8.06.2014

BlytheCon Seattle 2014

Other possible post titles: "that time I met Mab and went ultra-fangirl," "my first Blythe girl," "falling in love with Estra," and "the best event I've ever attended"!

Heads up: this is a MASSIVE post - Tal and I took tons and tons of pictures at BlytheCon (henceforth "BC"), I met so many incredible vendors and Blythe buddies, and I have so much to tell... I honestly can't cut it down any more than this, so please bear with me! Seriously, though, this is the most excited I've ever been to write about any event, so hopefully you enjoy some of it too! :)


Almost a month ago, Mab Graves posted a sneak preview of a beautiful cameo necklace she was going to offer at her booth for an upcoming show. I was all ready for my heart to sink, knowing that most of the artists I follow live far away and were either posting previews for local shows or SDCC (San Diego Comic Con) exclusives around that time. And that would mean I would have no way to see or purchase any of the items. BUT, then I realized that Mab was actually coming to Seattle for BC! Picture about a hundred squeals of delight and you might begin to understand how I felt. :)

I guess I should backtrack and say this: if you don't know of Mab Graves already, do yourself a favor and check out her website! She is one of my absolute favorite artists for so many reasons. In addition to being incredibly smart and talented, she is a savvy businesswoman (something I have a ton of respect for), a caring shop owner who makes time to show appreciation for her customers, and a sweet and generous soul. (Further evidence of her super sweetness: this awesome, personalized prize pack she sent me for being a runner-up in one of her instagram contests!)


I first discovered Blythe dolls a few years back, from various blogs and artists. As a kid, I was never very into dolls, so it completely took me by surprise when I saw Blythe and fell in love with the beautiful, wide-eyed doll girls. I knew that someday I'd want my own doll, preferably customized by an artist. I put it on my things-for-the-future list, but never made the leap into purchasing one of my own.

When I saw that BC was to be held in Seattle this year and that Mab would be there, I knew I would never get a better chance to bring home my very first Blythe. Since it was in Seattle, this year's BC theme was Emerald City.


Mab posted pictures of the dolls she would be bringing to BC on her Flickr. After much debate, I decided Noako and Estra were my top two choices. Tal and I decided to arrive an hour and a half early, thinking we'd be good.

When we arrived, I'd say there were at least 30 people in line already. Yikes! Tal confessed later that he was really worried I wouldn't get a Mab girl, because I had been talking his ear off for weeks about them and he knew I'd be heartbroken. I even woke up early that morning because of a dream (nightmare) that I missed getting one.

Anyway, I put that fear aside for a bit and had a fun time in line meeting my wonderful fellow BC attendees! I met Becky, who showed me and Tal the girls she brought (though I forgot to take a picture, having forgone having coffee that morning in favor of arriving earlier) and shared the story behind some of her Blythes. I also had chatted with super sweet friends Lindy and Sherri, whom I did remember to take a picture of! They've been friends for over twenty years - awesome!

When the doors opened at 10:30, I grabbed my goodie bag and went straight for Mab's table. Another girl was purchasing Noako as I arrived, but I got there in time to snatch up Estra! Life goal accomplished! Mab recognized me from my entries (bunnies and vamplets) for her Instagram contest. Even though her booth was crazy busy, she took the time to run out and give me a giant hug. :)

I met Angie, another major Mab fan who got one of Mab's beautiful original cameo necklaces!

After seeing Mab's booth, Tal and I went around checking out all of the amazing vendors. I was seriously blown away by all of the stunning displays. Check these out!

NOTE: There is no way I could post all of the pictures from the event in this post without crashing all of your computers - I narrowed it down and edited just over 100 pics. Yes, that's narrowed down! So check out the BlytheCon 2014 album on the Kels Shark Facebook page to see all of the pictures - there are a LOT!

MAB GRAVES
TONS more pics of Mab's booth in my Facebook album!

VINYL BELLY (left)
ZALOA'S STUDIO (right)
Those cat masks! And canvas prints! Love love love. :)

SUNCRAFTE TUTU

BUTTON ARCADE

FISH KNEES
Yay Portland vendors! ;) (I grew up in the Portland area!)

POMME-POMME
I took so many pictures of Fae's incredible booth setup (tons more in my Facebook album)! If I hadn't already blown pretty much my whole BC budget at Mab's booth, I would've gotten some goodies at Pomme-Pomme. It's definitely on my future must-have list!

CHANTILLY LACE

HAPPIBUG
shopblog | facebook

PHOTOS 4 SUE
shop | facebook | blog | flickr

DEVOUT DOLLS
Sara is THE sweetest! She was one of the BC organizers and also vends at UCU!

TINY HAUS
Diem is also one of the BC organizers - when I e-mailed her with questions about BC, she was super helpful!

ATELIER BLYTHE

KITTY KAT DANCE
I had the hardest time deciding between the pink dress (on the Blythe girl above) and the white dress I ended up getting. In the end, I picked the white dress because I had already purchased two pink Mab Couture gowns. :)

PUPPY52 (top left)
BLUE STAR DOLLS (top right, bottom)

KOOKANOID
Monster face dresses!!

GISANNA ROSE

MOMOLITA
website
Wow. Just wow. I want one of those dresses for myself!

I HAVE WINGS

IT'S A SHERSHE THING

GLAMOUR FAE

LA PETITE MENAGERIE

ROSIEE GELUTE
Doughnuts!!

UNICORNMINE SKINNY SCALPS (left)
KALEIDOSCOPE KUSTOMS (right)
I meant to come back and get a better pic of Kaleidoscope Kustoms' awesome goggles (they're to the right) since there were too many people in the way when I went around this time. But then I forgot to snap another photo. Sarah posted it in an album on facebook, though!

KAWAII KANDY
shop | facebook | flickr
So much cute! Detail shots in the Facebook album.

MY LITTLE HEADCASE
shop

A GREEN CAT / TINGEISHA
shoptumblr | flickr
Ahh I wanted those prints and all of the tiny city dresses so badly! Hopefully Cat will offer them again next time around, when I have more $$ in the BC budget! :)

BLYTHE EVER AFTER
website | facebook

RHODODOS NEST
website | shopfacebook
THOSE BUNNY SLIPPERS! Also, seriously I need more than one of those cutie hats/masks someday.

BLYTHE BLU
shop | flickr

FUNNY BUNNY
website | flickr

BLYTHE CUSTOMIZATION DEMO w/ HAPPIBUG LYNN
There were several Blythe demos/classes held at this year's BlytheCon. I attended Happibug Lynn's customization class - super cool! Lynn was super helpful and knowledgeable. I took extensive notes. :) Someday, it would be so much fun to try my hand at customizing a Blythe!

MEETING MAB!
After seeing all of the vendors and attending Lynn's class, I went back to Mab's booth to get a picture with her. Meeting Mab and getting to take home Estra were definitely the highlights to an incredible day!
See end of post for outfit details!

BLYTHECON SEATTLE 2014 HAUL!
There were SO many cute and beautiful goodies. I blew most of my budget at Mab's booth, otherwise I would have picked up a lot more from the other amazing vendors. It was also a bit overwhelming for someone who has only owned a Blythe for a few hours. But, I'm starting to get a hang of it and I plan to get more from everyone else in the future!

My purchases:
Mab Graves: Estra (Blythe doll, including white petal stand) | Pinky paper doll | unicorn girl pin | cameo necklace | pink poodle dress w/ boots & bow | long pink flower gown w/ bow | dolly collector card | pack of blue vintage dress supplies
Kitty Kat Dance: white dress (you can't see it here, but there's a layer of fluffy pink tulle underneath the white dress - same material as the ribbon!)
Devout Dolls: mint & pink puff sleeve dress | sticker pack

Even though this post is going to have over 50 pictures, I couldn't resist sharing these ones of Estra dressed up in her new outfits:


GOODIE BAG TREATS + RAFFLE PRIZE!
The vendors at BC were all so generous, donating tons and tons of goodies for the 350 goodie bags and the raffle! There were so many raffle items (well over a hundred) that it took two hours to award all of them, despite it also being the efficient distribution setup I could imagine. I won a super cute, colorful knit hat from Fables and Tales (shop | flickr)! More pics of the raffle prizes, display tables (for Blythe photoshoots), and event setup in the Facebook album. :)

Tal and I each got a goodie bag (they were sturdy tote bags with the awesome BC print by Dr. Blythenstein), so the picture below includes items from both bags (excluding doubles). There were tons more cards and coupons that didn't fit into my picture too. :)
Fables & Tales: colorful hat - pink/green with side strings (upper left)
Snow White (shop | facebook): pink dress | white dress (bottom right)
Weeping Sabicu: green/blue hat | brown/black/grey hat (middle left)
Willow & Quail: fox necklaces for Blythe (middle) | Blythe + fox postcard (upper left)
Mab Graves: dolly collector gretting card | dolly parade sticker (upper right)
Brown Eyed Rose: tiny desserts (upper middle)
Dr. Blythenstein (BlytheCon logo artist): BlytheCon tote | BlytheCon mug | BlytheCon pins (middle)
Karoline Felix + Almond Doll (collaboration): postcard (upper right)
Confetti by Lexi (shop | facebook | blog | instagram): tiny version of The Stranger, a local Seattle magazine (bottom middle)
Devout Dolls: tiny postcards (bottom middle)
Blythely I Go: tiny Starbucks mug (bottom middle)
Tiny Haus: tiny lanyard that matches the human-sized Blythe lanyard (bottom middle)
Vinyl Belly: girl sticker (bottom right)
Hegemony 77: I Want You sticker (middle right)
Pullstring Lane: tiny shopping bags (bottom left)
Atelier Matin: doll with heart gun postcard (bottom left)
Rachel K. Blythe (shop | flickr): lion doll | good witch doll (bottom left) - not in the goodie bags - Rachel was walking around handing them out to attendees! :)

Overall, I was completely stunned by how well-organized everything was. Sara, Diem, Brian, and Valerie did such an incredible job. It's no easy feat setting up a big event like this and I don't think you could find a better team than this. Thank you for doing such a spectacular job - it really made the event fun for all of the attendees (and from what I can tell, the vendors too)! Their bios + links to their websites can be found here.

Also, a HUGE thanks to Tal, who went above and beyond. He bought us tickets, came to the Allison Katzman and Junko Wong panel (more on that soon) with me, waited in line with me for BC to open, held some of the goodie bags & loot all day, learned about Blythe customization from Happibug Lynn, stayed through the whole convention (10:30am - 6pm), and took some pictures for me... all without a single word of complaint. I'll make it up to you during PAX weekend! :)

Alright, one last picture! Just wanted to mention what I wore, in case you were curious from the pictures above. :)
I'm Your Present - panda dress | Desigual - Leila coat |
Kelsea Echo* - charm necklace, bracelet, bow & key earrings, stud earrings

*I made all of the jewelry I wore for the event! I will be selling these styles as part of my Alice collection when I launch my shop in about a month. Shop opening will be announced on my blog, so follow along to be notified... or e-mail me to let me know you want to be notified when it opens!

Still there? Thank you for reading through - I know it was a ton of pictures and info! I will be writing more about Blythe on here, so you can use the links on the right sidebar to follow my blog if you're interested. Hello to all of my new Blythe buddies - this may sound cheeseball, but in all seriousness, my heart is completely full from all of the kindness, acceptance, and positivity I've felt from all of you. I can't wait to see you at next year's convention! :)

P.S. Further evidence of my Blythe addiction progress: I started pinning cool Blythes I saw to my Blythe Pinterest board and apparently couldn't stop. Mwahahaha.

29 comments:

  1. I love that you took so many photos!!! I'm so happy to have met you and I look forward to having you in the Blythe Community! If you have any questions about anything (there is so much to know and learn! I'm still learning!!!!) please contact me! Hugs!!!! <3

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    1. Thank you so much, Kimberly! <3 I'm so happy to have met you too! I am sure I will definitely have questions - just gotta process everything I've already learned first! My mind needs to play catch-up! :)

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  2. I can't believe we didn't get a chance to say hello! I saw you and your beau during the raffle, but it was so quiet I didn't want to yell "HEY KELSEA!" like I normally would ;) Thanks for such a great post! I really didn't get too see every vendor, so this is much appreciated :D

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    1. AHHH I KNOW! It was craziness (in an awesome way)! And I'm really shy in person... haha. :) We absolutely have to meet up next time!!

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  3. ahh even though I'm not very much into Blythe myself this post was such fun to read because you are so genuinely excited! I have to say though they are absolutely gorgeous dolls, love the one you got!

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    1. Thanks, Angie! Haha yeah, I feel like I'm just bursting with excitement and you can probably tell from my post!

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  4. Truly, this article is incredible!!! You and Tal are awesome people and it was a joy to stand in line with you! Sherri and I thought you were both delightful people. This was so well written and in reading it, I felt the huge excitement of this hobby rise up in me even more than it was before! LOVE your pictures, too. What a privilege it was to meet you and see what doll you purchased ! WOW! You got a beautiful doll! Congratulations, Kelsea! You have fantastic taste! Thank you for this post. It's like re-living it all over again...the Blythecon. I treasure all your photos and words. Xxxxxx Lindy

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    1. We had so much fun! Thank you, Lindy - I am so super-excited about Blythe that I'm already planning what kind of girl I want for my next purchase... and clothes I want to make (not that I can sew, but I can learn... hehe). Writing the post and sorting through pics was just like reliving it again too - so much fun! Hugs! <3

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  5. Thank-you for sharing your experience & the shop links! <3 Your new girl is lovely!

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    1. Of course! Thanks for visiting, Jennifer! :)

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  6. The doll you got is so cute. I love her hair. I'm glad you got her after all the waiting! :)

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    1. Thanks, Jessie! I love her hair too! <3

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  7. this is the best recap of BC I've seen. thank you! now I am more jealous than ever. come to Savannah, GA, BlytheCon! We have a beach.

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    1. Thanks, Maryanne! Hopefully you can attend a future BlytheCon! :)

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  8. hehe I could totally tell how excited you were just by reading this!! You got a very cute doll and I LOVE YOUR PANDA DRESS <3

    Jessica
    the.pyreflies.org

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    1. Thanks, Jessica! I love my panda dress & Estra! :)

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  9. How refreshing to see and read such a well written blog about blythecon from someone with so much heart and passion! All the vendor shots and links are great and brings my mind back to the event day! I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to meet you but will look forward to it! XO'S Lindsay Taylor (ellewoods2007 on Flickr)

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    1. Thanks, Lindsay! I'm sure we will meet at some point - seems like the Blythe community is pretty tight! :)

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  10. I am crazy jealous! Looks like you had a blast!!!

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  11. Also I have met and/or know a lot of these vendors so I'm really happy I got to see photos of their booths. Thanks for sharing these :)

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    1. That's awesome! Have you been to any BlytheCons, Violet? I had so much fun taking pictures!

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  12. So happy I came outside and sat with you for a few minutes! Wow! Loved your Blog! Made me feel exited to be a Blythe collector all over again.

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    1. Aw, thank you, Juliet! <3 I'm so glad we met! Can't wait for BC Vancouver!! I know it'll be awesome with you on the planning team!

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  13. Oh your doll is beautiful and oh so perfect!

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  14. Aww I love Blythe dolls. That looks like loads of fun! xo

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