I met Kelsie earlier this year during PAX South. She was cosplaying as Aurora from the video game “Child of Light” and I absolutely loved her cosplay. Her dress and crown were beautiful and she even had a little blue effect in her hands for Igniculus, the blue firefly companion that aids Aurora throughout the game. I got a picture of her and didn’t really talk to her a whole lot since Jason and I were headed out.
The week following PAX, I was constantly checking out the #PAXSouth hashtag on Instagram and came across her account. I followed her and commented on it mentioning meeting her and we’ve been friends on Facebook ever since! She may even possibly help me with my Elizabeth Comstock cosplay if I ever get enough money for it.
Hometown: Tempe, AZ
Current city: Tucson, AZ
Q: How long have you’ve been cosplaying?
A: 8 years! What?! Time flies.
Q: What was your first ever cosplay and how old were you?
A: I think my first cosplay was Freshman year of college. I altered a Goodwill dress to look like Fiona from Shrek.
Q: What was the first con you ever attended?
A: Phoenix Comicon 2013
Q: Who or what introduced you to cosplay?
A: I’m not sure. I’ve been sewing for 11 years, and somewhere along the line I must have made a distinction between Halloween costumes and cosplay, but I’m not really sure how that happened. Gradually I guess?
Q: What is your favorite cosplay you’ve ever made?
A: Eek. That’s like asking someone to choose their favorite child! I think my Arwen cosplay is my favorite. I made every piece from scratch, and it is one costume that I have zero things I would change (which doesn’t happen often). It’s also really comfortable to wear.
Q: What cosplay was the most difficult to make? What new techniques did you learn from it?
A: I’m a huge Doctor Who fan, so two years ago I decided to tackle Madame Vastra. I had never made prosthetics before, so I did a lot of research beforehand to make sure I wouldn’t waste supplies. I think the end result ended up looking really great, but there are a few things I would change, were I to make her again. Particularly, it was difficult blending the edges of the prosthetic into my mouth and eyes because I had made the mask too thick. I learned so much from this project and the mask is one item I am most proud of making.
Q: What cosplays are you currently working on? When will you be debuting it/them?
A: *blush* I am currently working on Severus Snape, Hermione Granger (Yule Ball Dress), the Princess from Dragon’s Lair, and Edith Cushing and Lucille Sharpe from Crimson Peak. I go into fabric stores with one or two characters in mind and come out with several…ya know…just in case I get bored! Severus Snape and Hermione Granger we are wearing to a Harry Potter Phoenix Symphony Concert in October. The Princess from Dragon’s Lair will be finished soon; she’s been delayed by our recent move. Edith and Lucille will probably make an appearance in October or November.
Q: What’s your one dream cosplay if budget/time/skill weren’t an issue?
A: Ach. I tend to be frivolous. If I want it—I make it. But one costume that I’ve been wanting to make, but shy away from is Alice’s ribbon outfit from Alice Through the Looking Glass. That blouse is made from ribbons! WHAT? Colleen Atwood is my favorite designer, and I pretty much want to make everything she designs. I think the costume is awesome, but I really need a nice, lacefront, ash wig to pull off that character and I’ve been trying to limit my cosplay spending. But I do need the same wig to pull off Edith Cushing, so I’ll probably give in soon.
Q: What do you like/dislike about the cosplay community?
A: I love how creative everyone is and how welcoming. I think the only thing I personally stay away from is “sexy” versions of costumes—half because I am too afraid to draw attention to myself in that way and half because I value costume correctness. My goal when making a cosplay is to be as close to the character as possible. Don’t get me wrong, sexy costumes are a lot of work!! I just happen to personally appreciate the original designs more. I somehow, almost always, always manage to choose costumes that show no skin—and then I die of sweat!
Q: Who are your cosplay idols?
A: Mm. I love a lot of cosplayers, but a few of my favorites are: @angelacostumery, @idapod, @alexandriathegeek, @theweaslette, @vescosplay, @jathoris, @narakubrock, @maul_cosplay, @xheeheex
Q: Have you entered any contests? If so, how did you do? Would you do it again?
A: I entered a contest in 2013 at Phoenix Comicon. I absolutely would do it again. I got some good feedback that my costume was great quality but my stage presence lacked…funny because I started out college as an Opera major. But I’m shy and a tad bit awkward, so I knew exactly what they meant.
Q: When you’re not working on a cosplay, what do you do with your free time?
A: Well, I work weekdays as a business writer. I also like to write for fun; I have a few manuscripts that I am trying to get published…one day. And I love to read! Pretty much anything fantasy.
Q: If you could give one tip to new cosplayers, what would it be?
A: If you think a cosplay is too hard to make or you don’t have the right tools, think again! There is always a work around, and with enough time, energy, and creative thinking, you can make anything!
If you want to follow Kelsie’s work, check out all her different pages!