Cosplay Shenanigans: Pokemon Edition

It’s Pokemon Week on the Ace of Geeks, thanks to the 20th Anniversary of the release of the first Pokemon games. We’ll be covering Pokemon related content all week, including the return of John Garcia’s Cosplay Shenanigans:

When I was preparing for Anime Los Angeles (ALA) 2015, it was pretty hectic. It took place around early January 2015, the holidays were still wrapping up, and the semester was just about to start.  I did not have much time to work on cosplay at the time.  I also wanted to be able to move around freely and comfortably because ALA was mostly a party and socializing type of convention.  It was also an anime-centric convention, and at this point, most of my anime-centric cosplays were JRPG cosplays like Auron from FFX and Thanatos from Persona, both of which are incredibly uncomfortable.  There was only one solution: LAST MINUTE COSPLAY!

I thought I would do something from my first cosplay, which was Digimon-related, but perhaps I could do something with its rival: Pokemon, so I thought I could make one of my favorite Pokemon, a life-sized version.  Thank goodness, my favorite Pokemon is ALL POKEMON, IN ONE, in the form of DITTO!

I think in the game, one way to uniquely utilize a Ditto is behind-the-scenes, by leaving it with a Pokemon Breeder, so I decided make an actual costume, and not just make the Ditto prop.


The Green Pokemon Breeder sprite from the game.

The actual worn costume for the breeder was easy.  I already own a white shirt, and brown shorts.  A quick trip tot he local store, I was able to get a cheap green apron, and buy some matching fabric to turn into a bandanna, and a scarf.  I also got some glossy white vinyl for the designs on the apron and bandanna.  I have sheets (not tape) of iron-on adhesive because these designs, as you can see, are very wide, and the tape only comes at 1 inch at the widest.  My sewing machine also broke last minute, so I had to use this method instead. It worked out a bit better, and it looked like the vinyl was a very sharply-printed pattern on my green apron and bandanna.


Next, comes the fun part: Ditto, itself.  It just took two sheets of EVA foam.  I wanted Ditto to have “legs” that kinda wrapped around my neck and shoulders, so I could rest it on my shoulders like a pet parrot.  Though the curvature on the foam would be obvious, when I wrap the pink spandex skin on him, the spandex would stretch to hide that curve, until I rested it on my neck.  The spandex would have enough give to let me fit the Ditto on the back of my neck and on my shoulder.  The face was finished off with a small bit of black felt for its face.

The Ditto rests around the back of my neck and on my shoulder.

You can see the Ditto’s EVA foam “skeleton” here

With the Ditto’s pink Spandex skin.

The Ditto is certainly not perfect, but it was done in a span of two hours, and a budget of around twenty dollars, so I cannot complain.  It even had a minor gimmick, and the Pokemon was life-sized from what I can tell.  My next Ditto, I certainly want to make it perhaps move or be partially be a puppet.

Also, shout out to David Ngo for this awesome pic below of my Ditto and myself from ALA 2015.

Photo Credit: David Ngo (DJAam)

Photo Credit: David Ngo (DJAam)  Please check out this awesome photographer’s Page here.



John Garcia
John Garcia is a Professor of English, specializing in popular culture, comparative literature, and postcolonial studies. He is also an artist and character designer for Smorgasbord Productions. He has been cosplaying since 2002, and attending geeky conventions since 1998.

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