Kumoricon 2019

Cosplay Contest

Entry Form

All entries are due by November 8, 2019, at 11:59pm. The entry form is open on this page, below the rules.

If you have any questions, please email


  • All participants must have a valid Kumoricon badge.
  • All participants must read and agree to follow all rules of the Cosplay Contest.
  • Costumes previously entered in a Kumoricon Cosplay Contest are ineligible.
  • By registering for the Cosplay Contest, all participants agree to allow Kumoricon to use their images for promotional purposes, both photographs and video. Photographs of winning entries may be shown at the Kumoricon Closing Ceremonies.
  • All convention policies must be upheld during the entirety of the Cosplay Contest. Anyone breaking Kumoricon rules will be disqualified and reported to Kumoricon Operations.
  • Kumoricon regular staff may enter the Cosplay Contest as long as staff-related responsibilities are fulfilled.
  • Board members may not compete in the Cosplay Contest.

How to Enter

  • To sign up, fill out the Cosplay Contest Entry Form on this page, below these rules.
  • The deadline for entry forms received online is November 8, 2019, at 11:59pm.
  • The total number of presentations that will be allowed this year will be 30 Skits and 30 Runways.
  • All entries are taken on a first-come, first-served basis. If all entry slots are full, there will be a waiting list for additional entrants who may be called in if anyone drops out or is disqualified.
  • Entrants must attend and be present on-time at the following events:
    • All participants must attend the Technical Rehearsal at their assigned time.
    • Skit entrants are also required to attend the Pre-Meeting.
    • Participants who elect to participate in the Costume Construction judging must attend their assigned judging time.
    • Entrants who miss any of their assignments will be disqualified. See the schedule for times and locations of required events. Please see the official Kumoricon schedule (once released) for times and locations of required Cosplay Contest meetings and activities.

General Information

  • Kumoricon is an all-ages-friendly event. Content should not go beyond mild PG.
    • Offensive language of any kind is not allowed—no racial or sexual epithets; no profanity, etc.
    • No excessive violence.
    • No sexual activity or contact—real or implied.
    • All sexual jokes must have a non-sexual interpretation that is at least as obvious as the sexual one.
    • All costumes must adhere to the official Kumoricon code of conduct.
    • If you have a question about your content, please feel free to ask the Cosplay Staff if it is allowable.
  • You may surprise the audience, but never surprise the staff.
  • No fire, flame, smoke, fog, dry ice, wind machines, lasers, pressurized gases or liquids.
  • No messy substances—wet, dry, or oily—in the green room or on stage.
  • No jumping on or off stage—please use the officially designated stage entrances and exits.
  • Entrants must abide by the convention weapons policies. All weapons must be peace-bonded and approved. Pointing weapons at anyone not in your Cosplay group will not be tolerated. The Cosplay Coordinators must approve any actions involving weapons.
  • Contestants may not use stage time to make political, religious, insulting, or other demonstrations not related to their entry.
  • Contestants who violate any of our performance rules may have their performance stopped and may be disqualified.
  • If for whatever reason one contestant is removed from competition for any violation the entire group may be disqualified as well depending on the situation.
  • All decisions made by the Cosplay Coordinators or Programming Director are final and may only be changed by a formal challenge though Programming.

Judging and Awards

A judges' panel will select and grant awards. Judging for Performance and Costume Construction are decided separately, with separate deliberation processes. Costume Construction judging is not required for skit entries.

  • All entrants will have a performance—either a runway-style walk-on, a traditional skit or dance skit.
  • Each contestant will appear in only one stage performance.
  • Entrants may enter in different Performance and Costume Construction categories.
  • To be eligible for the Best in Show award, your entry must be a Skit, and you must elect to have your Costume Construction judged.


Awards are to-be-determined.


  • Performance will be judged based on the performance of the whole group.
  • Performance awards are granted to the entries that have shown excellent stage presentation.
  • Performance types:
    • Skit – Skits in which the main activities include characters talking to each other and acting out a scene. Duration may be up to 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
    • Runway – Quick presentation consisting of a few poses intended to show off a costume. This is required for Costume Construction judging only. Duration may be up to 45 seconds.
  • Costumes not entered in the Construction judging do not have to be self-made. See below for Costume Construction requirements.
  • Pre-recorded music and dialogue are required.
    • File uploads are preferred for online entries.
    • Alternately, you may deliver your file by USB thumb drive.
      • For this method, please include your person/group name and skit title in the filename. (File uploads for online entries will be automatically renamed by our system, so the file name on your computer does not matter.)
      • One track is preferred; we cannot change tracks or start in the middle of a track.
    • We can accept MP3, M4A, and other common file types. We strongly prefer 128kbps or higher.
    • Recorded music and dialogue must be clear to hear.
    • Bring backup copies of your audio on USB thumb drive to ensure it's not lost. Kumoricon is not responsible for damage to or loss of your media device.
    • We will not play or rip music off of portable MP3 players, such as iPods or cell phones, or from YouTube.
  • Leave the stage as clean as it was when you set foot on it. Arrange to remove all items you brought on stage at the end of your presentation. If you have a particularly intricate presentation, we recommend you recruit your own stage ninjas.
  • No entry may be a repeat of an entry from any previous competition at Kumoricon.
  • Don't plan for complex lighting. The default lighting cue is: lights go up, music starts, you come on at stage right, you leave on stage left, music stops, lights go down. If you desire anything other than default lighting or music cues, discuss it with the Cosplay Coordinator before the convention.

Costume Construction

  • The Costume Construction awards are based on the following factors:
    • Adaptation:
      • Representation of your costume to the character design.
      • Skill in scale and body fit adaptation.
      • Resemblance to character shown in documentation
    • Overall Construction:
      • Use of materials, construction methods and durability.
      • Use of appropriate or innovative methods and applications.
  • All entrants will participate in the performance portion either in a skit or a Runway.
  • All costumes from all genres and media are accepted for Kumoricon's Cosplay Contest, including original designs as a separate category.
  • Multiple costumes made by the same person may be entered so long as each costume is on a different body.
  • Reference pictures will be required. This includes screen captures, posters, or any other official media that reveals the character's full costume. The pictures should reveal different views of the character (i.e. front, back, sides). Do not assume judges know your costume or character! You will be required to bring reference pictures to judging.
  • Commissioned, purchased, rented, or commercially made costumes will not be allowed to enter the Costume Construction portion of the contest. A portion of the costume (such as a leotard, tights and shoes) may be from purchased finished goods, but at least 60% of the costume should have been constructed by the creator of the costume. More is expected if you are entering as Journeyman or Master.
    • If you have made heavy alterations to a store-bought garment and wish to enter it into the contest, you must be able to explain how you have altered it and the processes that such an endeavor entailed. Unaltered store-bought assemblies of clothing to represent a "costume" are not allowed.
  • Costumes entered at any previous competition at Kumoricon are ineligible.

Skill Levels

To ensure that Entrants with limited experience compete with their peers and not against more experienced entrants, skill levels have been established. Entrants may elect to enter different skill levels for Costume Construction and Presentation. The Judges will assess entries of higher skill levels using stricter criteria.

  • For costume judging, these rankings apply to the costume maker, not the wearer as they are for construction, not presentation.
  • Group entries will be judged at the highest division amongst your members.
  • The Master category is intended for skilled cosplayers with extensive cosplay experience and several awards.
  • Those competing in the Masters Costume category must bring a portfolio showcasing progress of their costume and a minimum of three previous costumes to judging.
  • Professional costumers, tailors, pattern-makers, seamstresses or people who take commissions for creating costumes or other clothing are required to compete at this level for Construction.
  • Anyone who has won two or more awards as a Journeyman, or
  • An individual who has achieved "Master" status at any other major convention, or
  • Anyone who chooses to compete in this division may do so.
  • The Journeyman category is intended for people with some cosplay experience and/or some awards.
  • Those competing in the Journeyman Costume category must bring a portfolio showcasing progress of their costume to judging.
  • Has won fewer than two awards as a Journeyman, or
  • Has won at least two awards in the Novice category, or
  • Anyone who is not required to compete as a Master and who chooses to compete in this division.
  • The Novice category is intended for people with no Cosplay Contest experience.
  • First-time performers and/or costumers fit here.
  • Any group with at least one member who is old enough to not qualify for the Youth division, or a Youth group that prefers to compete in the Novice division.
  • Anyone who has never won an award in a cosplay competition at any convention.
  • All members of the group are 14 or younger on the day of the competition.
  • For Construction: Contestants beneath the age of 14 on the day of the competition who have created at least 50% of their costume on their own (if an adult created the costume, the costume is entered under the Adult's skill level).
  • Note: For Performance, parents used as "props" for small children do not bump children into an adult class.
Original Design (for Costume only)
  • Original Design will be treated as a separate competition. Contestants in this division will not be competing against the other divisions and will receive their own award.
  • Costumes that are considered original design are as follows: gijinkas, genderbends, characters with no published artwork, fan art designs, and original video game characters, etc.
  • Original Designs will be judged solely based on construction.
  • Original Design contestants must bring a portfolio of all reference/inspiration material and progress photos to judging.
  • Original Design may be eligible for Best in Show, but not Best Costume.

Please note that any entry may be reclassified by the Judges if they feel it is appropriate.