How did I become a cosplay medic? I find we get this question a lot and it surprises people how far back this goes for me. When I was in high school I was a techie and stagehand, and after a particularly rough startup to my freshman year musical, I decided to put together a small Tupperware container of fix-it stuff. My friends and I started referring to it as the “Techie-Emergency Kit: Everything You Need When An Actor Messes Up”. I had one every year and even found the kit when I went back to see a performance for which my sister was the student tech director.
It wouldn’t be long then that I was in college and my friends got me to go and cosplay at the local con in Pittsburgh called Tekko. From then on I had my little container in my backpack marked “Cosplay Emergency Kit” and even began integrating it into the cosplays as I got better. In 2015 I entered a cosplay competition as Astrid from How to Train your Dragon 2 and for the small hip pouch she has I made a roll up repair kit. While waiting back stage to do walk one for the masquerade I see a girl talking to one of the judges and he points to me, turns out her armor broke and the judge remembered my kit. Right before walk-on started, I was able to fix the armor piece that held the weight of the cape and she rocked it across the stage. Honestly, it was like a light came on and it hit me, that is what I want to do!
From that point on I started piecing and gathering the things I thought I would need. Starting with a backpack, to a hikers frame, to my current molle vest; changing out supplies based on before and after con stock, current trends in cosplay, and upgrading to the more efficient gear I do my best to be the most prepared I can. Now I can walk the con helping people with by just having supplies, or trouble shooting the problem whether it’s a safety pin or a soldering iron.
What is in my kit? “Everything but a sewing machine” often joked when I’m asked. Honestly, there is a ton in my kit, I have your basics like safety pins and needles with thread, but I also have a soldering kit, USB glue gun, a full med kit, and wig styling gear. One of my favorite things tucked into my kit is my tape pocket, it has duct tape kept in convenient strips on wax paper as well as double sided carpet tape that I use for just about everything.
I know there can be toxic parts of the community but ever since joining the conventions scene, I have met such a wonderful group of friends from all over the world. Not only that but since starting medic I have been able to meet so many more people and go to more conventions all over. This year I even joined up with a bunch of fellow cosplay repair medics at DragonCon and we have started a guild of sorts at the con to better help people.
As of right now, you can find me at Katsucon (National Harbor), Tekko (Pittsburgh), and Dragoncon (Atlanta). I may be adding some south-central conventions to my route here soon but nothing is set in stone.