Capital cosplay culture

TIM DONOGHUE
Last updated 16:20 31/05/2014
wellington armageddon
MAARTEN HOLL/FAIRFAX NZ

ALL HORNS: Shae Cook in her original design costume.

wellington armageddon
MAARTEN HOLL/FAIRFAX NZ
PRETTY IN PINK: Nina Wong (left) and Elizabeth Brown from Tawa in their Puella Madoka Magica costumes.

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Shae Cook likes to experiment with costumes and was in her element at the Armageddon Expo pop culture convention in Wellington today. 

She turned out with a large set of horns on her head and a large sword to defend herself.

Rounding the bovine ensemble off were a novel set of hooves crafted from high heel shoes covered in synthetic fur. 

She made the outfit herself in her Vogeltown, Wellington flat.

''I have two very considerate flatmates. I make quite a stinky mess at times,'' Cook said.

She and her business partner Ria Aps have their own Rebel Traders booth at the expo convention for the weekend.

Cook, who has a degree in graphic design, was the mannequin tasked with the job of directing would-be customers in the direction of the store.  

''Ria and I make costumes by commission. We also made a bunch of stuff up to put in the stall this weekend.''I just like dressing up and this is one place you can do it and have fun,'' Cook said.

Experimentation was behind her own costume. ''I just wanted to try out a few techniques with oversized horns and an oversized sword.

The challenge is to make them so I can still move round by keeping things fairly light. 

''When I made this costume I was influenced by the Warcraft computer game and things like that.''

In between making costumes on commission Cook works at the Enigma Cafe in Wellington Central as a barista.  

Meanwhile two other young ladies, from Tawa were also in an eye catching costume mode. 21-year-old Nina Wong turned up dressed as Puella Madoka Magica. 

Her former Tawa College friend Elizabeth Brown, 20, was dressed as Godoka.

Both characters feature in a Japanese anime television series which follows a group of female middle school students who choose to become magical girls battling surreal enemies called witches. 

Wong is a graphic design student at Massey University while Brown works as a shop assistant at Kirkcaldies. '

'Godoka decides to save the world from witches and monsters and so she turns in to a goddess.

''It is our opportunity to get out once a year and show our love for our characters. We have a bit of fun meeting everyone. We've been coming her for five years,'' Brown said.

Meanwhile organisers expect 25,000 people to attend the three day show.

Stars from the hit TV series ARROW attracted a small army of fans:  Michael Rowe (Deadshot) and David Ramsey (Diggle) also attracted long queues of fans waiting for autographs and photographs with the stars. Likewise D J Qualls  (Supernatural, Road Trip, Breaking Bad, Legit) and Jake Abel (Percy Jackson Films, Host and Supernatural), along with Christopher Judge (Stargate SG1), Samantha Ferris (Supernatural), James Patrick Stuart (Battlestar Galactica 1980) and Steven Williams (Blue Brothers and 21 Jump Street original TV series) all have excited followers watching their presentations and posing for photos.From its inception in 1995, the Armageddon Expo has grown to become the largest fantasy event in Australasia.  With shows in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Melbourne and Hamilton, the Armageddon Expo embodies the ever-growing pulp culture phenomenon.

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- The Dominion Post

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