A Chat with: Lauren of Dresses and Capes

April 7, 2017

Hey Gang!

 I'm so excited to be doing interviews again, it's been such a long time! I'm so excited to introduce you guys to Lauren, the awesome cosplayer and seamstress behind the blog Dresses and Capes. I discovered her on instagram right after she completed the most amazing Kiki's Delivery Service, and I thought, I have to get her on the blog! So without further ado, let's get to know a little about her.

Tell us a little about yourself?
Hi, I’m Lauren a fashion blogger, comic book enthusiasts, avid moviegoer, and casual cosplayer. Geez, when I describe myself I sound so all-over the place! I can’t help it though. I have a lot of different interest, that all take up a little bit of my time leading to me having no time!

How long have you been cosplaying?

I actually just started cosplaying in fall of 2014. I always admired cosplayers, and thought I would never have their skill or talent, so I never tried. Then, all of a sudden I decided to go to a local small con, and decided to cosplay something very simple, River Song from Doctor Who. It seemed like a natural fit because I love Doctor Who and River and I have the same hair! Looking back, I am somewhat embarrassed about how little effort I put into this first cosplay. I actually made the whole thing the night before, but at the time I was so proud and happy to cosplay a character I love.

What are some of your hobbies?
Well, as I mentioned I also am a fashion blogger (granted I am WAY behind on posting). I love to dress up, especially in vintage pieces, and sashay around. One of my favorite quotes is about being dressed up for life, because life is the occasion.

I also am a huge comic book and movie nerd. My love of comic books actually started thanks to my mom, who loved the X-men growing up. We used to watch the cartoon together on TV, and she would randomly bring me comic books (ranging from X-men to Spider-Woman to Barbie’s Adventures). My mom, is such a huge support in my love of nerdom that I don’t know what I would do without her. In regards to movies, almost every weekend during the summer I am at the movie theater seeing the latest release and discussing it with anyone who will listen. I am also a big fan of classic Hollywood films; two of my favorite films are “Rear Window” and “A Streetcar Named Desire”.

Do you prefer to cosplay alone? or with others?
Well, I only did my first group cosplay recently and had a blast! But, there is something nice about cosplaying alone too. There is a bit less stress about how your cosplay will look next your counterparts, and you don’t have to worry about cohesiveness.
But I would definitely do another group cosplay!

What is your most expensive cosplay?
The hard question, haha! I think my most expensive cosplay was my most recent one of Sombra from Overwatch. While the materials for her coat were not that expensive (thank the gods for the Fashion District), her bodysuit and wig were quite expensive. I usually make every part of my cosplay myself but this time I decided to just order her bodysuit online, and I’m happy I did, as I don’t think I would have been able to find a fabric that would match her design. And for her wig, I bought a pretty high quality ombre wig that I dyed and styled myself (her wig consists of two separate wigs I had to sew together). In addition, I always seem to rack up a lot of little costs along the way; a bit of glue here, some worbla there, and some more spray paint for good measure.

But I feel it was all worth it, as I plan to wear Sombra again for an upcoming shoot and love how the whole cosplay came out. I will be making a few adjustments though.

What is your favorite costume?
My favorite cosplay is actually tied between Sombra and my Sorceress Kiki. I love Sombra because it was an incredibly challenging cosplay to make but so rewarding to see it all come together. It was also amazing to walk the convention floor and have people immediately recognize who I was. Plus, I so rarely do “serious” characters that it was fun (and somewhat challenging) to not smile in pictures.

I love my Sorceress Kiki cosplay, because it was completely an original idea that I was able to create from the ground up, especially with a character I love and relate to. I designed the cosplay on paper first, and adjusted it fit my capabilities and new vision along the way. When I wore it for the first time, it was so exciting to see people slowly recognize who I was. Even though I was not immediately recognizable, it was extra special when someone loved my original design.  

What was your first convention?
My first convention was Long Beach Comic-con. I mentioned it a bit in an earlier question how I did a quick cosplay of River Song for it, and how it kicked off my love of cosplaying. After seeing so many people’s amazing cosplays, I wanted to join in on the fun.

If you could do your dream cosplay? what would it be and why?
Hmm, my dream cosplay? It would probably be the Last Unicorn but a redesign version that is more fairytale like (I love unicorns and loved this movie growing up) or an armored version of Korra from Avatar the Legend of Korra (I technically did this already but I know I could do a better version now).

What got you into cosplaying?
I have always loved dressing up, and cosplay was the natural progression. When I was a kid, I actually was not allowed to celebrate Halloween so when I entered college I went crazy at Halloween. My friend and I would plan these elaborate costumes that we would make from crafts supplies and clothes from the thrift store, but man! We looked good!
Plus, I had reached the level of nerdom where it was time to start cosplaying, haha!

Do you sew or buy your costumes?
I pretty much make all my costumes now, but I did end up buying the bodysuit for my Sombra cosplay. However, when I first started I would buy clothing and alter it to fit my cosplay to the best of my ability. It was a struggle because I always felt like I couldn’t fully achieve my vision this way, and it really forced me to learn how to sew and fabricate.

Any advice for poc cosplayers concerned about being outside their skin tone?
Just do it. I have cosplayed characters that were different races and skin tones, and while some people may trumpet only cosplaying a character that looks like you, I feel like that is complete and utter bullshit. If you love a character, cosplay that character! It was nerve wracking for me the first time I did it, but now I just keep pushing forward. There will be naysayers on the sidelines, but look at the positive comments and find pride in yourself.

Who are a few of your favorite cosplayers?

Oh gosh, there are so many. I really love arkadycosplay, toughtink, kixzune, cheyennejazwise, angiviper, hanecosplay, caleighallen, and theofficialariel. All of them are amazing at what they do, and really inspire me to keep going!

You can find more of Lauren on Instagram.

 Bloglovin | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube | Twitch Until Next Time, Stay Nerdy, ~Spokhette!~

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