Costume design club churns out cosplays

Photo courtesy of GT Costume Design Committee

Made up of approximately 15 members, the Georgia Tech Costume Design Community meets every Friday at 4 p.m. in the College of Computing.

“Basically we are a support group for cosplayers,” said co-president, second-year EIA Kat Hueber. “We usually have a short workshop, on say, wigs, or makeup or sewing. Then we just hang out and chat about what we’ve been making. It is a very casual atmosphere.”

Members of the club tend to be avid cosplayers who are actively making various costumes.

“Being a cosplayer in college makes you a bad roommate,” Hueber said. “Right now in my common area there is a mess of butcher paper, sharpies, hot glue and needles due to the project I’m currently working on.”

The paint on her shoes attests to the fact that the projects she works on take on a life of their own. All of the photos on her phone seem to be of previous projects or prospective projects.

“Most of the costumes that the members of the club work on are of anime or video game characters, but I also enjoy musical cosplay.  Right now, I am working on costume design for the musical, ‘Hamilton.’ Costume design is the hardest part of the process. Deciding what materials you are going to use and how you are going to achieve your look is difficult, especially if it is going to include materials you have not necessarily worked with before.”

This is where the club helps Hueber in her cosplay endeavors. During the week she sends texts and pictures to club members, sharing her tedious struggles with what she calls her support group.

The group meets once a week, and at each of their meetings, members of the Costume Design Community work on a specific portion of costume design, sharing their skills in workshops.

After a short PowerPoint on the workshop, a short demonstration is given and then the members discuss problems they have with the skill set being discussed that week or with current projects.

Another of the group’s main attractions aiding fellow cosplayers and commiserating over the process of designing and creating a costume, the club also has photo-shoots once a semester. This semester the photo-shoot is scheduled for March, leaving time for finishing some current projects.

Hueber, for example, is good at making wigs and applying costume make-up. She swears by authentic-looking wigs that she buys and dyes herself to achieve the correct color.

“Buying and dyeing a wig might seem like a very tedious process, but it is much cheaper than bleaching and dying your own hair as many cosplayers do,” Hueber said.

While, Hueber believes that design is the hardest part of the craft, she also believes that simpler looking costumes are much more difficult to pull off.

For example, the cosplays Hueber has made for two different anime characters, Princess Kraehe from the anime “Princess Tutu” and “Neon Genesis Evangelion’s” Asuka Langley, contrast significantly in terms of complexity as one had an intricate feather skirt the other consisted of a simple jumper school uniform.

Hueber found that making the feather skirt was a tedious process because it involved copious amounts of tulle and hot glue. However, she found the pleats and straight lines of her Asuka Langley cosplay to be significantly more difficult to achieve.

Correction: March 1, 2016
A previous version of this article stated that the name of the organization is Georgia Tech Costume Design Committee. The name of the organization is Georgia Tech Costume Design Community.