Monday, October 13, 2014

Traveling Lolita : East Coast Part 1: Rufflecon

Sorry about the delay readers, I'm still trying to recover from the whirlwind adventure I just took to New York and Connecticut. On my adventure I had the opportunity to meet a lot of lovely lolitas on the east coast as well as the brands Triple Fortune, Enchantlic Enchantilly, Morrigan NYC, Moss Marchen, OZONE, Belladonna, I Do Declare, Moss Badger, The Snow Field, Harajuku Hearts and many more. In this post I'll be covering most of the convention and the following my visit to New York and Btssb/Tokyo Rebel. So you have been forewarned, this post is really picture heavy.

To start off I wanted to go in by saying I purchased a ViP ticket back in February / March of this year when Triple Fortune was announced. ( I didn't get to purchase bonnets from them when I visited Japan  in March/April so I was determined to get them at this event.  ) Little did I know this was probably the smartest thing I did the whole convention. When arriving for the pre register Friday evening to pick up my badge there was also a consignment intake being held. It was a great idea and gave people an opportunity to sell items whilst also attending the con instead of having to deal with a swap meet. After heading upstairs I took a photo of all the cool swag which was included in my VIP bag.

The bag included a folder file and bag from Triple Fortune, a program schedule book from Rufflecon, a handmade rosette from The Snow Field, a bow with cat cameo from Enchantlic Enchantilly, a flower compact ( I am not sure whom this was from ), nail polish, a brooch and ring ( again I have no idea who they were from ) as well as an assortment of Lolibrary buttons and Rufflecon buttons. I was especially impressed with the amount of goodies and absolutely loved all the details.

There was also a meet and greet but I had come so late to the hotel that it was a bit pointless to try and change and catch up so I opted to stay in and wake up early for the marketplace the following morning. 

For the next morning I actually got up at 5am and got prepared and dressed for the fashion show in which I modeled for Belladonna. Since I also had ViP I was allowed access to the marketplace earlier than regular attendees. Given that my time was going to be limited with the rrehearsal for the fashion show, I opted to get down super early to do my marketplace shopping before I had to show up for rehearsal rather than after. I lined up for the Marketplace at 7am before even registration started; to ensure that my entrance would be in early. Another fellow friend and ViP attendee from Toronto showed up around 8am and thus began the marketplace line Friday morning.

Our efforts were successfully rewarded as between the two of us we both procured Triple Fortune bonnets when the marketplace finally opened at 9am. The final bonnet photo is one I'm including from all the girls in our joined hotel rooms.The top photo is my actual haul from the convention which consisted of two TF bonnets, one pair of TF tights, one Enchantlic Enchantilly otks, and one Linda Tea Maddhatters pin ( you can find her storenvy : here ). In the second photo from the bottom left  then up and clockwise: The first bonnet  is mine bought previously and worn Friday, my grey bonnet, Geraldine's cream brown bonnet, Kaisha's sax bonnet, and then my purple bonnet.

After this I had to get ready for the fashion show and rehearsal, where unfortunately I did not collect any photos. However, a wonderful photographer, Xin Lolita Photography took a ton of amazing photos and you can actually catch them here. ( You can also see me modeling for the brand Belladonna, which consists of two lovely ladies Rachel and Michelle who sew at breakneck speed. Their newest release is Ode to Darwin, which you can also view at their storenevy.) 

After the fashion show the Japanese brands actually sold off all of the items from the fashion show at their booth which was a nice treat. By this time it was already midway through the day and time to hit he panels. Sadly with half the day already over a lot of the panels I wanted to catch were not available or overlapped so going to both meant missing chunks of each. Some of the notable panels were: Piling Stuff on Your Head pt. 1 and 2, Workshop with The Snowfield, Forgotten Antique Hand-Sewing Techniques, and Lolita on a budget. There was also a Shades of Lolita focusing on lolitas of color as well as Victorian Menswear and Lolibrary for Advanced users which also had a lolita print bingo. 

During this time between bopping from panel to panel as fast as humanly possible, I happened to snap quite a few photos with some lovely ladies. Everyone was dressed so splendidly.. I really didn't get to take as many photos of everyone as I wanted and I'm really sad about that. Also, the lighting in the hotel could have been a bit better, but I just had a camera phone so I couldn't really complain. 

I was very really impressed with how freely the guests mingled with attendees and took photos. Before this last photo Kaie actually stopped me and asked to take a photo since I was wearing one of their older styled bonnets and I happily agreed. We actually took a selfie too but then I deleted it accidentally so they took a photo together with me to make up for it. ( they were so nice even after me being so incredibly clumsy. ) 

The variety show also had a lot of really cool things including a handmade contest, a coordinate contest and even a girl who sang Chinese in the talent show! I unfortunately took pretty crap photos but the girls who entered the handmade contest all blew my mind.

After this incredibly jfashion packed day I changed and hung out with a lot of lolitas I had only talked to online so it was a great networking and bonding experience for me. In the course of a day I had met and talked to girls from Canada, Alabama, California, Virginia, Boston and New York. I ended up skipping the Masquerade which ended up devolving pretty early due to time complications.

As the next day began, Sunday was the day of the tea party and it was just insane how quickly this convention had flown by. ViP was seated first, but I actually ended up sitting at a table in front of the designers table. All the tables were decorated and at each place setting were little gifts to each attendee as well as a raffle ticket. One of the gifts was actually a calendar designed by the brands featuring photos and art from their work.

There was a lot of commotion and a lot of photo taking before the tea party began. I was lucky to get some of my favorite photos from the event during this time. This photo directly below especially. I find this girl to be an exceptional inspiration to me and was incredibly honored to meet her and talk. It was as exciting as meeting the designers! 

This was my table for the event! Half of the table was from the east coast if I remeber correctly and the other half Toronto. We're missing my friend Erica, but she was there where there's an empty seat. All of these lovely ladies were dressed to the nines and I felt so honored to share my tea with these lovely gals.

Photo credit Yanise Cabrera

After the tea party and tons more photos, Triple Fortune gave everyone a special treat by taking Kabe-don photos. You had a choice of having a sweet princess photo or kabe-don photo. Most girls got the kabe-don. It was a madhouse of squeals, wails, and swooning to say the least; but everyone participated in an orderly fashion and there were even some photos of our male jfashionistas joining in!

Photo credit Stacy King

And as soon as it started, Rufflecon ended. It was an amazing weekend filled with knowledge and a true feeling of community and love for the fashion and way of life and I was happy to be a part of it. I wish I could have done more to contribute because I felt that I really wanted to put myself out there and make new wonderful friendships during my short stay. I want to thank all the volunteers, the lovers of this fashion, the hotel, even the attendees. Everyone who helped make Rufflecon a reality. Thank you for all of your hard work and making that weekend happen!

 For a first year con, this convention really stepped up to the challenge and surpassed my expectations. Now as with all first year conventions each one has their hiccups and problems, but though these things happened, I want to dwell now on all the positive aspects and what I took away with me. I hope in seeing and reading about my time there will encourage you to support Rufflecon so hopefully next year we can meet there and share new memories for future conventions to come. 

Photo credit Stacy King

I was ridiculously pooped by the end of  all the way down to my seahorse riding mermaid shoes. Thank you for reading and stay tuned for  the second part of my trip in my adventures in New York with the Torotno lolitas where I visit Tokyo Rebel / BTSSB, Laudree and other frilly things!

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