If you’re hitting a cosplay roadblock or missing some key component for your costume, take a look around whatever room you’re in. You might have something on hand that you can repurpose or borrow for a costume without running an errand or spending more money. For this installment of ideas for using everyday objects in costumes, I decided to take a different approach than usual and look around items on my desk to see if I could find five things – big or small – to use in a costume. Fortunately, my desk is crowded with stuff. Take a look:
Round lip balm tin – My lip balm from Lush Cosmetics is small but mighty. Besides making me feeling like I’m getting a sugary treat when I put it on (it’s honey-flavored and no, I don’t eat it), it’s a handy size and shape and can be split into two pieces. This could be used as an armor or crown embellishment, filled with resin and turned into a stunning and magical pendant or ring, or I could rig it with some LEDs to make a lighted accessory for a cyberpunk costume.
Darth Maul watch tin – Burger King had Star Wars watches available for purchase back in 2005, and they came in cylindrical tins. The watches are actually far cooler than what I’d expect from a fast food joint, and when I found a toy store selling them for for just a few bucks, I stocked up. The tin is just over five inches tall, and it’s lightweight. I could: paint and age it and make it a cool accessory for a steampunk belt (bonus: it’s functional and could hold cash and other necessities), remove the lid and turn it into a jewel, or paint it to match my costume and use it as a purse. For example, if I painted the tin to look like R2-D2, it would go well with a C-3PO-inspired dress.
iPad – My hand-me-down iPad lives on my desk most days so that I can stream television while I’m working on tasks that don’t require my full attention (filing, organizing emails, editing photos, etc). It’s a handy gadget that I turn to for a few activities, and I’d definitely consider using it for cosplay purposes. You can attach your iPad to a t-shirt you don’t mind cutting up and incorporating it into a television, computer, or iPad costume. If you can rig a controller, you can become a playable console or arcade game.
GoPro gooseneck – The flexible stand and arm I use for my GoPro is off to the side on top of my desk because I simply don’t have a better place to put it. I’d be loathe to wreck it for the sake of a costume, but the bendy arm has possibilities. Left as is, you could secure the arm with a GoPro to your shoulder and dress as a reporter – play it straight or apply a theme to it and become a cyborg or alien reporter. If you are willing to chop it, remove the base and camera stand and use the gooseneck in a Borg costume.
Toys – I cover my desk with toys because I like to be constantly reminded of stories and characters that make me happy. Some of the figures on my desk right now: Groot, Unikitty, Hellboy, Toothless, and Jake the Dog. If you also make your desk a happier place with toys, you can make a toy collector costume. Be a walking display case! If the toys are loose, place them on card backs or in bags and attach those to your costume with Velcro. If you want to attach the toys to the fabric directly, sew them on with fishing wire.