May 8, 2014

DIY Cosplay Repair Kit

Whether you're wearing a costume to a convention for the first time or the tenth time, things can go wrong. Wardrobe malfunctions are a common cosplay problem, but if you're lucky, you can repair them on the go at the convention without having to trek back to the hotel and taking the costume off. Safety pins, super glue, or Q-tips for quick makeup fixes can be life savers while cosplaying, and if there's not a Captain Patch-It wandering around to save the day, you can carry some basics with you without having to drag a giant bag around. You can fit a a lot of essentials inside an empty pill bottle, and it only takes about 15 minutes to pull it together.

Supplies for a DIY Cosplay Repair Kit:
Empty pill bottle, washed and dried - if you don't have any, ask a friend or relative. Lots of people save them. You can also buy them from eBay if necessary (they would make great gifts for cosplay pals - the repair kits that is, not the empty bottles).

Any small items you can use for quick and dirty repairs. I recommend anything from the below list that you can fit in the bottle:
- Paper clips
- Safety pins
- Buttons
- Q-tip (cut in half)
- Rubberband or ponytail holder
- Baby binder clip
- A strip of sticky back Velcro
- An alcohol swab and mascara wand (good for makeup fixes)
- Mini tubes of Krazy glue
- Glue dots
- Needle (cover the tip with a dot of clay or foam if possible) and thread
- Bobby pins
- X-acto blade (if you can cover the edge)
- Straight pins (again, cover the tip if you can)

Your desk is a wonderful place to raid for supplies.

Remember, this kit will have items for temporary fixes only. Call it your MacGyver stash. It's mean to keep you out and about in your costume, ready for photoshoots and adoration. You can handle permanent fixes from the comforts of your hotel room or at home.

When you've gathered all the items you'd like to include in your cosplay repair kit, the next step is to see what fits. You want to be able to turn the bottle over or fish items out, so don't stuff it so full that the items don't move. If you have anything like sticky back Velcro, roll up a few inches of it and put it in the bottom of the bottle. Add in other items around it. You'll be surprised at what you can get into a standard sized pill bottle:

My repair kit includes Velcro, a Q-tip, an alcohol swab, a mascara wand, 2 buttons, 2 paper clips, 3 safety pins (different sizes), 1 rubber band, 1 mini binder clip, and 2 bobby pins.

When you're done, you have a tiny and portable emergency cosplay kit that can fit into a small bag or a big pocket. You can safety pin a ripped seam together, glue or velcro an accessory or prop back into place, take care of a makeup mess up, or secure a wig or piece of clothing. The list goes on. If you want to take it to the next step, you can create a fun label and paint the cap.

Let me know what items you'd include in your on-the-go cosplay repair kit.

PS: My fingernails are not diseased; I painted them with a Darth Maul pattern for Revenge of the Fifth.


  1. This is so smart! I'm definitely going to put one of these together for my next con.

  2. Neat idea and very convenient.

    1. I like that it's so small! I feel like I should carry it my purse for regular wardrobe malfunctions, too.

  3. This is a GREAT idea! I usually carry around safety pins, about a foot of duct tap rolled up, and some Band Aids (because you never know when your shoes will get hungry...).

    1. Adding Band-aids is such a good idea!

  4. While you desperately hope and pray to the cosplay gods that nothing goes wrong with your cosplay at Comic Con, it always helps to be prepared. Be sure to have your cosplay repair kit packed in your Comic Con survival bag just in case anything does happen to go wrong.

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