For many cosplay pros the corset is an essential component of the costume making process. Why? Most animated and comic book characters have unnatural, dramatic proportions that can be best achieved with the help of a cinching corset.
We connected with a few of our cosplay customers and asked them to share some tips and tricks for using corsets for cosplay ... and of course show off their skills! See their creations below.
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Crystal Rose Schaefer - @crystalrosecreations
DominoPhoto credit: Joshua D. Muse
BeetlejuicePhoto credit: York in a Box
How long have you done cosplay? 4 years
Tell us about the work you did to create these looks: A lot of my work is modified after thrifted clothing or commissioned cosplays from various artists and companies from all around the globe. I try to find characters that suit my personality and that are good on the wallet! I am a cosplayer on a budget so finding a character I love with a design that won't cost a pretty penny is a huge bonus! Most of the characters I do range from all types of fandoms including Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, and a ton more! A lot of pieces from my cosplayers are recycled to make other cosplay such as arm bracers, corsets, and even wigs!
Tips or tricks for cosplay with a corset: Anybody of any size can wear a corset. However I know a lot of my plus size men and women have trouble when it comes to spandex such as Spider-Man costumes or superhero costumes. Some don't like the extra pudge they have in the belly area when wearing Spandex which is totally understandable. I myself do not like wearing Spandex without a corset. Wearing a corset while wearing Spandex helps to smooth out the body to make the spandex fit more comfortably. My recommendation is to wear shapewear over the corset to help smooth out the lines so they don't show through the spandex or other cosplays.
Favorite corset style and fabric for cosplay? My favorite corset style is the CS-426 longline in black cotton. The reason why I like the long line is because of my long torso and it has tummy control which helps to squish my belly. I also prefer black because black goes with everything and it's easier to blend in with clothing either under or over. I like cotton because it's easier to clean rather than satin. I also do recommend mesh since I know some cosplays can be overheating and mesh helps to breathe and air out sweat and is better with flexibility!
Sarah Spaceman - @sarahspaceman
Peridot (corsetted vs uncorsetted)
How long have you done cosplay? 7 years
Why do you use corsets in your cosplay? Because artists draw characters with waists that can only be achieved through laces and bones.
Tips or tricks for cosplay with a corset: Make sure to pattern with the measurements of the corset on the body. Remember that an overbust corset can hold up the weight of your hoop skirt, your wings and your boobs
Favorite corset style and fabric for cosplay? Definitely love mesh for under ballgowns.
Paris Burns - @parisburns
Black Canary Photo credit: 8 Bit & Over
'66 RobinPhoto credit: 8 Bit & Over
Tina BelcherPhoto credit: 8 Bit & Over
How long have you done cosplay? I completed my first cosplay in 2013 at Oz Comic Con in Perth. Before then I was the person who would spend months preparing for any dress up parties I could get an invite to.
Tell us about the work you did to create these looks: For my Black Canary cosplay I really wanted to focus on capturing the pin-up style of the Bruce Timm art it was based on. I had this in mind when doing my make-up and styling my wig, both of which were inspired by Veronica Lake. The bodysuit and jacket were both second hand items that I heavily altered to get the right fit for my body. I'm also wearing the Steel Boned Underbust Waspie Corset in Cotton (CS-201) underneath my bodysuit to finish off the look.
Tips or tricks for cosplay with a corset: It is definitely worth investing in a quality corset that is the correct fit for you and getting used to wearing long before the day of the convention. If you plan on wearing the corset underneath your costume I would also recommend starting with a skin toned corset and using thick quality tights and bodysuits to smooth everything out, especially for underneath tight stretch fabrics.
Favorite corset style and fabric for cosplay? I love to wear the cotton or mesh underbust waspie. I find that it's very discrete and incredibly comfortable for those long days at the convention.
Lindsey Black - @mslindseyblack
How long have you done cosplay? 4 years
Tell us about the work you did to create these looks: All my costumes are custom made.
Tips or tricks for cosplay with a corset: Pick stretchy material that will help flatter all your curves!
Why do you use a corset for cosplay? Makes the character look more like the comic book. Gives your costume more of a fantasy look.
Crimsyn - @crimsyn.co
RyukPhoto credit: VSM Mixed Media
FiddlestickPhoto credit: Katie Lee KTLFilms
Ryuk - prep
How long have you done cosplay? 4 years
Tell us about the work you did to create these looks: The two cosplays I create that utilize corsets are my Ryuk (Death Note) and my Fiddlesticks (League of Legends) cosplays. For each cosplay, I went through a 3 month building period to construct these cosplay that I documented through blogs on my website.
For Ryuk, I wanted to create the dramatic cartoon-like silhouette just like the character has in the anime, and I figured a corset was the best way to do that! I'm actually very happy that I chose to do so, because I ended up using the corset to help install my wings. Corsets are very sturdy and support the body, so I was able to attach the harness of my wings to the corset to stabilize them. In the end the wings were INCREDIBLY sturdy and supported a 13 foot wing span all thanks to a wonderful Orchard Corset.
For Fiddlesticks, I wanted to create another cartoon-like silhouette. Since this character is a scarecrow, he is very slender and has a strong silhouette, and what better way to achieve that than with a corset! Through this building process I ended up using a TON of wig fibers to create hay and wheat to accentuate the feel of a scarecrow. I made large shoulderpads that had hay and wheat shooting out of them, however, due to their size they needed extra support. I was able to stabilized the shoulderpads by running elastic and nylon belts into the corset. This turned out to be a large success and was extremely comfortable and durable through all the running that happens at large conventions.
Tips or tricks for cosplay with a corset: Corsets are a great tool that can be used in a variety of ways. I tend to use them to create specific silhouettes as well as foundation devices to support larger pieces of a costume, but there are many more ways than that to use them!
Also, don't be afraid to customize and decorate your corset! If your character has gems, fabric, or anything else that goes over the corset, feel free to apply that to the corset. Rhinestones and Corsets will always look beautiful together! ;)
Why do you use a corset for cosplay? I love using the CS-411 in Black Mesh. The CS-411 Mesh fits my male body shape the best and is most comfortable. Also, the Mesh is thinner than other fabrics and is easier to hide underneath costumes so they aren't seen in photos. I chose black because Ryuk has a black bodysuit, so it wouldn't have been seen, but a beige color would work as well!
Please remember: We know it’s redundant (and yes, we say it a lot!) but the best rule for using a corset for cosplay is to have a corset that suits your measurements. If a corset fits you well, it will be more comfortable to wear during long events or photoshoots, you’ll have an easier time lacing it up, and you’ll be able to achieve a dramatic shape and be comfortable!