01 November 2011

It's November now!

As excited as I am about The Sarasota Medieval Fair coming up November 12-13 and 19-20 (come visit me!) I am FREAKING OUT about The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim :) Literally. I kind of drool when I watch the trailer.

Anyway since for some reason I never posted these pictures, here's the Isabela armour I finished a couple weeks ago:

Made from 5oz vegetable tanned leather with some minor wet forming. The metal plates are also leather that's tooled and painted with a black base, gunmetal over that and silver on top. Yeah fake metal!

That's pretty much it for this update. I've been super busy with Halloween stuff and now I'm going to be super busy with festival stuff. Such is the life of a self employed leatherworker, right? Oh, I do have some exciting news. I'M GOING TO DRAGONCON NEXT YEAR. That's right. I booked my hotel at 8am the day registration opened and I already have a few people tagging along :) See you all there!

02 October 2011

Quick Halloween Update!!

Sadly there aren't any pictures in this update :( but I AM having a sale at my Etsy shop, so maybe that'll make up for it ^^ If you enter the code Halloween15 upon checkout, you'll get 15% off your total :) yay coupons!!

I'm also hard at work on yet another Dragon Age commission, Isabela's armour from DA2. It's about halfway done, so I'll have some pix of that up soon.

And lastly, for Halloween my husband and I are dresing a Perseus and Medusa, respectively. I'm taking some creative liberty with his costume since in most historical representations Perseus is actually nude (to which my husband replied "that's OK, I'll just need a shield" lol)

Hope everyone's October is filled with lots of doughnuts, cider, fall colours and costumed fun ^^ By the way, what's everyone dressing as this year??

19 September 2011

Dragon Age madness!!

Alrighty, since I have this weird problem with updating this thing on a regular basis, here's a nice BIG update to get everyone caught up :)

I'm so excited to report I FINALLY finished my Leliana costume from the Dragon Age Sacred Ashes trailer!!

Technically I had this finished a few months ago, but never got a proper photoshoot. My BFF from Michigan was in town and she just happens to be a photographer and snapped some awesome shots :) The rest can be seen here xavietta.deviantart.com

Oh! And one of the shots got featured on the official Dragon Age Facebook page :D That was a couple weeks ago so my 15 minutes of fame is well over, but it was cool while it lasted ^^

I've also been busy working on Dragon Age commissions and I just finished up belts and pouches for Bethany, Anders and Carver.

These were all for a wonderful lady I know only as Ros who's DA group at DragonCon was EPIC. You can see their amazing costumes (as well as my accessories in action) here ros1908.deviantart.com

And lastly I'm starting an order (the first of 2) for Isabela's armour :) and if I get some time I'll work on my OWN stuff, Merrill and my husbands Mage Hawke.

Stay tuned for updates, hopefully soon I get my costuming life back in the forefront where it belongs :)

04 July 2011

Update Long Overdue

I've been slacking over here, I admit it. But I've been working hard on commissions and stocking up my Etsy shop, not to mention experimenting with some new designs :)

Below are pictures of some new items in my shop, which you can find if you follow the item links to the right.

I'm working on some other small armour pieces, hair things and some nice detailed garments, which may or may not turn out the way I plan. That's one of the fun things about leatherwork: I'm always surprised with the outcome :)

25 April 2011

Getting Things Back on Their Tracks

The renaissance festival has passed, and I'm still trying to get over my first weekend off in 2 months. I didn't do anything crazy mind you, I just enjoyed it :)

Time seems to be evading me still and I haven't had a chance to really list anything on Etsy, I should have that remedied later this week though ^^

In cosplay news, hey I did this!

Pictured here are the arm and leg pieces for Merrill (and a leaf). The herringbone design was carved and stamped, all by hand and I dyed them brown then added some antique to darken it a bit. I still need to add the gold rings and straps, then wet-form them. I might do that sometime this week if time permits.

That's all for now, keep an eye our for more progress on Merrill, Mage Hawke (what??) and new stuff in my Etsy shop :)

Until next time readers, I recommend looking into a band called Florence + The Machine. I've been listening to their songs on repeat for 2 hours and it's amazing.

31 March 2011

Festival, Job, Cosplay, what else?

More of the same, really. EXCEPT FOR THIS
Massive ears are massive, but hey it's only a test shot. If you're a fan of Dragon Age 2 you may recognize that this vaguely resembles Merrill. She is my new cosplay endeavor and I wish I had more time to work on her.

So far I have most of the patterns drafted, the wig is styled and I just need to not be so busy so I can actually get some work done on the costume.

And don't worry, I haven't forgotten about my Leliana. She's still in-the-works, I'll have her finished soon enough.

In other news, the festival is going well, I have 3 weekends to go AND I just started my fancy new part time job at Tandy Leather Factory. Overwhelmed FTW

I need to get off the computer now, eat something and go to my Kung Fu class. Hopefully I'll have enough energy when I get home to finish restocking for this weekend. We'll see.

Until next time readers, remember this: "Thinking takes too long" -- It's one of the best quotes my Kung Fu teacher said to me about fighting (and life in general I suppose)

02 March 2011

One down, Seven to go!

Well, the first weekend of the festival is over, and as usual it was tons of fun! My new location seems to be working out quite well, though I only have one neighbor on one side...the other side is the privies! haha I made a good bit of money, especially considering it was the first weekend and I actually had enough stock to where I'm not scrambling all this week to make new things.

I already met an awesome lady for whom I might be making some armour ^^ she also agreed to draw me some concept art for armour in the future!! That said, I've been designing my own armour pieces the past few days and I have to say, it's a lot more trouble than I thought it would be lol I'm afraid it's going to just end up looking like a corset, so I'm being careful not to design it in a corsety way (if that makes sense)

I have a few more ideas up my sleeves and when I find something that works I'll definitely post pictures. Until then, send positive armour making energies my way!

21 February 2011

"Come with me to the renaissance faire..."

From the song 'Renaissance Faire' by Blackmore's night ^^

I set up my booth today at the fairgrounds and I wanted to let everyone who saw me there last year know that I'm in a new location. Right when you walk in the entrance, go left and I'm right past the kettle corn booth.

That's right. I got a spot on the perimeter. (that's good for traffic flow for those who aren't in the know about festival protocol)

I will also have my Leliana armour on display to see what the interest might be in making Lady Armour, since there's not too many artisans who do that. Everyone makes armour for men, and I think "why should they get to have all the fun?"

Anyway, I'm going to be super busy stocking up this week, but I want to post some pictures of some of the new things I have this year so hopefully I'll get some time to do that.

Oh, and for more info on the festival here's the website:


12 February 2011

This is only a test...

Were this an actual cosplay, it might be more epic; with backgrounds, poses, etc. For now this is just a test shot of what I have completed of my Leliana armour.

I recently finished the pauldron, but there's still tons to do including the boots, belt/pouches, bow and arrows. Slowly, but surely, it's getting there. When I get some time I'll start on all that, but for now I think I'm taking a break from this costume to work on "work" stuff. We'll see how long that lasts...

05 February 2011

Post Apocalyptic Party Dress

I just finished this order today for a lady who's going to a party in Las Vegas for her school where everyone is required to dress in white. She said she didn't want to go buy some boring white outfit off the wrack and wanted the dress to look "like I got dragged down the street by a truck."

How could I say no?

The dress is made from deerskin and rabbit fur. I tried to use as many of the raw edges as I possibly could to give it that torn up wasteland look. I draped and glued the leather right on to the dressform then riveted it together. I lost count of the rivets but it took 3 hours just to put them all on there...

I'm so in love with this dress and I was sad to see it go, but the customer was ecstatic about it and that makes me feel great :)

27 January 2011

I know leatherwork AND Kung Fu

It's true. I took my first (of hopefully many) Kung Fu class today and it was super fun. My legs feel like noodles, but it's all good.

Anyway, just a quick update on my Leliana cosplay; I finished the quiver and I'm so excited with how it turned out.

Like the rest of my armour, it's made from 5/6 oz vegitan leather. The front part is 3 layers: The first I painted silver, the next is antiqued and cut in a lattice pattern and the third is the vertical stripes that have been tooled, antiqued and riveted in place.

The sides are tooled to give some dimension between the red and the silver; I was going to add actual straps for the silver part, but I figured that would be a lot of extra leather and might not fit right.

The sides and the front layers are all stitched together, as well as glued, and the strips hide the lacing. The back panel is riveted in place.

Since video game characters are crazy and illogical, there are no straps or anything to actually attach the quiver. Instead I have 3 snaps on the back panel that snap directly to the back of my armour. I haven't tried it on with the quiver attached yet so I'm hoping the snaps hold, but so far they seem pretty stable.

The proportions seem a bit big in relation to the rest of my armour, but I think it still looks OK....probably just me being a perfectionist.

I also got my rivets in the mail today for the pauldron, so that should be done sometime next week. By the way if you're cool with paying $16 in shipping I definitely recommend standardrivet.com they have some epic stuff.

Now back to cosplay and other adventures!

20 January 2011


I've changed and updated a few things and this is what I've been working on the past few months (among other things ;)

For those of you who don't recognize it, it's Leliana from Dragon Age: Sacred Ashes :) One (of many) of my dream costumes, it's about 60% done. The hardest part so far is finding decent reference pictures...

The armour is 5/6 oz vegi-tan that's been tooled, dyed, wet-formed, glued and riveted together. The red part on the chestplate is off-white deerskin I dyed several times to get the right shade of red. The silver pieces on the panel skirt are made from sculpy. I made one, then made a plaster mold and cast 10 identical pieces. It's the first time I've ever done that and it turned out pretty awesome.

The daggers are made from balsa wood and the details are paperclay, craft foam, bias tape and metal brads. And I think they're pretty.

And finally, the scale armour of DOOM. It weighs about 9 pounds, which is pretty heavy on one's shoulders. Luckily when I lace up the sides, it's not so bad. Made from large aluminum scales from theringlord.com, it took about 8-10 hours a day for 3 days.

I should have the pauldron done soon and after that (hopefully) a dress rehearsal ^^

In other news I have a ton of costume orders (most of which got finalized yesterday) so I'll update more as I get those finished.

Oh, and the Bay Area Renaissance Festival is fast approaching, so I'm busy stocking up for that and trying to keep my Etsy shop afloat.

There's so much going on! :)