Ghostbusters Cosplay: Behind the Scenes

A Twitter friend of mine did a Ghostbusters cosplay to go see the new movie, and it put the idea in my head that I could do a cosplay from the new movie.  As soon as I decided I was going to do it, I started with what I thought was the easy first step: buy a khaki coverall.  That unfortunately was the stupid hardest step of this whole process.  I immediately went to Amazon to buy a coverall.  I looked up women’s coveralls on Amazon, and most of the results were for men’s coveralls.  Well, that sucked, so I tried to limit it to only women’s clothing.  Most of the results were either men’s coveralls, “sexy” coveralls, or mesh bodysuits for who knows what.  There were a couple of costume coveralls and a couple of actual coveralls for women but both tended to be super expensive or wouldn’t ship for a couple of weeks.  I ended up buying the three smallest sizes that would fit my chest in men’s coveralls.

The men’s coveralls were comical to say in the least.  I kept telling guys that men’s coveralls weren’t going to work, and they literally didn’t understand why.  I wish I had some before pictures of the coveralls on me because they were terrible.  I got a size that basically equated to “short Japanese man” as said in one of the reviews.  The height and the chest size were the big decision factors for me.  Basically, I chose the smallest coverall that was big enough for my chest.  I ended up having to basically resew the majority of the coverall.  I took four inches off the arms and six inches off the pants straight off the bat.

I had to strike the balance between having the coveralls be loose like in the Ghostbusters movie but not too loose that it drowned me out as a person.  I slimmed the width of the arms by a good five inches.  The pants were slimmed by over 8 inches.  While slimming the pants, I pulled up the crotch area because it was near my knees!  I had to add in a couple of darts for my chest.  Basically, the big difference between men and women are that women have larger chests.  The coveralls were straight down on both the front and back, so to accommodate for my chest, there was a bunch of extra fabric that bunched up in the back.  I took out a couple inches of it, and added some darts in the back, but it didn’t quite overcome the extra fabric issues.  It was good enough for me though!

I asked some of the other women who got coveralls what they did — one of them didn’t wear the top half of her coverall (she had it tied around her waist).  The other woman bought a premade Ghostbusters cosplay that had already been made for women.  I didn’t get a chance to ask another woman I saw, but I noticed that she had a lot of the same issues of baggy material that I did.

I did spend an hour or two searching for the right reflective orange ribbon.  It turns out, they had multiple costumes for the movie.  Some of them had reflective stripes, but that screwed up the shooting of the film, so they had to swap them out for less reflective material.  I chose to go with the reflective ribbon because it seemed more in the spirit of the movie.  I was able to purchase a Ghostbusters patch on Amazon, so that was pretty easy!  I bought an orange/grey luggage belt and looped it around me twice to get it to look like the proton pack belt in the movie.  I also bought an orange/grey backpack as a fake proton pack.

Two nights before we left, I dragged Mark to Home Depot 30 minutes before they closed so that we could pick materials to make a proton gun.  It was ridiculously fun.  The guy who cut the wires for us thought we were insane because I kept saying that I wanted particular colors of wires and I didn’t care about the wires themselves.  We went through a couple of iterations of what the gun should look like in that short amount of time, and then I put it together in under an hour using a hot glue gun, electrical tape, and tiptoes.  I went to Home Depot again the day before we left because I was feeling like I should have been able to make the proton pack itself, but I didn’t have as much luck when looking for things.  I also ran into two coworkers and I felt a little insane telling them both that I didn’t need help finding anything because I would know what I needed when I saw it.  In retrospect, I wish I had gone to target and got a mesh colander and built up from there, but whatever.  I’m happy with my decisions.

When I came home that night, I walked in to see a couple of copper pieces sitting on top of my proton gun.  Mark had gone out himself to Home Depot and other stores to see if he could find the proton pack toy.  When he found it was sold out everywhere, he picked up those copper pieces to accent the gun.  It was seriously perfect!  <3

I took extra electrical tape, glue, and zipties to the convention which ended up being great because I used them all to fix the gun at various times during the day.

Overall, this was the breakdown of expenses (inspired by Sharon!):
Coveralls: $35.01
3 yards of reflective ribbon: $14.95
Ghostbusters patch: $4.99
Orange backpack: $16.99
Boots: Already owned
Luggage Belt: $7.99
Black, fingerless gloves: $4.95
1.5inch metal tubes: $19.34
Black cable ties: $2.38
Orange electrical tape (didn’t use): $3.98
2 black electrical tape rolls (only used part of one): $1.58
2 grey fuse boxes: $10.76
Vinyl tubing (wires were wrapped around this): $2.70
Black wire: $1.44
White wire: $1.44
Red wire: $1.44
Orange wire: $1.76

Total: $131.70


Not bad considering you can buy a similar outfit for ~$150 but with no proton pack.

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