ladyofthethread: (Sarah cowgirl)
Wow, I almost never get random gifts but it has happened twice within two weeks! o_o I was surprised to get another e-mail yesterday saying 2 more months of paid time was added to my LJ account. (I wonder a bit if it’s people who bid on my stuff in the help_japan community since both extensions showed up around the same time I had transactions there.) Anyway, if whoever did that is reading, thank you! :-)


No April Fool’s joke from me this year but I did write a humorous Petshop of Horrors drabble for the occasion. Why you do not play April Fool’s tricks on Count D…

And I am amused by the ACP April Fool’s joke this year of a cosplay-themed trading card game. XD I put one of my Cecelia pictures on my card since it seemed fitting to have a Yu-Gi-Oh costume on there. Must look up friends’ cards later to see how they turned out.


Still working on the new Ryuuren costume. The shirt is done except for the collar and I think I might do the vest before I finish that up so I can better tell whether my collars are overlapping properly.
ladyofthethread: (Terra)
Started sewing on the new Ryuuren costume. Finished the yellow wrap thingy that goes around the waist and am working on the shirt now, which shouldn’t be too hard.

And I wrote a set of Saiunkoku drabbles based on the observation that Kouyuu wears red earrings like Reishin’s in some of the manga/artbook pictures. Considering how he dresses rather plainly compared to others around the Imperial Court, I think there has to be some reason behind the earrings. (Of course, it would be a cosplayer that thinks of such things. ^_^;;) I was a bit hesitant to include Yuri-Hime since she only appears in the novels and I only know what I’ve seen in fan translations but I thought, “Hmm… Why don’t I make this a set of linked drabbles with a piece from each family member’s point of view?” Originally, it was only going to be one drabble but the idea expanded a bit and each drabble is exactly 100 words. I guess this could be considered cute family fluff with a touch of angst.

Saiunkoku drabble set: The Ruby Earrings )

Edit: I've put up a couple of offerings at the [livejournal.com profile] help_japan community for drabbles and earrings. Both are Buy It Now since they're just little things.

And less than two days left to bid on my crafty creations with 100% of the final sale to go to Red Cross. See my earlier post for more details or go directly to my auctions on eBay to bid. The pouch and the needlepoint kimono haven’t moved beyond the starting bids yet and the price for the box is still low considering the work that went into it. And the needlepoint kimono is really low since just the materials cost as much as the current bid. Auctions are over now.

Photobucket
ladyofthethread: (D with bird)
I wrote a 100 word PSOH drabble this afternoon, based on the idea that the second day of the Chinese New Year (today) is the birthday of all dogs. Humorous and G-rated:
http://community.livejournal.com/psohdrabble/434839.html

I’m pleasantly surprised it’s up to 7 comments already. ^_^ [livejournal.com profile] psohdrabble had been so dead and there hadn’t been any posts for a couple of months that I wasn’t sure if anyone was still around. It’s a nice change from the lack of response I’ve gotten trying to archive all my old stuff together at ff.net. I’ve only gotten a single review there plus some favorites and alerts despite the PSOH stuff being up to over 2,000 hits combined for all my older pieces. And the Saiunkoku stuff is limping along there with very few hits, a few favorites from one person, and no reviews. Frustrating since it takes more time to write those than the PSOH drabbles.

And I got the latest volume of PSOH: Tokyo in the mail today so I'll have that to read for the weekend.

Update

Jan. 19th, 2011 12:18 am
ladyofthethread: (Kyoya)
Hmm… It’s been a while since I’ve posted and a bunch of things have happened since then.

Theatre
I made it to the final Wednesday matinee of “A Little Night Music” back on the 5th. It’s one of my favorite Sondheim scores so I enjoyed having a chance to see it onstage. It’s basically a romantic farce with lots of overlapping love triangles. They definitely played on the comedic material and it was hilarious; it’s kind of easy to forget that there’s also so much humor when just listening to all of the waltz music from the cast recording. The set was relatively simple but I liked how they managed to do so much with it. The walls along the edges of the stage could be lit in various patterns to give the impression of different rooms. Plus, they swiveled to form different arrangements and allow furniture to be brought on and off stage. I particularly liked when the trees were added for act 2. The costumes looked nice although some of the little details weren’t very visible from the audience (I bought a souvenir program afterwards so I was able to see some of the details I missed from the photos in there.) And I was curious how they managed to do some of the costume changes so quickly since they were period costumes. (Would be nice if I could manage to change costumes in a couple of minutes!)

My one complaint would be I couldn’t completely believe Bernadette Peters as the glamorous actress Desiree Armfeldt or Elaine Stritch as her former courtesan mother who once had kings among her lovers because of their accents. The show is set in early 20th Century Sweden and they just didn’t sound European at all. I’d never seen either perform live before but I had seen them in Sondheim things that were taped and released on DVD (Bernadette in “Into the Woods” and “Sunday in the Park with George” and Elaine in the Lincoln Center “Follies” concert). They pretty much sounded as they did in those performances and I felt their own personalities came through so I saw them as Bernadette Peters playing Desiree Armfeldt and Elaine Stritch playing Madame Armfeldt, rather than as Desiree Armfeldt and Madame Armfeldt. I enjoyed the show and they were hilarious, especially Bernadette during the “You Must Meet my Wife” scene, but I just couldn’t completely see them as the characters.

Cosplay
Then, my brother and I went to visit [livejournal.com profile] neoangelwink and [livejournal.com profile] loudnbothered on the 8th. Finally exchanged holiday presents with neoangelwink; had tea and cake; and talked a bit about plans for Katsucon and later this year.

Kaleido Star group for Costume Con has been cancelled. Neoangelwink and [livejournal.com profile] athena_chan hadn’t realized that Costume Con is the same weekend as Sakura Matsuri and they need to be at the festival to sell hats so they won’t be able to do the group with me. Other people who were interested in possibly doing it with me are also dealing with real life issues so this just seems to be bad timing for everyone and I don’t want people to stress out over costumes when they have more important things to worry about. I don’t feel like trying to rush through Layla’s ballgown by late April if I don’t have a group to present it with so the idea is postponed for now. Depending on whether people still want to try to do the group at some point, we could try for an anime con later on although I don’t know what would be good. The only ones I’m likely to be at this year after Costume Con are AnimeNext and NYCC/NYAF. Or maybe, just do a Kaleido Star group for fun and photos that isn’t limited to the Cinderella costumes.

And this leaves me uncertain about costume plans for this year. While I do have a bunch of things I still want to make someday, there’s nothing jumping out at me that I especially want to work on right now. I guess it doesn’t help that I’m still feeling unmotivated due to the cold. Plus, Chinese New Year is in a couple of weeks and that always means a lot of extra work around the house so it might not be the best time to start a new project anyway.

I’m not sure if I want to try to do something else as a solo entry for Costume Con. There aren’t that many things elaborate enough that I’d especially want to present them at Costume Con versus just getting them judged at an anime con. There’s the Future Fashion Folio which I still have to look over in more detail although I don’t know if I’d actually want to do one. It’s basically a collection of other people’s sketches for original designs so after the contest, it doesn’t seem like there would be many good opportunities to rewear it. Or I could try to come up with a Broadway costume to go with the Costume Con theme. I kind of want to since I love musicals but it’s very hard to come up with the combination of a show I love, a design I want to make, and a character that I like and could pull off. Plus, preferably, it wouldn’t be overly costly or time consuming to make since I doubt there would be a good chance to wear it again. :-/ Or just more anime stuff? I don’t know.

Fanfic
After years of not using it, I decided to clean out my ff.net account the other weekend and start over since I’ve been doing fanfic a bit more the past couple of months and my stuff has been scattered across LJ communities rather than collected in any one place. I’ve posted all of my PSOH stuff but some of my Saiunkoku stuff is being revised so it’s not all up yet.

http://www.fanfiction.net/~ladyofthethread

Going through [livejournal.com profile] psohdrabble to collect all the bits I’ve posted there kind of made me want to write drabbles again (too bad that comm seems dead these days). Not all of them were amazing but I think I was pretty good at it. I could hit 100 words exactly most of the time and usually answer the prompts in a unique way, too. Some weeks, I even managed to also theme them to holidays that were happening in real life at the time, like Chinese New Year. (I think I’m overdue for a rereading of the original PSOH series, too; it’s been quite a while since the last time.)

And now that my stuff has been up at ff.net for about 10 days, I’m looking at the stats and wondering if my Saiunkoku stuff is that boring. I’ve put up a couple of long drabbles plus the beginning of the long AU fic I did for the exchange last month. None of them have even hit 20 visitors yet. Meanwhile, for PSOH stuff, I’ve had 101 visitors for a long drabble, 120 visitors (and over 900 hits) for my collection of 15 short drabbles, and 179 visitors for a pair of longer related drabbles. Figures that the one with the most visitors is the one that sounds somewhat naughty from the summary. >_>;;; I know they’re both small fandoms but I didn’t think it should be that much of a difference considering some of the Saiunkoku LJ communities are actually larger than comparable PSOH ones. Kind of disappointing when the Saiunkoku stuff takes me more time to write since they’ve been longer pieces. :-/

And a slight rant relating to something I was talking to [livejournal.com profile] insaneladybug about a while back... People seem really lazy about reviewing stuff these days because even with all those hits and a few favorites/alerts on all of the PSOH things, I’ve yet to get a single review on anything at all. It wasn’t too uncommon for me to get 4-5 comments (and even more once in a while) on 100 word drabbles when they were originally posted on LJ but there’s been nothing there. I know I’m a much better cosplayer than fanfic writer and wouldn’t expect people to individually review drabbles. But if new people are reading them there and like them, it would be nice if they left one comment. Because while fanfic is fun to play with once in a while as a change from cosplay, I don’t enjoy the writing process as much as sewing and tend to do it in hopes of putting together something that other people will also enjoy or get a laugh out of. I’m not too bothered since I did get nice comments on stuff when it was on LJ but at the same time, it doesn’t help encourage me to get my revisions done so I can finish putting stuff up.

Fanfic

Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:00 pm
ladyofthethread: (D with bird)
Now that the voting is over and the authors list is up, I can finally talk about what I wrote for the Secret Santa fic exchange at [livejournal.com profile] saiunkoku_fic. I’d never done a fic exchange before since I don’t write that often but I thought I’d give it a try since it was only a 500 word minimum and I didn’t have any costume stuff I was rushing to finish. The assignments went out at the end of November and I didn’t think it would take me too long to finish but wow, I was wrong!

I got the organizer’s request for an alternate universe so I was trying to figure out a crossover I could do and then I thought why not do a Genju no Seiza crossover since Fuuto is a reluctant king like Ryuuki is at the beginning of Saiunkoku? I mostly cast the other characters as the guardian beasts and then the idea exploded into a 15 page, 8,500 word fic that I didn’t finish until Christmas eve! @_@

I actually still would have liked to edit more considering I didn’t write about half of the last big scene until the final day but I just didn’t have any more time; there was a small typo and a little spacing error I didn’t catch until after it was posted and maybe I’ll go back and polish this up a bit when I have time. I didn’t think it was likely anyone knew Genju no Seiza so I put in lots of description to help readers picture the world and make it understandable even if people didn’t know it. I was kind of nervous about it since it was a crossover with an obscure series and pretty strange (Saiunkoku characters having magical powers and transforming into animals? o_O;) but several of the other writers for the exchange seemed to like it.

It was amusing fun since I could be a bit silly and fangirly but it’ll be quite a while before I write anything this long again. It ate up a lot of my free time in December and I need to get back to working on costume stuff now. ^_^;;;


Title: The Legend of Dhalashar
Author: [livejournal.com profile] ladyofthethread
Rating: T
Genre: Fantasy
Word count: 8,510
Characters: Ryuuki, Shou, Kochou, Ensei, Shuuei, Kouyuu, Seiran, Shuurei, Shusui, Ryuuren
Summary: Ryuuki is the reincarnated king of the mysterious kingdom of Dhalashar with many supernatural powers… but no control over them! It’s up to the reluctant king’s guardian beasts to find the missing shaman who can bring his powers under control before a disaster befalls the kingdom.
Notes: Written for [livejournal.com profile] grey_damaskena for the 2010 [livejournal.com profile] saiunkoku_fic exchange. She requested an AU so this is a crossover using the world from the manga Genju no Seiza (an obscure series done by the same author as Petshop of Horrors). Only about half of the series has been translated so far and takes place mainly in modern Japan with little actually seen of Dhalashar so I’ve taken a lot of liberties with Genju no Seiza canon.
Warnings: extremely AU for both series, one very brief gory scene


There are stories told by travellers of a legendary oasis along the Silk Road… )
ladyofthethread: (Sarah)
Merry Christmas! ^_^ I hope everyone is having a nice holiday.

Woke up early this morning and baked a gingerbread cake from scratch since we had a jar of ground ginger and a bottle of molasses sitting around that weren’t likely to get used otherwise. I started from this recipe but since a bunch of the people who reviewed it said they doubled or even tripled the spices, I added an extra 1/2 teaspoon each of ginger and cinnamon. I also didn’t have ground cloves although there was a bottle of whole cloves left over from Thanksgiving so I just left it out entirely and added a teaspoon of nutmeg instead. I think the 1 hour baking time might have been a bit too long since the crust came out a bit hard and started to burn a little. The inside was good though and not too sweet, which is good since my mother usually doesn’t like Western cakes for being too sweet.

I finally finished writing for the [livejournal.com profile] saiunkoku_fic exchange yesterday. It turns out I severely underestimated how long my story would go and had to ask for an extension (original deadline was Dec. 20). ._.; The fics haven’t started going up yet but even if they were, I can’t really talk about mine for a couple more weeks since they do voting on the fics with a little prize for the most popular; we’re not allowed to say which story we wrote or post it elsewhere until afterwards.

Other than writing that fic, I ended up being lazy this year and not crafting any gifts like I usually do. So, I bought a few things instead and still need to figure out when I can go visit a few people and give them their gifts since I haven’t had time yet.
ladyofthethread: (D with bird)
Hmm… It’s been a while since I’ve updated. Relatives from Canada are flying in on Sunday morning so I’ve been doing some cleaning and the living room doesn’t look like as much of a disaster as when I’m in the middle of a costume. >_>; Still looks cluttered though since I have so many bags of fabric either leftover from costumes or for stuff I’m planning to do.

Tuesday afternoon was fun. ^_^ I picked up some little cakes from one of the nearby bakeries and went to visit [livejournal.com profile] neoangelwink and [livejournal.com profile] athena_chan for a little tea party. [livejournal.com profile] vampricyoda made a surprise appearance and I got to say hi to [livejournal.com profile] loudnbothered before I left. Talked a bit about cosplay plans for next year since it looks like we’ll be doing a couple of groups (more about that next time). Also joked about how everything in Harvest Moon: Grand Bazaar gets thrown and bounces when you put it down… Chickens, cats, dogs, eggs, bottles of wine… XD; (It is kind of funny but I sort of wish I could put the animals down normally like in the older games; all that throwing looks pretty rough!)

I’ve been enjoying the break from sewing and playing Harvest Moon instead. Into fall of year 3 now and have most of the farm upgrades but haven’t grown all of the different crops and trees yet; there are a few I still haven’t seen seeds for anywhere. And not even close to hitting the limit on animals since you can have a ridiculous number in this game. 20 chickens; 20 cows and sheep; 10 cats and dogs; and a horse. I’m running out of corny names for my animals so I’m considering being silly and doing a Saiunkoku themed game with Shuurei as the farmer since there are dozens of characters. >_>; I did a Fruits Basket themed game once in an older Harvest Moon with Tohru as the farmer and the Sohmas as the animals. Never did a PSOH one though; I guess since I haven’t played one for so long and most of D’s pets wouldn’t easily correspond to farm animals.

Also have been playing a bit with fanfic. Just some short little pieces because I don’t really have the patience to write longer stuff when I could be working on other hobbies. I think this one came out best: Birds of a Blue Feather. Short, cute, and fluffy Saiunkoku fic with Ryuuren, Eigetsu, and Kourin.
ladyofthethread: (Eugenie)
Went fabric shopping on Monday. Got buttons to finish my Elaine costume and some more stuff for Ryuuren. Also went to visit [livejournal.com profile] neoangelwink afterwards to exchange birthday gifts and hang out. She got me a nice tea sampler ^_^ and we watched some anime.

Elaine is now finished and here’s what I have gathered for Ryuuren so far. And I actually still need green fabric. ^_^; Beads, tassels, fringe, feathers… neoangelwink and I were joking that I’m making an Amano costume. This is going to be fun and ridiculous! :-D



Today’s the Mid-Autumn Festival although it seems we won’t get a chance to look at the moon with the thunderstorm going on outside. But we still have mooncakes for later. And after not writing anything in forever, I did a PSOH drabble for the occasion. Although it’s kind of depressing rather than festive. ._.;

My birthday is next week although I feel blah about it and am not planning anything. :-/ I figure it’s probably bad timing anyway since next weekend is the last weekend before NYCC/NYAF and I suspect people will be busy sewing. Then, the weekend after is the con itself and I have a wedding reception to go to on Sunday night after the con.
ladyofthethread: (T-Chan)
The Petshop of Horrors drabble community had a prompt of “purgatory” for this week’s challenge and the first thing that came to mind was Dante’s Divine Comedy since I took a whole class on it in college (not that I remember much of it now. >_>;).

So, I took a stab at it and came up with this cracked thing. XD; It was kind of forced and didn’t come out nearly as easily as the last one. Overly long, too, since challenge responses were only supposed to be 100 words. ^_^;; Includes spoilers for the end of the series and the side story from volume 2 of Shin PSOH.

A Not-So-Divine Comedy )

Maybe, I’ll post an actual update tomorrow.
ladyofthethread: (D)
So, I just wrote a new PSOH drabble. The Petshop drabble community has a challenge each week and the latest prompt was “poisoned apple” which lead to this bit of silliness. Inside joke for those of you who remember Anime Boston. XD I feel a bit dumb for not thinking of the idea earlier when I first saw the prompt! G-rated.

Saccharine )
ladyofthethread: (T-Chan)
Got my Twelve Kingdoms costumes ironed yesterday and was reminded of how awfully the top of my nyosen uniform wrinkles just from being on a hanger. (And how much of a pain it is to iron because of the huge sleeves.) Ugh. -_-; I think the only way to keep the thing wrinkle free would be one of those kimono display stands!

And, in time for Chinese New Year, my Petshop of Horrors drabble is finished. :-D G rated. I got the idea for this after remembering something my mother said last new year’s, that giving someone peach blossoms will help their love life. I couldn’t find an exact reference to that idea online but quite a few feng shui sites seem to talk about buying peach blossoms and placing them for luck in love. I have a silly little idea for a sequel to this but not sure if I’ll have time to write it over the next few days. ^_^;

Peach Blossoms and the Detective )
ladyofthethread: (Count D)
Did some more sewing today and the new dress is starting to come together. I love how the fabrics and trim look together but it’s still going to be a while before it’s done. I hope things will work out as I planned since I messed with the pattern and it’s basically going to be a wrap style held together with frog closures on the right side. ^_^;

Checking the weather forecast, it seems like it’s going to be much nicer on Halloween itself than tomorrow which kind of annoys me since tomorrow is when I can do pictures. >_> Oh, well. At least, that should mean I’ll be able to wear whatever costume I feel like on Tuesday.

And I wrote a silly little Petshop of Horrors drabble after not attempting fanfic for years and never trying to write something that short before. ^_^; G rated.

I’ve kind of wondered where Count D gets all his clothes… )

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