I first met cosplayer Miss Laneous at WonderCon 2017. She was cosplaying as a Dalek from the Doctor Who television series. I rushed across a courtyard to catch her and take her photo. A few weeks later, I ran into her again at the Art of The TARDIS Fair put on by Geeky Teas. This time she was dressed as a Rose Tyler version of a Dalek. I though that was an amazing and creative spin on two classic Doctor Who characters. I knew instantly I wanted to work with her again and convinced her to be part of a few Doctor Who themed photo shoots I was working on with photographer Katie York . As I got to know Miss Laneous, I learned more about just how talented and creative she is. But the thing that I admired the most about her, and that really made me want to share her story is how true to herself she is. She cosplays what she likes and what she is passionate about. It makes her cosplay range varied and colorful. She does is it for fun and as a creative outlet. She makes her cosplays based on her love of characters. It’s just one of the things that make her cosplay adventures fun to follow.
Tell us a little about yourself.
Muggles call me Lane Gjerstad, but I’m known on social media as Miss Laneous. I’m a SoCal-based cosplayer living in the City of Angels. After completing an entire childhood’s worth of art and crafts, I attended Savannah College of Art and Design where I honed my craftsmanship and fashion techniques. I’ve been cosplaying for the past few years and I’m probably most known for my Dalek dresses. My favorite fandoms include Doctor Who, Star Wars, and nostalgic 90s Nickelodeon.
When did you first discovery cosplay?
My first experience with cosplay was at Dragon Con several years ago. I had friends who went every year and they always came back with pictures of amazing cosplays. That’s when I realized that wearing costumes to a con was a thing. So, when I finally got a badge for Dragon Con, I was compelled to join in the fun and make my own cosplay!
What was it about cosplay that you like so much?
Simply put, cosplay incorporates many of my interests. It allows me a creative outlet that requires a variety of skills that have always sparked my interest such as fashion design, crafting, and modeling. Paying tribute to my favorite shows, movies, and games is also a special aspect of this hobby!
But the best part of cosplaying is the friendships. Cosplay continually brings new people into my life. It sparks an instant connection between strangers unlike anything else I’ve experienced. There’s something magical about embracing the things you love in the nerdiest way possible and having people accept you. In fact, I found my boyfriend by using R2D2 Dalek as my Tinder picture!
What was your first cosplay?
My first cosplay was Lightning from Final Fantasy XIII. I borrowed a friend’s sewing machine to alter a sale-rack jacket into her long white vest. The biggest challenge was sewing all the leather belt straps together for the leg bag. I took about three photos of this cosplay and was very shocked when people asked for my picture. In the photo, you can see I clearly had no idea how to pose.
What has been your most recent cosplay?
My most recent cosplay is Professor Chaos, the villainous alter ego of Butters from South Park. This one was especially fun to make. I loved figuring out the costumer’s approach to recreating a slipshod costume made by a fourth grader.
Which cosplays have brought you the most satisfaction and why? Do you have a favorite cosplay or yours?
I think of R2D2 Dalek as my baby. It would be the cosplay I would jump into my burning apartment to save. I love wearing this cosplay and getting reactions from people. Because it’s a mashup, it can take people a second to get it, and watching them figure it out is pretty amusing. I’ve inadvertently started a few arguments just by walking by and prompting a heated debate of exactly which characters I’ve mashed together.
Do you have any favorite stories from your different cosplay adventures?
One time I thought it would be a good idea to hit the bars in the Gas Lamp District of San Diego after a day of cosplaying at Comic-Con. As usual, the bar was packed with local regulars and my fellow nerdy interlopers. There was only one bartender and about fifteen people between me and the bar. I was in full Dalek mode, complete with my light up headband. This caught the bar tender’s attention and I was able to mouth my order to him and jump ahead in line—all thanks to being dressed up like a nerdy lighthouse.
Are there any future cosplay that you are currently working on?
My next cosplay is inspired by the original Disney version of Alice in Wonderland after she eats the wrong side of the mushroom and grows too tall. I’m excited to play with my height of 5’10”, which makes me a rather tall Alice.
Do you have a cosplay bucket list of cosplay you want to eventually do?
I do! I keep a list of every cosplay idea that pops into my head. The list mainly includes unique takes on beloved characters. I have plans for many versions of Luna Lovegood, and of course, new Dalek mashups.
Are there other cosplayers who have or do inspire you?
I’ve always been a big fan of Amber Arden. Her Snowba Fett cosplay inspired me to think of creative mashups myself. Her work is always professional, and she is so sweet to her audience. I really admire her for that.
What kind of stuff are you interested in outside of cosplay?
I like taking advantage of living in LA by going out to niche comedy shows, nerdy events, and generally exploring the city. Coming from the dirty South, I’m also a huge Auburn football fan. I have a soft spot for wonderfully bad movies, and I love nothing more than riffing on them MST3K style.
What advice do you have for someone who is new to cosplay and wants to get started in it?
I think the most important part of cosplay is to have fun. If you stay true to yourself and create cosplays of something you love, you’ll find a lot of amazing people who love the same thing. I also hear complaints of how costly cosplaying can be, which is sadly true. However, there are creative ways to avoid emptying your wallet. Consider altering your design to fit your budget. You can also find discounted ready-to-wear clothing that can be used to build a cosplay. Disney bounding is a fun movement that proves that you can create a costume using simple pieces. Just bring your own creativity to round out the design! Also, major fabric and craft stores have some great coupons, so take advantage of them.
You can find Lane on social media at: