What to Know Before Your First Cosplay Convention

What to Know Before Your First Cosplay Convention

Attending your first cosplay convention and have no idea what to expect? We were recently in the same boat. Here at HPO, our small team of four recently attended the Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle, WA. With none of us ever having been to a convention, we learned the ins and the outs of cosplay so you don’t have to!

The Value of DIY

I always thought Comic-Con was a sort of Halloween on steroids, but I soon discovered that it had one unique emphasis – DIY. On one panel we attended, @airbubblescosplay talked about making costumes from thrifted bedsheets, and @j_m_putnam talked about using trash and scraps to create props.

While the people who compete won't hesitate to hand sew their whole getup, most casual cosplayers were rocking store-bought costumes and DIY-ing an accessory or two. (Understandable, sewing is hard!) Despite our lack of handmade props, I got compliments on our Alice in Wonderland dress, and everyone wanted to take pictures with my coworkers in their Squid Games costumes

Prepare for Pictures

Speaking of pictures, people want to take a lot of them! Little girls flocked to snap pictures with my coworker dressed in our Princess Poppy Troll Costume and Wig, and it didn't take long to see that most cosplayers have poses prepared for the inevitable picture request. All the Spidermen were shooting webs, the people with weapon props held them as if ready for battle, and the anime girls were prepared to look just as cool as their TV counterparts. In short, make sure to think about the poses and mannerisms of the character you’re cosplaying, and be prepared for pics!

A Sense of Community

To say that people were nice is an understatement. One girl asked “do you want to be friends?” after talking about our costumes for a few minutes, (of course I said yes) and there was a huge emphasis placed on inclusion, consent (always ask before touching someone's cosplay!) and making sure everyone felt at ease. There were conversations about mental health, finding cosplay resources on a budget, making friends, and everything in between. There was even a free cosplay repair room stocked with glue, sewing supplies, and people eager to help!

Comic-Con Isn’t Just Comics

If there’s something you like, come to Comic Con. “What about-” Come to Comic Con. Whether it’s a video game, a table game, kids' cartoons, adult cartoons, anime, webtoons, movies, pop culture entertainment, art – there’s probably something for you. Sure, some genres and characters are more popular than others, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have a few “What the heck is that from?” moments, but by and large, you’ll find something that pertains to what you like, and you’ll definitely discover something new.

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