Adding Your Own Creativity to Costumes

As I begin work on my Poison Ivy costume for the upcoming Denver Comic Con in June, I reflect on reactions to adding a little extra “something” to your costume. The reason? I’m doing so with Poison Ivy, but staying true to the character.

I’ve had odd responses over the years because of my additions and creative changes. It’s liked or disliked, which is normal for anything, but I do question my own accuracy at times. I make changes while staying true to the character, or I believe so, but have been told time and time again that I’m wrong. My Rydia, Esper Terra, and Kuja are all examples of my creative flair to costumes. I do this to make it my own, unique creation, and perhaps to add a little challenge for myself in the process. I like taking different elements from each incarnation of the characters (artwork, rendering, sprites) and mixing things up a little. I think it adds a bit more, while others claim it detracts.

But seeing as how I wear and display the costume, I should be proud of my creation. It shouldn’t matter what others think, but I do enjoy constructive criticism so that I can potentially make some awesome pieces later on, or do alterations to things already produced. Please note how I said constructive criticism. ; P

What are your thoughts and opinions on this, readers?

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About Yunie

I am a cosplayer, a nerd, a geek. I am whatever you call me. However, I have a brain and tend to use it.
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3 Responses to Adding Your Own Creativity to Costumes

  1. mysteriousmaemi says:

    In my opinion, adding something of “you” makes it more your own version, which I like.
    In the sense that: yes we cosplay and we must stay true to their form
    BUT that costume of that character has been probably done many times over so by just copy’ing a thing and not putting your own mark on it, would somehow seem like a factory craftmanship in my eyes. Just by adding minor things, like another type of pearl, a ribbon you made yourself, … it makes it more interesting and sometimes more beautiful than the original design.

    As long as you do not exaggerate than it should be fine. Making huge differences so it (almost) does not look anymore as the original, is to me more a personal creation.

  2. Dea Thea says:

    I like adding ones own creativity to costumes! it makes no two alike! I love characters like Poison Ivy where you can do soo much with her since there are a lot of different versions out there (here’s mine http://deastar.smugmug.com/DeasCosplay/2010/Poison-Ivy/12645145_twrT72#!i=908871702&k=xkxbT) . Can’t wait to see your version!

  3. Charis (myalchod) says:

    I think it depends a lot on what you’re doing. On principle, I like seeing people put their own subtle twists on costumes, how different cosplayers handle combinations of colour or fabric choices or the like — but I like seeing it done in a way that’s handled well and makes sense. Using a tone-on-tone fabric instead of a solid to add some visual interest to a costume? Awesome. Using a satin where a fabric is obviously matte in the art, or where it doesn’t make sense for a character’s background? Not as much, IMO. But that’s admittedly a matter of personal preference.

    Personal example: a costume I’m working on right now is from a stage production; the character I’m cosplaying has a sword. I hated the design on sight; it’s blocky and looks rough, as if it was made to be viewed from the back of the audience and not inspected too closely. For a stage show, that’s fine, but I’m looking at it with an eye on photography — and the design just annoyed me compared to all the swords I’ve handled as a reenactor. So I took some artistic liberties with the show design, but kept the proportions. I like to think it’s still recognisable for what it is (for all two people who’ll know it? XD ), but I like it better than if I’d made it exact to the stage prop.

    And really, we make changes any time we set our hands to a costume — for proportion, for translating from 2D to 3D, for not being able to find exact fabric matches. The important things, IMO, are the feel of the character and the overall look.

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