Once the costume party or that cosplay event is over how do you store your costume? The $100 costumes you can just hang up or put in a box, others are a work of art that cost thousands of dollars. If you have put time and money into this specialty wear, consider storing it so it will continue to look great and last for years to come.
Get the most out of your costumes with these care and storage tips:
- Never store a dirty costume. Whether you danced the night away or roamed the halls of a convention center cosplay event the oils from your skin have been absorbed by your costume. These oils will break down material. Follow the costume’s cleaning instructions. No instructions? Then, hand washing or using a professional cleaning service is best. Some costumes can be laundered in a washing machine, but only on the gentle/delicate cycle with a gentle laundry soap and a small amount of liquid fabric softener. Always hang dry a costume. The heat from a dryer will damage delicate fabrics. It’s important that the costume be completely dry before storing it away. Mold and mildew can destroy a costume in a few weeks and also make it unsafe to wear.
- Consider storing the costume in the original package. If you don’t have this package, avoid storing costumes in plastic bags or bins. Certain kinds of plastic have acids that can ruin fabrics. Many manufacturers now make acid-free plastic containers. Wedding dress boxes and acid free garment bags are an example of this. You can purchase acid-free containers through stores like Amazon and some big-box stores like Walmart.
- Accessories such as masks, hats, boots, purses and props will require proper support so they don’t lose shape. Again, the original packaging can be helpful in storing these items. You can also fill the hollows of these items with acid free paper to help them keep shape and limit deterioration.
- Once you have taken proper care of the costume you can consider placing it in storage if you do not have a safe space for it.
If you have an amazing costume that you have taken the time and money to put together it’s worth storing properly so your next costumed event has great memories like the one you just went to.