Starting a New ICG Chapter

  1. Before you proceed, check the list of existing ICG chapters at In general, each state or province is represented by only one chapter, except for very large states. If there is already a chapter in your state, discuss your proposed new chapter with them to iron out any potential problems. You may decide it is more to your advantage to join that chapter, or if the existing chapter is distant, form a subchapter instead of a separate new chapter.
  2. Get together a minimum of six interested people 18 years of age or older who will be members of your chapter and who are willing to sign a letter of petition to the Board of Directors of the ICG. We recommend you obtain a copy of the By-Laws and Standing Rules which are available at and at
  3. Elect a board of officers and choose a name for your chapter. At minimum, you must have a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. Your president will be a member of the ICG Board of Directors and will receive all ICG mailings. Some chapters have unofficial nicknames as well as official names; for example, the NJ/NY Costumers' Guild, who are also known as the "Sick Pups of Monmouth County", and the St. Louis Costumers' Guild, better known as the SLUTS.
  4. Set and collect chapter dues from the members of your prospective chapter. Each chapter sets the amount of its own dues. This may include:

    Note: Most chapters offer a reduced membership rate for additional people who live at the same address and want to be a member of the local Chapter (known as a "household membership")--an example being the "head of household" pays, for example, $18 Chapter dues and then another $4 for each additional person over 18 that wishes to be a member of the Chapter. This means you must submit another $4.00 for each household member to the ICG Treasurer so that person is also a member of the ICG.

    Some chapters produce a newsletter (monthly, bimonthly or quarterly publication schedules) for their own members--although not required, it is an excellent means of communication. Other chapters have set up electronic mailing lists to supplement the newsletter. Be sure to set your dues to reflect this cost.

    For example: Chapter X set their dues at $20 per year. Out of that $20 the local Chapter will submit to the ICG Treasurer $8.00 in corporate dues for each member. Chapter X also produces a monthly newsletter which costs approximately $10.00 for 12 issues per year, per member to print and mail. That leaves $2 to cover any other business expenses for your Guild.

  5. Write a letter of petition to the Board of Directors of the International Costumers' Guild, requesting affiliation with the Guild. Your letter may take this form:

    We, the undersigned, request affiliation with the International Costumers' Guild as the (Name of Chapter), also known as (Unofficial Name,if any) representing (geographic area). Our chapter mailing address is (Address). Our officers are listed below. Attached is a list of our members. Please advise us if we have been accepted. Signed (at least six members, including Officers).

    Whatever form you use, please include all information in parentheses in the above sample. The letter must be signed by at least six chapter members who have paid their dues, including all your officers.Send this letter of petition to the ICG President (see the officers page for the email address).

  6. Your petition will be considered at the next meeting of the national Board of Directors or the next general members meeting.In general, the Board (made up of ICG elected officers and the Presidents of the affiliated ICG guilds) and the membership meet annually at Costume Con. Information on the next Costume Con is generally available in Locus, at Costume-Connections, any science fiction convention attended by large numbers of active costumers, the ICG's web page at, or by writing to the ICG Corresponding Secretary.Occasionally, special meetings are called to consider urgent ICG business. Pending petitions from prospective new chapters may be considered at such meetings.

    New chapters are admitted the ICG upon majority vote of the Board or the general membership present at the annual meeting. If your affiliation is approved, your president or elected chapter representative immediately becomes a member of the ICG Board and joins the Board for the remainder of the meeting. After the annual meeting you will receive a packet of information about the ICG, including by-laws and standing rules from the current Corresponding Secretary.
  7. As soon as your chapter affiliation is approved, forward to the ICG Treasurer the following:
  8. After your chapter is approved, you must do the following to maintain your chapter's active status:
  9. It is important that you make every effort to have at least one member to represent your chapter at every annual or special meeting of the Board, on the ICG-BOD mailing list, and of the general membership. That representative can carry proxies for absent members, or the individual members may choose someone else to carry their proxies. A sample proxy form can be obtained from the President or Corresponding Secretary of the ICG, or at
  10. If a chapter does not keep up with its obligations to the Guild, the Board may deactivate that Chapter. The delinquent chapter will receive notice from the Treasurer and will have 45 days to take care of the delinquency. An inactive chapter can be reinstated; see the Standing Rules for procedures.

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