Alpacas and Whoopie Pies: Cosplaying as Oerba dia Vanille

Every year, I get the pleasure of attending two comicons, a large one and a small one.  I cosplayed as Rosalina from Super Mario Galaxy at this year’s little convention, which I already wrote about some time back.  During the larger comicon, I wore my other costume this year, Vanille from Final Fantasy XIII.  While many people weren’t too fond of the game, and I, too, have some negative feelings towards it, I always liked Vanille for her cheerful personality (which she lost in Lightning Returns, unfortunately), and I thought cosplaying as her could be fun.  Plus, I’d get to wear a pink wig.  I’ve always loved unnatural hair colors.

As usual, my day started early, and I got to work getting my costume on.  It took a while, as there are a lot of pieces, but it was certainly easier than Kefka and Ghirahim, who had body paint and some tighter clothes to squeeze into.  I’ve also become quite a pro at putting on wigs.  That part’s still the worst, though.  No fun at all.  I completed my costume with pink eyeshadow to cover up my eyebrows (it didn’t have too drastic an effect, but it was better than nothing), and done.  I was Vanille.

Hey, I'm Vanille. 'Sup.
Image taken by the Duck of Indeed.  Hey, I’m Vanille. ‘Sup.

I had gotten a bag to carry along all my extra things (the bag I made for Vanille was just too flimsy to hold objects of any real mass), including supplies for minor repairs, money, a small notebook, and the like.  Expecting my hands to be full, I took a bunch of photos of my costume whilst still at home, where it was easier to do so without anything in my hands.  That is also why I wasn’t great about taking photos at the convention, so apologies for not having many cool pictures to share.  This year, I was also not attending the masquerade, as I didn’t have any good performance planned, plus I didn’t think this costume stood much of a chance at winning (only the really impressive ones win, and a skirt and some beads isn’t terribly awe-inspiring, I’m afraid), so I decided to just relax and take it easy that day.

When I arrived, everything was terribly crowded despite the comicon just beginning, though the manner in which we got our badges was more efficient than usual.  Basically you go by the counter in a line, hand over your ticket, take a badge, and go.  I, too, had planned ahead for efficiency, so when I arrived in the main hall, I had my small notebook handy.  I began systematically exploring each aisle and taking notes on the locations of anything good, as in the past, I had plenty of issues finding things again.  (I highly recommended this in any large comicon you might choose to attend, as it is very easy to get lost without clear notes as to where interesting items can be found.  Also, don’t dilly dally, as many things sell out fast.  I found this out when I tried to get a few things for my parents.  By the time I went to actually buy them, they were gone.)  I found a lot of cool things this time.  Lots of figurines, a giant Freddy plush (from Five Nights at Freddy’s), a King Dedede (Kirby) plush I had been seeking out for quite a while, and even these interesting metal figurines made to look like various things, including R2D2, a Dalek, and even a Sonic Screwdriver.  (There was also Big Daddy from BioShock.  Though I’ve never played those games, he was pretty darn cool.  Just expensive.)  By the time I was done with my search, I had quite a list of things that had caught my eye.  Hmm, what to do, what to do.

At this time, I took a break and ate a much-needed lunch of chicken nuggets (I loves me some chicken nuggets), and then I got to narrowing my options down.  I ended up picking two things I wanted most that would fit into my limited budget.  The first was a figurine of the Halloween version of Sora from Kingdom Hearts 2, who was just too adorable to pass up.  The other item was a bit different.  At every comicon I had attended these past few years, I have seen these adorable alpaca plushies.  After seeing these year after year, I finally felt compelled to own one of my own.  They almost felt like a necessary purchase for any comicon-goer, so purchase I did!  And fortunately, the place with the figurines gave me a huge tote bag, so it was easier to carry my items.

I didn’t think Vanille would be a very popular character, but she ended up being fairly well received as I went about my day.  I believe I received a grand total of ten requests to have my photo taken and three compliments.  As for any noticeable compliments/photos, well, one guy dressed as a Star Trek character said I looked just like Vanille.  On several occasions, people requested to have pictures taken with me, one of whom described my costume as “adorableness”.  She also said she was on the hunt for Final Fantasy cosplays that day and mine was the only one she had seen thus far.  Another lady caught me while I was carrying a soda, and despite all the things in my hands at the moment, she said she still wanted a picture, as I still looked “cute” anyway.  (Only at the comicon will you catch Vanille sipping a Pepsi.)  Another woman also made a heart shape over her head and said she loved Vanille.  So all in all, it seems Vanille is more well-loved than I expected.

As for any cool costumes I saw, well, I’m currently hunting down photos on Flickr of people I had seen, and that will be covered in my photo tour over on my personal blog.  Some notable ones include an awesome dragon lady, an inflatable t-rex (it was quite entertaining watching him shuffle around from place to place, as his head would flop from side to side, which always amused me), a beautiful Belle (from Beauty and the Beast, of course, who I think also won an award at the masquerade, if I’m not mistaken), an aging Han Solo (as seen in The Force Awakens, of course), and the most memorable, Slender Man.  This particular cosplayer was wearing stilts and had done something to make his arms look longer, and as I passed right by him, I found him to be terribly chilling.  Someone nearby even told the person next to her that he was creepy and that she wanted to get away from him.  So his costume was obviously successful.  Shiver.  He even had a spooky manner of walking.  I must say, Slender Man would truly be a terrifying sight indeed if even this cosplayer had such an imposing presence.

Photo from Flickr User: Phoenix Comicon This dino is strong in the Force.

My final purchase that day was a very puffy whoopie pie at this little place set in the midst of all the other booths.  What it was doing between all those other stalls selling the usual comicon fare, I know not, but it was a delicious treat nonetheless.  After that, I headed upstairs to the final large hall I had been meaning to see.  Here, they had the actors you could meet (I didn’t see anyone interesting, plus autographs can be expensive), plus some other cool things to see, like a Star Wars section and a corner dedicated to Dr. Who.  There was also a large scene made entirely out of legos, complete with model trains.  Again, more pictures will appear over on my blog soon.

Image taken by the Duck of Indeed. Complete with chu chu trains!
Image taken by the Duck of Indeed. Complete with chu chu trains!

It was a rather fun, but rather tiring day, but good, all in all.  It wasn’t the most exciting comicon I had ever attended; as much work as the masquerade requires, there’s something about performing on stage in front of hundreds of people that just has a way of making a day a bit more thrilling.  Honestly, I rather missed not attending the masquerade this year, but I did watch it on Youtube and got to still see some pretty cool things regardless.  Anyway, I’m just pleased more people liked Vanille than I had originally expected.  I do so enjoy having my picture taken while in full cosplay glory.  It makes all the hours of hard work creating a costume feel worthwhile.  And again, please check out my other blog this Friday for my photo tour, where I’ll share more photos and videos of all the cool things I had seen.

The Vanilla Duck

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