A very brief history of costuming:
1939- Forest J. Ackerman and Myrtle R. Douglas wore costumes at the first World Science Fiction Convention in New York.
1940’s – Costuming at conventions becomes more popular.
1950- First documented masquerade, also known as a costume contest, was held.
1979- First anime costume is believed to have been worn at a U.S. convention.
1980 – Starship Yamamoto group was entered into the Worldcon Masquerade.
1983 – First Costume-Con takes place.
1984 – Nov Takahashi coined the term cosplay (new evidence suggests that this may have happened earlier) and used it to describe the act of wearing costumes at conventions.
1985 – The International Costumer’s Guild was formed.
1990’s – Anime and Japanese media craze picks up in the U.S., and many anime conventions begin.
2000’s – Cosplay becomes a more popular term, and the act of wearing costumes to conventions becomes more popular, especially among teens and young adults.
2010’s – Social media helps to make costuming more “mainstream,” and gives way to costumers who are famous through social media.