Even though I don’t live in a household where things need secured or tied down on a regular basis, there are a pile of bungee cords in the garage. Maybe they were from the last time I moved or purchased an oversized bookshelf that didn’t really fit in my car? It’s hard to say, but I hesitate to give them away because they don’t take up much room and they’re handy. That’s how hoarding starts, isn’t it? Despite coming up with ways to use items like bungee cords in cosplay, I promise I don’t have piles of everyday objects waiting to be repurposed covering my house. Really.
But, if like me, you do happen to have more bungee or elastic cords on hand than you need, here are five ways you can put them to use for cosplay.
Articulating cosplay wings – If I was more seriously committed to cosplay (read: if I made more time to devote to cosplay), making articulating wings would be on my dream list. It would be a great educational experience, and on a pure visual level, they always look impressive. You can use cable or cord in the design to control the movement of the wings. The above video from Axceleration Cosplay shows one way to approach it.
Adding texture – If your fabric or armor needs piping running down the sides, a bungee cord might fit the bill. They come in different thicknesses and lengths. You can attach the cord to fabric by sewing it on (using thin fishing line will keep it hidden) or maybe gluing it or using Velcro. Those last two options would be tricky but possible. If you’re attaching the cord to something like craft foam or Worbla, glue is the best option. You can seal the cord and paint it before or after you secure it to the armor.
Belt – Want a unique belt for your character? Go with a bungee cord rather than the usual flat and wide option. I can’t think of any existing characters who have a cylindrical belt at the moment, but you could make it work for your original designs. I could see the accessory fitting into a steampunk or military look.
Elaborate pack – Go crazy and actually use the bungee cord for its original purpose: holding stuff down! If you’re dressing as a peddler, a backpacker, a traveler, or any one of a number of characters who carry a lot of stuff, use bungee cords for practical and decorative purposes.
Boot or gauntlet cuffs – Need to stack up piping on the tops of your boots or gauntlets/arm bracers? You can put down horizontal rows of bungee cords and seal and paint right over them. You can attach the cords right to the boot or gauntlet or secure them to craft foam and then glue the craft foam down. If using the cords horizontally doesn’t work, cut them into shorter lengths and line them up vertically a la the White Ranger’s boots from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (pictured above, photo via eBay).
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.