Today, the allure of cosplay has gripped thousands across the globe. With its rising popularity over the recent years, die-hard fans of movies, TV shows, comic books, anime and manga are getting in the league to cosplay as their favorite characters. Each year, they gather at cosplay conventions to celebrate their fandoms.

If you also want to be like them but have no idea where to start from, worry no more! We are here to present our ultimate guide to cosplay fashion. From choosing a character and picking the right materials to styling your hair and flaunting your costume, we will hold your hand through the entire process.

However, first, you need to understand something. There’s no need to be scared if you are new to this. You don’t have to be perfect at your first shot either. You can make mistakes, but that should not stop you from pursuing a new hobby. After all, every successful artist starts as a learner.

Now, without further ado, let’s delve into the process of curating the perfect costume for the next cosplay event you are planning to attend.

Cosplay Fashion
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Deciding Your Cosplay Character

The first step to creating a cosplay outfit is choosing your character. Just go through the list of your favorite movies, comics, TV shows, novels, manga and anime and think which character has had the most impact on you. Which one is your true inspiration? These should be your thoughts if you are cosplaying for the first time. In case you don’t have a favorite, pick a character that you are at least familiar with.

Remember that you can dress up as any character and not necessarily one which matches your height, weight, body shape, or skin color. Do not let these factors limit your desire to cosplay. Just keep in mind that you select a character whose costume would be comfortable for you to wear and make you confident because having fun would be impossible without that.

Planning and Design

After you have finalized your character, get straight to the design phase. Start collecting pictures of your character’s costume off the internet. To get a more elaborate idea about the outfit, it would be best to get a picture from each angle. It’s even better if you can make a sketch of the character and its outfit, but that is optional. Don’t forget to download images of the props if your character has any.

Then, decide whether you want to create the outfit yourself, get it tailored from someone or buy it directly from the market. Store-bought costumes can save you time but can be a bit hard on your wallet. There’s also the possibility of you being unhappy or unsatisfied with the final look.

Planning and Design
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If you want to make the costume yourself, see what you will require to create it. It is always sensible to first take a look in your closet and see if there is a piece similar to your chosen costume. We know how gratifying it may be to create the outfit yourself and how much it would boost your confidence, but it wouldn’t hurt if you reuse something that you already have.

There is no need to make every item yourself. You can reuse belts, shoes, wigs and other articles to keep your budget down. Remember, cosplay is about expressing your creativity and having fun at the same time. Reflect your artistry wherever you can, but don’t overburden yourself.

Collect the Materials

You will have to decide what kind of fabrics and materials would go best with your selected costume. You can use charmeuse silk, satin, linen, and velvet to create your costume if you are cosplaying as royalty or nobles since these materials would give off an elegant vibe.

For skin-tight outfits, mostly worn by superheroes, latex or spandex would be the perfect option instead of polyester as the latter would make you all sweaty in the buzzy convention hall. To enhance the firmness, you can even add buckram to your costume.

If you want to cosplay as a warrior or combatant, leather and velvet should be your go-to choice for fabric.

Collect the Materials
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To make your props or armor, you can use EVA foam as it is very sturdy. You can also go for thermoplastics like Wonderflex as they can be shaped and molded to make props and weaponry. Just remember to invest wisely in your outfit. You should neither spend too much on over-expensive materials, nor should you go for cheap, low-quality ones as they won’t last long.

Another important thing that you must consider while collecting materials for your costume is safety. Your costume should pose no harm to you as well as other cosplayers attending the convention. Conventions mostly have a list of rules and guidelines regarding this matter. Real weaponry, sharp props, and chemicals are strictly not allowed. You should also avoid choosing flammable items or items that may be a tripping hazard.

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For your comfort, create costumes that make it easy to move. Also, keep the outside temperature in mind. Steer clear of heavy outfits made of fur or velvet if the con is going to take place in summers. Instead, go for breathable fabrics. Similarly, in winters, keep an extra coat with you to tackle the freezing weather.

Another useful tip is to opt for comfortable shoes. You are going to be walking and roaming quite a lot at the con, so to avoid getting blisters on your feet, go for shoes that match your costume yet are made of comfy material. You can thank us later.

Get Tools and Stitching Patterns

Some costumes would need to be stitched before you can achieve the final look. Stitching patterns are lifesavers if you have decided to create your own outfit instead of assembling the available clothing pieces.

Surf the internet to download the sewing pattern that would be appropriate to your character’s attire. They not only come in handy during stitching but also give an idea of the required quantity of material. They also guide you in getting the perfect measurements for your costume.

For the creation of your costume and props, you will need a bunch of tools and machinery as well. Sewing machines come in handy if you want to save time while stitching, but if you don’t have one, you can simply sew by hand. Epoxy glue is necessary if you want to stick your outfit elements together. While creating props, gloves and goggles must be worn for your safety.

Styling and Makeup

Choose whether you want to use your real hair or not. If the character demands colored hair, you can always go for a wig. If you do not have one or cannot purchase one, go for temporary hairsprays to achieve the dyed look. Straighten or curl your hair if needed. Your hairstyle should be as similar as possible to your chosen character.

As far as makeup is concerned, follow the tutorials available on the internet to match your character’s facial appearance. Painting or spraying your body will also come in handy if your character demands it.

Styling and Makeup
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Start Early and Don’t Forget to Enjoy

It is always best not to wait until the day before your con to start making your costume. Preparations made at the last minute always end up ruining the purpose of cosplay, which is displaying your creativity and working hard for it. Sensible cosplayers dedicate their efforts and invest their time in creating the outfit of their favorite character.

You need to plan and make your costume and props beforehand to get comfortable with them and to avoid fussing at the eleventh hour about fittings and measurements. Also, don’t forget to practice the body language, speech, and mannerisms of your character to fully channel their personality.

Our last but the most important tip for cosplay is having lots and lots of fun. Enjoy while you are embodying your beloved character. While you are at it, take loads of pictures of yourself to later post on your social media handles and garner praise from your friends and family.

Enjoy Cosplay
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