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As Warlords wound down, I kept all three of my Tailors* busy making bags to ensure that all of my Horde characters who would be actively leveling and doing endgame stuff in Legion would have Hexweave bags in all of their personal and bank inventory slots. The Underpowered Death Knight got full Hexweave bags, too, because she had decided to become my primary Banker. But then I got tired of grinding out bags, so I left my secondary Shaman and secondary Monk — whom I intended to retire anyway — with Royal Satchels in their personal inventory slots and random combinations of the smaller Frostweave and Embersilk bags in their bank slots.

In a post last week-ish, Coffee Cakes & Crits mentioned continuing to churn out Hexweave bags with their Garrison Tailoring hut machinery not just to sell on the AH for teh golds but also to give to those in their guild who are leveling new Allied Races alts. This reminded me that I should get my bag-making operation going again, because someday I, too, will have new Allied Races alts who will need bags.

Thus, yesterday evening I dusted off Kaobeka and took stock of the bag-making supplies that she had on hand personally and that were stashed in my guild bank. I don’t think I’ll try to make full Hexweave bags for all of my Highmountain Tauren**, though, but will be satisfied if I can get to the point where I have enough Royal Satchels & Hexweave bags, combined, to fill all of their personal inventory and bank slots. Anyhow, by keeping Kaobeka’s primary Hearthstone at Sunsong Ranch, it should be easy for her to hop back and forth each day between Pandaria, to farm Windshear Cactus at Sunsong Ranch to make Royal Satchels, and Draenor, to trap beasts and put in work orders at her Garrison Barn and Tailoring hut to make Hexweave bags.

The problem is that her Garrison Hearthstone is broken. When I try to use it, the Garrison loading screen gets to 70 or 80% and hangs for a few minutes, and then I get disconnected. When I log back in, she’s right where she was when I tried to use the Garrison Hearthstone.

I first started experiencing this problem around, um, Patch 7.2, I think. For a week or two, no-one’s Garrison Hearthstone worked. It wasn’t access to Draenor that was broken, or access to the Garrison instance that was broken — if I got to Draenor some other way, such as by a Mage teleport, the portal to Ashran in Orgrimmar, going through the Dark Portal, or using the sooper-sekrit backdoor teleport between the Timeless Isle and Gorgrond, I could then fly into the Garrison without problems — it was just the Hearthstone teleport that failed. After a few weeks, some of my characters’ Garrison Hearthstones started working again. After a few more weeks, I figured out that the characters who’d come to Draenor the “right” way — who completed the Tanaan Jungle intro questline — could use both the Ashran portal in Orgrimmar and their Garrison Hearthstones, whereas the characters who’d come to Draenor by the backdoor — who skipped the Tanaan Jungle intro questline — could use neither the Ashran portal in Orgrimmar nor their Garrison Hearthstones. Those characters could still get to Draenor by the Timeless Isle backdoor, though.

So I guess if I want Kaobeka to jump back and forth between Sunsong Ranch and her Garrison every day without spending a lot of time getting from here to there, I’ll have to go through the Dark Portal and do the Tanaan Jungle intro questline with her…

Update: So I went and did the Assault on the Dark Portal questline with Kaobeka. At the very end, however, I couldn’t turn in the final quest because I already had a Shipyard in her Garrison, which put the landing site in a different phase. Her Garrison Hearthstone still disconnects, but she can use the portal to Ashran from Orgrimmar now. Going through the Dark Portal from the Blasted Lands puts her in Ashran, too. I can live with that. I probably really only have to visit the Garrison twice a week, anyway, because I can do the Hexweave CD anywhere and a full set of work orders for the Barn & Tailoring Hut takes about 3 days to complete.

* Kaelinda, Kaohana, and Kaobeka (my secondary Monk)

** My Void Elf, being Alliance, will have to muddle along with the bags she can obtain from quests and boss drops until she has enough money to buy better bags on the AH.

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Lord of Icecrown and Princess of the Mists over at WoWable are starting up a series of Transmogrification & creative writing challenges that sound like they’ll be a lot of fun. I hope they will become wildly successful!

Their first challenge is:

If your character lived/worked on the Darkmoon Faire, what would be his/her occupation?

I’ve done a set of outfits featuring the Cloak of the Darkmoon Faire before, and any of them would fit this theme quite nicely. It would be both lazy and cheating to re-use my previous work, though, so let’s see what new ideas I can think up…

Out of all my characters, the ones who have the least sense of allegiance to their native racial faction are Kivrinne and Kermione.

If Kivrinne ran away to join the Faire, she’d be an Assistant Darkmoon Mixologist.

Fel-Proof Goggles, Pads of the Venom Spider, Spellbinder Vest, Nesingwary’s Sash, Fel-Infused Leggings, Cobalt-Threaded Gloves + Green Linen Bracers, Apprentice Boots, Tuxedo Shirt, Cloak of the Darkmoon Faire, Pot Stirrer, Flask of Forest Mojo*
She wouldn’t be the alchemical genius who invented the Inky Black Potion, of course, but she might make a batch now and then to help keep up with the demand. She might be the person who actually makes the draughts and tinctures sold by Faldar Willowshade, or perhaps the person who makes the flasks used by the Fire Eaters. She’d be one of the people who Chronos gives all those Darkblossoms to after herbalist visitors to the Faire collect them for him.
The only Florentine flask off-hand still available is the Tears of Heaven.

If Kermione ran away to join the Faire, she’d be a Wanderluster Mechanic. She’d be on the crew of Faire workers who keep all the mounts, obstacles, power-ups, and toll gates for the Darkmoon Races tuned up and functioning properly.

If she were high-level and had her Engineering skill leveled up too, she’d wear this outfit:

Electromagnetic Gigaflux Reactivator, Lunarglow Shoulderpads, Mechbuilder’s Overalls, Grievous Gladiator’s Cord of Cruelty, Phoenix Gloves, Gnomish Inventor Boots, Green Holiday Shirt, Cloak of the Darkmoon Faire, Ogre Pocket Knife, Spring Gadget
The shirt brings in that Faire green-and-purple, which the outfit is otherwise lacking, as it focuses more on the “engineer” theme.
I picked this Warlords shoulder armor because it made me think of a shop towel that she keeps with her to wipe off excessively greasy fingers, tools, and parts. This shoulder model clips rather badly into the bust of female characters of most races, but Goblins wear their shoulderpads far enough out that they don’t have that problem.

Working with her actual level and my current Wardrobe inventory, this is what I came up with:

Vital Headband, Willow Vest & Belt, Treetop Leggings*/Councillor’s Pants, Phoenix Gloves, Slippers of Unturned Loyalties, Cloak of the Darkmoon Faire, Noxious Shooter, Rod of Molten Fire
This outfit is largely an effort to mimic the clothing of the Darkmoon Carnies, with the cloak in lieu of the tabard worn by the NPCs.

I feel like these kits are a little on the bland side, so I’m looking forward to seeing what others put together for this prompt!

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Four years ago, for Winter Veil 2013, Erinys created for me a beautiful set of outfits inspired by the Tauren creation myths found on scrolls hanging in the big tent on Elder Rise in Thunder Bluff. Ever since then, I’ve been wanting to actually make those kits in-game for my characters to wear. Although I haven’t created them exactly as Erinys originally designed them, I think that the changes I’ve made are consistent with her vision.

~*~*~

Before the Age of Memory, the gentle Earthmother breathed upon the golden mists of dawn. Where the amber clouds came to rest, there were endless fields of flowing wheat and barley. This was the basin of her works – the great basket of life and hope.

Endless fields of flowing wheat and barley
Erinys wrote: This is built around one of my favourite items in-game, the conifer cone staff. In my head, the Greatmother is a Shaman so this outfit had to be mail.

Crown of Flame (H), Mantle of the Golden Forest, Khan’s chestpiece, Engraved Girdle, Valorous Earthshatter Kilt, Bloodlust Gauntlets, De’rizu Greaves, Amber Filigreed Doublet, Conifer Cone Staff


Crown of Flame (N), Mantle of the Golden Forest, Khan’s chestpiece, Engraved Girdle, Valorous Earthshatter Kilt, Bloodlust Gauntlets, Amber Filigreed Doublet, Giant Club, Sternhorn’s Shield
Unfortunately, in the current Legion weapon paradigm, Shaman don’t use staves. I’ve made this kit in Resto spec so I could use this club, which seemed like a reasonable substitution, and I’ve picked a quintessentially Tauren shield design to go with it.

~*~*~

The Earthmother, her heart heavy with her children’s plight, could not bear to watch them fall from grace. In her grief, she tore out her eyes and set them spinning across the endless, starry skies. An’she and Mu’sha, seeking to ease the other’s sorrow, could only chase each other’s faint glow across the sky. The twins still chase one another with every turning of the world.

The Twins: An’she
Erinys wrote: I decided against going for the obvious golds and yellows, choosing to focus more on the dawning and setting sun, those delicate shades which paint the whole sky with just some subtle hints of gold to suggest the sun at its midday peak. The Sun had to be plate, whether I was influenced by those lines from Shakespeare’s Richard III,

Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of York;

or perhaps I’ve just pvped too much but it makes me think of arrogant warriors and paladins charging into battle.

Crown of Empowered Fate, Pauldrons of the Souleater, Commander’s Armour, Belt of the Seven Seals, Triton Legplates, Gauntlets of the Righteous Champion, Gothic Sabatons, Amber Filigreed Doublet, Ashkandi, Greatsword of the Brotherhood


Crown of Empowered Fate, Pauldrons of the Souleater, Commander’s Armour, Belt of the Seven Seals, Triton Legplates, Gothic Plate Gauntlets, Avenger’s Greaves, Amber Filigreed Doublet, Cataclysm’s Edge
The gloves Erinys chose drop from an AQ40 optional boss that is even now very difficult to solo due to its mechanics. So I swapped sets for the gloves and the boots.
Because of Mr Rossi at Blizzard Watch, I think of Ashkandi as a Warrior weapon. So I used this sword instead because it has colors that gorgeously coordinate with the rest of this ensemble and I’ve long wanted to use it for a Ret Paladin kit.

The Twins: Mu’sha
Erinys wrote: This could only be a cloth transmogrification with the Mooncloth Robe at its heart.

Moonsoul Crown, Aurora Mantle, Mooncloth Robe, Relentless Gladiator’s Cord of Salvation, Safeguard Gloves, White Tuxedo Shirt, Redemption


Moonsoul Crown, Aurora Mantle, Mooncloth Robe, Warmongering Gladiator’s Satin Gloves, White Swashbuckler’s Shirt, Staff of the Faithful
At the time that Erinys designed this outfit, the Safeguard Gloves were the closest to all-white gloves that were available. I even farmed them up specifically so that I could later make this kit. In the interim, however, these bright white gloves became available.
This robe has always been difficult to find a good belt for because it really looks better without one. I think Erinys picked a great belt for her original design — but now that belts can be hidden, hiding the belt was definitely what this outfit wanted.

~*~*~

This tale speaks of how the Earthmother gave the Shu’halo the love of the hunt. The Tauren became great hunters, but one spirit eluded them, Apa’ro, the white stag (called Malorne by the Night Elves.) The Tauren hunted Apa’ro to the ends of Azeroth, and finally the stag fled into the heavens. where his great antlers became tangled in the starts. As the moon, (Mu’sha) chased her brother across the skies, she saw the helpless stag, and immediately fell in love with him.

The White Stag
Erinys wrote: The fact that Malorne’s a Druidic icon, so to speak, meant that this set had to be leather. We know that he is a pure white stag so the Boneshredder set seemed like the perfect starting point for this.

Crown of the Forest Lord, Boneshredder Shoulderguards, Boneshredder Jerkin, Heraldic Belt, Jinxed Hoodoo Kilt, Boneshredder Gloves, Dreamer’s Dragonstaff


Crown of the Forest Lord, Pauldrons of Malorne, Boneshredder Jerkin, Moss Cinch, Jinxed Hoodoo Kilt, Ghostwalker Gloves, Conifer Cone Staff
Because I couldn’t use the Conifer Cone Staff in the Earthmother kit, I decided to use it in the Malorne kit, instead. Then this belt seemed like a good addition, to pull in a little bit more of that orange from the eye in the staff. I felt like this Malorne-themed kit should have something from the Druid tier set named for Malorne, so I’ve put in those shoulders.

~*~*~

Thank you so very very much again, Erinys! ❤

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… I wanted to participate in the community.

About two and a half years after I began playing WoW, I was playing a lot with my Boomkin. I don’t remember anymore if I was still leveling her or if this was after BTH and I switched guilds and the new guild, having enough healers, wanted me as DPS on my Boomkin rather than as a healer on Kamalia. Anyhow, I wanted to get better at Boomkining, and that led me to Restokin. Reading Restokin led me to a number of other blogs (many of which are now long since in mothballs). Presently, I started wanting to make comments on the blogs I was reading. Eventually, I started wanting to talk about the game on my own platform. More specifically, I wanted to participate in a survey about healing by making an independent post about it rather than by leaving a lengthy comment on the blog that originated the survey.

Cataclysm was announced sometime around the time I began blogging, so a lot of posts in the first year were prompted by the upcoming changes to the world. One of the bloggers I read issued an “Exploration” challenge, for which I wrote a series of posts about the Shaman totem quests. Another issued an “Eleventh Hour” challenge to write a story about a specific zone with a specific plot element in the story; from that challenge came my first story about Kaelinda. I wrote other stories to work out acceptable backgrounds/character concepts for characters that I was initially uncomfortable with the idea of playing — Forsaken and Death Knights. I have continued to write stories to record and respond to quests and events within the game.

I’d also been quite active as a commenter and on the forums of Kirina’s Closet, an early RP clothes blog, so it was a natural transition from writing about RP clothes in that venue to writing about them on my own blog. Although this blog has pretty much always had a signifcant emphasis on pretty clothes, fashion began to dominate my content after Transmogrification debuted. I participated in a handful of Transmogrification contests or challenges in the first year after Transmogrification went live. I also started keeping a running documentation of my own characters’ Transmogrifications.

I’ve met a lot of people whom I like very much through the exchange of reading and commenting on blogs, and I definitely still value the participating-in-the-community aspect of blogging. Although I appreciate every comment I receive and am quite fond of all of you who comment regularly, I think that if I were always trying to write my blog for other people, I would have stopped blogging long ago. Indeed, I blog mostly for myself. I can’t really talk about this game in any depth or detail to anyone in my family except BTH (who got me into it in the first place) because they either disapprove (my Dad, my in-laws) or aren’t really interested/don’t care (everyone else). I don’t write a lot about what I do in Azeroth in my pen-and-paper journal, either — I mention it, but only briefly. This blog is my primary record of my experience with the game.

So I write about anything about the game that is occupying my mind. I comment on events (both in-game and meta-game), I set goals for my characters and track my success (or lack thereof) in accomplishing them, I respond to blogging prompts such as this one, I write stories (which usually languish unfinished in my drafts folder for a very long time before I finally post them), I draw pictures (which I haven’t done much of lately). While Transmogrification is probably the “bread and butter” content of my blog — especially in the past year since I started doing the Sunday Mog Show series — I strongly suspect that my interest in blogging would burn out and die if I tried to make this exclusively a Mog blog. I’d still want to write about other aspects of the game, but it would feel like too much work to try to maintain two distinct blogs that were both about WoW — and the blogging about Mogging itself would become a tedious chore instead of a fun diversion. “Variety is the spice of life,” and all that.

I also feel like blogging — both writing about my own activities and reading about others’ activities — has helped me sustain my interest in the game. Someday, though, my interest in WoW and in blogging about WoW will dwindle, and I will wander away and find something else to occupy myself with. I like to think that when I feel that starting to happen, I will download and archive in some form or another my favorite content from this blog — by which I mean all of the posts linked on the “Stories” page and all of the “Things my [Class] Wears” posts — so that later, I can look back fondly on the time that I spent with this game and the things that it inspired me to create.

~*~*~

This post brought to you by Z & Cinder’s Blog Challenge #23:

Why do you blog about WoW?
Everyone who has created a blog has done so for a reason. For all of you WoW bloggers out there, what was that reason? Why did you choose to put fingers to keys to write about a computer game? What type of posts do you like to write? Does your blog have a theme to it, or do you just wing it and write whatever you want? We’d love to know!

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After about a week and a half of spending my night hours after baby’s bedtime feverishly working on downloading images from Photobucket, uploading images to my WordPress library, updating image links, and subdividing behemoth mog posts, I’ve finally finished updating what I consider to be the core content of my blog: my Characters page, my artwork (most of it was already in my WordPress library, but I still went through and double-checked it), my stories, and the “Things my [Class] Wears” Transmogrification posts. Everything else will stay broken indefinitely.

I don’t know why I was worried about the capacity of my WordPress media library. It’s now at 264 MB out of 3 GB — or not quite 9%. I should have started putting everything in my WordPress library as soon as Photobucket started giving me trouble about the bandwidth my account was using years ago…

All those new Transmogrification posts put me over the 1000 post milestone mark — counting this one, I’m now at 1030 posts. The Shaman pages weigh in at 72 outfits (75 if I split out all of the Broken Isles leveling sets into separate entries). That’s a lot, but not really surprising given that I was actively playing and mogging two Shaman up until about a year ago. But that’s not actually the most outfits I have for a given class. The two Death Knights together have 77 outfits, and the two Mages, Kaelinda and Kaylynda, have 79 outfits between them.

As I was going through all my characters and reviewing their Transmogrification history from the time that the feature debuted, I noticed that most of them really start to take off during the timeframe of Mists — not surprising, because that was the expansion when I had a ton of free time to level all of my heretofore low-level “one of each class” characters. And everybody has gotten new outfits a lot more frequently since last summer, when I started doing the Sunday Mog Show posts.

That means that the Sunday Mog Show is doing what I intended it to do: by documenting outfits as soon as I create them and publishing them relatively soon after I create them, I don’t get stuck waiting for weeks or months to make a new kit for a character because I haven’t yet gotten around to documenting & posting their current outfit. It’s allowed me to get through pretty much all of my backlog of ideas from the Transmogrification challenges that I participated in during the first year or two after the feature went live. I still have plenty of other half-forgotten ideas lurking in the back of my brain, though, and plenty of new ideas piling up…

The next installment of the Sunday Mog Show will probably be next Sunday, unless something crazy happens IRL.

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So I went to sub up for my Transmogrification Photobucket account. They’d been pushing getting to be ad-free for $2.49 a month, so I was expecting a figure comparable to that — maybe double or triple or something — to enable 3rd party hosting. When I got to the checkout, though, the price was $399 a year — or $33 a month. Holy sticker shock, Batman! I took one look at that and said Heck NO!

For comparison, $33 a month is about a third of what I’m currently paying for my mobile devices family plan and for my ISP. Do I think that the bandwidth that this blog uses for images, even with the large number of images that I post, is worth that much? No. I get barely a trickle of traffic — mostly from you guys who Follow me (thanks! {hug}).

I suppose I’ll start putting the images for the Sunday Mog Show in my WordPress media library going forward, and I’ll slowly start backfilling the images for older outfits in the “Things my [Class] Wears” posts into my WordPress media library. My most favorite other posts will eventually get updated, too… but there are too many posts and too many images to do them all. Many images and many posts will just get left broken indefinitely.

If I run out of storage space in my WordPress library, then I guess I’ll start paying for my WordPress account. Even the most expensive WordPress plan, with unlimited storage space, is only $25 a month…

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I’ve been increasingly irritated by the increasingly pushy and obnoxious advertising on Photobucket during the past several months. It’s so terrible that I always open Photobucket in a separate browser window so that I can immediately close it when the most annoying ads come up. The worse the advertising got, however, the more stubbornly I refused to upgrade my account to a paid account. I felt like the ramping up of the obnoxiousness of the advertising was a form of extortion.

Well, I guess enough other Photobucket users were of the same mind as me, or something, because now Photobucket has upped the ante: when I went to look at an old post that had come up in the “posts people are looking at today” section of my WordPress dashboard, I discovered that all of the images in the post had been replaced with a placeholder image explaining that Photobucket is no longer allowing third-party image hosting for free accounts. /headdesk Not cool, Photobucket, NOT COOL.

I am closing in on 1000 posts on this blog. Most of them have multiple pictures — a single Transmogrification post might have over a dozen pictures — so I have posted thousands and thousands of images. Some years ago — about the time that I first created the “Things my [Class] Wears” pages — I began to have bandwidth issues with my Photobucket account. Not storage issues — I still had plenty of room. Toward the end of the month, my images would start getting replaced with placeholders because my account was using up too much bandwidth. I got around that problem by creating a second account. One account is used exclusively for the pictures in the “Things my [Class] Wears” and “Sunday on the Promenade” posts; the other is used for everything else. Thus, if I wanted to restore all of the images I’ve posted on this blog, I would have to pay for two premium Photobucket accounts.

At the time that I made my second Photobucket account, I moved all of my artwork and the character portraits for my Characters page over to the Media library of my WordPress account. I also started occasionally putting images for posts that would use only one or two pictures into my WordPress media library rather than going to the bother of opeining up Photobucket. Any images that are still visible on my blog today are in my WordPress media library. I’ve currently filled about 4% of my WordPress media library. I’m not sure how much room I’d have left to grow if I put all the rest of my blog images there. Furthermore, the WordPress media library doesn’t have a sub-album functionality, which I very much need to keep my Transmogrification pictures organized.

I have neither the time nor the mental energy to spare for the enormous, nearly Sisyphean, tedium of finding another free image hosting service that is easy to use (and isn’t going to pull the rug out from under me at some future date), locating all of those thousands of images on my hard drive, uploading them to the new hosting service, and updating thousands of links in hundreds of blog posts. I am going to have to give in and start paying for the image hosting for this blog.

I don’t want to pay for two Photobucket accounts, though, because Budget. At the moment, I’m thinking that I’ll only sub up for the Transmogrification account. I’ll move the pictures from my favorite story posts over to a new sub-album in the Transmogrification account, or into my WordPress media library. That will still be a lot of work, and I definitely won’t try to do it immediately or all at once, so there will be broken image links in old posts on this blog for a long time to come. Many image links will stay broken permanently.

Meanwhile, I got two emails from Pinterest this evening: one asking for a confirmation to set up an account, and another notifying me of a new login to my account from somewhere in India. I don’t have a Pinterest account. I didn’t approve the creation of the account, of course, and I then went to Pinterest directly and followed the directions in their Help center to disconnect my email address from the fraudulent account creation attempt. sigh I’ve had this happen before — a few years ago, someone in India tried to use one of my personal email accounts to set up a Facebook account. I used the appropriate Facebook reporting tools to shut down the fraudulent user — but now I can’t use that particular email account to make a legitimate Facebook account for myself, either.

growl grumble growl growl snarl

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