darts into the back of the jacket and can't get the collar right...I have had the collar off 3 times now and am running out of ideas.  I have the belt buckle done and will probably finish the rank badge today and hope to finish the pants for this costume. 

The pouches that I made out of leather also came out pretty bad.  I need to try to get some better techniques on wetforming leather.  Where the concept works pretty good, the issue is the corners.  I just can't get them "crisp" enough and that contributed to stitching issues and the dying of the belt blank and pouches didn't really go well either.  I will have to re-think my choice of dye for future projects. 

This past Tuesday I had a meeting with the organizers of the Joliet Library Star Wars Day event and things are shaping up.  I did start thinking in terms of display items for the Rebel Base and started working on a couple of those.  I did do some signage for two of the pieces I plan to display and finished those up and am starting to store all of the items for that event into a tub.  I kind of waited too long last year to think about things like that and it showed so this year I am going to work on display pieces a little at a time.

I did do an event last Friday for the winner of the Max Lacewell Foundation Gala auction.  It ended up on a Friday night out in Oswego.  We got some snow that morning and I feared for a really difficult commute to Oswego, but the snow quit early enough and the roads were just messy.  It was an unusual trooping event as it was held at "Bounce Town" in Oswego.  There was so much for the kids to do that we costumed people were kind of just an "afterthought".  But, the family seemed pleased so that is the important thing.

The weather has been awful lately.  It snowed just about every day this past week.  We didn't get a lot of snow but it was always flurrying and I don't think we saw the sun at all this past week.  I signed on for the South Side Irish Parade this coming Sunday and hope that the weather will at least moderate a little.

On the entertainment front, I did get to the movies to see "Warm Bodies" and I really enjoyed it.  I finished watching all the DVD's I had for the TV Series Roswell, so I have nothing left to watch at the moment.  I finished another book of "The Vampire Diaries" and now have moved on to "The Mortal Instruments" series.  I am half way done with "City of Bones" and am enjoying it.

Also, I tackled trying to sell my "Action Fleet" collection on E-bay and so far the results are VERY dismal!  All of the auctions currently on e-bay are getting NO traffic.  No bids and no one even watching them.  Two of the auctions end today and I will re-list them with a reduced price if they don't sell.  There are several other auctions that end later in the week and if those don't sell either, I may have to re-think my strategy of putting the items up for sale in lots and just try to sell them one at a time.