2015 Year End Review

As we are now solidly into January, it’s time to post the 2015 year end review. At the end of 2014 I wasn’t really sure where the year was going to take me, or how much cosplay I was going to be able to do so I headed in with an open mind and no solid plans…and came out the other side having made the most costumes in one year since 2007. WOW, how did that happen? This year instead of focusing on big and elaborate costumes I focused on making simple costumes to wear with friends and 100% A+ will do again. I LOVED how 2015 went for me cosplay wise. Lets take a look at what I made in the last year:

 

Super Sonico, SoniAni

Photo Credit: Mike Boike

This was not a new costume, but at the very end of 2014/into the beginning of 2015 I was finally able to make my tiger camo hoodie for my Sonico costume. I also remade my headphones as the first pair did not turn out how I wanted them to. I count this as half a costume, and it was the first “new” costume I wore in 2015.

View the costume HERE

 

Umi Sonoda, LoveLive!

Photo Credit: Filmshooter

The first costume I completed in 2015 was Cafe Fruits Umi from Love Live School Idol Festival. I had wanted to cosplay from LoveLive for quite a while so I picked my favorite outfit and went balls to the walls making it. I added a lot of personal touches with rhinestones and trims and wore this for the first time to Anime Matsuri.

View the costume HERE

 

Umi Sonoda, LoveLive!

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While Cafe Fruits was the first costume I wore in 2015, Korekara no Someday was technically the first costume I started working on. I got most of the tailcoat done in January before switching gears to get the other costume done for Anime Matsuri. Originally This costume was selected for a group that fell apart, and I would not have picked it on my own, but since I had already started I finished it up for A-kon and managed to rope some new people in on it. Now that I have this costume though, I wore it a lot in 2015 because it’s so comfortable and easy to wear. I’m really glad it made it into my cosplay closet.

View the costume HERE

 

Sylveon, Pokemon

Photo Credit: Filmshooter

I basically came up with the whole concept for this Gijinka design based off of the fact that I wanted to draw a huge biker jacket patch that said “Dragon Slayer” and so this happened. I was able to utilize some supplies from my stash I had bought years ago for a project that I dropped so that was pretty good. I was reminded how much working with vinyl sucks. I also somehow managed to only wear this to summer cons because I am really dumb, why? Why a faux leather jacket in the summer?

View the costume HERE

 

American Bomber Girls, Happiness Charge Pretty Cure

Photo Credit: Cospix

When wanting to make a costume and participate in a huge gathering leads you to fly halfway across the country with inflatable hobby horses and american flags~ I don’t want you to think the PreCure Army is the only reason I went to Anime Expo, but it certainly was a motivating factor. Not only did I get to join a fabulous group of cosplayers from all corners of the US, I got to team up with two local friends to create this bit part PreCure team that has maybe 10 seconds of total airtime. IT WAS THE BEST!!!!!

View the costume HERE

 

Vert Far Breton, Dog Days

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Well, now that I was already going to AX, I might as well make another costume, that seemed to be my motto this summer. I jumped in on another AX cosplay group and made Vert. I picked her because her outfit would be doable in the month I had to finish and I already had a lot of supplies to make her. The only things I had to purchase were shoes, some notions/trims and the skirt fabric. Everything else I had on hand, or was graciously donated. In the end this whole costume came in under $50!

View the costume HERE

 

Shiragami Youko, Jitsu Wa Watashi Wa

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This was a series I really fell in love with over the Summer anime season and it gave me another excuse to design something for spoonflower. I had the bow and skirt fabrics custom printed, everything else was thrifted and altered. The fabric is available for other on my spoonflower account.

View the costume HERE

 

Full Moon, Full Moon wo Sagashite

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This year Anime Fest announced Arina Tanemura was returning as a guest. I used this as an excuse to make another Arina Tanemura costume. When I first got into Full Moon wo Sagashite I didn’t know much about idol culture in Japan. Now that I know more I based a lot of my design decisions on what a real life Full Moon might wear on stage. This particular costume got a lot of positive feedback, which surprised me a little since the series is older and wasn’t even that well known when it was new. Glad to find there are so many Full Moon fans <3

View the costume HERE

 

Original Design

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For TRF this year I made a simple knit dress and an over bodice with a long tail. I was able to utilize some really nice silk that was given to me for the over bodice. The entire piece is reversible too, so I’m hoping it will be a versatile piece…but I say that every year and then make an entirely new outfit so who knows.

 

Megu-nee, School Live

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The last costume I made in 2015, I literally finished on the evening of December 31st. It’s also the first new costume I wore in 2016, thank you Ikkicon for always making year end reviews more difficult. This is another Summer series I fell hard for, but unlike Jitsu Wa Watashi Wa which I watched as it aired I picked this one up in the fall and binge watched it in 2 days. The I rewatched most of it in another 2 days. Megu-nee is definitely the type of character I usually end up really loving. A motherly type who would do anything to protect her friends, she reminded me a lot of Mami from PMMM. This costume is SO COMFORTABLE I foresee wearing it a lot in 2016.

View the costume HERE

 

Thats a total of 8.5 cosplays and one Renaissance Faire costume. I usually average 3-4 costumes per year so that is over double what I usually make. During the height of summer con season I made 6 costumes in 3 months, and not only did I whip out a ton of work this year I managed to really get my time management in check. Aside from my Cafe Fruits Umi, every costume I made this year was COMPLETE before the convention. I guess the WCS did something to set my straight. I think I can also attribute some of my success in time management to starting to use the Cosplanner app. I didn’t think it would have that much of an effect on my working habits, but it did and it was for the better.

Reflecting back on my 2015 goals I would say I was fairly successful. I still have not finished my bunny suit, but I think I might have absorbed enough information in the last year to actually do it right, now it’s just a matter of if it will fit into the rest of my plans for 2016. I definitely got the idols covered, making 3 new idol costumes in 2015. I didn’t plan an onsite photoshoot, but I did get to participate in one coordinated by someone else. I had the opportunity to cosplay with a ton of people this year, in fact most of the costumes I made in 2015 were for groups. Not only did I get to cosplay with friends, but I managed to make it out west for my 3rd Anime Expo, a lofty dream I had last year that I honestly didn’t think would happen in 2015 but I am so glad it did. I had a chance to participate in 2 really fun cosplay groups and attend the LoveLive Concert screening with a bunch of LoveLive friends I’ve made over social media. In 2015 I also had the honor of being a Cosplay Guest at Anime Overload which was a great experience.

What does 2016 hold? I have no idea and I’m going into this year with a similar attitude to the last. Maybe I’ll get the chance to make a ton of costumes this year, maybe I won’t. Either way as long as I have a shot at spending time with my friends I’ll be happy. In 2016 I’m planning on cutting back on the number of cons I attend, and so far I am planning on Ikkicon, All-con, A-kon and AnimeFest. I hope I can make it out to San Japan too, but that’s too far down the road to know for sure. My cosplay goals for 2016 are to preform a skit at A-kon and to get some photoshoots of costumes I completed in 2015. A less cosplay related goal is to expand what I blog about to things beyond just cosplay. I want to start trying to blog more, and I want to cover other topics that are tangentially related, but not specific to cosplay. Things like Makeup & Beauty reviews, general fandom thoughts, DIY projects and nerdy fashion. With this goal in mind I am planning a sort of “rebranding” of myself online, removing the “Cosplay” from most of my social media handles and website. This DOES NOT mean I’m done cosplaying, but it’s only one part of what I love and I want to be able to expand and grow. Be on the lookout for more news about that~

Thank you for reading and heres to a happy and healthy 2016!

 

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