I just ordered a bunch of good stuff: 9 yards of 1/2" gold metallic galloon (believe it or not, the sashes really do require that much), Paper Solvy (a water-soluble stabilizer that you can trace designs on - I'm using it both to stabilize and mark the designs of my embroidery), and flat quilting pins (for really nailing the blue flat to the white). I also cut out some of my fabric. The pieces that will be embroidered were cut extra large with pinking shears so I can handle them frequently without shredding the crap out of the edges. When they're ready to be applied to their white base, I'll just cut them down to their proper size. And thus shall I soon begin my descent into long-term embroidery hell. Huzzah.
My metal for Rando's armor is here (yay), but I can't seem to find a price on the type of rivets I want (boo). After being really annoyed that rivet setters are expensive and don't even include the proper dies, which also cost a fair chunk of change, I decided to look into blind rivets, which are applied with rivet guns - a cheap and commonplace piece of hardware that you can get at Lowe's for under $20. The problem is that Lowe's doesn't sell the size rivets I want (I need them to have a large cap but a very short - less than 1/4 inch - length so that they'll look right in proportion to the squares and said squares won't be rattling around stupidly.) I found a company selling rivets that seemed to be appropriate and requested a quote, but thanks to their fucky web interface, I wound up asking for 1 rivet instead of 150, so I really hope they won't throw out my request as a joke. Eh, if I don't get any reply this week, I can always bug them again later. And I can always start cutting up the metal in the meantime. It's not like I can make the armor right away, anyway, because I still need to figure out exactly how I'm going to implement its fabric base. It would probably be easiest to use cotton duck, which is sturdy and cheap and easily dyed and can have holes for the rivets poked in it with an awl. I could fold its edges up and hem them, but I think it would be better to set the armor piece inside a properly finished silk cover (which would be much easier to fold and hem and would have the added advantage of covering up the ass end of the rivets). I'm already ordering a monster bolt of silk twill (nice fabric that's also easily dyeable and has some sheen without looking like a disco ball and works out to, like, $4/yd in quantity weeeeeee) from Dharma Trading for much of the rest of Xiahou Dun's clothing (except the underkimono - that's going to be brocade), so it's not like I'd have to buy an assload of extra crap.
I'm making myself finish spackling the sword this week. No excuses. My sleep schedule seems to be fixed (believe it or not, I got up around 9 a.m. today and wasn't tired), so as long as I lay off the caffeine (which seemed to be the source of my problems), I won't be dragging and I'll feel like working on stuff.