|The prettiest bustle dress of the weekend was on a DOG.|
The con has been growing by leaps and bounds. This year was the first in a new location, the Henry Gonzalez Convention Center and Grand Hyatt. The change was mostly a good one. The con had outgrown its former location and the main problem last year was overcrowding. This year there was plenty of space, and at times that made it feel a bit empty, even though final attendance numbers were over 9400. The events were split between the hotel next door and the convention center, which required some extra walking. But I was pleasantly surprised to find that I rarely had to stand in line for an elevator. Things seemed to flow very smoothly.
Of course, most of my experience of the con was from behind my table in Artist's Alley. I was lucky to get a table as they sold out in 2 1/2 minutes. This was my first time in an Artist's Alley and my first time vending a large anime con. Overall, things went extremely well. I have absolutely no complaints about con or hotel staff and everyone was very helpful and friendly. The reception of my wares and my booth was very positive, as was the reaction to steampunk in general. I liked that even when people seemed to have no interest in buying anything, lots of people passing mentioned how "cool" or "awesome" steampunk was. There was absolutely no attitude about "what are you doing at an anime con." Also, I actually didn't get asked "What is steampunk?" once. People seemed to have at least a vague idea, or someone in their group (i.e. the kids explaining to parents) was there to explain steampunk. So I definitely noticed a change with increased visibility of the genre in the mainstream.
What I did get a lot was people who were looking to start putting a steampunk outfit together and wanted advice or assistance. I heard multiple cosplayers say they were going to do steampunk next year. So our ranks continue to grow. Chances are many of these people will discover just how addictive steampunk can be.
|A fantastic "Kraken" costume.|
My other major activity of the con was my presentation on corsetmaking. It was well-attended, even if it was 11:30 on a Sunday morning. I got some positive feedback, so hopefully people found it useful. I always feel I'm throwing a huge amount of information at people really quickly, but I wasn't given as much time as I asked for, so I was rushed.
|A customer shows off the gold skirt|
she bought from me.
At any rate, from my point of view it was a great con and a great weekend. I look forward to doing it again!
|And, probably my favorite costume of the weekend. |
Sorry, steampunk, gargoyles captured my heart first.