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Unread 02-10-2013, 03:08 PM   #16
HerrLudwig
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For a big con, get in line an hour or two before a popular panel (Homestuck, my little pony, hetalia) so you can get in. If 200 people are I'm line, only 60 or so will get in.
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Unread 02-10-2013, 05:17 PM   #17
hikaru2322
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I reccomend bringing crazy glue in case your costume breaks ^^"
Hard candy/your own beverage is great in case you feel woozy and to save money. They like to charge extra for drinks at cons. Go for food with protein during lunch (like a hot dog). It'll keep up your energy and will save some cash.
Lastly, be careful with your shoes. If you want to wear shoes that have not been broken in, or hurt your feet, be prepared to face the consiquences. It can be worth it for cosplay, but it will hurt you the next day. Pantyhose are great to protect your legs if you're wearing a costume that exposes your legs, also protects your feet if you're wearing heels.
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Unread 02-10-2013, 06:37 PM   #18
Asa Gohan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loveless12 View Post
I'll tell you what not to do, buy con food. It's overpriced and god awful.
Certain stuff at Anime Expo was pretty good, but I regret the Chicken sandwich I had at Anime Vegas 2012. That was the worse thing in my life!
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Unread 02-10-2013, 10:52 PM   #19
animejunkie
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Basics for all con goers:

- Water/Gatorade to stay hydrated...especially useful when waiting in long lines in the sun or at cosplay gatherings
- 5-2-1: At least five hours sleep, 2 meals (pocky and other snacks DO NOT COUNT) and 1 shower a day (more if you sweat over the course of the day)
- A bag/backpack to store water and snacks (like granola bars) in; also good for storing purchases from the Dealer's Room
- If you're staying in a hotel, make sure you keep hotel money separate from spending money. This seems like a no brainer, but I've heard stories of people who didn't do that

For cos-players:
- Extra makeup so that you can touch up as needed during the day
- Safety pins, hot glue gun or any other items to help in case of a costume issue. A lot of cons now have rooms set aside for cosplay repair, but better safe than sorry
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Unread 02-10-2013, 11:02 PM   #20
p0p0p0psico
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Biggest lesson I learned? Get some sleep BEFORE the con. Sure, sleep is important during the event, but if you go there under-rested, it will affect your experience--regardless if you notice it or not.

Another thing, when making costumes, try to make them with human needs in mind, lol. I often see that many people sacrifice comfort for authenticity. I mean, if that's what you wanna do, do you. However~ just because that character's skirt doesn't have a zipper doesn't mean that you shouldn't add one. Or if you know you have back problems, or are not used to walking on high heels/platforms, either practice a lot before con or bring a change of shoes. No, forget practicing, just bring a change of shoes, lol. You know those SpareSoles? Take those with you if you anticipate a problem! (You might want to think about ways to transport the offending shoes when you take them off, too.) I think it's actually kinda fun trying to translate an impossibly styled costume into a realistic get-up that can be taken on and off easily and can be washed without fear.

Food-wise... I usually neglect to bring it with me, which is a big no-no both health-wise and budget-wise. If you're going to bring food, at the very least make sure it's something you can see yourself eating and that you will enjoy. I don't know about yall, but as appropriate and portable as a can of vienna sausage may seem, I ain't eating that ish. Cans of soup with removable lids. Now that's what I'm talking about. Also, eat like you normally would, I say. I don't eat breakfast day-to-day, so I wouldn't try eating it at con. If you're not used to it, it can have an undesirable effect (I get sleepy). But use your best judgment as always.

Ororo Monroe, I NEVER thought of a crockpot. That's freaking genious. Plus you can set it and forget it (as long as you check up on it at the appropriate times, of course).
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Unread 02-11-2013, 07:49 AM   #21
sillymyway
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Along with what others said, like bringing water and deodorant, try and bring a towel if you're staying a a hotel! If you're staying at a hotel, chances are they'll have some, but that's not going to stop your roommates from taking them all first. Also, if you have body paint on, be respectful and use your own towels to wipe it all off as soon as possible. It's not only good for yourself, but also good for other con goers as well. (You would not believe how many cosplayers get their cosplays ruined from a person with body paint rubbing up against them.)
Also, try and plan ahead! If you have a panel you want to go to, make sure you have time in your schedule for it. Try and have an intermission between events like masquerades and photo shoots so you can breathe a little, and also make sure you're looking alright.
Another thing, for all that is holy, is to bring an extra tshirt. If you eat something greasy or messy, like pizza or spaghetti with sauce, there's a chance that it can get all over your cosplay and stain it. (It's happened to me one to many times.) if possible, wear the shirt over your cosplay. If not, you eat as slowly and carefully as possible. Even if you're not in cosplay, it's good to carry around an extra set of clothes.
Lastly, make sure someone knows where you are, or at least have your cellphone on. This is a big thing of mine, not only because of safety issues, but also something like if someone wants to go grab food at a place outside of the con center. Traveling in groups, whether you're a minor or not, is a really helpful idea. You never know what creepers are lurking in a crowd of con goers.
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Unread 02-11-2013, 11:30 PM   #22
animejunkie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sillymyway View Post
Another thing, for all that is holy, is to bring an extra tshirt. If you eat something greasy or messy, like pizza or spaghetti with sauce, there's a chance that it can get all over your cosplay and stain it. (It's happened to me one to many times.) if possible, wear the shirt over your cosplay. If not, you eat as slowly and carefully as possible. Even if you're not in cosplay, it's good to carry around an extra set of clothes.
Hmm, never thought of bringing extra t-shirts but that's a great idea. I will probably be in costume quite a bit at AX so it certainly wouldn't hurt to play it safe because I would seriously hate it if I got a costume stained :/
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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:12 AM   #23
Ilafatyu
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I don't know if I'd want to deal with putting on a t shirt for eating. It'd mess with my wig. I'd be fine with a food-poncho, like the kind used for cutting hair.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:21 AM   #24
Tak-kun
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PHONE CHARGER. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD BRING A PHONE CHARGER.
I know that I'm on my phone almost 24/7 at a con, getting friends together, looking up prices on Amazon, checking and updating facebook and instagram, taking pictures, playing music, looking up photos on Google, etc. This drains my battery like no tomorrow. A fully charged iphone is dead before the end of most single con days, which is /not/ good.

Keep your wallet in a safe area, like a backpack. I kept my wallet in my cosplay pocket (since this one actually had pockets) and ended up losing it mid-convention. That was /not. pleasant.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:22 AM   #25
Kell-chan
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Much of my personal experience has been said, but I do have one more bit that I should have followed, long ago:

Test out your costume. If you are wearing something very unusual to your usual clothing choices (such as high heels), or if you are crossplaying for the first time - or even using a new method for body-shaping (no matter your gender), absolutely try it out at home first. Even if it's only for an hour or two, a test-run will ensure that you won't end up in discomfort or pain at the con. If you end up in pain at home, fix it. Do not simply endure it. It will only worsen after time and you risk serious injury to yourself.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 09:22 AM   #26
Fairlen
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Wow! Thank you guys so much for all the advice! You guys are great!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 10:22 AM   #27
Clockwork_Ducky
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tak-kun View Post
PHONE CHARGER. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD BRING A PHONE CHARGER.
I know that I'm on my phone almost 24/7 at a con, getting friends together, looking up prices on Amazon, checking and updating facebook and instagram, taking pictures, playing music, looking up photos on Google, etc. This drains my battery like no tomorrow. A fully charged iphone is dead before the end of most single con days, which is /not/ good.

Keep your wallet in a safe area, like a backpack. I kept my wallet in my cosplay pocket (since this one actually had pockets) and ended up losing it mid-convention. That was /not. pleasant.
Another thing to consider is a rechargeable battery with USB ports. They come in many sizes, some are even just cases for AA batteries. Most have adapters for phones, or USB ports you can plug into. These things saved me on a recent Disney trip - pretty sure it would work well at a convention. I usually end up charging my phone or iPad off the battery while it is stashed in my bag, and that way it is nicely charged and good to go when I need it. It looks like they are about $20 or so on Amazon, but they're handy outside of cons, too.

Also, check the weather heading up to the con... If you have an intricate costume that wouldn't take kindly to getting soggy... Plan for rain. Cheap ponchos, extra large garbage bags to cover big props, I suggest against umbrellas, since they're kind of bulky and hard to move through crowds with.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 02:43 PM   #28
Kayla Marie C
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Make a checklist of things you're going to bring to a hotel. Make sure to note every part of a cosplay. The last thing someone wants to do is get to the hotel and realize that the wig to your Sasuke cosplay was left three hours back at home.

Water is a must. At least 2 bottles a day.

Please take a shower either at night or in the morning.

Take a strap for your camera. Don't put your camera or phone or discontinued Sailor Moon wand down anywhere!

Make sure you eat well. Subway may be your best bet if there's one in the area.

Bring something to change into in case of a cosplay emergency. Your ponytail fell out of your wig? Time to change into street clothes. Keep them in your car. Also, a plastic poncho may be your best friend if you have to eat in cosplay.

Hope it helps. :3
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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:09 PM   #29
Pirogoeth05
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What do you do with all your stuff?
I have an awesome backpack a friend gave me. He was in the National Guard and had an extra one. It's got three main pouches on the front and one on either side. The middle pouch is meant for papers, so that's where schedules, signed photos (in a very sturdy folder), and other flat things go. The main pouch has my travel mug (which gets refilled with water throughout the day), snacks (usually at least something carb and something dried fruit; Dragon*Con warrants jerky), book/Kindle, cameras, stuff from the dealers room(s), and portable charger. The front pouch has extra pens, pencils, markers, cords for all electronics, flashlight, extra batteries. One side pocket has a costume repair kit, the other has a first aid kit. I just take it off when pictures are being taken.

I've also got a gadget holster that looks like a concealed gun holster. It fits great under many of my costumes and I keep the key to the locks on the backpack, money, credit cards, ID, insurance cards, change, and my phone in there. That way I know it won't fall out anywhere.

How do you get good cheap food?
Either bring it with you or go to Subway. That's my main goal. Although, you should check out the food options in the food court (if there is one). Last year was my third Dragon*Con, but the first time I actually went into what is possibly my favorite place. They're a huge buffet that you simply pay by weight. They have fresh, hot, good food. Lots of fruits and veggies. It's amazing it's not more crowded, honestly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HerrLudwig View Post
For a big con, get in line an hour or two before a popular panel (Homestuck, my little pony, hetalia) so you can get in. If 200 people are I'm line, only 60 or so will get in.
Totally seconding this. But the numbers really depend on the room. Have an idea of the size of the room and you might have an idea of your chances of getting in. I have gotten into plenty of lines that I thought I'd have a crappy seat for and ended up near the front, in a large ballroom.

That's my two cents. Hope it helps!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 06:30 PM   #30
hikaru2322
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Another good tip:
DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE NIGHT BEFORE THE CON TO MAKE YOUR COSTUME OR PROP

My friend did that with her Ariel costume for Kotoricon in January, and while she looked cute, it fell apart by the end of the con. She was literally exposed towards the end of the day.
I did the same thing with my Maria head platter for NYCC last year, luckily it turned out fine for the convention. But now I have to remake the crown because I didn't build it to last in my frenzy.
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