Cosplay: Just a little bit different

It’s been a month since I posted that cosplay spotlight on me and claimed that I would write a post about cosplay. I’m sorry I haven’t written it before now – things have been hectic and I don’t know. I just wasn’t inspired.

But cosplay – cosplay is interesting.

Cosplay is fun for me. I love dressing up in costumes and taking pictures. Above, you see me as Link (Legend of Zelda), Belle (Beauty and the Beast/Disney), Junko Enoshima (Dangan Ronpa) and Ash Ketchum (Pokemon).

But there’s a lot more to it than that.

There’s a lot of wank that goes on in the cosplay community for buying costumes versus making costumes versus commissioning them, et cetera. Some people only consider you a real cosplayer if you make all your own costumes. And in my opinion, that’s bullshit.

I’m a novice seamstress. I can make some things, but not many. My Ash Ketchum cosplay was made with the help of my grandmother, and it was my first one. Same with Link, my second cosplay.

Junko and Belle were partially sewn, partially thrift-store put together. I found pieces, sewed them together, had a friend help with Belle’s neckline, bought a skirt, et cetera.

But it’s bad for my self-esteem sometimes. I feel like I should be making all my costumes all the time. But I don’t have the time, money, or skills. My next cosplay – Sango from InuYasha – I was originally going to try to make, but now I’m planning on buying, because I don’t have, again, the time or money, and probably not the skills, to make it. And I feel really bad about it, especially because I’m going to be in a cosplay group with my friends who have probably all made their costumes/are going to make their costumes. They’re better seamstresses than I am. But it still makes me feel bad.

Then, there’s the weight issue. All of the above cosplays I wore back when I was thin. Callie from Splatoon, pictured below, is the only one I’ve worn since my weight gain, and I don’t think I even fit in that one anymore. I last wore it on Halloween 2016. It might still fit, I’m not 100% sure.

Callie photos by Lazzaro Studios https://www.facebook.com/LazzaroStudios/?hc_ref=SEARCH&fref=nf and http://lazzarostudios.webs.com/

I will hopefully have lost some weight by the time I wear Sango to Anime Boston 2017 – but I don’t know that I will. And I already feel bad about how I look. How bad am I going to feel surrounded by all my hot friends in their great cosplays? I don’t know what to do about that. Or how I’m going to feel. But I’m still going to cosplay Sango. Maybe not her bodysuit-armor outfit, like I originally wanted – I think that I would be too self conscious for that – but her yukata outfit should work just fine.

Then there’s the cosplay community – I can’s say too much about this because I’m not really a part of the community, but there’s something to be said there as well. I’m not part of the community because I don’t feel included. I’m a casual cosplayer for the most part – even if my costumes are complicated, I don’t do competitions, or the masquerade, and I don’t go to meetups. I feel awkward at meetups. I’ve never been part of a popular fandom cosplay at the time the fandom was popular, so I’ve never gone to fandom exclusive meetups.  (That’s actually a lie. I went to one Homestuck meetup as Rose Lalonde once. That was okay. But I didn’t feel like I made friends.)

I don’t know. This might just be me having trouble making friends in general, but I feel like it’s really hard to break into the cosplay community if you’re not already there, or if you’re not an AMAZING cosplayer. I’ve also heard there’s some bad stuff that goes down in certain fandoms, different wank and the like, but I can’t speak much to that.

But cosplay isn’t just the bad stuff. It’s feeling creative. It’s feeling good about yourself and the way you look, for once, even if it’s because you’re pretending to be someone else.

I feel good about myself in cosplay. Above is an elf, Hiei (Yu Yu Hakusho), Azula (Avatar: The Last Airbender), and Flo (Progressive Auto Insurance). Actually, the elf costume I wore on Halloween as well, so that might still fit me too.

Cosplay is a hobby. For me at least. A very expensive, time consuming hobby, but I like it. I know I haven’t said much about why I like it, but I do.So give me a few hours to be someone else. To put on a costume and run around with my friends. To pose for a photo. I’ll always take the opportunity.

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