2019 Live From Fashion Week - Integrity Toys Convention - Day 0

My first ever convention--and it's a Poppy Parker anniversary! YAY!

I love me some Poppy Parker. She is my girl. So when convention sign up came around this year, I was excited to go.


The theme this year was "Live from Fashion Week" where we were presented with fashions from all four seasons.

I went to Baltimore with my friends, Sato, who is also a Poppy Parker fan. Of course, we brought dolls with us. What better time to be crazy doll people than during a trip to get more dolls.😂

 

We flew in, planning ahead to arrive a day early, to beat the jet lag (it was not effective--we fared better than we would have if we arrived on the day but we were still jet lagged all days of the trip).

So the first day, October 9th, we explored Baltimore a bit in the morning and took some doll pictures.

Before coming, we heard that the city was not very safe. But I didn't really feel unsafe when I was there. I thought it was such a beautiful city! So picturesque.




After breakfast, we did some room shopping, found deals that I now regret not taking! We did pick up some really cool stuff though, at amazing prices (says the doll person who pays hundreds for dolls).Room shopping may be unfamiliar to the uninitiated so let me explain. So in doll conventions in the USA, a lot of attendees set up shop in their hotel rooms. Conventioneers then go room to room to see the goods for sale--this is room shopping. It is a lot of fun and very costly!

There were much, much more, room after room, than what you see here!

That afternoon was early registration where we received our welcome doll/registration gift. It's a beautiful doll--Fresh Perspective Agnes Von Weiss. She looks so soft and pretty!

Registration bag

Registration gift, Agnes Von Weiss

That day, we also got our first look at the convention upgrade doll, available to all W Club members, and pre-ordered before the con.

Gardens of Versailles Poppy Parker is quite a beauty! I love her puffy curls.


That night, we did more room shopping. The next morning was the official start of the convention and the convention shopping day for me! :)





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Instagram Fashion Doll Accounts : Some of my FAVES!

As some of you know, I love toys. I love dolls. I love setting up dioramas. I love dressing up my little people. :)

In fact, aside from a Sylvanian Families-centered account, I have a separate one for my BJDs and another for my fashion dolls!

Today, we will focus on fashion dolls. Despite admittedly not being so fashionable in real life (lol!), my @dolliberate account on Instagram seem to have gotten the most followers. I started the account July of 2017 so it's about two years now. Wow!



But this is not about me. So we shall stop talking about that now! :P

There are soooooooo many good doll accounts on IG but here are a few of my favorites!

1. @rayminogue


I absolutely adore their fashion ad-style shoots. They really like GUCCI and they execute their shots soooooooo well you almost believe it is a real campaign!



How friggin' cool? I dream of the day brands start doing campaigns with our dolls for real. :)

 2. @thetinycellar

 The Tiny Cellar focuses on the life of Jo, a Barbie wine-connoisseur. The creator takes beautiful photos that reflect real life. I enjoy their writing as well! There is a story that progresses with each post.



Wonderful diorama. Look seems to be really baking with all that mess she is making. Haha!

With each post you get to know her characters more and more. How to keep an audience engaged? The Tiny Cellar knows it well!

3. @yoedelmo


Yoedelmo likes to go outside and take photos. :) And it shoes in their feed! They often take their dolls and shoot outdoors, playing with forced perspective. I think they do it quite well!

This very convincing crowd scene was completed with the help of some friends. How did they manage to hide all their hands in the shot is beyond me. Haha!

And of course, they take amazing fashion shots like this, too! What more can I ask? :)

So there's three of my favorites! I hope you go visit their accounts and show them some support--they surely deserve it!
 

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Getting a US Visa for Foreigners Living in Japan



Living in Japan? Need a US visa?


It must sound silly, but one of my first questions when I decided to get a Visa was whether I need to apply in my home country or not (the answer is not!). I naturally did my research and eventually got the Visa I wanted! Here is how it went. :)

First of all, if you are a tourist in Japan, and just decided to get a US Visa while you are here, it will not work well for you. Sorry. :( One of the most important things your interviewer considers when deciding whether they will give you a Visa or not is whether you have strong ties to the country you are applying in.

Personally, I have been working in Japan for 4 years now. And last year, I got married to a Japanese national. Surely these two things worked in my favor. On the other hand, if you are a student here, it may be difficult for you to get a Visa, despite having traveled in the USA before, as they do not consider it a strong enough tie to return to Japan. (Take this with a grain of salt, there may be a chance you get it after all ;))

It was a fairly easy process. I came over prepared, but that is much better than the opposite. One of the things they recommend (not require!) you prepare before going to your interview is an evidence of your finances or capability to pay for your stay. Aside from my bank books, I also got my credit card statements with me. They asked for neither. But, like I said it's better you bring everything they may ask from you. I even had my marriage certificate with me. lol!

Ok, enough about my story, let's get down to the facts.

1. D-160 Form

Have your passport with you, and a digital photo with a white background. Then click this link, register an account and fill up the D-160 form fully and truthfully.

You can save your D-160 form and come back to it at a later time if you can not finish it in one sitting.

2. Pay the Visa/Interview Fee
Upon completion of your D-160 form, you will be allowed to schedule your interview at the embassy.

Note that the time you choose is the time the guards will allow you to enter the premises, not the time of your interview.

3. Your Interview
Come to the embassy a few minutes before the schedule you chose. Depending on the number of applicants, your wait can last for over an hour.

The website says do not bring bags bigger than 10x10 inches. I followed this closely, but I did see regular-sized purses bigger than 10x10 inches when I went there. I guess just don't bring a suitcase or something unnecessary, or you will be turned away.

Personally, I think it is always best to follow the rules so you avoid trouble.

The interview takes a few short minutes. Answer directly and concisely. You will be told whether you will get a visa or not right after the interview. :)

4. Wait for your Visa in the mail!
 Your passport will be returned to you within a week. You will then know whether you got a single-entry visa or a multiple entry visa.

Congrats!

I hope that this is somewhat helpful. Feel free to leave a comment below if you have any questions for me. GOOD LUCK!

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