NEW SERIES – Cosplayer Spotlite: Gabby Beez

Here at Fandom Spotlite, our writers have their own little passion projects. Ian has his B Movie Challenge, Martin has his DCOM reviews, Hailey has her ratings of canon Warriors couples, and I have my anime zodiac listicles. Now we have a new weekly series joining the catalog: Cosplayer Spotlite! Every Monday, we will shine the spotlight on a different cosplayer, sharing their answers to a standard set of questions as well as pictures of some of their best cosplays.

Our first featured cosplayer is…. me! Okay, I know that sounds egotistical and like shameless self-promotion, but I couldn’t help but ponder my own answers to the questions I’ll be asking other cosplayers, and I want to provide an example so our future featured cosplayers know exactly what to expect from their Spotlite. Without further ado, here are my responses to the questions we will be asking!

Fem!Inosuke Hashibira from Demon Slayer in 2022 (photo by on Instagram)

How long have you been a cosplayer?
Technically, my first cosplay was Dawn from Pokémon for Halloween in 2008, and my second was Raven from Teen Titans for Halloween in 2009 (the pictures of both have been lost to time, otherwise I would share them here). But I first started cosplaying for occasions other than Halloween in 2011, which is when I attended my first-ever anime convention (Zenkaikon). I took a break from the hobby in 2019 but returned to it in 2023. So, not counting that 5-year hiatus, I’ve been cosplaying for 10 years now!

What got you into cosplay?
I’ve been obsessed with anime since I was just 9 years old, and as far as I knew as a child, cosplaying was just a natural thing for otakus to do! Halloween has also always been my favorite holiday, so the idea that I could dress up as a fictional character outside of October was (and honestly still is!) super exciting for me.

Do you make, buy, or use a combination for your costumes?
Buy! I am absolutely horrible with making things by hand and don’t have an artistic bone in my body, so making my own props and costumes is just not something I’m capable of. The closest I’ve ever come to “making” a costume was adding fur to the pants for my Inosuke Hashibira cosplay. I don’t really have a go-to place for buying cosplays; just off the top of my head, I’ve bought costume pieces from Spirit Halloween, AliExpress, EZCosplay, and Amazon. Some of my “costumes” have also simply come straight from my wardrobe, such as the dress I use for Misa Amane from Death Note.

First cosplay?
If we’re not counting Halloween costumes, Kagome Higurashi from InuYasha in 2011. It was, well… Just see for yourself. Here’s a picture (left on desktop, above on mobile) of the costume, alongside my childhood friend who was dressed as Alois Trancy from Black Butler.

Latest cosplay?
Rook Hunt from Twisted Wonderland (see below), and it’s by far my favorite cosplay I’ve ever done!

Favorite thing about being a cosplayer?
Going to conventions and having my costume recognized by other people! It’s always such a great feeling hearing strangers refer to me by the name of the character I’m dressed as because that means my cosplay is convincing enough for people to know who I’m supposed to be (which I know is kind of the bare minimum, but still). Plus, cosplaying as a character will show anyone who looks at me that I belong to the fandom that character is from. I also love having my picture taken!

Least favorite thing?
Feeling like I’m not good enough, or like I’m not a “real” cosplayer because I don’t make my own costumes. I also NEVER wear makeup outside of cosplay (when we had a stage makeup unit in my high school Theatre Arts class, I earned the lowest grade I have ever gotten on anything in my LIFE), so I don’t have a lot of practice with it and have almost no idea what I’m doing. 

Rook Hunt costest before Zenkaikon 2024

What do you do for work outside of cosplay?
I am a middle school ESL teacher! I’m also a seasonal staff member at the New Jersey Renaissance Faire.

What are your top 3 fandoms?
I belong to so many fandoms it’s almost laughable to try to narrow it down to just 3! But if I had to choose my current biggest obsessions, I would say: Twisted Wonderland, Helluva Boss/Hazbin Hotel, and Eurovision. 

What cosplay are you planning next?
After seeing fellow Fandom Spotlite writer Hailey cosplay Firestar from Warriors at Zenkaikon this year, I was inspired to put together a cosplay of Scourge from the same series. We also met someone at the con who’s interested in cosplaying Tigerstar and doing a photoshoot with us (there is a monumental battle between Tigerstar, Scourge, and Firestar in one of the books), so I’m really looking forward to that!

What’s one piece of advice for new cosplayers?
Just have fun with it! At the end of the day, unless you’re doing it professionally, cosplay is just a hobby, so there’s no point in getting yourself stressed out over it. Making your own cosplays is super amazing and admirable, but it’s perfectly okay if you don’t have the time, resources, and/or skill to do so. As long as you know which character you’re supposed to be, I would say you’ve accomplished your job as a cosplayer.

Where can people find you on social media?
@gabby_beez_cosplay on Instagram, Gabby Beez Cosplay on Facebook, and @geminibee99 on TikTok!

Below is a gallery of some of our featured subject’s cosplays! (All photo credits use the photographer’s Instagram handle.)

About Gabby Bibus

Gabby has been obsessed with anime since she was just 9 years old, and is proud to say she has watched over 200 different series. But that’s not even her biggest claim to fame: she also lives on a farm with over 80 goats! Although anime and animals are her two favorite things in the world, she also loves music, books, and movies. Her day job is a middle school ESL teacher, and she is also a staff member at the New Jersey Renaissance Faire.

View all posts by Gabby Bibus

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