Italy has never failed in providing the community with very talented cosplayers. Many of you probably know NadiaSK from Milan, winner of many important awards (Best Female Cosplay at Cospladya 2010 in Palermo; 2nd place at Miss Cosplay, Festival del Fumetto 2010; Best Female Cosplay at Oscar del Cosplay 2009 – to name just a few, along with other several group awards), and was also one of the Italy representatives at World Cosplay Summit 2008 in Nagoya, Japan.
She studied Fashion Style and Design, and Fashion Brand Management, and she’s currently working as a fashion stylist for an important Italian fashion magazine. She loves to sew not only cosplay costumes, but also everyday wear outfits, with a personal T-shirt line recently launched. She also loves to write, and her dream is to publish her own novel one day. As a cosplayer she tailored a wide range of costumes, starting from ’80s anime series, up to the more popular Sheryl Nome and Ciel Phantomhive. We are happy she accepted to answer a few questions for our readers, which you’ll find below.
Years of Cosplay: 8
Cosplay Gen: How did you start cosplaying? Is there a special story behind it?
NadiaSK: I’ve always been passionate with anime and manga, but mostly with video games. When I went to a convention and I saw cosplayers for the first time, I thought they were people paid to advertise for the comics shop! The first time I cosplayed I was with some friends, and we made a small Final Fantasy X group, with me as Yuna. We had done it just as a trial. Then, continuing to go to conventions, I decided that I liked cosplay as a hobby and I wanted to continue to do it. To me, cosplay is a combination of creativity, fashion and comics. I could not find a better hobby!
Ciel Phantomhive (Kuroshitsuji)
Nu Wa (Orochi Warriors)
Sheryl Nome (Macross Frontier)
Cosplay Gen: You have a pretty amazing gallery of characters. How do you choose what to cosplay?
NadiaSK: When I choose a cosplay, it must always be something that I really like. Or I select it ’cause I have an affinity with the character or because I’m fascinated with its story. It happened to me to fall in love with a picture and start searching for the manga or anime it belonged to. Generally I prefer to represent a character that has a strong and cheerful personality. Shy characters are too far away from me. The only exception is Rei Ayanami. At first I was supposed to do Asuka, which I think is closer to my own personality, but Rei is the favourite character of my best friend, so for Evangelion I always choose her! But I would like do also Asuka in the future.
Rei Ayanami (Evangelion)
Cosplay Gen: Is there a special character you are fond of? Why is that? Can you tell us some details about the process of bringing that character to life?
NadiaSK: I have many cosplays that I am very fond of. Shiva and Rydia from Final Fantasy, Haruhi, Esther Blanchet… But perhaps the character for whom I have a special feeling is Lia de Beaumont. I’ve always been fascinated with heroines and historical clothes, so Lia was the ideal character for me. I decided to cosplay her for the WCS in Nagoya. I’ve searched in a lot of shops to find the right stuff, as I hadn’t found what I considered perfect. It was the first time I had that kind of a corset, so I had to make several attempts. I decided to make the embroidery on her bodice, skirt and sleeves with pearls and small Swarowski, in order to make the outfit shinier on the stage while I was moving.
To me, the biggest excitement was when the author of the manga, Kiriko Yumeji, contacted me shortly after my trip to Japan to congratulate me and tell me that I indeed was her character who had come to life! Great emotion!
Lia De Beaumont (Chevalier D’Eon)
Lia De Beaumont (Chevalier D’Eon)
Lia De Beaumont (Chevalier D’Eon)
Cosplay Gen: We’ve noticed you also cosplayed characters from old school anime series (such as Lady Georgie). What made you choose such characters who, although they are classics, are less known for a larger public?
I always choose a cosplay because I like it, never for its popularity. It is important first of all to please me. I am a big fan of the ’80s anime series. Lady Georgie
, Tongari Boshi no Memoru
(my next cosplay), Lady Oscar
… I decided to cosplay Georgie
because when I was a kid I loved his character. Georgie disguised herself as a boy, is a strong person who pursued her goals without ever looking back. All this without losing her femininity. I remember an episode where she had to go to a party, but she hadn’t a ball dress, so she sewed one using the curtains of his room!! Amazing.
On my website you can find a diary of a work in progress in which I explain how I made the costume, and all the steps up to the final outcome. There is also the link
of my performance at Cospladya 2010
, where I’ve won the prize for best female costume!
Suigintou (Rozen Maiden)
Shinku (Rozen Maiden)
Cosplay Gen: What was the most difficult costume you’ve ever made? Can you give us some details about the process?
NadiaSK: Each cosplay has its own difficulties. Perhaps one of the cosplays which took me the longest time to achieve as workload is Esther from Trinity Blood.
When I make a costume inspired from history I always try to be faithful to the patterns and fabrics used in that period. So I studied books on ways to make a very high collar and neck. For this outfit I also made an extensive search for materials. I tried Episcopal brocade suitable for this costume, and then I sewed millions of red rhinestones. The braid has a very important role and I searched in a lot of shops to find the best in quality/price.
Each pearl has been sewn one by one…. I didn’t know that there were ready-made strings of pearls available.
I have embroidered all the roses on the dress with the embroidery machine. The crown comes from an Italian shop for cosplayers, while the bracelets, collar necklace, and neck were recently redone by me using casting resin, forex and gems.
Sometimes the study of the costume is more difficult than the making process. Some very large costumes must be loyal, but also give the possibility to move. This is especially true with parts of armour that I made of resin and forex. Lately I’ve been trying to learn to use latex, which has more mobility.
Soah (Bride Of The Water God)
Sailor Saturn (Sailor Moon)
Sayaka Yumi (Mazinger Z)
Cosplay Gen: What can you tell us about the Italian cosplay scene?
NadiaSK: In Italy there are many cosplayers. The quality of the costumes is very high and you can see many outfits very difficult to tailor, such as great armours or mecha.
The performances are always different; yet, we don’t have a precise style to unite all the cosplayers.
We have a lot of trade shows, almost two every month. Lucca Comics and Games, Romics, Cartoomics, Comicon, and Fumettopoli are definitely the most important. Generally, there is a relationship of trust between cosplayers; we often help each other, and train each other in different materials. I think that’s why the overall level is high.
Kadaj (Final Fantasy VII AC)
Lulu (Final Fantasy X)
Tira (Soul Calibur)
Cosplay Gen: Where do you see yourself as a cosplayer in the future?
NadiaSK: I think that I will continue to enjoy myself as I have been doing until now with my friends. I prefer group cosplay rather than individual; I like comparing, and doing things together is much more fun. I also like to help my friends. I’d take part in the WCS again, because it has been a very nice experience for me and I hope to take part in one of the many international events that are being born now, as the ECG in Paris. I prefer international group competitions because sharing these experiences with friends is more fun. I’ve met many international cosplayers, and it’s amazing to share the experiences and this hobby with people around the world. I hope to continue travelling and meeting new people. My dream is to make a great cosplay group with some of my foreign friends.
Alice (Alice In Wonderland)
Kurai (Angel Sanctuary)
Matteo Arienti: Alice, Aries, Ciel, Doll, Lia de Beaumont. Rei, NuWa, Sailor Saturn, Sheryl Nome. Shinku, Suigintou, Sweet Lolita
Paolo Cellammare: Ixi, Lia de Beaumont1, Sayaka
Kyle Johnsen: Kadaj,Kurai
Max Vertua: Lulu
Operation One: (Soah)