I got into Cosplay over 14 years ago!
The short answer is that I went to a con, saw cosplay in action, and got hooked. But to elaborate – I have been an anime/manga fan since childhood after watching “Saint Seiya” at age 8. By 1999 I had read and watched tons of Japanimation and was an avid artist in Arizona. Through the local anime club I learned about Anime Expo and decided to attend the con to sell my artwork. I found the former website “A Fan’s View” and photos of the previous AX years, including pictures of people dressed up as these cool anime characters. Before knowing what this phenomenon was, I instantly became attracted to it – what better way to show my childhood love for the anime/manga fandom than to “become” my favorite characters?
Unfortunately I didn’t know how to sew back then, so I asked a kind friend to show me the basic use of a sewing machine and patterns. With her help I made my first (Asian inspired) garment and wore it to Anime Expo. Throughout the weekend I kept seeing more people dressed up and learned that this was called COSPLAY! It was all over from that point on.
I continued making costumes, experimenting and learning by hands-on crafting, reading sewing books, following tutorials online, sharing information with friends etc. I think a lot of the fun in costuming lies within problem solving. In 14 years, between costumes for myself and friends, I have made well over 265 complete costumes. That’s not counting costumes and accessories made for customers.
As you can see from my galleries, I have fairly broad taste – ranging from anime/manga to video games to movies, comics, j-music, and a variety of original designs. I think I just get easily excited about entertainment in general lol. What kept my interest in cosplay all these years and after all these sewing projects is the creative freedom I experience. It’s not only sewing but also sculpting, wig-work, props, makeup, photography etc. The possibilities are endless and I am constantly learning something new, which is a lot of fun!