Sleights of Hand

is creating cosplay and crafts

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About Sleights of Hand

The word sleight, meaning "the use of dexterity or cunning, especially so as to deceive", comes from the Old Norse. The phrase 'sleight of hand' means "quick fingers" or "trickster fingers".

While I've been attending conventions and cosplaying since 2010, I've only been fully making my own costumes and entering them into competition since 2018. Two for two! But everything I'm working with is generally the first time I've done it or worked with a product (thermoplastic, EVA foam—they were all new for my Crown Clown), even if I've engineered how I'd want to do it and researched for years. That's the unfortunate part of being poor: start-up material and equipment costs.

That said, I'm a resourceful jack-of-all-trades who grew up in the middle of the woods and I was building barns when I was 10. I've also always had an artistic streak and was doing freelance graphic and web design when I was 14, and I was winning college Halloween costume contests with my own original designs when I was 16. I also have more lives than a cat and storybook level bad luck, so I've frequently had to Do Whatever It Takes to survive a bad situation and move on, which always results in having to learn some new life skill to make myself marketable/not die. Also hiring people to do something is expensive and I'm allergic to spending money, so I just teach myself instead. So most of these skills aren't new! Just new for cosplay.

Please support and subscribe if you would like to join me on this journey. More than anything I want to be able to spend more time producing content in the form of tutorials, reviews, patterns, and templates while continuing to experiment with new materials and equipment to see just now Next Level I can take myself.

Should this be something free for everyone? Yes, it should be. I believe in the freedom of knowledge and collaboration in the creative community. But I am also hobbled by being someone without financial fallbacks or stability, I've been on my own and trying to get a toehold working multiple jobs since I was very young, and I am someone who works very hard full time at my day job just to be able to survive. I only attend conventions I can either work to make free, or find a way to make very low cost by staying with local friends. In 2018 I had a $35,000 surgery and almost $5,000 spent out of pocket to try and fix my teeth—not cosmetic, but a deep bone infection that resulted in widespread damage, that I need another $6-8000 just to get my smile back without fake teeth I, yes, taught myself how to make. My own teeth.

Maybe it makes me a sell-out, but that is why I'm asking you to help support me in this hobby, so that I can be more serious about it to bring all of you and the creative community the ideas I've had in my head for years, but lacked the resources to execute.

This is my passion, and I'm truly grateful to everyone who has helped me to share it. So truly grateful. Please come find me at one of my upcoming cons and say hi!! I love hugs and selfies! And will probably chatter your ear off.

Convention Schedule

Katsucon (Feb)
AwesomeCon (April)
Animazement (May, tent)
ColassalCon (June, tent)
Otakon (July)
AWA (Nov)
HolMat (Dec)


Animazement Second Place Novice (Allen Walker, D.Gray-man, Crown Clown)
Magfest Super Costume Contest Winner 2019 (Allen Walker, D.Gray-man, Crown Clown)
Otakon Costume Contest Honorable Mention 2018 (Allen Walker, D.Gray-man, Crown Clown)

Sleights of Hand, AKA Jay Walker, is a resident of the North Carolina but a vagabond from everywhere. He has a deep love of birds, cooking, computers, PC gaming, writing, and scooters motorcycles. He's been working management in various retail, non-profit, and property management positions for over 15 years and has a sordid past in campaign politics. Ask him to do something—he's probably done it.

He is a very poor, unlucky bastard.

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