With Quakecon coming up in less than a week, its time for a little fashion inspiration from last year.
(original image at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3923687448/in/photostream)
The look: Button mail has been a safe and classic choice for convention apparel for years, yet is always being updated with new buttons promoting new products. Its inexpensive, distinctive, and (slightly) protective.
The drawbacks: Some shy away from button mail, feeling its "too youthful". Others feel that button mail's innate decadence reeks of swag greed.
How to rock it: While you can count on many gamer appearing in current button mail, the use of vintage buttons is fresh and chic.
(photo by Drew "Prognar" Campbell Original image at http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3922704314/in/set-72157622040660734/)
The look: Its a safe bet that when hundreds of gamers descend upon Dallas, some one is going to use avante gaurde hairstyling to stand out from the crowd. Its also a safe bet that some one or another is going to find their look influenced by attempting to win a contest. This young lady pulls off both.
The drawbacks: Vaseline can be very hard to remove from the skin and hair. This look also loses its relevance if imitated by someone who didn't actually just win hardware by sticking their face in Vaseline.
How to rock it: I'm sorry, but theres no way you, personally, are going to stick your head in Vaseline and wind up doing anything that remotely resembles "rocking it." This look was one of the kind and of the moment- attempts to repeat will fall flat.
(photo by Matt "Dreggory" Bradshaw original image at http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3918186195/in/set-72157622040660734/)
The look: Character costumes are another time-honored choice. When the characters are classic, the costumes are classic. While coordinating outfits with friends can sometimes come off as cheesy, it's also kind of a status symbol. Having friends really helps distinguish you from the quintessential nerdy lonely guy in his mom's basement.
The drawbacks: A character costume ensemble is not an endeavor to be embarked upon lightly. A character should be well known, for full recognition effect, but there's always the risk with common characters that some one else will do it better than you. Attention to quality and detail is a must.
How to rock it: If you're thinking of going the character route, you must commit to it. Don't just throw something together. Its generally wise to choose a character with a similar look to your own, although lines of gender can sometimes successfully be blurred.
(photo by Matt "Dreggory" Bradshaw, original image at http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3918935262/in/set-72157622040660734/)
The look: A small child, particularly one clad in pink, is the perfect accessory for the hardcore swag seeker. A cuddly child perched on your shoulder is an excellent way to entice those onstage into throwing the loot in your direction, and also helps to extend your t-shirt grabbing range. Don't forget to accessorize your accessories of course- this one pairs blond curly hair and a pink hoodie with a Wolfenstein lanyard.
The drawbacks: Children do require feeding, bathroom breaks, and preferably, bathing. Also, if you do not already have your own, it can be difficult to procure one on short notice.
How to rock it: The child-on-the-shoulder look is perfect for those who actually look like they are capable of caring for a child. The key to pulling this one off is to keep the child looking happy and adorable. A "borrowed" and confused child crying for their mommy does not attract swag, but rather, ass beatings.
(photo by Matt "Dregory" Bradshaw. Original image at http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3918753628/sizes/z/in/set-72157622040660734/)
The look: Nothing says dark, edgy, and sexy like ninja style. But the ninja look is also quite versatile. Those with dramatic hair can pull off the bandanna-like face mask, while those who have lackluster hair or wish to not be identified can choose the full hood.
The drawbacks: Ninjas must suffer for their vanity. Its hot, obstructs the vision, and ninjas know not the taste of fresh air.
How to rock it: Almost everyone is better looking as a ninja than not. The key to success here is really covering as much of yourself as possible. If we can't see it, there's no WAY we're going to imagine something as bad as the truth.
(photo by Andrew "Jiggaman" Simons original image at http://www.flickr.com/photos/quakecon/3916255415/in/set-72157622040660734/)
The look: As many attendees are painfully aware, the ratio of male to female at gaming conventions can sometimes make it difficult to attract the attention of female attendees. But with a Bawls hat, it is equally easy to stay energized AND surround yourself with women.
The drawbacks: Wearing Bawls on your head can be somewhat inconvenient, as Bawls can, in some cases, be quite heavy. Those with Bawls on their heads are also often subject to a plethora of bawls jokes.
How to rock it: Keep your Bawls fully stocked- you can't really have too much Bawls. Also, it is worthy of note Blue Bawls were the preferred variety in a survey of at least four female Quakecon attendees. Bawls jokes can also work in your favor- be sure to practice a few at home that paint you in a favorable light.
(photo by Jim "Codema" Brown)
The look: A wig is a surefire way to stand out from the crowd, as as with small children, pink is the preferred color. Wigs can be a great look for ladies at cons- they allow a polished and distinctive look, with a smile that says "I can stay up later, and get up later, and still have better hair than you!"
The drawbacks: Sadly, this is a look best left to the ladies. The pink wig loses its effect on (most) men.
How to rock it: The wig is the female version of the ninja costume- easy, versatile, and great for almost anyone. Its also an act of feminine equality- ladies, you know the guys aren't brushing their hair, why should you have to conform to an unfair standard? Put on a brightly colored wig and wear it with pride, knowing that time not spent on hairstyling can be spent fragging.