We are about to go on a cosplay adventure with
NERDSOCIETY.COM: Thanks for taking the time to interview with us at NERDSociety.com, would you be so kind as to state your name? Stage name? Where are you from?
HARAJUKU BUNNY: HELLO! MY NAME IS KELSEY BUT I MORE FREQUENTLY GO BY HARAJUKU BUNNY FOR COSPLAY! I'M FROM LAS VEGAS, NEVADA.
NS: What was it that got you into cosplaying? How did the "light bulb" go off telling you, 'this is what I want to do?' Were you introduced into cosplaying by someone?
Do you make your own costumes or do you acquire them from other means?
HB: WELL I'VE ALWAYS LOVED DRESSING UP EVER SINCE I WAS A TODDLER SO I FEEL LIKE I'VE ALWAYS HAD IT IN ME SO TO SPEAK. I EVENTUALLY DISCOVERED GIRLS DRESSING UP AS CHARACTERS FROM SAILOR MOON IN LIKE THE EARLY 2000 S BUT I DIDN'T REALLY UNDERSTAND THAT WAS COSPLAY AT THE TIME. FROM THEN ON, I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO DRESS UP LIKE SAILOR MOON. IT WASN'T UNTIL ABOUT 8TH GRADE THAT I FOUND OUT EXACTLY WHAT COSPLAY WAS. I WAS A HUGE NARUTO FAN AT THE TIME SO I REALLY WANTED TO COSPLAY FROM THAT SERIES AND GO TO A CONVENTION. IT TOOK ABOUT 2 YEARS AFTER THAT TO CONVINCE MY PARENTS TO LET ME GO TO MY FIRST CON. MY FIRST COSPLAY WAS MISA AMANE FROM THE LIVE ACTION DEATH NOTE MOVIES. I MAKE THE MAJORITY OF MY COSTUMES. THERE ARE ALSO SOME I BUY AND ALTER PIECES FOR AND SOME THAT I HAVE BOUGHT FROM OTHER COSPLAYERS.
NS: What does cosplaying mean to you? Is it something fun that you do for personal enjoyment? OR is it something that you do for other reasons?
HB: COSPLAY TO ME IS ALL ABOUT BRINGING MY FAVORITE CHARACTERS TO LIFE! IT GIVES ME A HAPPINESS THAT I HAVE NEVER FOUND ANYWHERE ELSE. IT'S BECOME A HUGE PART OF MY LIFE! I'VE MADE SO MANY FRIENDS BECAUSE OF IT THAT I PROBABLY WOULDN'T HAVE OTHERWISE.
On Individual costumes:
NS: Tell us about why you choose to be Kim Possible, a character from a somewhat "old" cartoon that no one may remember? What went into preparing the costume? Why did you choose the standard "mission" outfit over the others such as her "Battle Suit" or everyday outfit--even cheerleader? How did you get a hold of Ron's naked mole rat, Rufus? What do you like about the character that made you want to cosplay her?
HB: I LOVE KIM! I GREW UP WATCHING THE SHOW ON THE GLORY DAYS OF DISNEY CHANNEL. I NEVER REALLY WORRY ABOUT PEOPLE NOT KNOWING THE CHARACTERS. I MAINLY CHOOSE MY COSPLAYS BASED ON CHARACTERS I HAVE A PERSONAL CONNECTION WITH. AS A KID, I WANTED TO BE KIM POSSIBLE! SHE SAVES THE WORLD AND STILL DOES ALL THE REGULAR TEEN STUFF TOO SO IT MADE HER SEEM RELATABLE! ALSO, SHE HAS YOUNGER TWIN BROTHERS AND SO DO I! I FELT CONNECTED TO HER THAT WAY AS WELL. THE COSTUME WAS MAINLY PIECES OF REGULAR CLOTHING THAT I BOUGHT AND ALTERED. THE CARGO PANTS I TOOK IN QUITE A BIT. THE TOP WAS A LONG SLEEVE BLACK SHIRT I CUT AND HEMMED THE SLEEVES AND BOTTOM ON. I MADE THE POUCHES ON THE BELT FROM SCRATCH. I HAND-PAINTED FABRIC AND SEWED THEM INTO THE VARIOUS POUCHES. I CHOSE THIS OUTFIT BECAUSE I FELT IT WAS THE ONE SHE IS SEEN WEARING THE MOST. ALSO, MY BEST FRIEND WANTED TO COSPLAY AS SHEGO WITH ME SO I FELT THIS WOULD LOOK BEST WITH HER COSPLAY. SHE IS THE ONE WHO ACTUALLY GOT RUFUS FOR ME! SHE BOUGHT HIM ONLINE I BELIEVE. KIM IS A STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER THAT SHOWS NOT ONLY CAN SHE KICK BUTT, BUT SHE CAN ALSO STILL BE A REGULAR GIRL. I LIKE WHEN CHARACTERS SEEM REAL.
NS: In playing Makinami Mari Illustrious, you chose her British school uniform over her plug suit (pink or green) what was a reason for doing the uniform version? What went into making the details such as the crest, her headband LCL link, the hair style and of course the glasses? Do you have any future plans to do a plug suit; either pink '05' or '08' or even the green? What do you like about the character that made you want to cosplay her?
HB: I CHOSE TO DO MARI'S UNIFORM OUT OF SIMPLICITY REALLY. IT'S PROBABLY THE EASIEST OUTFIT OF HER'S TO DO. THE CREST IS ACTUALLY A PATCH I PURCHASED ONLINE. THE HEADBAND'S LCL LINK IS MADE OF PAINTED SCULPEY. I USED MY REAL HAIR FOR THIS COSPLAY. I PURCHASED RED READING GLASSES AND POPPED THE LENSES OUT. I WOULD LOVE TO DO A PLUG SUIT! IT'S ONE OF MY DREAM COSPLAYS! MY APPREHENSION IS DEFINITELY DEALING WITH THAT FABRIC THOUGH. NOT EASY TO WORK WITH. I LIKE MARI BECAUSE SHE'S DIFFERENT THAN THE OTHER GIRLS IN THE SERIES. SHE OPENLY ADMITS SHE LOVES PILOTING AND SHE GOES FULL CRAZY IN BATTLE! SHE'S JUST A REALLY FUN CHARACTER! I ALSO SHARED THE HAIR COLOR WITH HER AT THE TIME SO IT WAS NICE TO NOT NEED A WIG.
NS: In playing Mio Akiyama from K-ON! You have 2 versions--the school uniform and the "Don't Say Lazy" Lolita costume. What went into putting together the school uniform? What went into the vast amount of pieces to make the "Don't Say Lazy" costume? What do you like about the character that made you want to cosplay her--especially in two different versions?
HB: THE SCHOOL UNIFORM WAS PRETTY EASY EXCEPT FOR FINDING THAT GREY SKIRT. THE ONLY THING I REALLY HAD TO ALTER WAS THE BLAZER BY ADDING THE GOLD BUTTONS. THE OUTFIT FOR "DON'T SAY LAZY" INVOLVED MORE CRAFTING. I MADE THE TOP HAT FROM SCRATCH OUT OF FELT AND ADDED THE RED RIBBON. I FOUND A BLACK DRESS THAT I ALTERED. I BOUGHT TWO PAIRS OF TURQUOISE TIGHTS. ONE PAIR I CUT TO MAKE HER ARM SLEEVE AND HAND COLORED THE BLACK STRIPES USING A FABRIC MARKER. AS SOON AS I STARTED READING THE FIRST VOLUME OF THE MANGA I IMMEDIATELY CONNECTED WITH HER. WE BOTH HATE SCARY STUFF! I LITERALLY HAVE THE SAME REACTIONS TO THE STUFF THAT SHE DOES! I NEVER REALLY GOT TO WEAR THESE COSTUMES UNFORTUNATELY. I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE PART OF A GROUP THAT NEVER HAPPENED, SO I NEVER WORE THEM TO A CONVENTION AND ACTUALLY ENDED UP SELLING THESE ABOUT ABOUT A YEAR AGO.
NS: What is your fandom with Sailor Moon? Are you excited to see her return--probably in the next few months--it has already started in Japan? Why so many different versions of Sailor Moon? Sailor Moon, Usagi, Serenity? What did you put into making the standard Sailor Moon costume? What are other thoughts you would like to share with your Sailor Moon costumes and enjoyment of the character?
HB: I'VE BEEN A SAILOR MOON FAN SINCE THE AGE OF FOUR! IT WAS THE FIRST ANIME I WAS INTRODUCED TO. I'M INCREDIBLY EXCITED FOR THE RETURN! I STAYED UP TIL 3 IN THE MORNING TO WATCH THE LIVE ANNOUNCEMENT ABOUT THE NEW ANIME FROM JAPAN! USAGI IS MY FAVORITE CHARACTER OF ALL TIME SO NATURALLY I WOULD LOVE TO COSPLAY ALL OF HER OUTFITS! I'VE BEEN TRYING TO COSPLAY THE SAILOR MOON TRANSFORMATIONS IN ORDER EVEN! MY NEWEST FUKU I MADE (NOT PICTURED) TOOK ME OVER 400 HOURS TO COMPLETE! I USE A LEOTARD FOR THE BASE AND THEN MAKE ALL THE OTHER PIECES SEPARATELY AND ATTACHED THEM. I ALSO MADE THE WIG MYSELF. I'VE GONE THROUGH MANY A PIGTAIL PIECES FOR IT AS THEY GET EXTREMELY TANGLED VERY EASILY. I REALLY FEEL LIKE I MORPH INTO THE CHARACTER WHEN I'M PORTRAYING USAGI (IN ANY FORM). HER AND I ARE QUITE SIMILAR PERSONALITY WISE SO IT'S NOT TOO FAR A STRETCH FROM ME REGULARLY. IT MEANS SO MUCH TO ME FOR PEOPLE TO ENJOY MY SAILOR MOON COSPLAYS ESPECIALLY SINCE THEY ARE THE CLOSEST TO MY HEART AND I REALLY STRIVE FOR ACCURACY.
NS: What were (are) some of your own favorite costumes; feel free to tell us your thoughts on them?
HB: MY FAVORITE COSTUME I'VE MADE SO FAR IS PRINCESS SERENITY BECAUSE IT WAS A DREAM COSPLAY OF MINE SO HAVING DONE IT, IT'S A DREAM COME TRUE! ANOTHER ONE OF MY FAVORITES IS MADOKA KANAME BECAUSE SHE'S ALSO ONE OF MY MOST FAVORITE CHARACTERS AND I JUST RECENTLY GOT MY GLOWING SOUL GEM PROP DONE SO I FEEL LIKE IT'S FINALLY PERFECT! I ALSO ENJOYED COSPLAYING POISON BECAUSE IT WAS REALLY DIFFERENT FROM EVERYTHING ELSE I HAVE DONE AND SHE WAS THE FIRST "SEXY" COSPLAY I GOT TO DO.
NS: Have you had any thoughts on cosplaying a character from let's say Persona 4, Vividred Operation, maybe Symphogear or even possibly Tomoko from "Watamote?"
HB: I HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT COSPLAYING FROM PERSONA BECAUSE I HAVE QUITE A FEW FRIENDS WHO DO! IF I WERE TO, I'D WANT TO DO RISE. ALL OF THOSE SERIES SEEM INTRIGUING AND I'LL DEFINITELY HAVE TO CHECK THEM OUT! AT FIRST GLANCE I LIKE THE OUTFITS, BUT I'LL HAVE TO SEE IF THERE'S A CHARACTER I CONNECT WITH AND WANT TO COSPLAY.
NS: Does it get to you when there are shows that portray "backstabbing and hate" in cosplay instead of focusing on why people do it in the first place? Isn't it about the creation of the costume and being able to play your favorite characters?
HB: IT DOESN'T BOTHER ME SO MUCH BECAUSE THAT IS UNFORTUNATELY A GROWING PROBLEM WITH COSPLAY. I FEEL LIKE THERE IS A LOT OF NEGATIVITY IN THE COSPLAY COMMUNITY AND IT REALLY DOESN'T NEED TO BE THAT WAY. PEOPLE COSPLAY FOR DIFFERENT REASONS AND SOME OF THOSE REASONS OTHER PEOPLE DON'T AGREE WITH, BUT REALLY YOU CAN'T LET THE DRAMA RUIN YOUR FUN. IT'D BE NICE IF EVERYONE WOULD KEEP IN MIND THAT WE'RE ALL JUST NERDS IN COSTUMES AND THE NEGATIVITY TOWARDS EACH OTHER IS QUITE UNNECESSARY.
NS: What advice would you give for aspiring cosplayers?
HB: COSPLAY IS EXPENSIVE AND TIME CONSUMING, BUT IT IS ALSO A LOT OF FUN! DON'T LET THE NEGATIVITY GET TO YOU! COSPLAY FOR YOU!
NS: Outside of Cosplaying, what are some interests you have? Music, Movies, Anime, etc , do you collect anything?
HB: I'M KIND OF A HUGE GEEK SO I WATCH A LOT OF ANIME, READ MANGA, PLAY VIDEO GAMES. I ALSO ENJOY SPENDING TIME WITH FRIENDS, COOKING AND BAKING, GOING TO CONCERTS, TRAVELING AND PLAYING WITH MY DOGS. I COLLECT SAILOR MOON STUFF! I MAINLY TRY TO COLLECT THE RPG TOYS.
NS: Any final words you would like to give to our readers about cosplay?
HB: COSPLAY IS UNLIKE ANY OTHER HOBBY IN THAT NOT ONLY ARE YOU CREATING ART BUT YOU GET TO WEAR IT TOO! IT TAKES A LOT OF DEDICATION TO PUT IN THE TIME AND EFFORT TO CREATE THESE OUTFITS THAT ARE SORT OF IMPOSSIBLE. ALSO, IF YOU'RE NOT HAVING FUN YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG!~
We at NERDSociety.com would like to thank Kelsey for her time to take part in this interview. It sounds like this cosplayer has a very interesting background allowing her characters to come to life. Props go out to her friend for playing Shego from Kim Possible, she really got the cartoon-like lips down and a great costume too.
For more about Harajuku Bunny, check out her Face book at:
Also, you can check out her profile and other costumes and photos at: