This weekend saw the arrival of YALC – the Young Adult Literature Convention, held every year above the London Film & Comic Con. It’s a convention where book lovers can meet authors, attend book signings, win exclusive early copies of books and much more. There are workshops to attend, activities held by publishers and, most importantly, books to buy! Publishers will set up their stalls and will often have the books discounted from their original price, so you’ll be able to save a few coins on book buying!
This year, we went for the whole three days, which I won’t do again purely because it was so exhausting and Olympia is a bit of a trek to get to! Three days of travelling does take a bit of a toll! I’ll be writing another post about my YALC experience as a whole, but for now I wanted to focus on the Saturday as this is the day I wore my Kaz Brekker cosplay.
If you know me (I hope you do, cos you’re following my blog…) you will know how much I love Six of Crows. Like HUGE FAN LEVELS of love. I’d been toying with the idea of a Kaz cosplay for a little while, and thought it would be perfect to do this at YALC where he’s a known character. With the help of best friend Stacey, we – or rather she – got planning. While I got together clothes – seriously Kaz, wear something suitable for Summer next time – she planned out how to create the cane and style my hair. I found a resin crow skull from Etsy, Stacey showed me the right hair products to buy, and we spent about two hours crafting his cane and a further hour practising my hairstyle. All to make sure that on the day, everything was perfect!
When the second day of YALC came, I was so thrilled with the results of my cosplay. Stacey excelled with my hair (which didn’t budge all day!) and I very much thought I looked the part! The only thing that had to change was the gloves. I know they’re a huge part of Kaz, but it was so so hot that my hands weren’t able to cope being in the gloves for more than five minutes! There’s a picture below of my full cosplay!
It was tons of fun walking around YALC as Kaz. Aside from one girl saying that I would be perfect if I just wore the gloves, I had nothing but positive reactions of the outfit! I made a habit of stopping in front of friends without announcing myself and seeing the surprise as they took in my outfit was gold. The majority of the awe was of the cane, especially the uniqueness of the feathers – although I did lose one of my favourite feathers early in the day. A wonderful friend of mine, Helen, also cosplayed as Wylan, and we had loads of fun terrifying authors near the green room as we had some photos taken. She put tons of work into her outfit, especially the amazing embroidered collar!
If you want to follow my candid shots through the day, Stacey very helpfully created a hashtagged thread, #KazDoesYALC! It follows my entire day of Kaz, from early travels to home on the train. You can check it out below:
Imagine my surprise when I get home on Sunday night, unpack my bag of books, clothes and the many candles I seemed to acquire through the day, and my phone lights up with a Twitter notification. It didn’t seem out of the ordinary as I’d been getting lots of likes on one of the Kaz photos I’d put up in the day. When I checked the actual notification, I nearly fell over. Leigh Bardugo herself (YES), had retweeted the picture of my cosplay and added the words “This is perfection.”. She also commented on the picture of me and Helen, calling us the ‘best Dregs’. I won’t lie, I had a total fangirl moment over this. To be acknowledged by one of my favourite authors is absolutely huge, and I was over the moon.
Of course, this made my entire weekend so much more amazing than it already was. I had a bit of a squeal on the phone to Helen about it, and then started considering my plans for a Kaz cosplay next year…
Oh yes. Kaz will be back. He isn’t going anywhere…