Fix it Felix

The idea of becoming a cosplay medic occurred to me around the early years of the concept of the Cosplatality or Cosplayer Break Lounges that were beginning to sprout up at cons and convention message boards. I had only ever worn cosplay and never fully created costumes outside of simple changes to outfits bought at Goodwill or closet cosplay. To this day I still do not have the skills to create new items from scratch, but my strengths lie in hospitality and event planning; having been in the con circuit for 12 years and restaurants and hotels before that. I enjoy making sure people are happy and comfortable, and no one is that way when their costume is having a developing tear or crack. So since I already look a bit like Fix-it Felix, I don his outfit and walk the show floor with my equipment to make sure attendees are feeling in tip-top shape.

Whereas cosplayers' cars are filled with their amazing creations, my trunk space currently takes my Simplicity Stow n Go, Husky tool tote, and a Harbor Freight Toolbox. The latter holds my LED and electronics fixes while the other two hold a blend of commonly and uncommonly requested supplies and tools. I feel bad whenever I cannot assist a person, so I try to be prepared. The Stow n Go and tool tote definitely are the most important since they house staples like needle and thread, different types of tape and adhesives, hair spray, various pins and scissors, and many more. The most common requests usually revolve around hot and super glue, then pins, followed by tape, and needle and thread. Occasionally some velcro is requested. Otherwise, I'm also prepared with wire, clasps, elastic, and buckles. Thanks to Sergeant Swift Stitch, I recently got to learn about USB powered glue guns, allowing me to not have to camp out by outlets constantly for hot glue use, as well as paging systems to be contacted through without having to post my own phone number. If there's a way to improve my repair game the way cosplayers evolve theirs, I'm happy to learn it. Just recently I returned from Final Fantasy Fan Festival with a book version of my repair kit in order to be able to have it travel by plane (and to fit the theme of the Scholar class).

While I have a Facebook page for this service, I don't really upkeep it since that's not the reason I do it. I just do it because that's what I enjoy doing. And that's my advice to cosplayers too. Do what you do because you enjoy doing it. Don't worry about a numbers game, don't worry about fame, and don't put down others. Just take part in this wonderful creative circuit because that's where you feel your inspirational fire. Post your WIPs and take pride in the project you're creating. There will be hurdles and mistakes, but if there's one thing the cosplay circuit has shown me it's the resourceful way it brings fantasy to reality. Support each other and be kind. We're all in this nerdy circuit together and it's only going to get better from here.

I'll next be going to Daishocon, then Naka-Kon, and finally my equipment will be used in Anime St. Louis' Cosplatality Lounge, where I'm the convention chairman. I'm always happy to attend other conventions where my schedule and funds allow, and I can be contacted through my convention e-mail address. 

- Jeremy Johnson