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Unread 06-18-2013, 10:14 PM   #1
xcvi
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Packing a complex costume?

I'm planning on attending Katsucon in February 2014. I'm planning on going as Nia Teppelin for sure... so there are the components for that. The shoulder armor/"metal" stuff with the cloak is the major thing I'm concerned about. The other "metal" (wonderflex) stuff is small and sturdy and shouldn't take up too much space. The dress is small so that's all fine.

A costume that I'm currently planning and designing is my own version of a Sayaka/Octavia witch costume from Madoka Magica. It will include the sword, which will be longer than a suitcase. It will have a hoop skirt or partial hoop skirt.. it's basically going to be a ball gown kind of thing. It's also going to have other swords because I'm including the flags.. also.. the crown. I'm not doing the full helmet but I am doing my own version of the crown... and the neck thing.. and there will me an armor chest piece, and the arms, and neck piece.. and oh my god. It's going to be a large costume.. but I'm determined to do it for this con because there's no better place to cosplay than at Katsucon!

I just want to make sure that none of this gets ruined on the plane.. so yeah.. I need to take both these costumes. For actual clothes.. well.. I'll really only need one outfit and pajamas and those can easily fit in a purse or backpack. But how do I deal with the suitcases? Especially without spending too much money? We'd be flying JetBlue by the way.. so everyone's first bag would go free as long as it's under 50lbs. I'd also be worried about my VERY heavy makeup bag sliding around and crushing things! Should I invest in one of those hard suitcases so things don't break when the bags are being tossed around? I've never traveled for a con before.. let alone traveling with a LARGE costume! Does anyone have tips?
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Unread 06-19-2013, 12:56 AM   #2
animenerd93
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I recommend that unless the makeup bag is filled w liquid that doesnt fit the regulations, I would take it on the plane. I have a metal container, one that looks like a professional carrier but was like $25 at target, and it locks! As far as the sword, it needs to be either broken into two pieces (it can be done at hilt, there are a ton of tutorials) or i would ship it. For the petticoat and larger items, I would totally just fedex it there. It will still be cheaper than pauying for overweight or another bag. For Nia, Id put that in a suitcase (tho it depends which outfit, im guessing its the dress?) and wrap the armor in bubble wrap. same goes for the crown and other armor pieces.
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Unread 06-19-2013, 10:23 AM   #3
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Stuff it, like a turducken.
Things you don't want crushed are best padded from the inside out. (I'm not familiar with the character so bear with me, I'm making 'armor' generalizations).

Roll your pajamas into a tube shape, stuff these inside your arm bits, wrap a tee or pair of socks around the outsides, stuff the arms inside the legs, wrap something else around the outsides of the legs, stuff them inside your chest piece. you get the idea, use smaller pieces to fill bigger pieces and not only will it all fit in the suitcase nicely, it's less likely to crush. Fill your space completely. Double bag your make up and other liquids. If the make up is really heavy all together separate it down into smaller bags.

Ever unpack an electronic product? those boxes go through all kinds of rough handing, but the contents not moving within the box are what keeps the inside products whole. that is your packing goal.

And yes, I'd either invest in a hard sided suitcase or reinforce your soft sided suitcase to be less smushable.
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Unread 06-19-2013, 12:12 PM   #4
xcvi
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Omg, duh, stuffing it! That's the way to go! I'm starting to actually consider driving to this thing if I end up doing this cosplay. It's only like 7 hours.. it's doable if I really need to.
I did find that I have a REALLY BIG suitcase that would in fact fit the sword if the hilt detaches and probably the crown.

As for shipping large items... I DO have relatives that live KIND of nearby but I would be staying at the hotel. Where would I ship all my stuff to and assure that it's safe and there when I arrive?
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Unread 06-19-2013, 10:32 PM   #5
animenerd93
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you can ship to the hotel, ive seen people do it before
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Unread 06-20-2013, 10:12 AM   #6
Penlowe
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I once worked at a hotel, people mail stuff ahead ALL the time.
Mail it to arrive 2-3 days before you arrive.
Use an envelope to make a packing label, on the end write " packing slip, open here", the hotel staff will know to open only that envelope.
address the envelope thusly:

Your Name
C/O Big Hotel
street address
city zip

Inside put a simple note:
Big Hotel persons,
Please hold this package for Your Name checking in on Date Date, confirmation number XXXXXX

make sure you put the name both on the mailing label and in the note the same way you registered, i.e. if your credit card says Samantha and so that is how you registered, don't write Sammie on the outside.
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Unread 06-20-2013, 10:59 PM   #7
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you could always call or email the hotel ahead of time to make sure they're ok with it and to give them a heads up to expect a package for you. they might charge a small fee for holding the package for you but it would still probably work out cheaper than paying for extra/heavy luggage
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