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Oz Comic-Con Melbourne 2022

There’s something special about people coming together. It’s everywhere, from intimate dinner dates to rippling seas of fans packed into stadiums. Garage parties, musical theatre shows, nightclubs heaving with strangers that have grown closer in the space of 20 minutes than I did with most of my high school graduating class. Impossible to manufacture, and utterly precious.

The crowds at Oz Comic-Con Melbourne fell somewhere in the middle of that spectrum, and the electricity of human connection was undeniable.

I got off the train at Southern Cross Station, worried that my dismal sense of direction would derail the walk to Melbourne Convention and Exhibition centre, but the brightly coloured wigs of several League of Legends cosplayers acted as my guide. If you’re anything like me, nerdy stuff makes you absolutely gleeful, and seeing a glimpse of it out in public is a delight. Once you get inside MCEC, that glimpse becomes the majority, and it’s even better.

A photo taken outside Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre showing the main signage on the entrance to the building. The sky in the background is light blue with white clouds and a bird flying.

Sure, your feet hurt from wading through the crowds, and the lines for the food trucks and toilets can be pretty hefty, but it’s the price you pay to be surrounded by a sea of people who share your passions. 

From our booth, nestled between the Oz Comic-Con merch stand and Artist Alley, we watched streams of cosplayers weaving through crowds to compliment each others’ spectacular outfits and request photos with characters from matching universes. I loved the atmosphere of enthusiasm and respect that seemed to bring everyone's guard down. Seeing the pure excitement and instant connection of two cosplayers portraying the same character was pretty special, and it was everywhere we looked.

A photo of our booth at Oz Comic-Con, showing the name "Samurai Punk" displayed above the booth.

We started the weekend off with half our booth collapsing 5 minutes before opening time, and the mad scramble to fold shirts definitely woke up any of us who hadn’t yet shaken off the haze of such an early morning. It’s an inevitability of cons; something always goes wrong. I guess it’s just an inevitability of life in general, but there’s a whole blog post in that alone. This theory was proven by a lovely artist from the Artist Alley, who had problems with their power and needed us to charge their portable power banks. With struggle comes camaraderie, at least!

A photo of our booth at Oz Comic-Con, showing Miki preparing someone's order beside the heat press. A group of people are watching as he folds a custom printed sweater.

Our booth attracted a heart-warming amount of attention on both days of the convention, and we’re beyond grateful for all the friends, both old and new, that we got to hang out with. Miki’s custom printing on the heat press was a massive hit, and we constantly had people poring over the booklet of custom design options. With the tunes pumping and smiles all round, we saw so many happy convention-goers leave our booth with new threads. Combined with the periodic uproar of applause from the stages around the exhibition space, the atmosphere was buzzing.

A photo of the display folder we used at our Oz Comic-Con booth to showcase the available custom printed designs. The front page of the folder shows various versions of the 'I Don't Like Anime' design, featuring blue and pink typography and an illustration of a female character with black and pink hair sticking her tongue out.

We really felt the love for our ‘I Don’t Like Anime’ (IDLA) and ‘Soy Fish’ collections, so much so that we sold out entirely of the latter. (Time for a reprint…?) To top it off, we also sold all 50 of our exclusive IDLA jacquard sweaters. We’re endlessly grateful for your support, and we're stoked that you're loving our latest designs!

Two days full of laughs and new friends later, we were exhausted, but stunned by the success of the weekend. This is really just an appreciation post for all of you. Without our incredible community, literally none of this would be possible, so thank you for always bringing the love, supporting local and making us smile. You’re the best!

A photo of one of our Oz Comic-Con staff (Jordy) posing with a member of our community who is wearing one of our older designs and giving a thumbs-up gesture.

If you bought some sick new threads from us at Oz Comic-Con, tag us in your pics on Instagram and Twitter! We’ve loved seeing everyone rock our apparel so far. Keep it coming! <3

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