Hello all! I'm Tanglwyst de Holloway, runner of the Masquerade!
I have been judging competitions since 1988 and have 200+ under my belt. I've run about 30 competitions, and a dozen costume contests. This is definitely the biggest competition I've done and I am excited to bring this to you!
A little bit about the competition. We'll be using the International Costumer's Guild Guidelines and using categories for competitors. However, costume contests on this level are a bit different and we want to make sure everyone understands what is expected, there might be a few differences based upon your previous experience.
Cosplay costumers for comic cons look at costumes as a way to connect to their favorite characters, as part of the fandom. However, original characters or book interpretations are not really common. Mostly, you have people doing the impossible: translating ink and non-physics into a world that requires real stuff and actual physics. Making a Bayonetta cosplay entirely out of hair, etc. Making a costume that is already imagined is difficult, especially when the person creating the visuals has never apparently worn clothes, let alone sewn them.
Costumers who do a lot of original characters or interpretations from the written word are coming at it from a different place. They have no visuals to go from so they have to create them from descriptions alone. Something they never have to deal with is clothing that has no physics. Whether you're creating the clothes from LOTR or Scalzi's The Collapsing Empire, one thing you never have to wonder about is if the worlds have gravity. Since physics are assumed, that lets the costumer not have to deal with that improbability.
Because we want to be inclusive, we're listing the category descriptions as if the contestant is not familiar with the other side of it.
Important Fashion Tip: For costumes that are period recreations, anime, movie or tv, have reference photos with which to compare the finished product.
For original characters and non-visual inspiration such as Steampunk, costumes from books, or something straight out of your imagination, let the judges know in your documentation your inspiration, techniques, and backstory for the character.
On the website, there will be a form that you use to sign up for the contest. It will have a spot to upload your documentation so we can get it to the judges ahead of time. This is HIGHLY encouraged and saves time so the judges can focus upon looking at your work in person. You will also have your judging forms made available to you so you can read what the judges thought and get their tips to help you improve.
The deadline to sign up for the contest is May 31, 2019. If there is room, we will happily add folks on site, but those sign ups will have to be exhibition only.
So sign up once it opens September 3, 2018 on our website and get your documentation ready!