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This LibGuide features information and resources on some of the many different aspects of cosplay, including costume creation, fandoms, and conventions.

About this Guide

While it is aimed at those who may not be especially familiar with cosplay, we hope it will be helpful for novice and experienced cosplayers alike!

What is Cosplay?


The term "cosplay" refers to the activity of dressing up like a favorite character and comes from the words "costume" and "play." While cosplay is often associated with anime and comic books, cosplayers find inspiration from a wide range of sources, including novels and television series. Costume design and assembly is often a big part of cosplay, and many cosplayers make their own. Costumes may be simple or elaborate, homemade or purchased, but all allow their wearers to embody a character of their choosing.

General Information

Cosplay on Wikipedia

The cosplay entry in Wikipedia has a good overview of the history and practice of cosplay.

Cosplay at Kotaku

The cosplay area of this video game-focused blog features photographs of cosplayers and costumes from conventions and around the Web.

Cosplay basics: a beginners guide to the art of costume play by Jennifer Culp

This book, available through the Commonwealth eBook Collections, provides basic information on cosplay and features cosplayers from many different fandoms.

Cosplay by Yuki Takasou

This book, available for request at several libraries in the Minuteman Library Network, provides information on planning, designing, and construction costumes, as tips on how to attend cosplay events.

Cosplay Books in the Library

Local Groups and Pages

There are many cosplayers and cosplay groups/communities based in Massachusetts. Here are a few to get you started:

AE Cosplay

A Massachusetts-based Facebook community focused on cosplay.

New England Cosplay Community

Information on and photographs of events hosted by the New England Cosplay Community.

Cosplayer Nation

A Facebook page featuring cosplay photographs and events, both locally and across the United States.

Cosplay at Anime Boston

Information on Cosplay at one of the largest conventions in the Northeast.

Major Conventions

New York Comic Con

Held in New York City each October, the New York Comic Con is the largest con in the country.

Comic-Con International: San Diego

This four-day con is held each July and was the largest convention in the United States for many years.

PAX East

Pax East is a 3-day video game convention held in Boston.

C2E2: Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo

Each April, this multi-genre pop culture convention features the C2E2 Crown Championship of Cosplay, the country's largest and most prestigious cosplay competition.