Captain Marvel soared. The first-female led Marvel film broke the box office this weekend, making an estimated $455 million worldwide. It is clear: The support is there — for fans and for superfans.
A professional seamstress and a wig maker, Jedimanda (yes, she loves “Star Wars”) — is obsessed with Captain Marvel and recently made the costume herself. “She’s exciting, strong and stubborn. [She is] someone I can attach myself to,” she says. “Her representation on the screen inspires me — and so many others — to stay strong, trust your gut, and have the feeling that you can conquer anything. I connect with her on so many levels. I feel so powerful when I get to dress up like her.”
Expect this enthusiasm when she commits time to a costume — the shortest build was one month, the longest nine. “I have to be connected to the character in some trait [to make the costume]. I love strong, driven, kick-ass female characters! To be able to transform into those characters is the ultimate feeling,” she says.
And Jedimanda — who picks super-human strength as her superpower — has a few tips for anyone thinking of trying out their own Captain Marvel costume. “Making her suit and creating her look are two different things,” she says. “On my YouTube channel, I have two tutorials to help you make her suit and helmet. But if you want to rock the essence of Carol, grab your coolest ’90s t-shirt, jeans and a leather jacket. Or, rock her military style by wearing a military-fitting olive green jacket with patches and aviator sunglasses. Anyone can rock the Carol Danvers look!”
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When you have to do a fitting by yourself and you don’t have enough hands! 👐. Haha! I’m just really excited about this cosplay if you cant tell. Im looking so forward to becoming Captain Marvel soon! 🌟 ____ #cosplay #captainmarvel #marvelcosplayer #womenofmarvel #captainmarvelcosplay #marvelcosplay #caroldanvers #marvel @captainmarvel_official_ @thewomenofmarvel @marvelstudios
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And everyone can cosplay, she says. “Old, young, small, large, black or white. If you love something and you want to show it, throw on a costume and attend a convention. It truly is the best feeling.”
That being said, she admits the conventions can affect her skin. “The environments that we put ourselves in, like convention halls, airplanes, hot and humid photoshoots, can cause lots of [skin] issues. I’m very acne-prone, so I have to be careful with the makeup I chose. But I also have dry skin! It’s a consistent balance,” she explains. “A lot of [cosplayers] will use sheet masks at the end of the day. We will just chill out in our hotel rooms with random sheet masks on. Very strong looks!”
And do not forget the makeup — a Jedimanda must-have. “It’s very integral because if I don’t wear a good amount of makeup, I will disappear in photos. I put a lot of work into making my outfits, I need my face to look just as good!” She also has a few tricks up her sleeve: “I use translucent powder [Mehron Colorset Powder for sci-fi and NYX Mineral Finishing Powder for every day] over my lipstick to keep it sealed. I wear body paint with some of my makeup too, and I swear by powder. Put it everywhere!”
Jedimanda started cosplaying in college, where she studied fine arts and costume design. “I would make beautiful outfits for actors and dancers, and got jealous that I couldn’t wear them,” she says. “A friend told me about cosplay, and the rest was history.”
A history that spans everything from five to seven conventions a year to being covered by multiple cosplay magazines — Cosplay Culture and Cohaku to name a few. “I would have never expected in my lifetime for me to grace a magazine cover,” she says.
She does get frustrated, though, with non-cosplayers’ misconceptions, mainly that cosplayers only dress up to perform sexual acts. “That’s so false. Not all of us would risk a 9-month armor build just to break it doing sexual favors,” she says.
Jedimanda spent five months building her Captain Marvel costume. So, it goes without saying that the release of the movie is a culmination for her. “I’m so excited, I can’t contain myself! I can’t wait to watch the film with a giant bucket of popcorn, a root beer and my Captain Marvel shirt on,” she says. “So many feels.”
Don’t have the time or energy to commit to a full-costume build? Check out the suggestions below to bring your own Captain Marvel to life.