Of All The Jyn Joints….

“What chance do we have? The question is ‘What choice?'”

-Jyn Erso: Rogue One

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Jyn Erso. Possibly the most admirable criminal in the Star Wars universe since the world was introduced to Han Solo in the 1970’s. Jyn is one of the most human characters in these films… and that includes some of the realest non-human characters. Sure, she’s part of the rebellion and does her part to help with that, but deep in her heart, she’s also spending that time trying to find and re-connect with the loving father that was taken from her by the Empire.

The Empire pretty much ruined Jyn’s life. In the beginning of the film, they take away everything she ever had, including a chance at the normal, peaceful life of a farmer’s daughter. She spends the rest of her life either imprisoned and doing hard labor or running from something. Despite one of the hardest lives a person can face, Jyn still remains kind, compassionate and brave; even risking her own life during a shootout to save a child she doesn’t even know before any harm can come to them.

Though her movie is only a one-off side story as opposed to a major part of the original canon, Jyn might be one of the most important characters in the series. In an attempt to remain spoiler free, all I’m going to say is that she was the reason the rebellion was successful and she aided the bringing about of one of the most major events of the rise of the rebellion…. and if you saw the movie, you know exactly the explosive event to which I am referring.

Jyn is incredible and I’d be lying if I said I haven’t wanted an excuse to dress like her since I first saw the film. I totally spent a lot of winter trying to make a wool scarf work in the same way hers does. It didn’t really pan out, so I did something a little more workable for this shoot.

I made some executive decisions with the changes to some of the fine details. For example, where I’m at, we’ve already had a 100 degree day and it’s not even June yet, so I swapped some of the layered look for something that wouldn’t make me pass out while taking the photos.

For the first layer, I went with a navy shirt since in some lighting in the film, you can see that her shirt is indeed a dark blue rather than grey. However, if grey or even olive makes you happier, then obviously be that.

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In place of lots of layers and jackets, I opted for a shrug jacket made of a nice, light material that gave the look a little boost without being too much.

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The base was a pair of black skinny jeans and some brown boots. I could have gone olive green or dark grey with the pants as well as just about any color for the boots, but since Jyn’s are brown in all the pictures I can find of her, I went with brown.

And since I say it almost every post, it should be obvious that I saved the small detail part of the look for last because it’s may favorite.

I managed to find a super passable necklace that serves as Jyn’s Khyber crystal necklace given to her by her mother as she was bidden to ‘Trust the Force’

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I love this thing. I’m going to wear it all the time even when I’m not casually cosplaying anyone. I feel like it’s a great way to keep the Force close to my heart at all times.

Personal life information:

I’ve loved Star Wars since I was old enough to remember anything about it. It’s been a huge part of my life, a driving force (no pun intended) behind the person I’ve become, but it was Rogue One that finally helped me settle on a major decision. I’ve wanted a Star Wars tattoo for the longest time, but could never figure out what to get or where. With the introduction of Rouge One, I finally kept hearing a phrase over and over in my head,

“I am one with the Force, the Force is with me”

I had also been wanting something for a long time to honor both of my parents because I love them and they both mean a lot to me (Hi Mom, I know you’re reading <3) so I had them each write out a section of the phrase so it would be like them saying it to me in a way. I then got their handwriting tattooed across the arm that would hold a shield were I going into battle so that no matter what, my mom and dad are always protecting me. I decided to showcase that tattoo this week and have a little fun to end Star Wars month. I definitely hunted down a good Jyn Erso-looking scarf for this look.

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I hope you enjoyed this, the last post for 2018’s Star Wars month! Check back on Thursday for an update on what’s next for Closet Warrior! As always feel free to share your own looks with me as well as inbox me with any questions, comments, suggestions or feedback you may have!

Thank you for the read, and may the Force be with you!

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Self-Rescuing Princess

 

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General Leia Organa-Skywalker-Solo: The original self-rescuing princess. Rebel. Warrior. Sass-mouthing, smuggler-infuriating, Jedi-saving, Ewok-whispering, Wookie-kissing, boyfriend-rescuing, original badass and proof that elaborate space royalty hairstyles are probably genetic.

I have always loved Leia. I remember being really little and trying to do my hair like hers and learning early on that movie hair is a lie. She was the first character I didn’t have to argue to be when I would play Star Wars with the boys in my neighborhood (The fight to be Indiana Jones got ugly real quick) and my desire to be her hasn’t really faded now that I’ve reached adult(ish)hood.

The older I get, the more I appreciate more of the deeper aspects of Leia. Where my six year old self was just excited see a girl use a blaster and wear amazing outfits and be all cool and brave, my adult self sees so much value in manufacturing my own rescues, standing firm and making sacrifices for something I believe in and also taking time to be soft and allow for love and friendship.

Leia has also had many iconic looks and outfits, but the one I chose to get casual with this week really spoke to me as being important because of something Carrie Fisher said about it. It has next to nothing to do with the fact that I’ll probably never be able to work a head to toe brilliant white outfit without some sort of stain disaster befalling the clothes.

Carrie Fisher at one point after the release of Return of the Jedi was confronted about that iconic metal bikini. The conversation was essentially dragging her for being such a positive role model to young girls up until this point. She was asked how people were supposed to explain the outfit still made her a strong character to their daughters. Carrie’s response was perfect.

“Tell them that a giant slug captured me and forced me to wear that stupid outfit, and then I killed him.”

Granted, murder isn’t exactly the best way to get where you want to go in life, but the attitude that no one gets to hurt and humiliate you while you stay quiet about it is. In her situation, Leia didn’t have a great many options, but she still didn’t let anyone get away with enslaving her. I’m not saying that this outfit is the new feminist icon outfit or anything, but to me, it still shows how tough Leia has always been and how far she was willing to go in order to not wait around for someone else to come along and rescue her.

I decided to make this controversial outfit a little more comfortable by starting with the base of a green tank top and a pair of stretchy red skinny jeans. In the film, I think her skirt might be purple and the top is definitely a gold metal, but every costume recreation puts green fabric in the top and the skirt is always red, so I went that direction.

In the film, she wears stylized green boots. Since I don’t have those and can’t really think of an occasion that would warrant purchasing a pair, I substituted some grey suede heeled boots instead

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In order to bring out the metallic features of the original outfit, I used an assortment of goldish jewelry and long necklaces to substitute in for the little bit of chain she has left around her neck after escaping.

 

I realize that not all environments or climates allow for bare arms like I have here, so I also did an alternative option featuring a very neutral colored duster sweater. I thought the light and flowy nature of the sweater would be a nice stand-in for the original skirt featured in the movies.

Even Leia isn’t immune to Rancor attacks.

I hope you enjoyed my homage to the original badass princess! Since she has several more iconic outfits, Leia may pop back up again in later posts! Always feel free to share your own looks with me as well as inbox me with any questions, comments, suggestions or feedback you may have. Check back next Tuesday for the last week of Star Wars month! After the last post for this month, I will be announcing the theme for next month on Thursday, May 31st, so check back to see what’s on the roster for June!

 

Thanks for the read!

YAS Queen

“I’m going to help Obi-wan. If you plan to protect me, you’ll just have to come along.”

-Padme Amidala, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones

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In honor of Mother’s day a few days ago I decided to make this post about the galaxy’s first badass space mama: Padme Amidala. Mother of Luke and Leia, Queen of Naboo, space fashion icon and the universe’s least hateable politician.

I know the prequels get a lot of criticism from fans of the original trilogy, but I just can never be mad at some of the characters in the prequels. Some, not all. I discussed last week how Obi-Wan is one of the things I liked about the prequels. This week, we’re going to talk about Padme because she’s easily one of the most admirable characters in the franchise.

When we first meet her in Phantom Menace, she is Queen of Naboo; a planet on the brink of war and she still manages to keep her cool and the only ‘weakness’ she shows is her concern for her people. She is willing to suffer for them and to do anything to help them. It is revealed in Attack of the Clones that she was so good to her people and so popular that her people tried to pull an FDR and have her in office longer than was traditional. It is also in Phantom Menace that she is involved in a firefight. Rather than hiding behind her bodyguards and cowering, she grabs a a blaster of her own and manages to do some hefty damage to the droids swarming the palace. Get it, girl.

Let’s also not forget about the time that she was chained to a post in the middle of an arena awaiting execution by Nexu (Bad Kitty) and she manages to escape her chains and work toward self preservation while the two seasoned Jedi beside her are still talking about what to do. Did I mention that this is because she LITERALLY PULLED A PIN OUT OF HER HAIR AND USED IT TO FREE HERSELF? After that, even though she takes a pretty powerful hit from the Nexu, she kicks the thing and it goes falling to the ground. If given more hairpins and more time, Padme could have probably gotten out of that arena on her own. Because we’ll never know, this is just something I’m going to choose to believe because I can.

Aside from her bravery, Padme is also a deeply caring and loving person. She’s willing to risk her own safety to go save Obi-Wan against all orders to NOT do the thing, she loves and supports Anakin even when he begins to pull more and more toward the Dark Side. Even in her very last moments, she is trying to convince Obi-Wan that she believes that there is good in Anakin’s heart even after what he did to her on Mustafar.

She is a really great example of someone who can be tender and tough at the same time and I think that’s why I like her so much.

Since I know some of you are here for the ‘LEWK’ more than the extensive reading, without any further ado, I present my Padme Amidala casual cosplay.

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The base of this outfit was a plain, red, long sleeved dress:

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I feel like a red shirt and skirt would also work, and if you aren’t a dress/skirt kind of person, try a red shirt and dark jeans.

I stuck with black and gold accessories to compliment the gold ornamentation on her gown as well as the dark trim. I thought a long gold chain could stand in for all the embroidery on the front of her gown.

I feel like the belt broke the dress up a little; without it, this was more of a Star Trek look, which isn’t the fandom I’m celebrating this month.

Since no one really knows what kind of shoes are worn under this gown, I really tried to take the character into consideration. Given the ornateness of the gown and the hair and the makeup, I didn’t figure this would be set off by plain flats or pumps and I decided to get bold while still being comfortable.

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These bad mamma jammas are actually surprisingly comfortable and easy to walk in, but they also made me feel very Space Queen.

I also paid a great deal of attention to hair and makeup this week since Padme’s hair in particular is always ornate and awe inspiring, but let’s be realistic here: there is nothing comfortable, simple or casual about that amazing high roll, so I went for this sort of vintage-y twists that were actually surprisingly easy to do. HOWEVER. If big hair is your thing and you have the courage and patience for that iconic style, BE THAT.

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And then when we look at the intricate face paint and the Scar of Remembrance that all Queens of Naboo sport, we’re once again looking at something that’s going to drive a convention wild but won’t feel comfortable after awhile, so I picked a happy medium: full red lips that I achieved using actual Star Wars makeup:

 

 

 

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Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s Tattooine.

Don’t let the caption fool you, it’s Covergirl; credit where credit is due.

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I hope you enjoyed my honest, ranty opinions about why Padme is one of the coolest Star Wars characters! Always feel free to share your own looks with me as well as inbox me with any questions, comments, suggestions or feedback you may have. Check back next Tuesday for the next fun week of Star Wars month!

 

I’m Your Only Hope

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Like most people, my first introduction to Obi-Wan Kenobi was in Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. Being about four or five at my first viewing, the biggest impact he had on me was his final battle with Darth Vader. I was actually pretty upset at the outcome of that fight and would actually close my eyes when that part of the movie played every time. It wouldn’t be (go easy on me) until the Phantom Menace was released and he was played by the incomparable Ewan McGregor that I really started to relate to him as a fellow sass master and really started to appreciate Obi-Wan’s character.

I found a book series shortly after this written by Jude Watson that chronicled the adventures of Qui Gon Jinn and young Obi-Wan before the events of Phantom Menace. To oversimplify his character to two traits: Obi-Wan really only ever wanted to eat and hit things with his lightsaber.

Preach, friend.

When I watched it recently, Luke’s description of ‘Old Ben’ also struck a chord in me.

“Well, I don’t know anyone named Obi-Wan, but Old Ben lives out beyond the dune sea. He’s kind of a strange old hermit,” (credit)

The older I get, the more I relate to Obi-Wan very deeply. A master of sass who has the luxury of being a hermit in the middle of the desert? Passionate about food? A love of weapons? I mean, if he had a dog and Wi-Fi he’d be hashtag goals or however the kids are referring to it these days, which is why I chose to make the second week of Star Wars month all about General Kenobi.

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I started with this sort of cream colored short sleeved shirt. I figure a white shirt or any sort of ‘neutral’ toned kind of shirt with sleeves of any length would work just as well. As long as it provides some kind of contrast to the outer layer so they’re not the exact same color.

Next was a basic brown duster sweater thing. Anything that’s a darker shade of brown than the neutral shirt you use will work: cardigans, jackets, wraps, whatever you have that you like best.

If I was going an actual costume of some kind, I’d go for khaki pants, but since this is all about being subtle and stealthy, I went for light colored jeans instead. Years of customer service have also sort of ruined khakis for me so I try to avoid them whenever possible. But as I will always say, if you want to wear the khakis instead and go for a full-on look, BE THAT. In cooler months, I’d pair this with my taller brown winter boots, but since it’s finally warm here (YAY), I opted instead for a pair of simple brown flats that I’ve had for a million years.

After the clothes came picking my small details, which is honestly becoming my favorite part.

I went for blue lightsaber earrings (which actually came in the same multi-pack that last week’s Rebel Alliance earrings were in) and a simple blue necklace to keep paying homage to Master Kenobi’s blue lightsaber.

Also, in deference to the version of Obi-Wan that made me pay serious attention to him, I tucked a small Padawan braid into my ponytail.

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Another thing that really struck me on a re-watching of a New Hope was what he says to Darth Vader during their final encounter:

 

“If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” 

 

Now, I realize some of this was meant very literally, but it’s also kind of poignant for someone who has faced their share of adversity. It hits very much like a ‘If you knock me down, I’m just going to keep getting back up’ sort of ideal, and I really like that. I really think that facing our fair share of troubles in life really do make us stronger people.

Life may knock us down, but it’s always our ability to pick ourselves back up that makes us stronger. Even if we have help from friends or family, it’s the fact that you get up and keep going that’s the important thing. Even if you’re limping moving forward, you’re still up and you’re still moving and that’s huge.

 

I hope you enjoyed what quickly became ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Motivation For Life’ week! Always feel free to share your own looks with me as well as inbox me with any questions, comments, suggestions or feedback you may have. Check back next Tuesday for the next fun week of Star Wars month!

Scruffy Looking Nerf-Herder

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Han Solo is the galaxy’s most lovable scoundrel, smuggler and scruffy looking Nerf-Herder. An important main character from the original trilogy, he was one of my favorite characters instantly. This probably had very little to do with my huge crush on Harrison Ford. Nope. Not a thing. Stop looking at me like that.

His sarcasm and sense of humor spoke to me even at the age of four. It’s a trend I’ve noticed with my favorite characters from anything I’ve watched or read my whole life. Oh, they made a sarcastic comment? I relate to that! Wow! So relatable!

When I was a kid, I had this half cocked idea that if you could deal with adversity through sarcasm, you were instantly as cool as Han Solo. This made for some really interesting playground confrontations and ultimately made me very few friends. It wasn’t until I was older that I learned how to use my powers of  sarcasm for good that it become one of my more endearing qualities. Maybe. People laugh when I talk sometimes so I see that as a positive reaction and run with it.

A portion of who I am today began to form the first time I saw Star Wars and realized that I wanted to be as cool as Han Solo which is why I decided to have him kick off Star Wars month. I love this one so much because it’s also a lot of payout for very little effort. Seriously, one of the easiest things to put on and wear for the entire day.

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The Inspiration….
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Who’s Scruffy Lookin’?

Since spring hasn’t really taken a firm hold here yet, I opted for a long-sleeved white Henley style shirt, but a short-sleeved tee could also work with this for sure.

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I happened to have this fluttery black vest type thing laying around, but I would have gone with a black cardigan or jacket as a second choice if I hadn’t had something so perfect.

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Everyone probably has a pair of dark wash jeans in their closet somewhere, so that was a pretty easy choice.

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Rounding out the major parts of the look are a pair of black boots. I feel like any pair of black shoes would work for this depending on personal style.

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Yes, that is paint all over my hardwood floors. I blame the people who owned my house before me.

I think my favorite part of any casual cosplay I have ever put together is the tiny details. They’re mostly for me since the details are so small, but the whole concept of this blog is to be doing this primarily for the person wearing the clothes anyway. These made me really happy so I ran with them.

And of course, the obvious thing here is that this isn’t set in stone. My way might not be the best way for everyone. Want to replace an item with one that you like better? Do it! Want to wear black pants instead of blue? BE THAT.

Always remember that this blog is about empowerment and self-confidence and not me telling you how to live your life. Be your own best self!

 

I hope you enjoyed this week! Always feel free to share your own looks with me as well as inbox me with any questions, comments, suggestions or feedback you may have. Check back next Tuesday for the next fun week of Star Wars month!