Supanova‘s coming to Sydney this Saturday, and despite how much I love going to pop culture conventions, unfortunately I won’t be able to make it this year.
So since I’m missing out, I’ll be doing a throwback post instead (lots of pictures in this one!)
I’ve honestly written and posted about this all over my social media because I absolutely love how it turned out.
What I’m talking about is the group cosplay I participated in with my friends a few years ago. If you don’t know what cosplay is, the basic definition is when you dress up as a (usually) fictional character. You’ll encounter many people with amazing costumes, cosplaying as their favourite characters at pop culture conventions and the like. I think it used to be considered an unusual hobby in the past, but it seems to be gaining popularity and becoming more accepted in Western culture nowadays.
Anyway, in 2013, four friends and I decided to go to Animania, which was a small anime and manga convention in Sydney. We wanted to dress up, but it was kind of difficult choosing characters since we wanted to cosplay as a group of five and two of our friends weren’t really into anime or manga. After some consideration, we decided on Houkago Tea Time from K-ON!!
If I recall correctly, K-ON! is this really cute anime about four (later five) girls who are part of the Light Music (keion) Club at their high school. They form a band called Houkago Tea Time and perform at their school. You can read more about it here.
Let me tell you why I considered it to be an awesome choice for us.
Firstly, there was exactly five of us. Not only that, but most of the girls fit the personality of the characters they cosplayed. Our group consisted of someone as feminine and classy as Mugi (who could also play the piano!), as adorable as Azusa, and as “tomboy-ish” as Ritsu. The costume was also relatively easy to arrange since it was just a school uniform. Not to mention, my hair was long enough for Mio.
Putting it together was fun. We were aiming for something simple since we didn’t want to buy a pre-made costume and were on tight budgets. None of us possessed any skill in making clothes either so we figured we could find the individual pieces separately at different clothing stores. At first we actually did try making the skirts, but we didn’t get very far with that, so my aunty (Mugi‘s mum) made them for us. We ordered navy blazers and gold buttons online, but our blazers only came with one big button. Not wanting to ruin them by trying to make button holes, we unstitched the original button and put it on the inside of the blazer so it could still close. The golden buttons were just sewn on the top.
Another thing we did to limit expenditure was to buy the least amount of wigs as possible, so we only got two – one for Yui and one for Mugi. We bought extensions and clip-in bangs for Azusa, and Ritsu and I just used our natural hair. I had to cut mine (!) and used black hairspray to make it a bit darker, since my hair is more of a very dark brown in the sun.
With everything prepared for the day, we met early at Mugi’s house to get ready together. One of our other friends came as Misa from Death Note.
Before going to the convention, we met up with some more people and had a picnic at a nearby park, since we didn’t want to spend a lot of money buying food at the convention. We had so much food leftover we had to store it in someone’s car. Unfortunately by then we were quite behind on our schedule due to getting ready and travelling times, but everything still went according to plan.
At the convention, some time was spent looking at the stalls and exhibits, and looking at the different activities. My shoes had actually broken by the time I got to the place, most likely because of the shoe polish I had used.. But that didn’t hinder me from having fun. We snagged mini figurines of the K-ON! girls for obvious reasons, and some of us also got a few other things like buttons and accessories. We attended one or two panels, read some fortunes and played Just Dance. Throughout the day we vlogged, but the video camera I used was really old so the quality isn’t great.Honestly though I still had an enjoyable time, and we spent most of it outside the building taking photos. Animania was held at Australian Technology Park in Eveleigh, which had some nice scenery surrounding it. The weather was great too, and since it was our first cosplay we wanted to capture the memory digitally.
I had a great time that day and I’m quite satisfied with our cosplay. It was a new experience for me, especially when people asked to take photos with us. This one guy was apparently running around trying to find us when he saw us walking to the convention! It was inspiring to see so many great costumes and characters, and having so many people with similar interests in one place.
Unfortunately Animania was discontinued the year after, so we never got to go again. But at least we made some great memories, and there are always other conventions throughout the year.
To see more photos, click here.