Where to Find Me at Star Wars Celebration Orlando

It’s that time of year again! I’m putting on my space pants and leaving my house to attend Star Wars Celebration Orlando with my trusty co-pilot,  and while this year came at us like a tidal wave, we’re more than excited to get down to the Orlando Convention Center (where I attended my first major con over a decade ago please shoot me im so old) and see everyone. I’m involved in all sorts of mischief this year, so I’ve decided to compile it all here into one post for you! Many of the events this year hold a special place in my heart, so I’d love to see all my Star Wars pals at them.

The Bounty Hunt

Sign up outside of Room W303
  • Thursday (3:00 pm to 5:00 pm)
  • Friday (5:00 pm to 7:00 pm)
  • Sunday (11:30 am to 1:30 pm) – Bounty Hunt for Kids!

The Bounty Hunt is an annual adventure that I can’t wait to be a part of! Find me along the way as you scavenge for some of the galaxy’s greatest items and prizes. Get all of the info here and remember to stay on target!

Drowning in Moonlight: a Memorial Gala in honor of Carrie Fisher

Rosen Center Poolside – Thursday (7:30 PM)

Carrie Fisher’s passing is still something that hits me (and several people, I’m sure) on levels that are surprisingly personal. I’ve been given the honor to speak on one of the podcast panels at this wonderful charity event, and I’d love to see you there. Come by for the good cause, stay for a night of dancing and dining on themed goodies. What better way to celebrate the galaxy’s most infamous rebel than by sharing stories and partying down in her name?

We Love Rebels! 

Star Wars University (W300, 3rd Floor) – Saturday (12:30-1:30 PM)

If you know me, you know that I’m obsessed with Star Wars Rebels. I’ve hosted podcasts about it, I’ve written endlessly about the show’s characters, and gone above and beyond to defend my faves. Now, witness all of that obnoxiousness in real life! Join a panel full of Rebels experts to talk about where we think the Rebellion is going after that incredible finale.

These Are Not The Writers You Are Looking For: Bloggers Discuss Writing About Star Wars

Fan Stage (W308, 3rd Floor) – Saturday (4:30-5:30 PM)

Some of my favorite Star Wars-centric journalists (and yours truly) are getting together for a very special panel!  We’ve covered Star Wars all over the web, and now we’re sharing stories about how we ended up blogging about a galaxy far, far away.

A Unifying Force: Keeping Fandom Safe & Welcoming

Image by Star Wars TFA Fan.

Star Wars University (W300, 3rd Floor) – Saturday (6:30-7:30 PM)

As our favorite franchise continues to grow, it’s important to keep the gates open instead of turning our noses up at other fans.  Join us for a special discussion on keeping the Star Wars fandom a welcoming, knowledgeable, fun place for everyone.

Women in a Galaxy Far, Far Away

Fan Stage (W308, 3rd Floor) – Saturday (3-4 PM)

Join a panel ofdie-hard fangirls as we discuss Star Wars heroines from past, present, and future stories. If you’ve been waiting to hear my Patton Oswalt-esque pitch for a Padme book series (and I’m sure you have), this is probably the panel to head to.

Phew! Outside of this, I’ll be attending a ton of panels and haunting the local cantina spots in the evenings, because I’m attending with no other responsibilities! What will you be up to at the show? Follow me on Twitter and let’s connect for meetups!

 

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Excitables: Bioworld x Rogue One Winter 2016 Collection

The wonderful thing about being a Star Wars fan is that the community is so vast that no matter where you land, you’re going to find someone doing something of interest to you. Whether it’s theorizing on Twitter, collecting Topps trading cards, or putting your pride-and-joy 3D printer to use for armor molds, the Star Wars community has a hobby or interest for anyone. One of my “Star Wars Hobbies” happens to be collecting awesome clothes and accessories associated with my favorite film franchise. Recently, I’ve been given the chance to expand upon this (and couple it with my love of costume construction) for the official Star Wars blog with a column that I like to call Force of Fashion. So naturally, when something new and wearable pops up on my radar, I’ve got to check it out.

Leading up to the release of Rogue One, Lucasfilm and Disney have announced an initial batch of major partnerships for the Rogue One marketing campaign. Small hints of what to expect come this Fall and Winter have begun to pop upon social media (hint: you’ll want to check on my column over the next few weeks), and one particular new batch of products — which will release in December — has me intrigued.

Over on The Wookiee Gunner, my pal Johnamarie Macias has a complete run-down of the upcoming Bioworld x Rogue One accessory line, and I can’t wait to see what it looks like. I recently fell head over heels for their Poe Dameron Dome Bag, which I STILL need in my life, very badly. The silhouette images of each product must be what has me so jazzed. I’m more than excited to see what kind of products they have in store for their line, including the Jyn-centric accessories. Here are a few that I can’t wait to see:

star-wars-rogue-one-death-star-crossbody-bagDeath Star Cross-Body Bag ($39.95)

Step aside, Ramona Flowers, there’s a new circular cross-body bag in town. The first intimidating Death Star will presumably grace the outside of this bag, making it easy to proclaim your loyalty to the Emperor and still keep all your things on you. The chain strap is a great touch, but unlike a few other Empire-style accessories that I own with chains, it also offers a comfortable shoulder strap on top. I’ve been wanting something like this for a while, so I can’t wait to see what it looks like!

Rebel Mini Backpack ($39.95)star-wars-rogue-one-mini-backpack

I don’t travel often, but when I do, it’s usually because I’m doing a bunch of trips at once. For this reason, I’m constantly on the hunt for the perfect “everybag”. Something durable, small, but efficient enough to throw in a tablet or a small laptop if I have need for it during my day. I fell in love with Loungefly’s Rey Backpack ($60), but I might hang back and see what this one looks like before I make my decision.

star-wars-rogue-one-rebel-dome-satchelJyn Dome Satchel ($49.95)

Remember how I said I’m super-lusting after that Poe bag? Bioworld’s dome bags are cute and perfect for a day out that requires a little more space on the inside. I’m interested in seeing what design Jyn’s costume inspires, since she has no helmet or major outstanding logos/patterns on her outfit.

 

The whole line is set for release this December, and you can get the full details on pre-orders over on The Wookiee Gunner.

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My First Disneybound: Captain Phasma

(Stick around ’til the end for a bonus vlog with Passholder tips!)

Phew! It’s been a while since I cracked my blogging knuckles. I apologize — life has taken a few great turns, and I’ve decided to ride along with it. Today, though, I’m focusing on something that makes me utterly nervous: my first-ever Disneybound ensemble. I have some incredible friends who have made headlines for their creativity with these outfits, so it feels like I have quite a bit to live up to. For my first outfit, I wanted to go with my favorite now-Disney-owned franchise, Star Wars. As you know, I’m very unpredictable.

With that in mind, my continued and bafflingly unrelenting Captain Phasma obsession made its way into my plans, and I went with it. I’m not exactly happy with the turn-out, but hopefully one day, when I’ve coordinated much more impressive outfits for other events, I can look back on this with a sense of appreciation.

For those not familiar, a “Disneybound” is basically an outfit inspired by Disney properties and characters. It is not a costume — rather, it’s an arrangement of pieces inspired by certain elements or color themes found in its subject. Since both Lucasfilm and Marvel are owned by Disney, there’s a bit of leeway when it comes to what you can use for inspiration. For a better explanation, check out this helpful guide by my pal Sarah Snitch.

Anyway, on to the outfit!

Caught up with an old pal from my bounty hunting days #StarWars #BobaFett

A post shared by Catrina D. (@ohcatrina) on

I found the dress at a thrift store and it immediately reminded me of the bold black on Phasma’s mask. While I could have gone with something shinier, this jersey knit high-low dress (paired with dark grey tights) was perfect for both the hot days and cold evenings that tend to happen during Southern California summers. I paired it with black flats (plus comfy insoles to last me for the day) and used a black H&M shoulder bag to carry my things around in.

As for my accessories, I went with mostly reflective “chrome” pieces, including a necklace resembling Darth Vader’s TIE Advanced from Hot Topic. To resemble the bold red on her cape, I found a cute flower crown and went with the “Captain Phasma but as a forest spirit” look.

Have you ever done a Disneybound before? I would love to see your posts for inspiration — and if you’re looking for some, The Nerdy Girlie has plenty of ideas for you to check out!

As promised, here’s that video…

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My First Lightsaber Class, or, How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Jedi

Yesterday, I booked it north after work to head up to Hollywood boulevard for my first ever lightsaber class.

No, seriously! Thanks to The Force Awakens, lightsaber combat and fitness are on the rise — meaning that, finally, classes are easier to find in most major cities. With two more months left until I had the insurance required for the West LA Kendo dojo, I was antsy to polish up on sword combat (something I hadn’t actually done in over a decade) and completely geek out at the same time. I didn’t know what to expect, but going in blind made for one of the most exciting and fun combat classes I’ve ever taken.

saberclass01

Instructor Flynn Michael founded the original New York Jedi, and has been training in various martial arts since before I could walk. Our first class focused on the 8 Core Principles, which most combat arts are founded upon. Flynn was hilarious, knowledgable, and most importantly, easy to work with. I made instant friends with the other students, thanks to the fact that we were so distinctly amongst “our people” — saber swinging kids who used to jump off of our parents’ couches attempting to catch the air that the wild-flipping, top-of-their-game Jedi of the prequels could, or faced off against our friends in epic duels as Luke and Vader.

Factor in a comprehensive first class that made me reconsider the very way I stand on a regular basis, and it was almost too much fun. My upper body feels sore “in the good way,” and I actually feel calm today. This in itself is a feat, since anyone close to me can tell you how anxious and tense I can get at almost every hour of the day. I feel a lot more focused, but more than anything, I really want to get back to class. I guess that’s a bit weird to anyone who might look at this from an outside perspective, but the sheer amount of joy this class brought me topples the achy joints in my body tenfold. Going in without worrying about judgement — and writing about it now with as little care for my peers’ opinions on my hobbies as I can muster — is like a breath of fresh air. (For the record, my peers think it’s either neat or hilarious, which are both pretty decent outcomes for me.)

saberclass02

Over the course of the class, we were taught basic forms, stances and swings, but the highlight had to be the very end, when we paired up and staged two combat skits. Some were more combat-heavy, a few others were more dramatic, but we had tons of fun regardless.

Anyway, I wrote this blog post mainly to spread the word. Our batch this time was pretty small, but I’m hoping to get Flynn and his folks back to L.A. for more classes in the future. If you’re into it, check out the Lightsabers L.A. page and ask for it!

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Announcements Regarding Podcasts and Vlogs for 2016

I’m narrowing down my schedule and committing to some great projects over the next year, including the continuation of Woman Up! Podcast (Live at 8PM PT on Wednesdays – follow here for the show schedule) with Sarah Rodriguez. Woman Up now has it’s own YouTube channel, where we’ll upload our episodes and extra vlogs! I’m also periscoping our pre-show, where Sarah and I brainstorm our ideas and pitch songs at each other before every podcast. Those will upload to my YouTube channel after the show!

I actually get to serve as co-host on a few shows this year, including From a Certain Point of View (weekly uploads here) and Hangin’ With Team Kanan (LIVE on Google Hangouts, Sundays at 10am PST). Comics in the Cantina (formerly Mos Eisley ComicPort) is now a monthly show with a wider focus — we’ll cover the most recent comics, then have a broad topic or guest interview to explore!

Topping off this incredibly unbalanced list of podcasts is #ForceFangirl (LIVE on Periscope every Thursday at 7pm PT), my half-hour block on Parachute TV dedicated to all things from a galaxy far, far away.

I’m still vlogging sporadically on my YouTube channel, primarily documenting my adventures in Los Angeles and talking about comics.

The only bad news here is that I’m indefinitely shutting down Mos Eisley Underground — because with that much on my plate, it’s just a tad too much to run a podcast network at the moment. Luckily for you, my friends at Making Star Wars have just launched an awesome podcast network that you should check out!

TL;DR

Here’s my show schedule:
From a Certain Point of View (weekly)
Comics in the Cantina (monthly)
Hangin’ With Team Kanan (LIVE Sundays at 10am PT)
Woman Up! Podcast (LIVE Wednesdays at 8pm PT)
#ForceFangirl (LIVE Thursdays at 7pm PT)

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