Welcome to Straywind.com!

Welcome to my Cosplay home on the net. My name is Rebecca (aka Stray Wind online). I've been Cosplaying since late 2001. I love the fellowship, challenges and creativity involved in making costumes. My forte is Cosplaying from survival horror video games as well as characters from Anime and games that I grew up enjoying. Since I began Cosplaying, I have worn over 80 costumes and I've attended over 75 conventions and major events. Cosplaying is an exciting journey and I look forward to future projects and events as my journey in the world of Cosplay continues.

-+- Updates -+-

June 14th, 2018
It's almost time for Pretty Heroes and I'm really excited for it. I've been fairly busy these last few weeks since Anime North. Taking inventory of things that I had sold and what was left from the Nomi took several days and just a week after AN I had to quickly gather some things to sell at a garage sale my older brother was hosting at his new house. Needless to say, packing and sorting things has been my life for quite a few weeks. Pretty happy to chill out a bit after Pretty Heroes.

Preparing for the con has stalled a bit. I'm having a heck of a time picking a costume to wear. It makes sense to wear a fuku since this is a more Sailor Moon orientated event, but wearing a fuku is so constricting and time consuming. I really would like to wear the Super Sailor Chibi Moon costume that Amber made for me, but it might be just too much if I also want to venture around the Science Centre. I will be wearing my Sakura Kinomoto costume on Saturday of the convention. That one I have my heart set on wearing. I'm hoping to get a few photos of the costume in the ravine area of the Science Centre, but that also depends on if I can find anyone to shoot with. Almost everyone that I know is going to Yeticon so itís going to be interesting to see how this convention goes in comparison.

For Sunday of the convention, I'll still consider wearing Super Sailor Chibi Moon, but I'll see if I feel up to it or if I would rather be a bit more casual and I'll probably re-wear my Kagome costume. Both options fit the theme of the con. I have tons of female heroine costumes so actually picking a costume to wear is difficult. I would also love to re-wear my Madoka school uniform. Maybe if I attend the con again next year, then I'll re-wear Madoka then. :3 I had a new purchased costume that I was kind of hoping to wear to the con this weekend, but I didn't get a chance to get the wig trimmed so that's unfortunately on the back burner for a few weeks.

I have a vague idea of a couple of fun costume options that I wouldn't mind working on over the summer. There is one costume that I might look at making over the fall for conventions in 2019 and the other a costume that might be fairly easy to make so I would consider working on it for Fan Expo. I only just thought of this new idea in the last 24 hours so it's still extremely tentative. If I do it, I already have a wig and shoes and the outfit is pretty simple. It's another school uniform (surprise) and this time it's a simple knife pleated skirt and short sleeve zip up blouse. It's from an older Anime now and I've already Cosplayed from the series once before (with another costume from the series waiting to be worn actually). It all really depends on if I can find the right fabrics for it, but it would probably be fairly cheap and quick to make. I would love to work on something simple for the days when it's too hot to really go outside. We'll see if I can arrange a fabric shopping day in the next few weeks to get started on this costume in July.

-+- Past Updates -+-

May 28th, 2018
My 17th Anime North is now behind me and all and all, it was a pretty good year. I was so worried about getting to and from the con and how that would limit my experience, but I usually went home when I was good and tired and it was nice to take time each evening to sort out what I had left from the Nomi as opposed to having to deal with that and unpacking all at once on Sunday.

My table, N122, at the Nominoichi, went over pretty well. I did about as well as Iíve done during the last couple of years (over $1,200) and I did make a pretty big dent in what I brought. I took with me four full boxes of stuff and a suitcase that was pretty stuffed and in the end the suitcase was half empty and only two boxes are left moderately full. I sold plenty of figures and quite a few little Re-Ment miniatures. I have quite a few gashapons left over, as well as most of the clothing and wigs, but hopefully I'll find more chances to sell some of that stuff during the rest of the year. I've heard a board game group at U of T does a garage sale event and will run one this fall so I'll probably see about getting a table there. I can't thank my friend Adrien enough for driving us down to the con, for creating our setup and for making the amazing sign that we had. It really was easy to spot our table. I had lots of fun talking with people as they browsed and I'm happy that almost all the people that reserved from me showed up. I'll hopefully be back again next year.

The Nominoichi took up the entirety of my Friday and I didn't Cosplay. It was quite hot in the Nomi venue. I was surprised that we got an early taste of summer for the whole Anime North weekend. Originally the prediction was for rain and thunderstorms on Saturday and Sunday, but besides it getting dark for a bit on Saturday afternoon, it was quite clear. Too bad it was so hot. It definitely wasn't the best weather to wear my costumes. XD

My Sakura Kinomoto costume, which I wore on Saturday, went over really well. I re-wore my school uniform with my new updates including new buttons and lace detailing on the skirt and I'm happy with how it looked. My new Dream wand made for an awesome Cosplay prop. It arrived on the 22nd, just a few days before Anime North, so I'm thrilled that I got it in time. That and my wig especially, got lots of compliments. I'm just really happy with how the costume turned out.

On Sunday I re-wore my Kagome costume. I was nervous about wearing it with the heat, but it wasn't quite as terribly hot on Sunday. The costume looked nice and I loved wearing my new wig that Pan had styled for me. There were quite a few Inuyasha Cosplayers at AN this year. I got a photo with a wonderful Sesshomaru and Inuyasha and the costume earned me quite a few compliments. That costume is something I still hold close to my heart given that I made it last fall when I was really struggling emotionally so every compliment was a treasure to me.

I spent most of the weekend at the Congress Centre in and around the various vendors. Usually I'm at the Delta quite a bit, but with no hotel space there for me, I only went there for a little bit on Sunday. I had to walk by the hotel pool and cry a little. I hope next year I get hotel space again, but I'm a bit torn because staying home was kind of nice.

I actually did most of my shopping for the weekend at the Nominoichi on Friday. I was able to get some Pokemon Center Halloween straps as well as the coveted Easter Eeviee and Easter Pikachu plushies from another seller at the event. I was a bit on the fence about collecting the Easter plushies, but they're super cute and soft and that adds an Eeviee plush to my growing Pokemon Center collection. From past events and online purchases, I have last year's Halloween Pikachu, the Christmas Vulpix and the Valentine's Day male and female Pikachu plush set from this year so now I've pretty much covered all the major holidays in Pokemon plush form. It was a nice surprise to be able to get those Easter plushies at the Nomi since the only other dealer for the con was sure to have sold out of them within a few minutes of the con opening on Friday. I also purchased a large Banpresto sleeping Vulpix prize plush from another Nomi table that's super fluffy! I've become a sucker for Vulpix plushies!

My only other purchases from the weekend were a couple of cute postcards (one of which is another Sakura print from the new CCS Anime) from Artist Alley, some sweet magnets from Crafter's (one magnet is of Lesser Dog from Undertale, which looks like my Samoyed Persephone). Finally, I got a cute Twinkle Snow Miku keychain from the dealer's room and I fed my Kuma Crafts addiction by getting 2 new necklaces - one a stuffed cookie and another a Halloween witch rabbit. So cute! Looking forward to shopping from them again at Pretty Heroes.

It was nice seeing the friends that I ran into during the weekend and checking out some of the cool exhibits like the awesome Pokemon statues in the Gallery Momiji. I'm glad all the food trucks and food vendors were back this year! I loved getting cherry lemonades and places like Swiss Chalet were quite prepared to handle the big crowds by rolling out special menus to keep the wait times down. I had a really nice Anime North. Nothing over the top happened and the Nominoichi went well so I have no big complaints. I'm definitely looking forward to attending again in 2019!

I didn't do any photoshoots during the weekend, but I did get a couple of hallways shots of my Sakura and Kagome costumes, which I added to those costume pages. I'm hoping to do a shoot of my Sakura costume at Pretty Heroes. My plan right now is to wear Sakura to that con on the Saturday and a new costume I have (that I didn't make) on Sunday. It's kind of exhausting and exciting to have another con coming up in just 3 weeks. I'm sure it'll be really fun. I keep hearing good things about Pretty Heroes and I'm excited to see Amber there. At some point I want to start working on a new costume (maybe something for Fan Expo). I have no costume ideas right now, though, so maybe something will come to me in the next month or two. Now I just need to focus on recovering from Anime North!

May 20th, 2018
I can't believe that Anime North is already less than a week away. Itís crazy how time flies. It's been a bit of a hectic month. Trying to get things sorted out for the Nominoichi is always a big part of my May. I'm in the final stages of getting everything packed up and getting all the supplies ready. Doing the final checks to make sure that I don't forget anything always makes me nervous. I don't stop taking hold requests until Wednesday so getting a final sense of how much I can manage at the table pretty much comes down to the wire.

Planning for the con this year has been difficult. Trying to figure out my travel plans has been a bit frustrating. I think I have Friday and Saturday sorted out. The plan that I thought I had worked out to get a lift with a friend on Sunday fell through. Thankfully it seems another friend can probably give me a lift or I was pretty sure I was going to just give up on going to AN on the Sunday. My exact plans are still a bit up in the air because I don't know about the timing. I have no idea if I need to get up to leave super early or if things can be a bit more casual. As it stands right now I'm borrowing my family's van for Friday and Saturday so at least those two days are a bit more certain.

I'm not planning to Cosplay on Friday of the con. I've done it every year in the past, but it's looking like it's going to be a very hot day and with my lack of a hotel room not giving me a reason to show up early, Cosplaying just seems like a hassle. The Nomi venue can get quite hot at times so I'm a little nervous about how warm it'll be this year. I'm crossing my fingers that we don't all cook. The Nomi has also been extended this year from 3.5 hours as it's now 4 hours, so that extra selling time should make the event interesting.

Saturday will be a test of how manageable commuting is after a late Friday night. I'm wondering how long it'll take for me to get up and get into my costume before travelling out to Anime North. My plan is to re-wear my Sakura Kinomoto Clear Card school uniform costume. I'm excited to wear it again after the little adjustments I made to it. Also, it looks as though the Dream wand that I ordered should arrive in time for Anime North so I'll have to see about potentially bringing it. It should make for an awesome prop. The only worry is what to do with it if I plan to venture into the Congress Centre. Hopefully I can stash it in the car after a few hours.

Sunday is definitely up in the air. I'll see how much of the con I get to explore on Saturday and if I can tackle the Dealer's Room and Artist Alley in full before the end of that day. Whatever I don't get done I can finish up on Sunday. I just have to coordinate with friends. I'll also see how tired I am. Right now I'm thinking of re-wearing my Kagome school uniform on Sunday. It should be nice to wear it again with my new wig. My only worry is the timing because I'm not sure when I can get a lift and I definitely don't want to inconvenience my friend. We'll see if I even have time and energy to Cosplay that day. It might not be so bad to be casual on Sunday especially with all the issues I've had to face making the convention work out.

Amidst all the confusion as well as the chaos of selling stuff on Friday, I am very much looking forward to another Anime North. AN has been my go-to convention for 17 years! That's almost difficult to fathom. It certainly does feel weird going this year without a hotel room, but who knows, change can be good. I'll see how it works out for this year. The last year of my life has been so challenging so I'm excited for something that's been a fixture in my life for so long. I sure hope that it's a fun year for Anime North and yields neat purchases and great memories with friends new and old. I don't have any photoshoots planned this year since I'm not wearing anything new and my schedule is so uncertain, but hopefully I'll get some pictures of Kagome and Sakura if I wear both costumes. I'll be sure to do shoots of both costumes at a later date. If nothing else, I'm looking forward to seeing the food options for the con this year. I was blown away by the new food truck and food vendor options that sprung up last year. If nothing else my stomach will probably enjoy the convention. :D Canít wait for Friday!

May 1st, 2018
Another month has gone by. 2018 just feels like it's melting away. I'm just happy that I finally have my laptop up and running properly again. I had to get a new solid-state drive for it, but that seems to have done the trick to get it working again. Hopefully I'll be able to get another couple of years out of this laptop before I need to replace it.

I can't believe it's almost time for Anime North! The next few weeks are sure to go by fast. It feels a bit surreal to not be working on a costume right now. I still have to decide what I'm going to wear to Anime North. Right now I'm leaning towards re-wearing my Sakura Kinomoto school uniform on Saturday of the con and maybe re-wearing my updated Kagome costume for Sunday. I have a new wig for Kagome now so it would be nice to re-wear the costume. Another idea I'm considering is my Shippuden Sakura Haruno costume or just being casual on Sunday. It looks as though I can find a ride to the convention on Sunday, anyway, so that means I can actually go all 3 days. I'm still leaning towards skipping Cosplaying on Friday though.

In other news, Kris Byers sent me copies of the photos from my Sakura Kinomoto school uniform shoot from Sunday of Toronto Comicon and I love how they turned out. I wasn't feeling great during our shoot so it's amazing what she was able to get from working with me. I adore the street shots and she found a great way to utilize the stained glass walkway in the Skywalk. It was great working with her again. You can find the photos here, in my Sakura Kinomoto costume page.

I'm hoping to have the Dream wand that I ordered in time for AN so when I wear my tweaked Sakura costume again, it'll have some nice upgrades. The wand has yet to ship so we'll see if that turns up. I know the next month is going to be pretty chaotic and Anime North will be here before we know it. I just hope that everything shows up in time!

April 22nd, 2018
It's been a few weeks since my last update and things have been pretty busy for me. Firstly, the hard drive on my laptop failed a week ago and gave its final death cries. It's toast and I need to buy a new hard drive so I can try to salvage my computer. At the moment I'm making due with a laptop that had belonged to my mother, but I don't have any of my standard programs here for editing photos and what not so it's frustrating. It might be another week or two before I can properly replace it.

I was able to apply for a table for the Nominoichi prior to the laptop meltdown and my efforts were successful. This year I'll be at table N122. Sadly, I'm still off in the far reaches of the Nomi, but hopefully the table display Adrien and I come up with will get our table noticed. I've spent the last couple of weeks going through boxes and taking photos of a lot of the items that I'll be selling. I'm currently taking reservation requests over on the Anime North forum so that's keeping me plenty busy and I'm sure organizing for the table will keep me moderately busy all the way until the 25th of May.

I finally bought my ticket for the Pretty Heroes convention in June. I managed to get a weekend pass before the early bird pricing ended early last week. The tickets this year include access to the Science Centre as a whole so I'm pretty excited about hanging out at the Science Centre again. My friend Amber is a Cosplay guest again and our schedules have finally aligned so I can actually see her when she's here for the con. XD I've been meaning to go to Pretty Heroes (when it was still Toronto Sailor Moon Celebration) for 2 or 3 years now so I'm glad that things worked out this time and I can actually make it!

I did take some time to work on costume stuff over the last few days. I had ordered new buttons for my Sakura Kinomoto school uniform and some lace to test out on the skirt. Both arrived in the last couple of weeks so I bit the bullet and finally tried to incorporate them into my costume. I originally skipped out on adding the lace to my Sakura costume because I figured that I would wear a lace underskirt, but a lace underskirt added a lot of bulk and I didn't like how it would stick out at different lengths. I didn't have enough of any lace to test out partially adding a lace layer to the skirt itself. Once the lace I ordered arrived, I trimmed it and sewed it at the point where the red bias tape is so the lace stitching is camouflaged a bit. I was worried that it would still be bulky, but I bought very lightweight lace and I only stuck it out by a couple of centimeters so I think it looks nice. I had to no fray the whole edge though. The threading was a bit loose. Swapping the buttons was pretty easy. I was just super careful about sewing where the old buttons were so I wouldn't mess with the original spacing. The new buttons are much less shiny so I think it looks nicer. I finished up my sewing spree by adding a new snap to my Kagome skirt and attaching my old Konoha headband to my new Sakura Haruno wig. I did all this between Tuesday night and Friday night, but at least now I can relax until AN, that is in terms of sewing! The next few weeks are definitely going to fly by and Anime North is going to be very hectic this year. I just hope that it's lots of fun!

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