North Italy

Hetalia: Axis Powers

  • Status: Retired
  • Cost: ~$100
  • Bought and worn in 2009-2010

Many of us remember when Hetalia sort of took over fandom spaces at conventions. As a history lover, I found the characterization of countries circa WWII was interesting and quite amusing at times (though not completely accurate). I was surprised that Italy was separated into the north and the south in the show, which actually makes a lot of sense when you learn about the regions' differences, especially when considering World War II was less than a hundred years after Italian unification.

But enough about HISTORY! North Italy was just a cute character, and I spent a lot of time watching the series with friends in high school and then in college. I saw a cosplay of Italy's military suit online. I like bright blue, and I'm also part Italian, so I decided I wanted to cosplay him.

I think the costume was from Cosplay House, and it fit pretty well. I was actually really impressed with the costume. I added my white flag for Italy with a piece of white cotton and a dowel rod, and I bought a pair of discounted boots and added the white parts to it by gluing it along the top.

I first wore the costume to a Hetalia meetup in DC, and we all walked around the mall and various museums together. I was pleasantly surprised that a lot of the people there were a little older than I was, and we all eagerly talked about history, politics, and also cosplay. I ended up befriending a lot of people that day! I definitely met some overeager, young fans who didn't understand yet how to behave at conventions and treat cosplayers like people rather than characters, but I'll never forget the awesome group of people I initially met when wearing North Italy.

Later on, several of my other friends from high school also joined in on the Hetalia cosplay bandwagon, including the last time I wore the costume, when my friends were Germany and Russia. Our photoshoot was a ridiculous amount of fun; I had a great time making a variety of facial expressions. But at the con, I got glomped a few times, and that was enough. I'd had my fun in the costume, so I decided that was enough.

This is a reminder that you shouldn't touch anyone without permission, even if it's something you think isn't a big deal. If you want a picture of someone cosplaying your favorite character, please ask them. If you want a selfie, just ask. If you want to give them a hug, please ask first! Getting hugged out of nowhere is really shocking. And if this person declines the hug, please respect that.

Photos by Smile Jade Photography

With my friends Maddie as Germany and Marija as Russia