Choosing a Cosplay

Katsucon is approaching fast and you want a costume that will stand out, but you don’t know who to choose. Whatever you do…

Do not choose a character based solely on their popularity.

I can’t stress this enough. You’re going to spend months of work and hundreds of dollars making your costume on the hope that you’ll get noticed for it. You’re setting yourself up for disappointment: you will never get as many pictures, complements, or fans as you think you should.

What’s most important when selecting a cosplay is how much you like that character.

My very first cosplay was Misha-san from Pita-ten. I think I was vaguely recognized once out of a 72-hour period. My second was Claudia from Tales of Destiny; that time I moved up to four whole people who had any idea who I was. And you know what? I loved those cosplays then, just like I love them now.

It’s because I’m a big fan of the characters themselves–I understood them, I related to them, and my costume was a tribute to how awesome they were. That’s how you should approach this. There are minor, less important things that come after that, but that’s the most important rule.

What to consider when selecting a character:

Is it a character I like?

  1. Do I know the franchise? You don’t want to meet someone cosplaying from the same series and have no idea what they’re talking about.
  2. Can I make the cosplay? Know your skill level! Don’t try to make Lulu’s dress from Final Fantasy X if you’ve never sewn something before. Start on small projects and work up.
  3. Can I afford to make the cosplay? Know your budget. Don’t try to make Lulu’s dress from Final Fantasy X if you only have $50 to spend.
  4. Do I have enough time to make the cosplay? Choose a costume you’re sure you can make. Don’t try to make Lulu’s dress from Final Fantasy X if you only have two weekends to finish it (Lulu’s dress is hard).
  5. Will I feel self-conscious wearing the cosplay? If you don’t like the idea of being seen in the costume, then don’t wear it. It’s that simple.
  6. Follow these rules and you’ll love your cosplay. If it’s seems like they’re limiting your selection, it’s because they’re blocking out all the choices that will make you miserable later on. Trust me.