Materials to pick up are depending on what style of build you want to start. Walmart and Harbor Freight have supplies for both foam and Pepakura builds plus they're relatively cheap which is a bonus.
Patterns and templates are all found in The Armory on the forums here so you've found the right place. A few costumes may need a bit of searching for more obscure parts but if you ask questions in this thread I'm sure someone will be able to dig up a link.
Welcome! Hopefully you had an awesome weekend in Philly, I know I had a blast!
Tutorial Index Who can make a Tutorial? A: Anyone How do I make a tutorial? A: Create a thread in any part of the forum you think your tutorial pertains to such as Costume, Props, Soft Parts etc. How do I get the tutorial in the Tutorial Section? A: start a conversation with me...
Welcome to the party! Sorry I couldn't make it to meet you but glad to see new faces. Using the tutorial index and new recruit area to look and learn is your best option. But please feel free to ask questions and surf through many of the awesome threads out there. Can wait to see what you start crafting!