A WARDROBE of capes, masks and armour is nothing out of the ordinary for cosplay enthusiast Anna Marangelli.
Cosplay, short for "costume play" is the practice of dressing up as a character from a film, book or video game and is fast emerging as a subculture in Toowoomba.
The recently formed group has already attracted more than 200 followers on its Facebook page and is organising its first semi-official meet up this weekend.
The appeal of the hobby - for some an art form - was put quite frankly by Ms Marangelli: "who doesn't love dressing up?"
"It gives a movie buff or comic book fanatic the chance to become their favourite characters and live out their fantasy," she said.
"It can be exhilarating once you get into character,"
Fellow cosplayer Nick Scotney was a terrifying sight as he emerged from the darkest forest of the Japanese Garden.
His impressive hand-made steampunk suit, worthy of a Tim Burton film, came complete with moving cogs, a lightbulb and a vial of liquid.
"Being in costume can change everything, down to the way you walk," he said.
The group hoped to attract like-minded people in Toowoomba, who would usually have to travel to a capital city for their dose of pop-culture performance.
- Meet-up at Queens Park on Sunday, May 4, at 11am.
- For more information search for Toowoomba Cosplayers on Facebook.