The termCosplay” generally refers to costume play and involves people dressing up as characters from anime, manga, books, movies, tv shows, video games and more. The term “cosplay” came into existence in Japan in 1984. Since then, it has grown in popularity with Comic Cons and other conventions that invite cosplayers to come dressed up. 

#28DaysofBlackCosplay is a hashtag that was started in 2015 by Chaka Cumberbatch-Tinsley. The hashtag was created to create a space for African American cosplayers. Since 2015, it has grown in popularity and has been a way to show that African American cosplayers are a large part of the cosplay community. The hashtag was started in February, as it is African American History Month, but it is used throughout the year as well. For many years representation of African American cosplayers has been absent, and this hashtag highlights their amazing work and empowers them. 

If you’re interested in cosplay or would like to gain inspiration, simply google #28daysofblackcosplay and look at all the awesome costumes that come up! Also, you can check out these books on Cosplay at the library to learn how to make your own.

Cosplay : a history : the builders, fans, and makers who bring your favorite stories to life by Andrew Liptak

This look at the colorful and complex history of cosplay and fandom fashion examines the relationship between franchises and the cosplayers they inspire and the technology that helps bring the details of costumes to life.

Creative cosplay : selecting & sewing costumes way beyond basic by Amanda Haas

An inspirational guide to the art of making designer-quality costumes. From how to research and decide what costume you want to make, to fabric selection, to sewing guidelines, to how to ultimately wear your costume at a convention or with friends-this book has it all.

Casual cosplay : character-inspired fashion you can wear anywhere by Krystal Everdeen

Join style maven Krystal Everdeen and friends as they channel not only classic Disney characters, but also Pixar, Marvel, Harry Potter, and Star Wars too. Packed with beautiful four-color photos, shopping lists, and styling tips, this step-by-step guide helps you create your own looks at home by pulling pieces from your closet, scouring vintage and resale stores, and adding inexpensive basics. 

Cosplay Fabric FX : painting, dyeing & weathering costumes like a pro by Julianna Franchini

Learn key techniques and get detailed how-to instructions from a veteran cosplayer on special effects to enhance tiny details and give props and cosplays more dimension. Painting on fabric and weathering can transform cosplays from a simple costume to a garment that tells an entire story.

Level up! Creative cosplay : costume design & creation, SFX makeup, LED basics & more by Amanda Haas

Includes an in-depth look into patterning and design, fabric information on specialty fabrics, stabilizers, painting, dyeing and more. Creative Cosplay, helps newer cosplayers add new skills and advance their skill sets with steady guidance that takes them from their sketchbook to the convention floor and beyond.

The hero’s closet : sewing for cosplay and costuming by Gillian Conahan

This essential handbook offers detailed, step-by-step instructions that cover the basics of sewing costumes (which often require skills not found in standard sewing guides) to help even the most novice sewists create the costumes of their dreams. A skilled crafter and avid cosplayer, Gillian Conahan walks readers through finding inspiration online and through their fandom; shares insight into translating character art into real-world garments; and offers advice on pattern selection, alterations, fabrics, and embellishment techniques.

Cosplay World by Brian Ashcraft