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Unread 01-30-2004, 10:56 PM   #1
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Frequently Asked Questions: "Who should I cosplay?"

Frequently Asked Questions: "Who should I cosplay?"

If you are asking this question, you are probably new to Cosplay.com. First of all, I'd like to welcome to the forums and to this community. I hope you have fun here.

And now to address your question,
  1. Who should I cosplay?

    Start out with characters you are familiar with. Try thinking of characters from anime, video games or manga you've seen and if you like any of their costumes.

    You are going to be putting time and effort into making a costume so you really should decide for yourself.

    If you need help, try searching online, either on Cosplay.com's image galleries or a search engine like Google for ideas. For instance, if you like Final Fantasy, try searching for that and maybe the search results will give you ideas.

    Try asking your close friends who you should cosplay. Your friends will know you, your tastes and your personality. They will probably be a better judge of who you should dress up as compared to total strangers.

  2. Well I look like this! I have ____ hair, I have ____ color eyes, and I'm ___ tall! Who should I cosplay?

    The short answer is, see Answer #1. :)

    The long answer is that looking like a character is only part of cosplaying. Plenty of people cosplay characters that look nothing like them. For instance, there are plenty of Caucasian people who cosplay Japanese characters and vice versa.

    Instead, you should really consider the difficulty of the costume and how much time/money/effort you want to put into it. Again, see answer #1. :)

    However, if you really need someone to tell you who you look like:

    If you are a girl: You look like Lei Fang from Dead or Alive: Extreme Beach Volleyball. ;-)

    If you are a boy: You look like Spike from Cowboy Bebop. ;-)

  3. Can you sew?

    Something else to consider is if you can sew. If you can't, that's ok! There are still plenty of options for you. If you can, that's even better.

For those who can't sew:

If you can't sew that's ok. Not all cosplayers know how to sew. You have several options available to you.
[list][*]"Found-Items" cosplay:
This refers to finding pre-existing clothes and putting them together to make a costume. Often people go to a thrift store to find clothes cheap and then put an outfit together.

A good example is Ed from Cowboy Bebop. It's a pretty simple costume. Black bicycle shorts and a loose white top. Maybe a wig and some simple makeup to make red cheeks. Add an Ein plush toy and you have a pretty simple costume that you can put together easily.

Of course found-items cosplay usually involves costumes that are simple or characters that wear "normal" looking clothing with minimal alternations. You may have to add a strip of fabric here or cut a sleeve or something, but most of the hard work is already done.

[*]Commissioned Costumes:
For more complex costumes that don't look like normal clothing, you'll probably want to go with a commissioned costume. This includes begging your only friend or relative who knows how to sew to make you a costume. :)

There are several cosplay commission sites and there's of course places such as eBay where you can buy pre-made costumes.

What commissioners do is make a costume for you based on what information you give them. They'll usually ask for many reference pictures and then ask you details about the costume. The materials you want to use and other details such as if you want pockets.

Please remember, commissioned costumes tend to be more expensive then normal clothes you buy at a store. These costumes are made for you, usually based on your measurements. The costumes themselves are often hand made and you are paying for the quality of the work as well as the materials.

You are not going to get a commissioned costume such as Lulu from Final Fantasy X for $50. :)

For those who can sew:
Your job is no simpler. :)
  • It is rare that there are patterns that look exactly like the costume you want to make. What you normally have to do is find patterns that sort of look like the costume and then alter it appropriately.

    For instance if you want to make Japanese schoolgirl uniform, where do you get the pattern for the skirt? Well many people say they just use the pattern for a cheerleader costume.

  • If you know how to draft your own patterns then you should probably not even be reading this post. :)

  • Since you will be modifying a pattern, it's usually a good idea to make a mock-up using cheaper material like muslin. That way you can try it to see if it fits before you put the time and effort into making the costume out of pricier material.

I hope this post has helped somewhat, and if you would like me to add anything else or have any suggestions, please go ahead and Private Message me and I'll add it.

Good luck on your costume and I hope to see you at a future convention.

Last edited by Michi : 07-29-2012 at 05:58 PM. Reason: fixing broken links
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