How to Prevent Leaving Elements of a Cosplay Home

Tutorial IconTutorial August 6, 2019

It’s happened one too many times.

I pack up everything for a weekend and start heading off to a convention. When I get there (or oftentimes just too late to turn around), I realize that I forgot a piece of two of my cosplay.

Being a solution-oriented person, I came up with something to help solve this problem. It borrows some from the experience of checking in and out library books. Thought it might help others as well!

I call this solution: The Double Check System.

Essentially, The Double Check System is a method of organization that allows you to keep track of where different cosplay components are, across multiple areas of storage. It also allows you to make sure that what is being taken out of storage or put in, is accounted for. For cosplay with many pieces, this can be particularly useful.

Sheets are available to download at the end of this post, by the way.

How to Use

  1. Take inventory of all the items in a cosplay
  2. Figure out how and where items are going to be stored
  3. Determine how items will be separated (for instance, 12 items in Box A and 3 items in Box B)
  4. Create at least one storage sheet per box, making sure that each item is on a separate line (multiple sheets may be needed for a specific box)
  5. Attach sheet to the corresponding container
  6. Actually check-in and check-out items

For Each Sheet Write…

  1. The name of the cosplay on the top left corner
  2. An item of a cosplay that’s going in the box
  3. The unit number of this item (1/1 when everything is contained in a single box, 1/2 and 2/2 for cosplay that spans two boxes, etc.)
  4. If you use multiple sheets, use page number to keep track of their being more items in a cosplay within a unit
  5. Mark by bubbling in, or squaring, which items are actually placed inside of a unit

In Action

As an example, here is my Hei Hei cosplay:

1 pair of shorts

1 pair of socks

1 belt

The Hei Hei hoodie

So many feathers!

I put all of these items in this box and labeled it so.

As you can see, everything is included inside this box but my shoes. I later put in my shoes and filled in the bubble in the center.

The is a bubble and a box around it, so that each piece of paper can be used multiple times. Essentially, the first time around, I would bubble in the circle in the “Out” column when taking items out. Later, I would square the items in the “In” column, denoting that I put an item back in the box.

In this example, “Unit 1/1” shows that everything is self-contained in this box. If I had multiple boxes or areas of storage, I not only change this number but add in where the corresponding container was located in the bottom left corner.

“Page 1/1” lets me know that there is only one page for Hei Hei items in this box. If there were 28 items, then I would have a 3-page situation going on. This is particularly useful, if you have one box with many cosplays in them.

Any system is only as good as it is actually used correctly. Some problems that one may encounter:

  • Not taking inventory of all of the items in a cosplay and their location
  • Not making notes of check-ins or check-outs
  • Moving boxes around and not correcting this information on relevant sheets

As long as you take these problems into consideration, this system should work well for you. If you’re interested in using this, I have quarter sheets designed for regular 8.5″ x 11″ paper and label sheets with 4 labels on them. You can download them here:

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If you do end up using this system, let me know. Would love to see it out in the wild!

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