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Christmas Gift Guide

Seamstress Mel Hoppe as Sailor Moon

Aela the Huntress

Rei Miyamoto

Zhen Ji from Dynasty Warriors 6

Borderlands' Lilith

Duela Dent

Harley Quinn

Cammy White

Black Cat from Spider-Man

Cassandra Alexandra

The Huntress

Devil May Cry's Trish

Songbird from Thunderbolts

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

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.

Caption by / Photo by WindoftheStars.com
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.
Caption by / Photo by WindoftheStars.com

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.

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

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.

Caption by / Photo by WindoftheStars.com
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