Sunday, March 29, 2015

Ramona Flowers Cosplay Makeup Transformation (Video)

One of my goals this year is to get more involved with video content! I had a photoshoot as Ramona Flowers, so I decided to record my makeup process. I knew nothing about makeup before I started cosplaying. Everything I've learned is from cosplay!

Please let me know what you think of this video and if you have any video requests.

Interested in learning more about cosplay makeup? Be sure to read my guides: part 1 and part 2.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Style Icon: Sansa Stark from Game of Thrones

This post contains minor spoilers from HBO's Game of Thrones, but no book spoilers.

Game of Thrones has some of the most beautiful costuming I have ever seen. Each outfit tells the story of the character and the characters' wardrobes evolve as their stories do.

Sansa Stark is a character who has transformed tremendously through the first four seasons of Game of Thrones. In the beginning, Sansa is a young girl, full of dreams and naivety, but by season four, she has learned to play the political games in King's Landing. She's a somewhat controversial character among fans, especially since she begins the series as an annoying, bratty teenager. Through the seasons, she learns quickly that her former dreams for the future are simply fantasy and she must adapt. Her wardrobe reflects her constantly changing status and the careful way she must portray herself to survive. For more on Sansa's sartorial symbolism, this article is definitely worth a read (but beware spoilers!).

I interpreted four of Sansa's looks into modern outfits. With each look, I'll also analyze Sansa's state and what her wardrobe reveals about her own struggles.

Sansa Stark - Little Dove
Necklace | Dress | Belt | Vest | Boots

In the very beginning, Sansa is very much a young lady from Winterfell. She wears her hair the Northern way, had hopes of knights and romance, and wears clothing that is utilitarian, not frivolous. She dresses in simple dresses with warm detailing to protect her from the chill of Winterfell. At this point in the series, her clothing reflects her homeland. The Hound teases Sansa early on by calling her a "pretty talking bird, repeating all the pretty little words they taught [her] to recite."

To bring this look to life, I chose a simple boho-style dress with a floral print, reminiscent of the floral design on Sansa's gown. To accessorize, boots and a faux fur vest are ladylike while still hinting at a colder climate. This outfit is inspired by nature, so top the look off with a replica of Sansa's own dragonfly necklace.

In King's Landing, Sansa learns that words are her armor. She chooses her words and appearance carefully, blending in at first by choice and then by necessity. Her clothing and hairstyles become more ornate -- she is seen wearing this beautiful purple gown several times. At this point, Sansa is becoming disenchanted with reality, quickly realizing that "There are no heroes... In life, the monsters win."

To reflect the ornateness of the dresses Sansa wears in King's Landing, I chose a delicate plum dress with lace and chiffon detailing. Accessorize with subtle wolf jewelry as an ode to the Stark family and a reminder to keep your family close to your heart. A braided updo ties the look together as an homage to the elaborate braided styles of King's Landing.

This is the point in the series where I just want to give Sansa a million hugs. She's played the game of thrones as carefully as possible, somehow surviving through all sorts of twists and turns, but winds up in a nightmarish scenario. Without giving away too many details, the dress Sansa is wearing at this point has embroidery that tells her story in great detail -- a lion slashing at a wolf. At this point, despite her best efforts, she cannot escape the Lannister family.

To recreate this look, I settled on a formal cream and champagne ensemble. A unique, gold hair piece and glittery heels are party-worthy, but the monochromatic, grown-up color pallet is a dramatic shift from Sansa's previously girlish wardrobe. Finish the look with a lion necklace -- at this point, Sansa cannot afford to be loyal to her own family and must wear the banner of her hostages.

Sansa undergoes a major makeover at the end of season four, complete with a dramatic hair change. I like to think of this Sansa as "goth Sansa." After all the hardships she has been through, this Sansa is made of stone. She is cunning and calculated and seeks her own survival. Sansa herself thinks, "My skin has gone from porcelain, to ivory, to steel."

The original dress is floor-length with feathered sleeves and a corset; I chose a little black dress with a beaded neckline for the modern interpretation. Accessories are bold choices for a bold Sansa -- try a a chunky bracelet similar to her necklace and a statement ring with wolf fangs to reflect Sansa's own ferocity.

Who is your favorite Game of Thrones character?

Looking for more Game of Thrones style? Learn how to get Margaery Tyrell's look.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Jord Wood Watch Review + Giveaway!

We all have our go-to accessories. Some people collect purses, some love hats, and others like jewelry. I'm not a watch person. As much as I try to wear a watch, I dislike the design and size of most watches and wind up using my phone to tell time.

Jord Wood Watch
Pictured with my power mini bracelets.

Jord contacted me about their product and I was immediately curious. A watch made of wood? As beautiful as they seemed on the website, I wondered if they'd seem flimsy in real life.

I chose an Ely watch in Maple and received it quickly. The packaging was beautiful and luxurious -- I immediately thought about how one of these watches would make an impressive gift. As for my concerns about quality, they were immediately dismissed. My Ely feels sturdy and well-crafted. The wood is such an interesting design choice and when I wear my watch around, people always comment on the unique design.

Jord Wood Watch

The band was initially too big for my wrist, but it was simple to resize it myself by taking out an extra link. Now it fits perfect! The only minor complaint I have about this watch is the size. While the Ely is the smallest Jord Watch design, it is still larger than I would have liked. I think these watches would be excellent for people with bigger wrists or those who are used to wearing a watch, but for me personally, it did feel a little large. After chatting with people who wear watches regularly, they thought the size was fine, so it's probably just me!

Overall, I love my Jord watch and I'm glad to have a real wristwatch of my own. It feels like something every adult should have!

Jord is going to give a watch away to a lucky reader! Just fill out the widget below for your chance to win.

Jord was kind enough to provide me with a watch to review. All thoughts are my own.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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