9.21.2016

How do I do Cosplay?

After the last post, I wanted to wirte this other one down. Please note I'm not a professional Cosplayer unlike....I don't want to make names but, you know, many others around. Thus, if you want to take this post as a suggestion on how to make breath-taking costumes, win cosplay competitions or collect some money by selling your pictures, this is the wrong post, sorry.
This is menat as a suggestion to all the people who want to get into this world for the first time.

Which character should I cosplay as?
There isn't a right or wrong character to cosplay as, the important thing is that you feel at ease walking in its shoes. If you're into cosplaying for the first time and you have zero experience in crafting and sewing, it should be better to start with a pretty "plain" character which requires a minimum work on it.
You just need to fix your hair/wig a bit and you're ready to go

Once you get the ball, you've got everything you need

90s fashion I guess
Characters wearing ordinary clothes are easy to build up and wear. Being comfortable is essential in crowded conventions, otherwise you can't get to look around properly. Moreover, strating by sewing or crafing small pieces will help you get used to the techniques and you'll slowly succeed to get a full padronance on them in order to get always more elaborated costumes.
Anyway, if you want to get the maximum from this experience, choose a character you really relate to, don't just go for a popular character that everyone but you know. It's going to be pretty useless.

Character chosen, now what should I do? 
Once you are fine with your character, it's about time to think about how to realize it, Let's proceed step by step.

Step 1: Clothes

When it comes to clothes, don't just go on rampage ordering random, sometimes expensive and wrong-size stuff on the internet. You have no dea how many ordinary clothes can become cosplay costumes with just a slight modifcation.
If you have time and not so much money, you should start visiting cheap clothes shop, look for stuff that might resemble or perfectly suits your character and proceed.
There are several tutorials on how to sew on YouTube, or maybe you can just ask someone who knows that to teach you, That's indeed the best way to get started and get always more elaborated costumes.
If your costume is something like a sport suit (which is pretty hard to to sew for a beginner), you can look for it on the internet, please mind the feedbacks and give a good look at the expedition expenses prices.
If you are familiar enough with sewing and crafting, the easiest way is to visit a fabric shop. This decision surely leaves you more choice, but you need to be able to properly sew, otherwise it can turn out in a mess.
Quick tip: see what's hidden around your home, the amount of potential material you have around is impressive. I did it and found enough fabric to cover up my shoes for Julia cosplay.
Also, please give a look to those amazing cosplayer's pages, some of them gve tips on how to make costumes and stuff (I know one, but she writes in Italian, sorry).

Step 2: Wig


Unless you are one of those lucky ones who has perfect hair, then you surely would require a wig. Again, before throwing yourself in the internet, check your city out. If your character has a plain, straight wig, there's no necessity to spend a single cent on the mailing expenses. Sometime syou will find longer wigs than those ones you need, you can always cut or ask someone to cut them.
Simple colored wig are available all over, you should look for them especially around halloween or carnival days. 
I don't know about abroad, but here the avrage price for a decent wig is around 20-25 €. At a comic convention, I paid 25€ for a heat resistant wig, that was a good compromise!
Of course, before straightening a wig, make sure it is actually heat resistant! I usually don't trust the ones I buy at cheap shops...
In case of odd hairstyles (most of the japanese charachters have one) is slightly different, in that case you might purchase one on the internet or straight at comic conventions (the ones I attended so far all had a wig stand).
As said for clothes, you can start with plain ones and style them in order to get accustomed with the process and being able to have amazing styled wigs without spending your entire wage on it.

Step 3: Accessories 

It could be some plushie to carry around or just a clothing item like necklaces.
Official accessories, might be pretty expensive, either if bought at a comic store, comic convention or on the internet.
What's the soulution then? Some minor objects are actually pretty easy and chea to realize with what you have at home. Any examples? I realized my N.Gin rocket with an old packet of cookies and tons of painting.
Before spending your entire wage on some power wand, make sure that it is actually necessary and that you are not able to do it.
Usual YT tutorial aside (and that's were you start to laugh), I often used suggestions form the kids program Art Attack, you should give it a shot.
Of course, items made with paper won't last forever, so if you are planning to use it for a longer time, it might be useful to buy one of the more expensive items.

Step 4: Make-up
This is one of the easiest parts. Do you need to buy professional stage make-up? No. Ordinary make-up products are just fine if you know how to use them. Besides, YT is literally full of video tutorial on the subject and differently from the previous cases, in which a failed attempt could mean throwing stuff away, here you can try as much as you want as long as you have a make-up remover with you.
During Halloween and Carnival days, you will also find cheap face paint (which should last longer than ordinary make-up).
In order to make your face last, you can buy one of those make-up fixers, a single spray of that and you're okay all day long.

Ready, let's go to the convention. Wait, what should I bring with me?

Despite several cosplayers don't suggest it, You should bring a bag or backpack with you. If someone asks you for a picture you can always take it off.
You should bring some emergency make-up and something to sew or fix your cotume in case it breaks. Let's not forget that at a comic convention you might want to buy something and have to carry it around.
If your shoes are uncomfortable, bring a change, if the convention is crowded it could be hard to go around with high heels or platforms.
Of course, you'll need to have some essential like keys, wallet and phone with you, but I'm not here to remind you that.

I guess we're over with this quick life-hacking stuff. I hope it was useful to any of you ;)
I might create some work-in-progress article when I'll be working on one of my costumes (Gonna be next year though).
Cheers and drink beer (unless you are a minor, or you've gotta drive, or for some reason you cant. In that case don't drink).








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