NekoCon Hall Craftsmanship Contest

What is the Hall Craftsmanship Contest?

The Hall Craftsmanship Contest is a COMPETITION for those who wish to have their costumes evaluated by a panel of judges, but do not wish to go on stage with the costume. Those who enter will have five minutes to talk about their costume with the judges. 

Sign up for the contest will be at con on a first-come, first-serve basis and times will be posted on the top left side of the schedule. Judging and sign ups will take place at Cosplay Contest Central in room 101. 

If you wish to go on stage you may enter the Masquerade with a skit or as a walk on, with the option to have your costume judged. There is NOT an option to walk on stage in your costume with the Hall Craftsmanship Contest. You may enter both the Hall Craftsmanship Contest and the Masquerade so long as you do not enter the same costume in both.

Competition Awards:

  • Best Overall Hall Craftsmanship
  • Best of Saturday
  • Best of Friday
  • Best Master
  • Best Journeymen
  • Best Novice
  • Best Youth

Awards will be announced following the Halftime show during the Masquerade, but before Masquerade awards. 


Category Explanations:

Youth– Any entrant aged 13 years and younger. Youth entries may have help in creating their costumes. Entrants under 13 must be accompanied to their judging session by a parent or guardian, and have permission prior to entering.

Novice – Any costumer(s) who has won 2 or fewer craftsmanship awards. This is the category you select if you have never cosplayed before, or have not won any contests. 

Journeyman – Any costumer(s) who has won 3 – 5 craftsmanship awards.

Master – Any costumer(s) who has won 6 or more craftsmanship awards.

If you have a group, determine who has the highest skill level and use that when registering.

Example 1: You have a group of 4 Novices and 1 Journeyman. You will be entered as Journeyman level.

Example 2: You have 3 Masters and one Novice in your group. You will be entered as Master level.

Hall Craftsmanship Contest Rules:

  1. The Head of Cosplay is in charge of the Cosplay. Their word is law and final.
    Do not try to make their job harder than it already is, and follow any instructions without fail. They will not make any unreasonable demands. Their #1 priority is to ensure the safety of the entrants and that the Cosplay Contests go as smoothly as possible.

  2. Please, do not try to bribe, cajole, entice, offer favors, or otherwise influence the judges in your favor. They are mighty oaks that are immune to your wiles. Cosplay staff however will accept your bribes, but it will have no bearing on your chances in the contest. We like cookies.

  3. Poor sportsmanship is grounds for disqualification from future NekoCon contests. Be a gracious winner and loser. Additionally, bullying another contestant or cosplay staff member is strictly prohibited. If the contest coordinator finds out that bullying has occurred the bully will be disqualified. Be kind to your fellow contestants.

  4. Follow all venue and convention rules and guidelines. 

  5. No entries may contain religious, political, insulting or offensive statements. We utilize the following definition of offensive cosplays: cosplays that incite violence, racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism, transphobia, ageism, and bigotry. This includes race-facing (e.g. blackface/brownface/yellowface) as well as costumes that replicate or make light of historic or current international or national tragedies (this includes depictions of the novel coronavirus in any way).

  6. Lying to cosplay staff about your costume’s eligibility (including cosplay judges) may be grounds for disqualification from future NekoCon contests.

  7. You must have a Convention badge to participate in the Cosplay Contest

  8. Bring reference pictures for the costume you are entering. You MUST have a reference image in order for the costume to be judged. Fan-art costumes are allowed from established artists (ie NoFlutter, Hannah Alexander, Sunset Dragon).  Costumes from western pop culture are allowed. No original characters are allowed. Book and Podcast costumes are permitted with proper documentation from the source material and any visual references used. Genderbent versions of characters are permitted.

  9. In order to compete you must have made 80% of your costume, or the person presenting the costume must be present. (Example: If you wish to make a costume and have someone wear it for the contest, you must be present to explain the construction and the awards will go to the creator of the costume, not the model.)

  10. YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO ENTER A COSTUME THAT HAS WON A MAJOR AWARD AT A DIFFERENT COMPETITION. (“Major award” is defined as a first place award in any category or a ‘best’ i.e. best in show, best weekend, etc)

  11. Use of latex balloons and gloves are not permitted due to life threatening allergies. This is a disability/accessibility rule. Latex alternatives like silicon or mylar are permitted. You will not be penalized for not including props like latex balloons in your costume. If you have a question about what could be considered dangerous please email the contest staff at: [email protected]

  12. Groups will now be permitted to enter Hall Craftsmanship together! Competition level is dictated by the highest categorized member of the group. So if your group has one novice, two journeymen and one master, you would compete in Master.

  13. Judges’ rule is final. If you would like feedback on your costume, you are welcome to come to feedback on Sunday!