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Cosplay Club couture

Maddison Behringer / THE GATEPOST

By Ryan O’Connell

Associate Editor

By Fransisco Omar Fernandez Rodriguez

Interim Asst. Arts & Features Editor

The newly created Cosplay Club rolled out the red carpet for a crowd of costumed students at their first event in the McCarthy Forum, Feb. 7.

Rileigh Kelley, sophomore fashion design and retailing major and president of the Cosplay Club, said the red carpet roll out was an opportunity to promote what the club is all about. 

Formed in December 2023, she said the goal of Cosplay Club is to teach people skills useful for cosplay, such as sewing, styling, or building props. 

She added it’s also meant to be a space for people to find their creativity and to build both confidence and success in the hobby, but also invites those who are just interested in exploring the concept.

Kelley was dressed as Mitsuri Kanroji from the anime “Demon Slayer,” a character she said she has cosplayed at least six times. 

“I love this character a lot,” she said. “She’s just really funny - she’s just a really silly character. I also really like her character design. I love her hair, a lot of the reason I decided to cosplay her was because I wanted to style this wig.”

She said she has been cosplaying for over eight years, since she was 12, but really became invested in the hobby only three years ago, at 17. 

She said in the past she has cosplayed Kokomi from the videogame “Genshin Impact,” Serena from the “Pokémon” franchise, and Tohru from the anime “Fruits Basket,” among other characters.

Kelley said she started the Cosplay Club because she knew there had been public interest in it before, and wanted to create a space for people who shared the hobby.

“One day I went up to Aili and I said, ‘Aili, we should start a cosplay club,’ and she said, ‘Sure,’” she added.

Aili Schiavoni, sophomore fashion design and retailing major and the vice president of the Cosplay Club, cosplayed Hato Higashikata from “JoJolion,” part 8 of the anime and manga series “JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.”

Schiavoni said cosplay is the reason she became a fashion major.

“I’ve been cosplaying since before I knew what the word ‘cosplay’ meant,” she said. 

She added as a child, she would comb through family member’s closets, looking for clothes she could wear to resemble characters she liked - mentioning Tetra and Medli from “The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker,” or Samus Aran of “Metroid.”

“I never played a single ‘Metroid’ game, but I liked the way she looked,” she added. “So I took a pair of Christmas pajamas and I painted them to look like her suit.”

Schiavoni said she was very excited about the red carpet event, and Cosplay Club has plans to do a lot more as the semester continues. 

She added the organization plans to offer workshops teaching sewing, a costume karaoke event, a cosplay showcase, a cosplay coffeehouse, a group trip to a renaissance fair, and more.

Oliver Swanson, a freshman international business major, also attended the event. He said he has not done cosplays before but has been wanting to both try out building and wearing cosplay.

He said he has been into anime for a while and sees cosplaying as a fun way to show appreciation for those series. 

He added he has some characters in mind that he wants to cosplay. He said, “I’m really thinking between these two: Sung Jinwoo from ‘Solo Leveling,’ the main character of the series, or Arthur Leywin from ‘The Beginning After The End.’ I like both of them.”

He said he’s only been to one convention so far - Comic-Con - on a trip with FSU’s Comic Book Club. He said he plans on going to two more through FSU clubs as well - PAX East, through the Gaming Club, and Anime Boston through the Anime Club.

In Cosplay Club he has also been learning how to sew. He added, “Also I’m enjoying sewing so far. I’m not gonna lie, it’s really fun. I think people need to give sewing a try.”



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