You’re never too old to start doing what you love.
Retired couple Steven and Millie Tani first stumbled onto cosplaying three years ago, when they were in need of a costume for a Halloween event. The couple, who have been married for 27 years, haven’t stopped since.
From Mary Poppins and chimney sweep Bert, to Captain America and Agent Carter, the couple, who live in Southern California, travel around the state attending various events and conventions dressed up as their favourite characters.
Cosplay, a portmanteau of the words “costume” and “play”, sees people dressing up as their favourite characters — which can be anything from anime to video game characters.
Here’s them at Stan Lee’s Comic Con in LA:
The couple, who declined to reveal their age but added that they were “both in their 60s”, first learned about cosplaying through their daughter, who is a 10-year veteran cosplayer — but never thought they would end up cosplaying themselves.
They later changed their mind after their first cosplay event, to which they received a “marvellous reaction.”
The couple’s very first cosplay outfit was the adorable elderly couple Carl and Ellie from Pixar’s Oscar-winning Up.
“Since we sort of look like Carl and Ellie we decided to try our hand with something simple,” the couple told Mashable. “We got a marvellous reaction from guests… and thus began our cosplaying career.”
It was also their daughter who first suggested they created a Facebook page dedicated to their cosplaying adventures.
The couple says it takes them up to two months to make a costume. They try to use items they already have, but sometimes go to thrift stores for additional items or hunt online on websites like Ebay and Etsy for accessories.
The costumes are sewn by Millie, who considers herself “an average seamstress who can do simple outfits.”
Steven and Millie add that when they first started, they were surprised at the attention they got.
“We are both basically very shy and introverted individuals, so when people started to ask to take pictures of us in our cosplays, we were first taken aback at the attention we were getting,” they said.
“We [also] weren’t sure how people would react to us as an older Asian couple…but many have welcomed us and…we are feeling more comfortable and have gained more new friends.”
And the couple is showing no signs of slowing down.
“We will continue with this cosplay adventure while our health holds up,” they said in an email to Mashable.
“We don’t want to sit around in rocking chairs, as we want to enjoy our golden years and live life to the fullest. It’s almost a 24/7 labour of love coming up with new cosplays, so hopefully we can squeeze in another 10 years!”