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Opinions on bought costumes?

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TheStephil
TheStephil Posts: 858 Member
Hey guys!

Just curious what everyone's opinion is on buying your costumes for cosplay? Whether from stores or as commissions from other cosplayers? Not in regards to competing but just to wear and enjoy at the con?

Replies

  • Koholint
    Koholint Posts: 104 Member
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    Some of them could be good... Maybe something simple like a Dragonball Z gi, that's hard to mess up.

    But I'd watch out because most of them are made cheaply yet overpriced. If I wanted to buy a pre-made costume I'd find one from someone on Etsy who'd take commissions and has pictures of their work, or find a cosplayer online selling their old costumes (with photoshoots of the actual costume.) Attention to detail is important to me.

    Personally I think most of the fun of cosplaying is making the actual costume :smile: And then being surrounded by others at a con, admiring their awesome cosplays and knowing how talented they are to have made it!
  • Guinevere117
    Guinevere117 Posts: 148 Member
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    I think it's ok for people that are lacking skills, or short on time or money.

    But like Koholint said, they are so expensive, most of the time, and you don't really know what you are getting. Another issue I have is that the vast majority of them are made in China. I don't have anything against the Chinese or anything, but I would prefer to buy something from within the US.

    I definitely would opt to making costumes whenever I can. :)
  • mruntidy
    mruntidy Posts: 1,015 Member
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    I think it depends on the skill of the person as well - I'm pretty good with foam builds but my fabric skills are pretty crap - that said I can sew and usually have a go before I go ahead and have something commissioned.

    Weighing up the worth of it is the big thing like people have already said - you can spend a lot on a costume which you leave open to someone elses interpretation on what you are asking for so you take that risk on board as well.

    So long as you credit your commission to the people who made it I think that is the biggest thing to me - taking credit for someone elses work is not on and I think you'll get just as much respect for a well thought out and accessorised costume that someone else has made for one that you made completely by yourself if you're open and honest about it.

    I guess the flipside of this is that my umbrella costume was probably 70% shop purchased (and by which I mean scoured teh Earth for - those trousers are hard to come by!) but put together thereafter, compared to an iron man costume there's little construction invovled and then even less so with say an attack on titan titan morph suit - again it's horses for courses I think.

    But when you're all together - nothing matters!
  • Nimue108
    Nimue108 Posts: 110 Member
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    I have bought and made cosplays before, and I can tell you that making them is a much better option if you have the time and skill. The costumes I bought were flimsy and not how they were presented online so that sucked. I also have an EXTREMELY short torso so it is easier for me to modify patterns than to modify already created costumes. It is also really nice at Dragon Con to tell people I made it so....there's that, lol.
  • geminigrey
    geminigrey Posts: 26 Member
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    I commissioned someone to do my first big cosplay costume, and I got lucky that they did a wonderful job with it. It was pricey, but well worth it on the value side. On the other hand, I didn't feel nearly as accomplished, since all I was doing was wearing it. Even though my current costume I'm working on won't be as well made, I already feel good about what I've managed to accomplish, through a lot of stumbling and fumbling. :)

    That said, while I have a lot more respect for the folks who can craft their own costumes, I don't look down on the folks who buy theirs either. Like somebody told me, a good costume takes one of three things: time, skill, or money.
  • mruntidy
    mruntidy Posts: 1,015 Member
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    That said, while I have a lot more respect for the folks who can craft their own costumes, I don't look down on the folks who buy theirs either. Like somebody told me, a good costume takes one of three things: time, skill, or money.

    I think that's the key - sadly there is a lot of elitism in cosplay. Having respect is something that costs nothing yet I've seen other people at cons loathed to give it.
  • Nimue108
    Nimue108 Posts: 110 Member
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    I have nothing against people who buy their costumes. I just know that I feel pride in people appreciating my work. There is alot of elitism not only in cosplay, but also in the nerd/geek world at the moment.
  • mruntidy
    mruntidy Posts: 1,015 Member
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    Oh completely - effectively by making a microcosm of a society that shuns 'nerds' and 'geeks' there is effectively a new society created which has a replicated and to some extent almost concentrated hierarchy within it.

    Where those individuals who were bullied on a societal level found solace in a united front in a society of like minded people there emerges a new top to bottom structure and the same problems occur. It's really interesting from an observationary point of view but equally as sad too.
  • BombshellPhoenix
    BombshellPhoenix Posts: 1,693 Member
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    This makes sense. I had actually considered buying a costume a few years ago because I am, by no means, a craftsman. I adore and admire those who do their own and I don't think less of someone who buys their costumes. It's for fun and the love of a character. The courage just to do it had always been admirable to me.

    I would like to create my own though, purely for the pride of doing so and learning something new.
  • TheStephil
    TheStephil Posts: 858 Member
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    Totally forgot I posed this and forgot to check in.

    Thanks for everyone's opinions.

    I'm learning how to be crafty but it's a very slow process. I am not artistic at all and the basic concepts are taking forever for me to learn. Can't even sew in a straight line with my sewing machine. I still want to make costumes at some point but in the mean time, I want to cosplay at cons. I know the quality of online stores is questionable, my boyfriend's Jellal costume was extremely small even though the company said that they custom made the costume per the measurements we provided. However, I've been contemplating going with a commissioner on cosplay.com that has some experience for future costumes. It may be more expensive than a random costume websites but the quality should be better and customized.
  • BombshellPhoenix
    BombshellPhoenix Posts: 1,693 Member
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    There are some awesome cosplayers on there. Hope it turns out well!
    I've considered buying a dark Phoenix costume, myself, as I do not trust myself with stretchy material and have zero sowing knowledge
  • mruntidy
    mruntidy Posts: 1,015 Member
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    I would LOVE to be able to wear something skin tight - I was going to do an early Marvel Punisher for last years comicon but decided against it after injuring myself plus the lack of body confidence. But - rather than go off topic on the thread, start off with small items; I had zero sewing or crafting ability - I highly recommend taking a small piece like a wallet or scarf or scabbard or something and having a go at making that first to work on your basic skills.

    It is both cheaper and you won't feel like it was a massive waste if you botch it up but when it goes right it will give you much more confidence to go a bit further next time. I did it with my Resident Evil costume in this video;

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TG79mDzemg

    It was frustrating and I wanted to throw it away a million times but the result was so worth it for my costume - and to think I don't even pull it out at conventions I just know it's there :)

    Good Luck.
  • JM1481
    JM1481 Posts: 88 Member
    edited February 2015
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    As long as you commission from a reputable person and you are happy with the costume and feel great in it, all is good! Even some of the most talented cosplayers I know commission things from time to time. For instance, maybe you are good at props but you suck at sewing or the other way around? Cosplay is about showing your passion for something. Whether that passion is the character, the craft itself or both doesn't really matter. It's different from one person to the next. For instance I know a guy locally who commissions a lot and spends thousands of dollars per costume. Spending the amount of money he does, no one can say that his love for cosplaying is any less than someone who makes their own.


    That all said, if you plan on commissioning and you want a top notch costume, do your research and be prepared to fork out some cash. If you don't have a lot of cash, there are some other creative options as well. For instance, I have two girlfriends (they are a couple actually) who put together costumes from mostly thrifted items. It's pretty amazing what they can put together, it's a skill all of it's own.

    tl;dr

    Love what you do, do what you love. Have fun. Don't be concerned about others. It's your hobby, no one can tell you how to enjoy your hobbies.
  • lewnatic
    lewnatic Posts: 8 Member
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    My only gripe with bought costumes is that finding the right size for you may be difficult depending on your body type. I'm a little more broad-shouldered, so even when I lose weight I will probably need to opt for XXL-sized cosplays if I were to buy, unless I could somehow afford to have it tailored. (Not happening anytime soon.)

    Also, of course, be extra-vigilant about what you buy. Know what materials feel like, whether they're stretchy, if you want them to look shiny or matte, etc. Most reputable shops will tell you what materials are used, so just make sure you get something that will be comfy for you!

    I stand by that if you want to cosplay, it's really all about having fun in the costume whether you bought it or made it. You won't be able to compete in masquerades with a bought costume, but that doesn't mean you won't still have tons of fun at photoshoots and events.