Isabelle from Animal Crossing
If you ever asked me what my favorite video game is, I’d answer “Animal Crossing” with no hesitation. I’m a casual gamer at heart, and I love games that are slow paced and open ended. The cute graphics and soothing nature of Animal Crossing help me with my anxiety — I play it almost every day before bed to wind down.
So when some friends of mine created an Animal Crossing cosplay group, I realized I had to hop in! My friends’ costumes were just plain adorable, and I was happy to make a costume to go along with them.
Deciding to do an Isabelle cosplay was a natural choice — she is your player character’s constant companion in New Leaf and a fan favorite! She’s one of my all-time favorite characters because she’s so positive, adorable, and loyal — she is a dog, after all!
- Wig: Vivien from Arda Wigs in ash blonde with a bun attachment
- Vest: Thifted men’s plaid shirt, heavily modified
- Skirt: Thrifted
- Shoes: Ebay (just search for loafers!)
- Socks: ModCloth (similar)
- Bell bag: Made by Chinochinako!
The good news is Isabelle’s simplistic design in-game makes her outfit open for many interpretations! I wanted my Isabelle cosplay to be something between realistic and cartoony — instead of using a chunky pattern for her vest, I wanted to try a plaid that seemed more realistic. I also tried to choose the silhouette of the outfit based on professional attire, so I opted for a more form-fitting pencil skirt rather than an A-line skirt.
I began with the base pieces of Isabelle’s outfit — her skirt, shirt, shoes, and vest. I was able to use shoes and a shirt I already owned, and I picked up a suitable skirt and modifiable shirt for her vest at a thrift store.
The biggest pieces were the vest and the wig. For the vest, I started with a men’s plaid long sleeved shirt and chopped the heck out of it! I cut the shape of Isabelle’s vest, tailored the vest to my body, and added bias tape along the edges of the vest. The buttons on the front are purely decorative — the vest closes with velcro.
The wig was a fairly simple task, once I decided the interpretation I wanted to go with. Isabelle doesn’t really have hair in her original design, so it is up to the cosplayer to choose what style to give her. For my Isabelle cosplay, I wanted a big bun directly on top of my head, so I went with a longer, wavy wig with blunt, heavy bangs. Then, I just added a bun attachment onto the wig, cut the bangs, and added her ribbon and bells, and bam, done!
Later on, I added some quick ears made from felt. Easy peasy!
Another fun aspect of this costume was the makeup! I wanted to go with a cartoony eye look with lots of eyeliner and huge lashes, and I added some fake freckles to up the cute factor.
I made a video of how I do my Isabelle cosplay makeup too 🙂
This costume has quickly become one of my favorites! The reactions at cons are priceless — I didn’t expect so many people to recognize me (and a lot of them tell me they’re so sorry they haven’t been to their town in a long time, haha). I’ve also been able to cosplay with a few groups now and I’m so happy to spread the Animal Crossing love!
I also love that this costume gave me a chance to practice more hardcore makeup. I took a lot of inspiration from drag queens with the big, double stacked top lashes, solid white line below my eye, and heavy bottom lashes. I want to experiment more with special effects makeup in the future!
Have you played Animal Crossing?
(Prepare to be new best friends if you’re as obsessed as I am!)