Seamstress Mel Hoppe as Sailor Moon

Reno, Nev.-based costume designer Mel Hoppe, aka WindoftheStars, has spent the last seven years turning a cosplay habit into a business creating, modeling, and selling her own character outfits, accessories, and posters. One of her favorites is this take on Japanese manga character Sailor Moon.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Aela the Huntress

Mel Hoppe in Lake Tahoe as Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim's Aela the Huntress. She says that besides liking Aela's character and garb, "her being a badass warrior werewolf was just icing on the cake."
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Rei Miyamoto

Japanese anime + zombie story line + cosplay expertise = best of all worlds. This is one of Mel Hoppe's earlier creations from 2010.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Zhen Ji from Dynasty Warriors 6

Deadly elegance is on display in this take on Zhen Ji from Dynasty Warriors 6. Mel Hoppe says the costume took more than three months of "hard, hard work."
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Borderlands' Lilith

Why tap the Borderlands franchise for cosplay ideas? As costume creator Mel Hoppe puts it: "Who doesn't love loot midgets and guns, guns, guns?"
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Duela Dent

Duela Dent of Batman fame was one of Mel Hoppe's outfits for last year's Comic-Con. In this particular version, Dent is actually portraying the Joker and wearing a battery pack that lights up the costume. Quite illuminating...
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Harley Quinn

Mel Hoppe says Harley Quinn, another Batman character, is one of her favorite villains of all time. It was part of her ensemble for Comic-Con 2011.

"Getting to flex all my creative muscles while making the costume is liberating, but then getting to share my work with others at events or through photos online is very rewarding," she says.

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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Cammy White

Mel Hoppe wore this relatively simple take on Street Fighter's Cammy White to Fanime 2012. Somebody tell Zangief to calm down, it's just a costume.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Black Cat from Spider-Man

In costume as Black Cat, a mini-series from Marvel that was spun off of Spider-Man. Mel Hoppe wore this getup to Wondercon in 2011.

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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Cassandra Alexandra

The first character costume Mel Hoppe ever created was this battle-ready version of Cassandra Alexandra from Soul Calibur 2.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

The Huntress

A huntress of another kind, this DC Comics villain from the Batman series switches back and forth between baddie and heroine, but for cosplay purposes, Mel Hoppe's version is more "Bad" in a Michael Jackson sense of the word.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Devil May Cry's Trish

Another vintage WindoftheStars piece, this costume was inspired by the game Devil May Cry 4 and was completed in 2008. Amazing what can be done with pleather.
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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:

Songbird from Thunderbolts

Mel Hoppe declares Songbird from Marvel's Thunderbolts series her "favorite superhero ever!"

"Might be because her name is Melissa too or that she has pink hair or because she's badass," Hoppe says.

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Photo by: WindoftheStars.com / Caption by:
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