Chances are, you recognize this power couple duo and this ita bag that I decorated during Christmas last year! ♡＼(￣▽￣)／♡
Hope ya'll had a great Christmas. 8)
Season four of My Hero Academia can’t come soon enough for us to see our favorite platonic life pals again.
But alas! I will not wait patiently! It’s my OTP bromance and I need it now! It’s Sonya again with another Inspiration Station, showing off the KiriBaku BakuKiri (Yeah, I went there. ┐(︶▽︶)┌;;;) Messenger I decorated over Christmas break!
I picked the OTB Messenger Starter Kit in Red, the newest color! Thanks again to everybody who backed the Kickstarter and made this possible. The wait is over and the new colors are in the store for OTB Messengers and Totes!
First, as always, I gathered all the merch I had.
After tediously bothering all my friends ♥ and scouring the internet for matching Kirishima merch, I DID IT. ﾉಥ益ಥ)ﾉ I luckily had extra Bakugou merch from collecting for Kacchako (Who can say Kacchako is still bad when it helped this much? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯) . But Kirishima and Bakugou merch are very hard to come by! Most of the time, they are claimed first, if not second, in box splits. When you are able to snatch any, they are more pricier than the rest. o(〒﹏〒)o
But, the boys need a bag, and I will make them one or die trying. Doing more with less, at this point, is the theme of this Inspiration Station.
Lay out that fabric and inserts, fam! ( ･ω･)☞
BAM! ╰( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡° )つ──☆*:・ﾟ Inserts made.
Bois looking tuckered out from all this inserting~(ง ื▿ ื)ว
If you haven't guessed by now, I love using inserts. |ω･)ﾉ` And, you may know me by now as a JoAnn junkie. I'll let you in on a secret. ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ I used to work at a JoAnn so I always knew what fabrics there were... or I just lived there. Take your pick. (￣ε￣;)
It was hard finding a "boyish" or "masculine" pattern for a fabric for these two bromates. I figured triangles ▲ were boyish enough. Perfect too because the pattern came in a hard red and explosive orange! Remember: fabric choice is key to making a great backing! When purchasing an OTB Messenger, you can opt for a starter kit that includes two insert backings, and then you can simply cut and tape/glue the fabric onto it.
Just look at how good it looks in the bag!
Time for the test layout! Another thing to remember, test layouts are fine to do! I recommend it. Keep rearranging until you like what you see. It will save yourself the heartache when pinning and unpinning a bajillion times. (｡╯︵╰｡)
I was lucky enough to have found two massive acrylic charms of Bakugou and Kirishima. Be careful with these kinds of keychains as they are prone to snap without support! This is why inserts can be important. (･ω<)☆ These two big boys are the focal points on this side of the ita bag which makes it easier to do more with less! Then, I filled in the middle with matching rainy day pita merch alongside small, convertible acrylic stands of them.
Doing More With Less — Tip #1: Pick a smaller bag. No one will judge you by the size of your ita bag and merch. Having large pieces of merch is pretty handy to fill in the white space in your bag, especially a small bag. Use that to your advantage to make an illusion of a fleshed out ita bag. (ﾉ◕ヮ◕)ﾉ*:･ﾟ✧
If your merch ever outgrows your small bag, you got two options: 1) move everything to a larger ita bag or, my choice, 2) get another bag for your lovelies. I'm a big fan of growing my love and having different ita bags for certain occasions. (*ゝω・)ﾉ
Time to get handsy! 👋👋👋
I'm gonna make customized chain segments for this bag. :D
Here I attached the pieces I made to the loops!
Soon™. I know I say this a lot but DIY items will be here sometime... Those who participated in the Autumn Palette Kickstarter had a chance to obtain a DIY kit! You guys will be able to do this for your ita bags at home.
Using the nylon pliers (the green handle ones), I open jump rings which do not crimp or scratch the red coat on them. Using the needle nose (the blue handle ones), I detach chain links to make customized chain lengths for in between the loops. I chose this option over a clasp or hoop chain since the large acrylic charms are so bulky as it is. (^▽^;)
To make keychains and the like less bulky, I will take the needlenose pliers to take off their hanging components. I'll use other methods to attach them to the bag! For example, I will customize the PITA! acrylic charms with using clasp adapters. Be wary, clasp adapters are meant to use inside ita bags and not outside as the jump ring used is thin and weak enough to be bent with your fingers. (°ロ°) ! It's best to use them for light weight merch such as small acrylic charms and rubber straps.
So how did I attach the big acrylic charm? I kept it on its thick jump ring it came with but attached the thin jump ring from the clasp adapter to the loop on the bag. It doesn't do much hanging as it's caught by the bottom of the bag to bend the thin jump ring open. It's used to just hold it in a place.
Kirishima: :'( It looks a little empty, Baku-bro.
Bakugou: Shut up. (°ㅂ°╬) I gotta do everything myself, huh? ((╬◣﹏◢))
The full window side is nearly done! It looks a bit empty up on top according to Kirishima. Time for Baku-bro to step in and make things as good as he can. ´∀｀）
Remember those huge buttons from before when I gathered all my merch? We're gonna use them to decorate the top rim of this bag! The rim on this side is such prime territory for outside decorations. 👌
Oh no! Kirishima is extra THICC. (⁄ ⁄•⁄ω⁄•⁄ ⁄)
When placing buttons on the outside of any ita bag, I strongly recommend badge covers. You may see me doing this for inside the bag too, that's just because I like to protecc everything. (;´д｀) You do you!
Unfortunately, Kirishima may be a good boi, but he also a thicc boi. ΣΣ(ﾟДﾟ;) Even if a can badge/button measures out to the badge cover size, it may not be able to properly fit in it because it's too thicc. If you force your way in to abruptly, you can cause breakage to the badge cover, which is what happened here. With some patience and slow jazz music, I was able to get them to fit in the 75mm Can Badge Covers.
Some badge covers are not created equally. Sometimes the seams on them aren't as strong and break. If that ever happens to you with Co-Kan brand ones, please let us know! We can send you replacements, free of charge. (・ωｰ)～☆
Kirishima: Dude! This looks rad!
Bakugou: Of course. ლ(ಠ益ಠ)ლ
Just check how satisfied Kirishima looks as he admires Bakugou's brilliance. He's of course happy Bakugou even protected his handsome mug with badge covers. (´꒳`) Remember to cover your badges when going out in public, folks!
But, really. Those badges do wonders for the large space above the window of the ita bag. It even covers the bag's loops and somewhat hides how I hung the merch on the bag. It definitely filled up that empty space for sure. ٩(●ᴗ●)۶
Doing More With Less — Tip #2: Disregard merch you can’t work into your ita bag. If you don’t have much merch, it may be tempting to try and use it all. Resist that urge and evaluate your merch.
Does this fit into a theme you can use for the ita bag? For example, I used only three outfits that Baku and Kiri wear on this side of the bag. I doubled up on merch that showcased those three outfits. You can categorize merch themes by character outfits!
Do I have a good place for it? While my large buttons that I used on the outside could go on the inside, the smaller pita can badges wouldn't have covered enough space on the outside to look as good, imo.
I always try to ask myself these questions. I had a few pieces I was really hoping to fit in but just couldn’t find a way to implement them well. There will be other ita bags!
Kirishima: Hmm...what are we gonna do for this side? (｡•́︿•̀｡)
Bakugou: *unintelligible grumbling* ୧((#Φ益Φ#))୨
Flipping over, we gotta rinse and repeat what we started with on the full window side: ita bag test layout. Bakugou is showing how its done on this side from the get-go. ( ･`ω･´) Kirishima doesn't seem to get decorating an ita bag too much. (´ε｀；)
Kirishima: You don't look so good, Bakugou... ლ(ಠ_ಠ ლ)
Bakugou: Fuck up. ╬(눈_눈)
The cheer squad merch is the centerpieces for this side. I paired them with the wait staff merch in the corners of the heart window! We're cooking up a storm. ╭〻◕`w´◕〻╮I couldn't fit those dress-up niitengomu rubber straps inside the heart, so tossing them the outside. (╯°▽°)╯ ┻━┻ But I did put strap covers over them so it's all gucci. 👌
The heart window is proof of the fact that this ita bag is completely platonic. Yup. Absolutely. Most definitely. For a subtle touch, I added a red glass heart charm to the top center of both windows to accentuate the power of what was a completely platonic ita bag.
Doing More With Less — Tip #3: Consider accessories. There is great joy to be had in using non-merch accessories to liven up and draw attention to the merch you do have. Though I barely put any accessories in this bag unlike the Jyuushimatsu bag, it's a well respected technique, and people who do this regularly are one of the common types of ita baggers.
Fufufufu. Time to tie these boys up. (*´艸｀)
Ballchains can break so these cable rings can be more secure!
Kirishima: BRUH!!! ( ╹ਊ╹)
These Bakugou and Kirishima plushies weren't just for show. Oh no. We're gonna attach them to the bag itself!
Through the ita bag community, I found a neat little trick with trying to keep large items on the outside of the bag more secured. Ball chains just don't do it since they can break easily. Using a cable ring will do the trick! They are sturdy and screw on to close. I hastily rushed to the nearest hardware store but fret not, we will have them here soon on Co-Kan too.
I tried hanging Bakugou through the loop on his head. It's nice but what if I...
Kirishima: ФоФ) B-Bakugou...?
Bakugou: (ʘ言ʘ╬) Get away.
After slamming these BakuKiri plushies together and making smooching high-five sounds, I attached them to the side of the bag using the cable rings! I decided...upside down was for for a more hilarious decoration choice. ψ(｀∇´)ψ Plus, having the cable ring around their necks felt more secure for them since the loop on the head could eventually tear from being tugged on.
And now, I present you this totally gay bromace ita bag! I had so much fun, after hunting down merch, putting this together.
Did I mention this bag was especially put together for our good friends over at Cosplay Realm Magazine!
A super huge thanks again to Emily and Aesthel over at Cosplay Realm Magazine for shooting this ita bag for the December issue! Emily even dressed up for the occasion. ｡･ﾟﾟ*(>д<)*ﾟﾟ･｡ She looks so good! They've got great stuff on instagram. Their photography is soooo much better than ours, please check them out!
That concludes this article of Inspiration Station.
Stay roosted for our next issue!
— Sonya from the Co-Kan Flock ♥
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Aesthel from Cosplay Realm Magazine made an awesome video of how she decorated her Cutility Pack Ita Bag!
We've worked with Aesthel (@aesthel) and Emily (@yoemilyrey), the team at Cosplay Realm Magazine, before last year as well! You may recognize them as the models for the KiriBaku Messenger and the Miku Affectuator!
Their work is phenomenal and we're proud to be in their December Gift Guide again this year. Their magazine is full of amazing photos and interviews with top-notch cosplayers.
The snow may have melted, but the Miku is here to stay.
The Snow Miku Affectuator is one of our convention booth favorites. Its bright, cluttered, symmetrical aesthetic draws the eye. I decorated and posted this one over Christmas break, but it’s finally time to give you all the sauce! It’s Sonya here with another Inspiration Station!