How do you deal with going to cons solo?

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#1 TorgHacker on 1 year ago

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to deal with going to cosplay cons solo?

I'm planning on going to PAX West, and doing at least one day of cosplay, but my particular cosplay requires assistance to get on.

#2 EXEC_HYMME_MACARON on 1 year ago

if you absolutely need assistance getting it on, the only suggestion I have is to ask around on that conventions forums or social media if there would be someone willing to help you. Be sure to state what you need help with and the time and day you plan on wearing the cosplay

#3 gypsy_girl on 1 year ago

I usually make sure that if I'm going to a con alone, that I have cosplays that are easy and comfortable.

#4 TMLiza on 1 year ago

If I am going to a con alone, I always go with cosplays I can get on/off myself so I do not have this issue. Do you have any friends you can meet on site to help you?

#5 Syon on 1 year ago

[QUOTE=TorgHacker;5066912]Does anyone have any suggestions on how to deal with going to cosplay cons solo?

I'm planning on going to PAX West, and doing at least one day of cosplay, but my particular cosplay requires assistance to get on.[/QUOTE]

I've done that more than once. Actually, the first time I went alone to a convention was the moment I discovered cosplay as a hobby for myself ;)
The second time, I traveled over 9000km to a convention alone, because it was just the perfect moment, where time, luck and money fell into place. The third time my friend got sick the day we planned to leave for the convention and the last time I simply had no one who wanted to accompany me.

So as I am an unfortunate lone wolf, I can at least give some suggestions on how to handle this.

1. Plan ahead: Figure out the local environment and ways how to get from A to B from the comfort of your home. Where to get food and drinks? How to get to your hotel? What way from your hotel to the convention...and so on. I did this two weeks ago, just to spare myself the discomfort of feeling lost in an unknown city, without someone at my side.

2. Make use of the convention program: Finally you have all the time in the world to go to all the panels you want, eat when you want, watch a contest, play games, go shopping...enjoy that freedom. As long as you are busy or at least have a few things in mind you want to do that weekend, you will not feel as lonly and you may actually start to like your solo-time.

3. Get out of your shell: I know its hard, but this is the moment, where you benefit a lot from starting conversations with strangers. I did this at BlizzCon 14 and one moment of braveness lead to me having a group to go with for breakfast, dinner and explore the area around the convention. It was definitly worth it.

Now to the cosplay problem: In the year where my friend got sick, I dressed up as good as I could on my own and packed everything else into a bag to get help from another friend at the convention itself. Depending on the costume, you could do that too. I'm sure almost all other cosplayers would help you getting into costume, if you ask them for help. If that isn't possible, you would need to either find a way to get completely dressed at the convention or ask if anyone is in the same hotel as you and would meet up to help getting dressed. Maybe you find another person stuck in the same situation and you could help each other out.

#6 Chiagirl on 1 year ago

If your costume needs assistance to get on and the convention isn't too far away, perhaps you could have a friend or family member help you get the whole thing on at home and simply head straight to the con afterwards? I had a con where my usual plan A had to back out due to a soccer match, and my replacement buddy wasn't really familiar with putting on wigs (I suck at that myself too). So I just had my mom help me get my wig and stuff on before my friend and I left for the con. It was only about an hour drive so it wasn't too bad, but it's really only a first day solution as if you're there for multiple days with multiple costumes that require help it won't work for all of them.

#7 Scunosi on 1 year ago

PAX West huh? Hopefully you got those tickets that just went out today then. :P

I've only done a few solo cons and they were all quite local so I didn't need very much extra planning. I just brought a bag for my things like usual and nothing outside the ordinary. I did also either not wear a costume or just wore something really easy/my kigu though.

Not to discourage you but unless you feel comfortable asking strangers for help personally I would advise against wearing something complex by yourself. Sure you maybe could get a fellow hotel-stayer's help in the morning, but what about when you're out and about during the day and something malfunctions and you need help again? Or when you need to go to the bathroom or up stairs or an escalator? I would do a test run and judge exactly how much assistance you would actually need and then decide if you'd be okay dealing with that alone (or potentially leaving things as-is if they break or fall off while you're wearing them) for the majority of the day.

Also while most cons are probably some of the best places to ask strangers for help due to the general happy, camaraderie feeling of cons, PAX West isn't a very cosplay-heavy con so others may be less inclined to help with cosplay-specific requests, in part 'cuz they may just not know how to. Even a cosplay repair booth isn't guaranteed as in the past they've only ever had them if they're sponsored by an attending vendor, not the con itself.

#8 walkerofdarknes on 1 year ago

I'd also agree with the other folks, but I'll add in one more option: bribery. I had a cosplay that required some help, and in order to get it done I had one of my friends go out with me on the condition that I pay for gas. I also kicked in some quality beer for the friend. They drove me out, helped me get into costume and then left me there with a message "I'll be back at 5." 5 came around, they found me, helped me out of costume and drove me home. They claim to have waited on drinking the beer until that evening, but I'm not so sure....

I'd also recommend that you check Facebook and search "cosplay (name of your town/county/region)". I found a cosplay group in my area, and when I mentioned I might need help this time, several of them with simpler cosplays said they'd also be at the con and would gladly help me suit up. And it might also let you find someone in your area to kibitz with.

#9 CS3 on 1 year ago

Practice ways of getting your costume on by yourself or use objects to help like walls, floor, chair. Going to a con solo sucks I've cancelled going to cons if I couldn't find someone to go with.

#10 Dr Tweed on 1 year ago

[QUOTE=Syon;5066924] the first time I went alone to a convention was the moment I discovered cosplay as a hobby for myself...

Make use of the convention program: Finally you have all the time in the world to go to all the panels you want, eat when you want, watch a contest, play games, go shopping...enjoy that freedom.

Get out of your shell...this is the moment where you benefit a lot from starting conversations with strangers... [/QUOTE]

Yes yes yes on every point!

My daughter got me into Cosplay, and for the first several years we went together.

Then I got REALLY into Cosplay and wanted to go to a bunch of Cons she didn't want to go to. So I went by myself, and had a great time. Truly it's when I discovered Cosplay as a hobby for myself, as you well put it.

Yes as you say I use the programme to see all the panels I want to see. I shop and eat suiting only my own whims. Do I ever feel lonely? Not a bit. There are potential new friends all around. That's the thing about the cosplay community: everyone I meet is cool.

About putting on costumes and makeup yes I only do Cosplays I can handle by myself.

And just like Gypsy Girl, all of my Cosplays are easy and comfortable.

#11 scribblingninja on 1 year ago

I've been to cons on my own, although usually I have someone help with any bits of my costume that need extra hands, and walk with me at least most of the way to the convention centre. My fella likes hanging around in the city library, which is close enough to the only convention I generally go to that by the time we part ways I'm surrounded by other cosplayers anyway.

I have more trouble being in the actual convention and having no one to talk to. (At. I mean talk AT.) Although I have made some pretty cool friends by just... hanging out with people at photoshoots and stuff.

I know when I did my Erza cosplay, bits of it fell off occasionally. (Craft foam. *sigh) But even then, people are usually happy to help out a random stranger.

#12 Rosendust on 1 year ago

For me, I go to cons with my friends-but I'd feel very uncomfortable asking them for help. I usually just ask my mom to help me(esp. If it's something simple like a wig.) I suggest that comfortable cosplays are the key. But at my main 3 cons, I have had staff members help me in a pinch.

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