In Review: 2018

How was your 2018? I’m looking forward to 2019!

Outside of cosplay my life pretty much fell to bits this year, which in turn impacted my enthusiasm and productivity. But that’s how life goes isn’t it? The optimist in me thinks, “it wouldn’t be interesting if things went smoothly all the time!”, while the cynic thinks.. well, stuff I’d rather not repeat here. Hah!

Despite a rocky year, here are some of my cosplay highlights!

  

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Cosplay Life “Shopping in Tokyo”

Happy new year everyone!

Over the winter holidays, I helped my good friend Lauren with a new video project for her new cosplay-centric YouTube Channel, Cosplay Life!

The first project is an overview of Shopping in Tokyo. During a recent visit to Japan, Lauren captured some footage around different districts in different stores to highlight what is available for cosplayers, whether it’s buying premade costumes, picking up accessories or looking for supplies to make your own costumes – there’s a little bit of everything for cosplay enthusiasts covered!


Shopping in Tokyo is a four part series covering stores found in Akihabara, Nakano Broadway and two parts dedicated to Ikebukuro. Obviously, time will change what is available and which stores are open – but for the time being, hopefully you will find it helpful if you’re planning to take a trip to Tokyo!

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Exelia’s Guide to Applique!

Over on my Facebook page I asked if anyone would be interested in an applique tutorial, and you guys responded! So here it is!

I’ve used applique on costumes for years now, it’s one of my favourite techniques and it’s really satisfying to look at! Even though it’s time consuming I find it much easier than patterning and top-stitching bias for complex designs like those in the Tales of series. It’s easy to sew and when it’s done well it looks really clean, avoiding any fraying or uneven edges.

All of my sewing is self taught; that means if I can learn to do it, you can too! Applique isn’t hard, it just takes practice and patience. Hopefully this tutorial will help you get started!

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Cosplay Makeup

Cosplay is a huge, creative hobby, and cosplay makeup is something I’m really passionate about! Recently I’ve been able to dabble with some more interesting makeup, and figuring out how to style it for different characters is one of my favourite parts of putting a costume together.

I encourage everyone within the cosplay community to learn the basics of makeup – so here’s a short introduction about how it works and why it’s important to use it! All you need is a bit of patience, some basic products and the want to learn!

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WCS: Last-Minute Advice

World Cosplay Summit 2014 starts this weekend in Japan, and most teams will be flying out mid week! It’s a terrifying and exciting time if you’re taking part in the competition, so I figured I’d put together some last-minute advice for anyone taking part and is having a bit of a panic.

When I arrived last year there were a lot of things we were missing and locating them in Japan is tricky, so it’s easiest to make sure you’re well prepared!

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Cosplay Progress Books

I finished my progress book for Madoka Kaname yesterday and while I was getting critique, one of international cosplay friends commented that they had never seen one before. In the UK they’re quite common now to go with competitions; most major competitions (including both European Cosplay Gathering and World Cosplay Summit qualifiers) now require progress books, and many local competitions encourage you to submit one too.

I think they’re a great little momento for cosplayers to make and keep, especially for bigger costume projects! Most events will give you your books back so it’s a nice keepsake and chronicle of how you made your costume and they’re great if you want to share them and show your construction to others.

My first progress book was for Eiko Carol, which was very well received by the judges. It was a lot of fun designing it to match my costume.

 

Mog’s Journal

 

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So YOU Want To Enter WCS?

So. The UK Preliminaries for World Cosplay Summit are approaching fast, and in under less than 5 weeks next year’s UK representatives will be chosen!

As one of this year’s representatives I highly recommend and encourage anyone who is interested in competing to enter – it’s an amazing experience and a fun-filled trip in Nagoya with some of the most amazing, talented cosplayers you’ll ever meet! No matter how long you’ve been into the hobby or what your reason to enter may be, as long as you’re enthusiastic enough about cosplay to go for it it’s worth giving it a try. The great thing about WCS is that everyone is there for the same reason: their love of cosplay!

This post is a summary of advice I’m giving as a previous entrant, to show what you should expect from the competition itself. WCS is a huge contest, but a lot of entrants don’t know much about the competition until they get there – myself included! – so it’s worth giving some advice from my personal experiences, not only for future entrants from the UK, but for cosplayers across the world wanting to give it a go.

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