There are some must-have items for beginners who are planning on making their own cosplay. I’m going to be focusing on no-sew items for novices. I had some help from the UK Cosplay Facebook group!
1.Stick it to the man (or women)
You’re going to need to stick things to other things when making cosplays. My first cosplay was Poison Ivy and that basically consisted of sticking thousands of fucking leaves to a body suit. I bought a hot glue gun which is a must have for any cosplayer. Other adhesives that are useful are superglue, tape and the super helpful safety pins. All good for initial making and quick fixes. THERE WILL BE FIXES!
2. Trash Treasure
I really throw away bits of cardboard, fabric, random toys, fake flowers etc. My cosplayer brain always has an idea of a use of typical rubbish. As they say, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
3. Paint the Town Red
Obviously normal acrylic paint is good for props that are made or cardboard or other compatible materials but I’ve found spray paint to be a godsend. It’s quick but a little messy.
Make sure you know your equipment and materials. Ventilation is important when working with spray paints; don’t leave your hot glue gun on, don’t run with scissors etc. I’m going to hope you at least have some common sense.
5. Get Thrifty
I often use clothing items from Amazon or eBay and customise them for me cosplay needs. You can also find some great items in charity shops or in your own or others wardrobes. (Make sure to ask permission. I do not condone stealing.)
6. Whip That Hair!
WIGS! Wigs are great because a lot of fictional characters have some strange as fuck hair. You can get wigs on Amazon for under twenty quid and there are lots of tricks to making them look better than they are but I’ve had some pretty great wigs from Amazon. You can get lace front wigs but they often cost more and I wouldn’t recommend splashing out till you know this is a thing you want to do.
7. Magic Face Changing Powers
Makeup is fucking magical. Along with face paint. My best cosplay buy was definitely the
LaRoc ® 120 Colours Eyeshadow Eye Shadow Palette, it’s amazing, filled with so many colours and eyeshadow is pretty versatile. Use it to re-structure your face to look more like you choose a character or do some awesome eyeshadow. Eyeliner is great for detail and face paint for more solid coverage. There are plenty of Youtube tutorials and Pinterest graphics to help.
8. The Logistics
Remember that if you are doing this for a convention you will probably be walking around for hours and you also want to be able to pee. It is quite uncomfortable to have a friend have to help you out of a catsuit and corset so you can of to the toilet. Just make sure to think it through. Believe me!
Use original pictures of your character and other pictures to work from. As a newbie, it is pretty intimidating the amount of creativity within the cosplay community but doesn’t be afraid to go off of a reference.
10. One of us!
My experience with the cosplay community has been mostly positive and everyone has their own little tips and tricks which they’re happy to share. The community provides encouragement and inspiration when you’re working with hot glue at three in the morning.
However, don’t compare yourself. I know it’s fucking hard as hell but learning is part of the cosplay experience and everyone has different advantages and disadvantages. Do your best, have fun and rock that cosplay!
If you are looking to just get started and are a little scared to make the lead read my post: COSPLAY: Getting Started
Thanks for reading,