Costuming on a Budget: Creating Awesomeness Without Breaking the Bank

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If you’ve ever wanted to get into cosplay without spending a fortune, then “Costuming on a Budget” was the panel for you. Held at 11:30AM on Friday in America’s Mart 2, Room 204 DE, the panel was hosted by Matt Hayward and Carol Marie Underwood. The two costuming excerpts gave tips and tricks on how to make the costume of your dreams without taking out a loan on your house.

Their biggest tip? Give yourself ample time to complete your costume. The more time you have, the more you can price hunt and find alternative ways of making things. Underwood also recommended crowdsourcing materials. For her Borg costume, she put out a call on Facebook for extra computer parts. By the time the costume was completed, she had more computer parts than she knew what to do with.

Goodwill and dollar stores can also be your best friend. Before you even start constructing your costume, take a trip to both stores and just look at everything available to you. If you can base your costume off what you find, rather than hunting for very specific pieces, it can make things much easier and much cheaper.

Another great way to save money; take your time and don’t rush. Rushing often leads to mistakes, which can end up costing you money to repair. Best case scenario, you pay a few bucks to get some extra wood glue or another filler to repair cracks or breaks. Worst case scenario, you may need to scrap the project and start from scratch.

If you want to learn to do make amazing looking costumes cheap, YouTube can be your best friend. Both Hayward and Underwood recommend watching YouTube videos from professionals creating the same costume (or using the same technique) you’re doing. In addition, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Many professional cosplayers will be more than happy to tell you how they made their costumes and answer questions.

If you’re a newbie cosplayer and have questions, you can find Carol Marie Underwood on Facebook under her name and Matt Hayward on Facebook under the name Dark Matter Cosplay.

Cosplay on!

About the author

Ralph is a geek through and through. Living by the beach in sunny South Carolina, he spends most of his time huddled over a keyboard. Whether it's comics, anime, or sci-fi/fantasy, if it's even slightly geeky, he's there. He's a member of Wayland's Forge, a cosplay making group from Myrtle Beach.

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