Project Cosplay

Project Cosplay

This blog is about the behind-the-scenes aspect of the hobby. The process that makes it happen, tips, tutorials, memorable quotes, and the little moments that make it all worthwhile. Brought to you by mods (Xaynie & ElfGrove) and our cosplaying cohorts.

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12 simple rules to have fun doing cosplay without hurting anybody (especially yourself) by secondlina

Over the con season, I spoke to SO many cosplayers. It made me want to draw this. So that the new generation of cosplayers have a little guide. This is not just how to make a costume. This is also about how to keep yourself feeling good at a con, how to interact with other con goers and how to interact with webcomic artist and merch folks. 

Please feel free to add to this list of recommendations. 

Thanks Isa! This is super!

My own input, mostly regarding rules 4 & 7, sometimes carrying stuff (even a totebag) or leaving a hand “normal” isn’t a reasonable option in some costumes. For these costumes, have a place where you can go back, dress down, and store your gear after a few hours on the con floor. Do not try to handle people or merchandise while wearing body paint or appendages that can potentially do damage. If you can’t carry stuff or need help getting around, make sure you’ve arranged in advance for a friend (or a sequence of friends) to act as your handler while wearing the costume.

#8 addendum. Don’t block hallways or walkways (even if you don’t think it’s a particularly important area). If someone can’t follow you out of a traffic zone for a photo, don’t stop for them. It’s too easy to end up with a crowd of photogs once one starts.


Elfgrove is at DragonCon this weekend, check her Facebook cosplay page.

A lot of people, both cosplayers and not, will get approached by people taking video at conventions, and they usually will ask your permission before videoing you. This is great! Bigger productions will ask you to sign release forms. This is pretty standard legal protection stuff.

However, it’s a good idea before agreeing to be recorded to ask what they will be asking you to do. It’s better if you can ask them to video you first and then give agreement or not based on what is actually recorded. If someone is shifty about what they want to video you doing, you don’t have to agree to be recorded. If they video you and do something you’re uncomfortable with, state clearly that they do not have permission to use your image (into the camera if possible so that it is on record).

Because model releases are somewhat legally binding, wait until after a photo or video is taken to sign the release. This means you can decide to sign the release or not based on what they actually do.

Sometimes larger or formal shoots will require release forms in advance. Make individual judgement calls on whether or not to sign these by looking into the party you are signing the release to.

If someone is using their status as press or photographer to harass or otherwise be jerks at the convention, get their name, badge name, description, or snap a cell phone photo and report them to convention staff. No one wants these people at con, and staff may very well revoke their badges to prevent them harassing attendees.

This website (and this one [link]) may be helpful in getting the proper fit for a more comfortable men’s dance belt. There’s a guide, purchase links, and sizing information.



OK dinguses, here’s something that’s gonna make your life and the lives of everyone who sees you at the con so much better.

This is called a Men’s Dance Belt.


It’s for male ballet dancers to wear under their tights. Its purpose?


when I’m at a con, nothing kills a potential good superhero costume more than seeing the cosplayer’s friendly neighborhood spider-cock through the costume.

I made a comment on this when someone shared this on FB, but I had to add here too.

As a dude, this is extremely vital if you plan on wearing spandex. Now I think it’s slightly misleading when it says it gets rid of the bulge. It doesn’t. You will still technically have a bulge. What you won’t have is people being able to tell exact details of what you look like underneath the spandex. No one wants to know that much detail about you on first meeting. This thing basically just smooths you out but you are still going to be obviously defined as male.

I will state though, that these things are the bane of my existence. They are not comfortable. I think the longest I’ve lasted is around six hours, at which point the thong part just hurts way too much and the waistband really cuts into your sides. I’ve been left with marks from these things for a day afterwards.

I will still wear it though in costume. I swear to God, you have no excuse. Wear the damn thing. Suck up the pain. It makes your costume look that much better.

As a female-bodied person I don’t know any tips for improving the fit of a dance belt to be more comfortable, but hopefully one of our followers does?

Regardless, a huge thank you to all the spandex clad male-bodied persons who do wear one.

Edit: Here’s a link with some places to buy dance belts [link] and some starter sizing information [link].

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hi there! So I recently got my first wig (from Arda) in the mail, and even though I've brushed it out, it still looks so clunky and big and fake on my head. My head is pretty small so maybe it's just me- but is there any way to make it thinner/not as bulky near the top? (It's a Ferrari in black) thank you!
projectcosplay projectcosplay Said:

I feel your pain there. Arda makes very nice wigs, but the cap size tends to run a bit larger, which means when you’ve got a small head, they don’t sit right. I also have this issue, which is why I rarely order from Arda despite liking both their selection and quality.

Re-sizing a wig smaller is a bit of work, but less work than making one bigger.

Luckily, the internet has our backs here, and there are a couple of tutorials on how to make the wigs smaller. Arda even endorses two of the three I’m posting.

For wigs that are too big near the crown: 

For wigs that are too large just all around:

minimortem asked:

I wish I could submit a picture to you so you don’t have to image search or anything, but I’m doing Police Officer Stocking from Panty & Stocking w/ Garterbelt and she has these weird strap thins on both her arms. I have no idea what they are! I have no idea how to make them either. I’d really appreciate your help :)

I pulled up some reference pictures from Google. I hope these are right as I’m unfamiliar with the show.

Non-specific details like this from a show actually work in your favor as a cosplayer, because without canon definition, those things on her arms are whatever you want them to be.

You can take some jewelry arm cuffs and make them black. You could size down some thin black belts to fit. You can sew together fabric of your choice, turn it inside-out and stiffen by inserting craft foam to make a simple strip, size it to your arms, and make it either a circle or close it with a snap, buckle, or velcro. You could cut black craft foam (or black elastic) and fasten it closed with the same methods as fabric. Really, it’s whatever is easiest on and looks best to you. I note that the reference pictures appear to have a silver detail. This can be a buckle, a dab of paint, or a silver jewelry finding from a craft store glued on.

To wear this item, you should be able to just slide it up your arm. You may want to use foam mounting tape or fashion tape to secure it in place and avoid sliding.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
is there any way for someone who cant grow facial hair to get realistic looking stubble or scruffy facial hair on?
projectcosplay projectcosplay Said:

Hi! There’s actually a couple of methods available to you.

There are a variety of pre-made facial hair (both beards and sideburns) appliances out in the world that can be applied with spirit gum pretty much straight out of the package. They’re often sold at higher end costuming shops and wig retailers. I’ve never had need to shop for them myself, so I  cannot recommend a particular shop, but a quick Google search turned up this catalog just to give you an idea of some of the variety that’s out there: [link] (Please shop around to find the best deal.)

On a more DIY (and potentially cheaper) route, we’ve previously reblogged this tutorial [link] on using crepe hair to make a beard or stubble.

Additionally, there are a few purely make-up routes for getting the stubble effect. I like these tutorials:

okay, so I made a female version of Loki's armor (from the Avengers) and I have no idea how to fixate my armor on my shoulders and also the fact that my horns are a bit heavy and I don't know what to do.. Could you help?
projectcosplay projectcosplay Said:

Hi! I’m not sure how your armor is set up but we have a post on attaching armor which might help you:

As for the horns, are they fixated on a helmit or are they individual horns which you are attaching to your head? If you have a reference photo, it will help us help you! Thanks!