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Amberlee - Innovative and Creative spunk!

Amberlee as Maleficent: Inspired by
the new movie.
Photo by Hyrum Hirschi

Amberlee is always a charm to speak to at conventions, even though I have only run into her a few times. She surprises me with her mad sewing skills! Last September at Salt Lake Comic Con she debuted in the cosplay world with her fem-Jareth cosplay. Her female version of the Goblin King was really well put together and I could not believe it was one of her first sewing projects.
Now fast forward to April and the Salt Lake Comic Con Fan Experience (FanX). Amberlee walks on stage with a gorgeous Maleficient cosplay. She gets bumped from Intermediate class to Masters with her amazing craftsmanship.
I enjoy seeing hard work and new ideas put into a cosplay. Sometimes I am jealous of the costumers who can belt out five to ten cosplays in a year, but when you focus on getting one or two just right, the results are amazing. Amberlee really shows off her skills and is willing to try new things. She learned how to sew in the past year, works with metal, used real animal bone horns in her Maleficient cosplay, and so much more. Her fresh look on costume crafting is amazing. She even has some puppets in the works as well!
Links for Amberlee
Make sure to check back in the third week of May for "How Amberlee Made the Maleficent Headpiece!" Next week I will posting videos of the stage performances at FanX.
Interview with Amberlee
When did you start cosplaying?
I have always loved dressing up for Halloween, but it was the first SLC Comic-con and the Jareth costume that got me started into cosplaying.  It just seemed right.
Amberlee as Jareth, the Goblin Queen.
So far Jareth and Maleficent are my only cosplays, I do plan on adding to them.  For Fantasy Con in July, I am upping the Jareth costume with a goblin puppet.  It is in design mode right now, where I am trying to figure out what kind of puppet, should the mouth movements be done by my hands or some kind of rigging... I don't know because I've never done it before.  Eeekkk!
As for Maleficent, I will make a better leather cowl that will hold the shape and not look as lumpy.   I will also finish the raven I had started but could not finish before Fanx due to time restraints and finals coming up at school.
What brought you into the cosplay world?
Here is the long story that may seem like a very strange treatment for social anxiety...
To be honest I have a VERY hard time around large crowds and am generally a very introverted person who keeps to myself.  I was the girl in high school that preferred to eat lunch in the library because books were more engaging and less demanding for someone as awkward as myself.  I stick my foot in my mouth and am constantly worrying if I sound crazy to the other person.  Many people feel this way, but for me it has affected my life hugely.  I attend school and have a very hard time in any class that doesn't allow me to move around or has a large group.  Large events, church and even family events are so hard for me and often times impossible to attend without panicking.
Amberlee as Maleficent
I need that third wall, a safety that allowed me to feel safe in chaos.  In knowing myself and having gone through these many years of bubbling, I knew that pretending to be someone stronger might help. Cosplaying made sense, because I could be anyone I wanted to be and still be myself and feel safe.
So I chose Jareth, I could be an awesome magic man that was a little evil and a whole lot of bad a$$!  As a girl watching Labyrinth I didn't want to be Sarah. I wanted to be Jareth and this is the same for Maleficent and very likely for every character I will be in the future.  I find safety in the third wall that is created as I become the characters. This is  because I see what I so desperately want to be and what I can pull out of myself.  For any cosplayer, you feel that energy in a crowd that might otherwise drain you; you feel accepted into this world that knows you are dressed up but embraces you for it.
Amberlee, you rock! These are the kind of stories in cosplay that are inspirational. Social anxiety is normal and it can be tough. Seeing what people can do with it, how they handle it, helps others try new things and overcome it. You are a wonderful example!
Amberlee as Jareth
Of all the new skills you have learned in the past year, what has been your favorite?
Sewing... Honestly, my sewing machine that I bought eight years ago had only been used a few times till I started this.  And now!!! Heck, there is no stopping me now.  Well unless I run out of thread.
Tell us about your favorite crafting moment. What was the most memorable part of making your cosplays?
With both projects, it was when I could finally see what I was making coming to life. You can have a hair brained idea and put your whole heart into it, but it is not until it starts looking like something, other than a lump of crap, that you then can smile and take a breath.
What was the most frustrating moment you had when making a costume?
Seeing that the hair brained idea turned into a lump of crap and threw the said lump against the wall and went and cried in a corner.
What kind of advice would you like to give newcomers to crafting and cosplay?
YouTube is your friend as well as Google if you ever want to know how to do anything!!!

Amberlee as Maleficient

Comments

  1. Wow, this was an amazing costume. I'm impressed you went as far as using real bone for the horns. What a way to commit.

    ReplyDelete

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