There are many different kinds of cosplayers out there – from casuals to perfectionist – and I’m pretty sure we all agree on one thing: Cosplay is an expensive hobby!
I am myself a perfectionist with most costumes. I spend whole years on a costume and pay $200+ for my big costume projects. Worbla, specialty tools, the perfect fabrics – a project can add up really fast.
But most cosplayers out there are students, meaning they don’t have that much money for costume materials. And it’s true, it is really, really expensive to make costumes! But there are also ways to save money, and some people might think it’s impossible to find materials for an armor 2nd hand, but it isn’t. Yoga mats and other foam-materials can often be transformed into elaborate armors. Fabric can often be found in 2nd hand shops as well – it’s rare to be lucky, but persistancy pays off! I’ve bought rolls of fabric at ridiculously low prices. And maybe you’re just looking for that 1 meter patterned fabric that you need for a small detail in your costume – maybe that fabric could originally have been a table cloth, bed sheets?
Jewellry with the perfect beads, with the right metal adornment, maybe even just beads and sequins can be found in 2nd hand shops.
Tools like sander, screwing machines drills can also be found used. I’ve even bought acrylic paint. Sure, the quality isn’t always the best, but if you take your time searching, you might end up finding just the thing you need at 1/10th the price it would’ve cost from new.
Hope this inspires people to go look for cheap materials and get crafting!