The SacAnime Masquerade and Cosplay Parade, open to competitors of all ages and skill levels, is one of the most popular events of the weekend!
All contestants will be allowed to participate in either the skit competition, or Cosplay Parade “Walk-Ons” on the main stage. After which, the contest winners will be announced, and prizes will be awarded.
If you would like to participate, please take a moment to read the rules before submitting your registration.
If you are interested in performing as an act for the show in the future, please check out our Open Auditions.
Costume Contest General Rules
a) All entries must be registered for the convention, and have their badges clearly displayed during contest sign-in and judging.
b) The theme of SacAnime is “A Celebration of Asian Media and Popular Culture.” This includes Anime, Manga, Asian video games, music, television, and film. All costume entries must be relevant to this theme. Entries that don’t fall into these categories will not be eligible for this contest. (Examples: Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, My Little Pony, Adventure Time)
c) This is a family friendly convention. Please, no nudity, or potential “wardrobe malfunctions”. If your costume is determined to be too skimpy, or inappropriate for children, you will be asked to cover the offending portion before participating in the contest. Failure to do so will result in disqualification and possible ejection from the convention.
d) Costumes purchased as-is (store bought) or created by someone who is not you or a member of your group are ineligible for Craftsmanship Judging. However, they may still participate in the Skit Competition portion of the contest for a chance at a Presentation award.
e) Youth costumes (13 years and under) made by a parent are eligible for Craftsmanship Judging, as long as the parent is present at the time of judging.
f) No cell phone use is allowed by contestants for the duration of the Masquerade. This also includes texting.
g) One Costume = One Contestant. The only way a contestant is allowed to wear more than one costume in the contest is if they have a “transforming” costume that switches from one to the other on stage.
h) No contestant may be a member in more than one group, or participate in more than one performance.
i) Found item (piece meal) costumes are no longer eligible for Craftsmanship Judging, but may still be entered as part of a skit.
Scoring and Awards
Entries will be scored on both the Craftsmanship of their costume, and their Presentation during the skit competition portion of the event. Each half of the competition counts for up to 50% of the total score. As such, only entries that participate in both Craftsmanship and Presentation Judging will qualify for “Best of Show” consideration.
Entries may be individuals or groups. Group entries will be judged as an entire group, with their score averaged over the entire group.
- Best of Show
- Best Craftsmanship – Beginner
- Best Craftsmanship – Intermediate
- Best Craftsmanship – Advanced
- Best Presentation
- Outstanding Original Design*
- Most Convincing Portrayal
- Audience Award
- Best Youth Costume (Age 13 and Under)
- Judge’s Awards
*If your costume is an original design, you may only submit your costume for judging if you are in a group with non-original characters. If you are an individual submitting an original design, you will not be able to participate in the Masquerade, but you may enter the J-Fashion Runway Event.
NOTE: Costumes that have already won an award at in a previous contest are not eligible for Craftsmanship Judging. (Give the other guys a chance, ok?)
If you made your costume (with or without assistance), you may choose to submit it for Craftsmanship Judging. Judging will be done using four factors:
Please note that Wigs and Shoes may be store bought or commissioned, but you will need to declare that to the judges at the time of your review.
Looking for costume inspiration? Why not dress up as a character portrayed by one of our talented guests?
Group Entry vs. Individual Entry
In response to input from our judges, groups who want to enter for Craftsmanship judging must now be judged as an entire group. That means everyone in the group must have made their own costume, with or without assistance. Piece meal (found item) costumes are not eligible for Craftsmanship judging. So if members of your group have piece meal costumes, you will not be able to enter as a group.
If you made your costume, but your group is not eligible for Craftsmanship judging, you may have your own costume judged individually. Only one costume per contestant may be judged for Craftsmanship. (So even if you made three costumes, you may only choose one to be judged, so pick your strongest entry.) You will still enter with the rest of your group for the Presentation judging portion of the contest.
If you are entering your costume for Craftsmanship Judging, you will be required to provide at least three(3) In-Progress photos of your costume at the time of sign-in.
We have added this policy in response to contestants trying to enter store-bought or commissioned costumes to gain an unfair advantage over those who made their own costumes. Remember, Craftsmanship Judging is to see your skill, not the size of your bank account.
Our judges have been chosen based on their sewing and crafting expertise, and experience in the costuming field. However, they can’t be expected to be familiar with every character, show, book, and game out there. So please, help them out by bringing reference materials for your costume. Color printouts are best, but black and white images will also be acceptable.
IMPORTANT: Don’t bring something you can’t afford to lose. The convention and our judges are not responsible for keeping track of your possessions, and cannot be held responsible for lost items such as artbooks and action figures.
As not all costumers are at the same skill or experience level, we will be sorting Craftsmanship entries into divisions. If you are entering as a group, and your members have different experience levels, you may enter as the lower skill division as long as the inexperienced members outnumber the more experienced members by at least 2 to 1.
How to determine your division:
Please note that your division may be changed at the Director’s discretion if your Craftsmanship skill seems more comparable to a different division.
Skit Competition or Cosplay Parade?
Contestants have the choice to perform in the Skit Competition, or participate in the Cosplay Parade. This was put in place for what used to be called “walk-ons” where a contestant didn’t have a performance prepared, but still wanted the chance to show off their hard work to the audience. By putting all of the walk-ons at the same time, it makes it easier for the judges to keep track of scoring, and also keeps the pace of the show going by not breaking up the flow of skits and non-skits.
If you don’t want to perform, and would just like to do a walk-on in costume, then the Cosplay Parade is the choice for you. You will not be required to submit an audio track for your walk-on, as we will provide the music. Please keep in mind that entries that participate in the Cosplay Parade will not be scored for Presentation, and as such, will not be eligible for Best of Show.
If you would like to perform any skit, dance, or performance, then you should enter the Skit Competition and be judged for Presentation. Presentation Judging is subjective, but the question each judge is being instructed to ask themselves is, “Did I find this entertaining?” Be funny or dramatic. Be a graceful swan or a giant spaz. Just remember that the audience is there for a show, so whatever you do, don’t be boring.
Skit Competition Guidelines
*For the record, Hentai, Yaoi, and Yuri are 18+ subject matter. They are not appropriate for this competition.
Prop Weapons Guidelines
Please see the Weapons and Peacebonding Policy for more information.
|With your help, we can make this a safe and fun event for all. We look forward to seeing your creative ideas come to life at SacAnime!
~Katie Bair, Costume Contest Director
Katie Bair has been cosplaying for a decade, and has won costuming awards all over the country. She is also an experienced masquerade judge, costuming mentor, and author of “The World of Wigcraft”.
Done reading the rules?
Then go to the Registration Page!.