Category Archive for New York

Watch Oddities TV show, Season 4: La Carmina guest star! Obscura Antiques, Discovery Science Channel video.

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I know you’ve been waiting for this… La Carmina on Oddities! My TV show appearance premieres June 8, 9pm ET/PT on Science Channel, and then airs on repeat.

My episode is called “The Mummy Returns” (Season 4, Episode 11). Below is a short clip — watch me purchase a large, fuzzy reminder of home!

Do you like what I wore on-camera? Keep reading for outfit details, and a zillion Obscura shop photos.

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Owners Mike Zohn and Evan Michelson are lovely in person. I frequented their store years ago, before the TV show came along.

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They loved my custom, skeleton corset. Quite appropriately, the sign above me reads “Torture.”

Skeleton corset: loaned by Wilde Hunt Corsetry — her designs are spooky-gorgeous!
Victorian dress and lace shrug: gifted by Heavy Red
Bone and devil hair clips: gifted by Kreepsville 666

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For those who don’t know, the hit TV show “Oddities” is about Obscura, this little East Village shop of horrors. In each episode, the owners meet kooky customers and help them pick out items. For example, they helped the Speakeasy Dollhouse creator find a gurney for her immersive play.

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The store is not for the faint of heart. Organs, skulls and animal heads abound.

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Ryan, Evan and Mike are often here, manning the counter and signing autographs for fans.

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It’s hard to believe that we filmed this episode last August, in New York City! My hair color by Isolde Semple; the styling is by Brandon Pope of TIGI NYC

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I could have browsed for hours in Obscura Antiques.

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In real life, I bought my friend a jar of chocolate-covered poison from their medicine cabinet. Somehow, I managed to take it through customs.

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For the sake of the show, however, I “purchased” this gargantuan, stuffed elk head to remind me of home (Canada, not Japan as some might assume!)

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The owners are passionate about their collections, and wonderfully knowledgeable. In the clip, I learn about the elk’s horns and history.

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Also for sale: a box of potions…

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… a bear in a hat, a laughing pig,

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… and real life skulls.

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Since it was summertime in NYC, I was boiling under my Victorian skirts. The crew interviewed me in the nearby East Village street, about my work in dark coolhunting and travel journalism.

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Here’s the pirate hat I tried on. Arr.

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“Is that a straightjacket?” Nope, but this two-headed creature is also featured in the show’s intro.

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So many creepy and bizarre items in here. I fit right in.

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If you’re in New York, drop by Obscura Antiques and Oddities and say hi for me. The shop address: 207 Avenue A New York, NY 10009. Phone: (212) 505-9251

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I hope you’ll tune in for my appearance on Oddities! “The Mummy Returns” (Season 4 Episode 11) first airs Saturday, June 8th at 9:00 PM ET/PT.

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Don’t worry if you miss it: the show will repeat multiple times on Science Channel / Discovery TV; check the schedule for dates.

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Click to watch my Oddities clip. To view more corsets like the one I’m wearing, visit Wilde Hunt Corsetry.

Are you a fan of this TV show? What would you purchase to remind you of home?

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Wave Gotik Treffen, Prague & Berlin Goth travel guides. Tokyo Japan bagelheads gone viral. Part 2 of 2012.

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As we approach the New Year, let’s reflect on the second half of 2012. One of my favorite moments was doing this professional photoshoot, involving latex feather dresses and sugar skull makeup, with my talented Vancouver team. The images were published in Sugar Heart, and Gothic Beauty Magazine — a total honor. (More images and full credits here.)

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I also did a pro shoot with a blow-up bear, in a potato field…

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… and it ended up making the cover of Vanity Magazine! I blogged more of these Goth modeling photos.

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I got to cross off a “bucket list” travel destination, thanks to Go With Oh. The wonderful apartment rental company sent me to Wave Gotik Treffen, the largest Gothic festival in the world. I also explored Prague with Rock n Roll Bride, and Berlin with Yukiro, DJ SiSEN, G-sus and spooky friends. View our adventures in my Germany Goth travel guide.

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After Europe came Asia. I spoke on the fashion blogger’s panel at Hong Kong Social Media Week. It was great to see family and John Skeleton, and do some hardcore shopping — especially at the Hello Kitty shop. See more of my favorite Hong Kong stores.

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In between, I hopped around the USA. I was Guest of Honor at Animegacon in Las Vegas. Spoke at PRSA Travel & Tourism conference in Ohio. Flew to New York City to be a guest on Discovery TV’s Oddities (my appearance will air early next year). Did some heavy pre-Halloween partying in Los Angeles, and hosted Gothic club night Bar Sinister with Amazing Race’s Kent Kaliber.

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I’ve been writing about Tokyo bagelheads for years, and nobody paid much notice. But then, my Tokyo TV company worked on National Geographic’s “Taboo” episode about saline forehead inflation, and the extreme body mod went viral! I even flew to LA to be on “The Doctors” talk show, where I discussed bagel heads and deflated misunderstandings about body mods.

What a colorful year! What’s coming up in 2013? More TV work and global travels (stay tuned to see where I go next). I’ve just completed a press trip to Phoenix, and will be in Tokyo to appear in a documentary. And I’ll be in a warm destination this January… announcement to come.

Above is a compilation of my television presenting clips; full videos are on my La Carmina bio page. PS: thank you to Hostelbookers for interviewing me about my life of travel blogging and cat-craziness.

Do you have any goals for the New Year? What do you hope to accomplish or improve? Any “bucket list” items you’re determined to cross off? Here’s to a grandiose 2013!

Italy modeling, New York fashion week & Dancing for Japan. La Carmina travel blog: 2012 year in review, part 1.

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Merry Christmas, pirates! It’s hard to believe we’ve reached the end of 2012. Let’s usher in 2013 with my annual “year in review,” beginning with reminisces and outtake photos from the first six months.

I spent January in Italy with Seby. We stayed with his family in northern Italy, and then ventured to Florence for Luisaviaroma’s Firenze4Ever (the event that flies in the world’s top fashion bloggers for photoshoots and fun). One of the many highlights was modelling designer fashion with the Duomo as my backdrop. You see more images from this shoot here.

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I did quite a few TV hosting and fixing gigs this year, with my First Mate Naomi. It’s a pleasure to work with her, and team up with some of my favorite shows including National Geographic Taboo, Discovery TV Oddities, Fashion TV, and more. More TV hosting clips to come in 2013.

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In February, Yukiro and I attended New York Fashion Week, and even sat front row at Lincoln Center shows. We also checked out NYC’s Goth Punk shops and nightlife, such as this romantic Dances of Vice party in a church.

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For the one year anniversary of the Japan Earthquake, I teamed up with Industrial dancers tank9 and Mary Nine. We made a dance video in Seattle, as part of Ridley Scott’s Japan in a Day collaborative film (watch it here.)

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As you know, I host a regular travel video series published in Huffington Post. My film crew and I got the chance to shoot in gorgeous Maui, Hawaii. We explored the local fashion and over-indulged in Japanese food (check out my Hawaiian travel guide).

I’m always looking to stretch my creative wings, and do something new… and one of my favorite projects was the release of DNR’s Rock Princess music video. Do you like my red hair and Vivienne Westwood disco dress?

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Don’t worry: between all the adventures, I put in plenty of Basil-snuggling time! In the next post, we’ll take a look at what happened in the second half of 2012.

Did you travel anywhere this year? Try something new, or achieve a goal? What were your favorite memories? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

New York Goth, Punk, Industrial, Alternative style & shopping. St Mark’s Place NYC. Happy Thanksgiving!

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If you’re on my Twitter or Google Plus, you’ll already know… we Pirates landed a new TV job, which will shoot early next year! Details and destinations to come soon. (Above: doing a segment with Fashion TV Japan during NY Fashion Week.)

I was chatting with Yukiro yesterday, and there’s a lot we are grateful for. Here’s some reflections (and bonus NYC photos) on Thanksgiving Day.

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First, I’m thankful to all of you who believe in my work. This journey’s been long and strange, and your support is very meaningful to me.

(Above: sitting front row at the Vantan Tokyo runway show, inside Lincoln Center.)
Zombie and eyeball hairclips: gifted by Kreepsville 666
Sunglasses: gifted by Lumete
Zombies tshirt and cardigan: gifted by Sourpuss Brand Clothing
Tulle skirt: gifted by Shabby Apple

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I’m beyond grateful for good friends and the good times we have together. Yukiro and I can inject hell and horror into any mundane situation…

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Even when riding the NY subway…

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… or ordering pizza.

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I appreciate being able to travel so much for my work, allowing me to discover new corners of the world. (Vietnamese pho at 2am, St Mark’s Place.)

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I know I’m very lucky to have this mobility, which lets me see friends in wide-spread places. (Mugging outside Kenka izakaya.)

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Super grateful for RuPaul’s Drag Race. But seriously, Ru’s a pioneer and his show shines a light on alternative culture. Inspired to do the same.

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Here’s to good causes and good food. Jenny of ProjectExplorer (a terrific, non-profit educational travel series) took us to Spice Market in the meatpacking district. I’m salivating as I recall the south Asian flavors… coconut rice, shaved tuna with chili tapioca, yuzu drink, and pumpkin ginger cheesecake.

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Let the ghostly adventures continue! Click for more NY Fashion Week coverage, including runway shows and parties.

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What are your plans for Thanksgiving? Will you be eating cute or scary desserts?

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What are you thankful for today? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, or on my Google Plus.

PS: since some of you asked, these photos are taken with a Canon Powershot S100, available on Amazon. Simply the best compact camera on the market.

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