Final Fantasy X Inspired Home Decor

This simple DIY project was inspired by Final Fantasy X’s Yuna Braska and her cool looking staff.


Figure. Yuna’s default staff in FFX.

When I posted the project on Facebook, I mentioned that I wanted something FF inspired without being too obvious for the entrance of my apartment (don’t want to scare away visitors too quickly).

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Figure. Key before paint job.

I found this cool, but plain key piece at my local Michael’s craft store on sale for about $10 (marked down from $35). Originally, I wanted to paint it like a keyblade from Kingdom Hearts. However, the top piece of the key reminded me of the sigils and temple symbols from Final Fantasy X.

I used acrylic paints, both basic and metallic colors, to mimic the design and color scheme of Yuna’s staff. I think it was quite successful and was finished in just one night. It was sealed with my new favorite craft savior: mod podge.

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Figure. Key after paint job!

I unintentionally have a slight travel theme going on in my living room (ironic because I haven’t traveled to many places compared to other people I know).  So, I was thinking of completing this entrance wall with a quote from “The Hobbit” along side this beautiful Middle Earth map poster that Naomi got for me. I’ll update later if I ever get around to doing that.

I hope you have enjoyed this and hope it provides some inspiration for more subtle video game home decors out there 🙂


Designer Fave: Jou-Jou

Happy September, y’all!

So a few weeks ago, I was fairly certain that summer was on it’s way out. When I was waking up in the early morning for work, my car was reading as low as 47 degrees F! I know that the weather is looking humid and hot for the holiday weekend, which is great, but I wanted to share a lovely find for the fall.

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Figure. I haven’t always liked leather jackets, but I have been craving for a caramel brown jacket for the longest time!

Meet my new Jou-Jou fall jacket! It’s made of “vegan leather.” I had no idea how exactly to define this, so I looked it up. According to The Gloss, vegan leather is a man-made material. Also, a random note: the article brings up a good point that just because it’s animal-friendly does not necessarily mean it’s environment-friendly.

I really like the aesthetic that Jou-Jou has! Their style has a very modern, futuristic vibe. Also, their jackets remind me of Neku’s outfit from Square Enix’s “The World Ends With You” (aka “TWEWY”).


Figure. Main character: Neku! I think I unfortunately deleted my review on TWEWY on the Nintendo DS, but I am obsessed with this game.


Figure. My other Jou-Jou jacket that  I bought back at the end of 2011. It’s made of a wool-like fabric with a hood that reminds me of a wolf. It also has a front zipper that is sewn askew, which I love.

My one complaint based on what I see in stores and online is that Jou-Jou seems to reuse that one jacket pattern in so many of their items. I understand wanting to make a trademark look, but I feel like there must be a way for their clothes to have have similar elements without using the same exact pattern. It can cheapen the feel of the jackets because they look almost cookie cutter-like instead of well thought out, individual designs.


Figure. Some examples of Jou-Jou jackets. Their website:

All in all, I’m really happy with this particular purchase of just $36 from TJMaxx! It also has this beautiful golden lining on the inside, which I sadly forgot to photograph.

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Figure. Oh yes, I’m rocking that biker chick in PJ shorts trend. Hahaha.

I love fitted jackets because they focus on streamlining my top-side and good tailoring can make one look taller and longer. I can’t wait to wear this in the fall as the weather begins to cool down again.

My only regret is that my old Charlotte Russe boots are no longer with me. I think they would of looked awesome with this. What do you think?


Figure. R.I.P. 2011, darling.

Digging the vegan leather trend? Check out fellow blogger Kristina Mirasol’s review on Express’s Minus the Leather jacket.

What Makes Being A Nerd Awesome? By Wil Wheaton

This is so amazing. And what I love most about it is that it was on the spot, impromptu, and genuine.

What makes being a nerd awesome? The way you find other people who love [something] the way you do.

Words of wisdom by Wil Wheaton. A mouth full of alliteration, and it’s totally worth it.

Thanks to my friend, Naomi for sending this to me.

TED Talks: Misogyny, Video Games & Cyber Bullying

A very interesting video was posted on my Facebook yesterday morning from a former roommate who knew of my love for video games.

About TED Talks

I can’t believe I have never mentioned TED Talks on this blog before, but if you are unfamiliar these are videos about “Technology, Entertainment, and Design.” Their motto is quite simply to spread ideas worth inciting discussion. I highly suggest you to look at their website and Youtube channel. I guarantee that you find a topic that will captivate you.

Natalie Tran aka Community Channel

I initially found TED Talks a few years ago via Natalie Tran of YouTube’s Community Channel. She creates funny yet smart videos that are satirical, random, and run by a one woman show. As she mentions in her TED Talk, she steps back and observes the “awkward moments” or small parts of life in her videos. She also points out some issues of being a funny female on internet. Please watch Natalie Tran’s TED Talk here.

TEDxWomen 2012: Misogyny, Video Games, Cyber Bullying

This is a great way to transition to the into video that my old roomie posted.

This is Anita Sarkeesian. She is a media critic who wanted to take a critical look at female representation in video games. She was met with a lot of hostility and online abuse, much of which can be classified as misogyny. Listen to her TED talk as she can explain and present her case in a much more captivating way than I could write.


Other TED Talk Fave

Finally, I just want to insert this TED Talk I watched in Philosophy/Ethics class last year. It’s about how Google and Social networks use algorithms to generate search results and ads catered to  you. Some crazy stuff if you think about how the internet is evolving and becoming more aware of each of its users.

Concluding Remarks

I just want to urge again to try watching and sharing TED Talks. They are really interesting topics that are educational. The talks vary in length and even accessible via free apps for smart phones and ipods/iphones. Just in case you want something new to pass the time when  Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, and whatever is floating  your game app boat today gets boring 🙂

Finals Week Destressers – Fall Term ’12 Edition

So this post is very belated, but as I tried to type before, I spilled a bit of coffee on my laptop and now its on the fritz. Luckily, my sister, bro-in-law, and I bought mom and dad a new laptop (they have never had one before), and thank goodness I can use it. I’m on break now, but busy as a bee. More on that in later updates though.

I’d like to write about some of the things that have kept me sane during finals and interviews while at school this term. Since blogging wasn’t an option, here’s what satisfied my need for break time.

  1. My Guilty Pleasure Music

    I have no idea if Jazz dance class has soften my ears to mainstream pop, but I am sorta embarrassed to say I have been blasting Ke$ha’s “Die Young” and T. Swift’s “I Knew You Were Trouble.” Shoot me, they are catchy as hell.

  2. This Chem-E Student’s Crazy Dancing
    To the T. Swift song I just mentioned! I can partially blame this dude with my weird music cravings, too, I suppose.

    Not convinced of how hilarious this guy is? Watch his moves to Cher Lloyd’s “Want U Back” (which was one of the songs we used in Jazz coincidentally).

    I have a strange sense of humor, but at least I know Naomi shares it with me. We were studying in the Science Building, DYING with laughter behind textbooks.
  3. Flash Game: Sushi Cat

    Let me preface this with I don’t really play video games as much anymore. It’s a sad fact. But I wanted something mindless to do in between studying. What better way than a flash game! I haven’t been to since Sophomore year, but BEHOLD they never fail me!


    This game is about a cat and his “wife” (which happens to be a stuffed animal). During this edition of the game, you are trying to eat as much sushi as  you can to get bigger and overcome obstacles to reunite with your lovely pink wifey.


    As Aniket kept making fun of me, I realized you can’t call this a “game” per say because all you do is control where to drop the cat. I could argue that there is some strategic physics involved, but really that’s stretching it. However, the unlockable cute outfits made me want to finish the game in its entirety. I can’t help my love for fat kittens!


    There are also 2 or 3  previous games of Sushi Cat, one of which you fight Bacon Dog to win you wife back. Yea, I got a little crazy.

    Link to game:

Alright that’s it from me for now 🙂 Now that I’m break with a keyboard that works, hopefully I can get back to writing more.

Halloween Costume: T.A. Kirby-Bauer aka Scientist Kirby

My Halloween Project for this year! I didn’t feel like dressing up or sewing a costume, so I made my Kirby all festive! He’s a scientist like me (in the future lol) 🙂 This idea was inspired and made in honor of my super awesome TA in micro lab, and working with bacteria all summer on my last coop.

Some details:

Here are the things I made.

  1. Lab coat, gloves & goggles: The lab coat is complete with buttons on the shiny side and a collar! I wanted to put pockets in (and those safety slits on the side), but got too lazy. Still PPE length approved though! Sewn from white extra fabric left over from a cosplay. The gloves were cut form cleaning gloves (we had only 1 of a pair left over lol) hot-glued and pinned onto Kirby’s arm/hand. The goggles are actually mine/Naomi’s from lab (tee-hee my micro lab partner!)
  2. Study Cards: All these microorganism identification cards using video game references were my TA’s idea. I wrote them down in class one day in my notebook and it was the main inspiration to complete this project. I love mini things!

  3. Name Tag: Nothing special. Just a piece of tape and paper. However, the name is important! I named Kirby “T.A. Kirby-Bauer.” This is in reference to the Kirby-Bauer method, which uses Muller Hinton II agar to diffuse bacteria lawns into a very thin layer.

  4. Bow tie: A suggestion from Megan! I used my remaining fabric from the dress I had sewn for the Academy of Natural Sciences Gala a year ago. It reminds me of one of my med school friends who always wears bow ties to formal events, like Bill Nye the Science Guy.
  5. Petri Dish: The actually petri dish is actually real haha. Although I got it from my lab now, I worked with this sized dish primarily when testing water at PWD at my first coop. As you would guess (from name tag explanation in Step 4), this is a petri dish is filled with Muller Hinton II agar on it (rendered by a circle index card glued to the bottom of the dish and colored yellow/beige). A hole punched index card piece was glued to the center and represents an antibiotic dish of tetracyclin (which FYI affects both Gram negative (G -) and Gram positive (G +) bacteria) that we used in a lab session. The “lawn” of bacteria is red because I wanted it to be Serratia marcescens (G -). It is susceptible to the antibiotics, so a zone of inhibition is observed by the uncolored gap around the disc.

    I even labeled on agar side! Though I messed up the order. Name of microorganism, test date, initials, agar type, incubation time.

  6. Cell Spreader: I was originally not going to make this, but I saw some toothpicks, colored it with a marker, and forged it with some hot glue. Also, with all the damn hell the cell spreaders gave me on my last coop, why not. Look at the petri dish pics for the blue thing. One of my favorite pieces.

All together now!

I know, I’m still recovering from the nerdy overload, too. This is what I did instead of continuing my Neuro readings. However, I had to get all this creative energy out somehow 😦 I’m really happy with the outcome.

HAPPY (belated) HALLOWEEN!!!

AnimeNEXT 2012

Almost two weeks ago, I had the privilege and joy of going to an anime convention with close friends from New York and Philadelphia. I don’t think I have really posted here before on anime cons, but a brief description of them is a place were anime fans come together, go to panels targeted to topics based on favorite series, anime screenings to view, buy fan based items and food, listen to Asian music, —- and my favorite — dress up.

Here is this year’s con booklet!

I hadn’t been to a con in about 6 years now, last being in 2006 in Maryland for Otakon. AnimeNEXT is a much younger and smaller con, but it’s was loads of fun. It’s grown a lot from when I first saw it in 2004, so I can’t really complain.

To be honest, I was a little bit skeptical that I would really enjoy the con since it’s been some time since I attended one and my once undying love for anime withered away throughout college. However, John, Scott, Kirsten, and Megan really made this a con for me. If it wasn’t for them , I would have forgotten how much I enjoyed attending these things.While I didn’t really attend the events, hanging out with my friends and watching anime and cosplaying for a weekend was a great get away from life.

Here’s Scott & Kirsten as a great Holo & Lawrence pair from Spice and Wolf.

Ref art:

Friday, I dressed up as Mayuri Shiina (who affectionately refers to herself as Mayushii) from Steins Gate. While Mayuri is not my usual pick for a cosplay outfit criteria (and definitely a rather air-headed character), Mayuri is the childhood friend of Okarin aka Hououin Kyouma the main character mad scientist. Of course I had to match John’s Okarin. Megan decided to jump in and made it a group cosplay with her Feyris Nyan Nyan maid costume.

Reference art! From right to left: Mayuri, Feyris, Okarin.

Me as Mayuri.

Megs as Feyris Nyan Nyan.

John as Okarin.

Saturday, I dressed up as a character from Haibane Renmei per Megan’s request. In the reference art, I made Rakka’s outfit (middle/right) and Megan made Rekei’s outfit (far left).

Me as Rakka.

Megs as Rekei.

Really happy we had a “comfy time” costume. It was soooo hot!

I also came out with a lot of great souveniors! I got something for my sister and bro-in-law, but won’t post in fear they will see this pics haha. I’ll probs post later >:)

First up are two great teeshirts Megan bought for me at her favorite vendor, Modondi. They are absolutely adorable!!!!

The sumo one suits me best, I think!

Next up, I actually bought prints from Artist Alley, contrary to what I thought I was going to do. I have collected a lot of posters and wall decor over the years, but I couldn’t help myself! This was the first time I attended a big Artist Alley 🙂 I was so happy to see a Final Fantasy VI artwork with Terra Branford (top) and The World Ends with You group shot (bottom), since artwork for these games are pretty hard to find. Juri was the name of the artist herself 🙂 She not only did fan art, but some great fantasy based stuff.

I had bought Aniket a souvenir also of his favorite anime character, Luffy from One Piece. Don’t get me started on how many times I circled the Dealers Room to figure out what to get him and from what show. However, at the end of the day, he loved the shirt I got so much that he grabbed it and wore it before I could take a pic of it. It basically looks exactly like the image below, but minus those awkward black dashes/stitches. It’s a bit artsy and doesn’t scream obnoxiously “I’m an anime geek.” Great.

Here are the business cards of the places I bought from. Very happy with what I got 🙂 Please click for full size to figure out how to go to vendor websites!

And to end the entry, what better way than a display of true fan devotion. Triforce car decal? Holla!