When I traveled to the foreign and exotic lands of California for Anime Expo, I met a ton of cosplayers who were all amazing in their own ways. The one that stuck out more than a lot of the others was LaydiexSkull! I kept seeing her from afar and by the time I got to where I had last seen her, she had disappeared into the convention like some cosplay unicorn! When this happens, and it does happen a lot, I fall back to my skills of intense lurking on Instagram under various hashtags and sure enough, I was able to find her! 😀
It was a treat because I got to check out all of the other costumes she had done and all of them were just as awesome as the ones I saw at Anime Expo!
I hope you enjoy our interview with awesome miss LaydiexSkull!
The Geek Lyfe: Although I have been a fan of yours for quite some time, there may be a few Geek Lyfers who have not seen your work before, would you be alright introducing yourself?
LadyxSkull: Sure, hi! My name is Sam, or LaydiexSkull (pronounced “Lady Skull”. The “x” is silent haha) I’m a 21-year-old cosplayer and aspiring character designer/animator from Los Angeles, California.
TGL: How long have you been into cosplay and what led you down this path?
LS: My first convention was Anime Expo in 2012. I remember going and seeing so many people in costume and being surrounded by so many people with similar interests as I was just so inspiring and I knew that it was something I wanted to join in on. So in 2013, I made my first costume and…it was terrible haha. But, I tried and I had fun! However, it wasn’t until 2014 when I decided to make cosplay a permanent part of my life. I stumbled across Commander Holly on Youtube and she inspired me to try challenging myself to create something I would have never dreamed of making. So, that’s when I made what I consider to be my first official cosplay, Juliet Starling from Lollipop Chainsaw. I made her chainsaw from scratch, having never made a prop before, and I sewed the entire outfit by hand. Looking back, yikes it’s awful haha, but that was the starting point for me and I’m still proud of what I was able to accomplish for one of my first costumes. It’s been about 2 and a half years now, and I don’t plan on stopping any time soon.
TGL: What has been your favorite moment?
LS: I’ve had a lot of great times at conventions, but one of my favorite moments was probably successfully wearing my Bowser cosplay. I’m always nervous when wearing new cosplay because you never really know what can go wrong. Things can snap, fall off, tear, you never know! I finished my Bowser cosplay the morning of the convention, applied my makeup (for the first time, I hadn’t even tested the lookout beforehand) and grabbed all my armor and went to the con. It took about 30 minutes to put it all on and by the time it was all on, I was already sweating haha but I went the entire day without anything going wrong! It was super comfortable (besides the heat and sweat), nothing ripped, my makeup looked good and stayed on, and people thought it was super cool! If every costume I wore went that well and had nothing go wrong, I’d never be nervous while attending a convention again haha.
TGL: What was the worst day for you in your cosplay career, what happened, and how did you deal with it.
LS: Looking back, this is a pretty funny story but at the time, it was pretty stressful. I had just attended a convention and had another one coming up 2 weeks later. I decided that I wanted to make something really awesome for this convention. So, I drew up an armored version of Princess Peach. It was my first ever armor build and I only had 2 weeks to make it, including a few props. I went on Youtube, checked out a bunch of tutorials and rushed to make this cosplay. I stayed up super late the night before the con and finished it the morning of, just a few minutes before having to leave (honestly, this is pretty much every morning before a con for me haha.) I went to the con, had tons of fun even though I was completely exhausted, people seemed to really like my costume and I was pretty happy with what I was able to make in just 2 weeks, especially since this was my first set of armor. However, what happened was, I didn’t realize that you’re supposed to wear undergarments with your armor. So I sorta didn’t have a bra on. And unfortunately, I didn’t do such a great job securing the back of my breastplate. I was just casually walking around when I suddenly felt my breastplate just go loose.
Immediately I was just like “…shit” hahaha. I told my boyfriend to look and tell me if it was totally ripped in the back and he said it was so I said: “Okay, let’s look for a cosplay repair center, RIGHT now!” We went looking at the information desk and then into the Dealer’s Room and it turned out that this con didn’t have a repair center. So we went to where all the guest cosplayers were and asked around for some hot glue. We were at a booth and one of the girls there said they didn’t have hot glue but they had super glue and she offered to help glue my breastplate for me (bless her, she was so nice and my back was so sweaty, it was pretty embarrassing). She said it probably wouldn’t hold for too long but I thanked her and went to find tape instead because I figured that would hold at least for the rest of the con. I wound up getting some packing tape from a wig booth and my boyfriend and one of the guys there helped tape the back together. Luckily, I had a long wig so it covered it up and it actually kept my costume together for the rest of the con. Moral of the story, if you’re going to wear a foam breastplate, please wear a bra underneath. And don’t rush a costume in 2 weeks if you don’t really know what you’re doing. And bring hot glue with you just in case. And if you carry a giant hammer on your shoulder, then you’ll probably end up with a sore lump the size of a golf ball on your shoulder. Looking back at the photos, my wig was terrible, the armor was frumpy, the foam was ripped and…*cringe* let’s just say I know I could make a much nicer looking cosplay now that I have a bit more experience hehe. It was a fun con with some unfortunate incidents that I hope I NEVER experience again hahaha.
TGL: When you aren’t doing this, what do you do in your spare time?
LS: I’m currently a student, so I do student-type things like slack off on homework and cry at 2 am while writing essays. But besides that, I draw, play video games, watch cooking competitions shows, eat a lot of snacks, work out at the gym, eat more snacks and then scold myself for it, and hang out with my boyfriend and watch horror movies.
TGL: What geek medium(Video Games, Comic Books, Novels, Movies, etc.) made the biggest impact on your life and why?
LS: I would say an equal mix of Video Games and Cartoons. My first console was a Sega Genesis where I met my first love Sonic The Hedgehog. To this day, I’m still obsessed with Sonic and though I’ve ignored a lot of the recent games and have pretended they don’t exist, hours and hours were poured into his earlier games. I also have great memories of going over to my cousin’s house and playing games on his N64, especially Mario Party. Currently, I spend a lot of time playing Monster Hunter, Fallout, and I used to be pretty into World Of Warcraft but addictions aren’t healthy so I haven’t played in a while hahaha. As for cartoons, I was glued to the TV as a kid, and I grew up watching Rugrats, Ed, Edd & Eddy, pretty much all the shows you’d find on a “only 90’s
kids will remember!!” list. But now as an adult, I still watch some of the current cartoons like Steven Universe, Star VS The Forces Of Evil, and I’ve recently started watching Loudhouse. I would love to one day work on cartoons myself. I’ve dabbled in other geeky mediums but video games and cartoons are what I enjoy the most. Embarrassing story, but as a kid, me and my friends would roleplay as characters from literally any show or game we played. Anything from Johnny Bravo to Cyberchase. It got weird.
TGL: What costume would you say is your favorite so far?
LS: That’s a tough one. Probably my Buzz Lightyear costume, mainly because of how silly the concept was, but how surprised I was with both the execution and especially the reception it got. I wanted a new costume to wear to Comikaze and I was having trouble deciding who I wanted to make. I started looking up cosplay mashups people have done to get some inspiration and came across a Buzz Lightyear/Warhammer mashup and I thought it was so badass, I was immediately like, “I HAVE to cosplay Buzz Lightyear!” So I sketched out a design and it ended up being one of my first armor builds. I was actually really happy with the finished product even though I was pretty inexperienced with EVA foam at the time. A lot of people at the con were really excited to see it, it made a lot of kids happy smile, and Toy Story is actually my favorite animated movie so all in all, it was just a great time. I have plans to revamp and update it as well!
TGL: Time for the hardest question of all: Today is the day you become a pokemon trainer. What six pokemon do you have by your side?
LS: Oh geeze, hm. Definitely Gyarados. Victini, Lilligant, Gengar. Even though he’s new, I’m already in love with Mimikyu so I’d take him. Aaaand Absol.
TGL: Do you have any projects in the near future we should be excited to see?
LS: Well, if you’re into 90’s cartoons, I’ll be cosplaying Freakazoid very soon! I’m really excited to cosplay as him and I’m hoping I’ll be able to do him (and his hair) justice. Aside from that, I’m hoping to finally make a Monster Hunter armor set, and I may make some super spooky for Halloween!
TGL: What advice do you have for any aspiring cosplayers out there?
LS: Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself! Trial and error is a huge part of creating costumes so if you mess up on something, don’t fret, just try again and again until you figure out what works. If there’s a cosplay you want to make and it looks super complicated, just break down each part of the costume and take it piece by piece. Research the crap out of it, take your time, and you CAN make some amazing costumes! Don’t be discouraged if it looks super difficult and intimidating to make something, just try it out for yourself and you may be surprised at the awesome stuff you can create! Most of all: just have fun with it!
I want to give a crazy big shout out to LaydiexSkull for taking the time to answer a few of our humble questions! She is super dope and a wonderful person in every way I highly recommend you check out her stuff when you can! 😀