What Are Fursuits?
If you’re a furry or you know anything about the furry fandom then you probably know what a fursuit is, but just in case you don’t here’s a brief explanation. Fursuits are custom-made animal costumes, sometimes full body, sometimes partial, worn by furries that represent their fursona. Much like a cosplayer, furries will dress up in these suits when attending things like furry conventions and meetups to show off their work. A lot of fursuiters even make their suits themselves and therefore have even more reason to show off their hard work. The best comparison I can make for someone who has no clue what a fursuit is would have to be those mascots that come out and dance during NFL games. Imagine those, but people spend weeks, sometimes even months, making it themselves to suit their every creative desire.
How Much Is The Average Fursuit?
As you could imagine when it comes to something so labor intensive, not everyone has the time nor the know-how to make one themself, and therefore the people who can and do make fursuits drive a big price tag for their work. The cost of a fursuit can vary widely depending on a lot of factors such as the type of suit you want, what parts of the suit you want, what details you want to be added to the suit, etc. The most expensive fursuit sold was priced at around $23,000.
However, that’s an unrealistic price for most people and on average a fursuit can cost anywhere between $3000 and $4000. While that does sound like a lot you have to consider that you are paying not only for the supplies to make them but the time it takes to make them as well as the patience and skill to make them.
Anthro Rabbit (I think)
Image via DeviantArt
Then What’s A Digitigrade Fursuit?
To the untrained eye, a digitigrade fursuit may just look like any other fursuit, but I can assure you that there is a difference. A digitigrade fursuit refers to a fursuit that has padding in the thighs and feet. This is to make the suit look more animal-like as it makes the wearer look like they are standing on just their digits. The name comes from the word digitigrade which literally refers to animals that walk on their toes. This trait of legs can be seen in animals like canines, felines, and even some dinosaurs.
As well as this, the hands of the suit are typically made puffier to resemble the paws of an animal just like the feet. In essence, the point of a digitigrade suit is to bare the most similarities with an animal while remaining slightly cartoonish.
It’s a super cool trick that really brings a suit to life and makes it stand out from all the other suits out there.
High Resolution Furry Art
Image by DeviantArt
How Much Is A Digitigrade Fursuit?
As cool as digitigrade suits are, all that extra padding comes at a cost. This padding means that more foam has to be put into the suit which makes it significantly more expensive than a standard fursuit. If you’re buying a digitigrade fursuit you can expect to be paying about an additional $500 – $1000 so in total around $5000 when buying with sites like Lemonbrat.
All hope is not lost though. Sites like koshkafursuits.com start their pricing at around $2400 for digitigrade suits and while it is likely to go up a lot from that, it is nowhere near $5000.
Image via Lemonbrat
What’s The Difference Between Digitigrade and Plantigrade Fursuits?
Now that we understand what a digitigrade fursuit is, there’s a chance you may have also heard of a plantigrade fursuit. At first glance, you may think the name is in reference possible to the eco-friendly nature of the suit or maybe it’s a bio-degradable suit. Both are wrong, it has nothing to do with plants or the environment.
Plantigrade suits are essentially the opposite of digitigrade suits, the name similarly deriving from the word plantigrade which refers to mammals that walk on their whole foot as opposed to just their toes. This is a trait that can be seen in humans, any primate, kangaroos, rabbits, and others. This is important as most fursuits are actually plantigrade suits. This just means that they are an outline of the person covered in fur, no extra padding or adjustments made to bear similarities to an animal. This also makes it one of the most affordable full-body suits that you can buy if you are looking to buy a fursuit.
Where Can I Buy A Digitigrade Fursuit?
Any fursuit maker that offers full-body suits very likely offers digitigrade suits, but to save you the hassle of searching we’ve compiled a list of the best places for you to get your very own digitigrade fursuit.
The aforementioned Lemonbrat is probably the biggest seller in the fursuit marketplace. Although their prices aren’t the most affordable, they are the most reliable and easiest to work with out of any fursuit provider you will find out there. They also cater to almost every niche and this includes digitigrade fursuits.
This is yet another site we previously mentioned but it is worth reiterating that they are an affordable seller that actually offers digitigrade fursuits. It’s hard enough to come by a fursuit seller, so to tick all the boxes of being a fursuit seller, an affordable fursuit seller, and a digitigrade fursuit seller is too good to pass up.
While this isn’t traditionally a fursuit-selling site, they have definitely come into their own as a platform for fursuit makers to offer their service to the fandom. Etsy has some super talented artists on here including some who can make you a digitigrade fursuit and this way you can ensure that 100% of the profits are actually going to the maker of the fursuit.
The Dealer’s Den
Unlike the previous sites on this short list, The Dealer’s Den doesn’t actually allow you to make commissions. The Dealer’s Den is instead a marketplace for users to sell their pre-owned fursuits. However, in these many fursuits, you will very likely be able to find a digitigrade fursuit.
One of the first fursuits
Image via WikiFur
What Other Types Of Fursuits Are There?
Fursuits don’t just stop at plantigrade and digitigrade though, there are several other types of fursuits that you can find. For example, there are quad-suits. These are suits that are designed to enable their wearer to walk around on all fours. These are probably one of the less common fursuits you’ll see but they for sure exist.
As well as this there are also unguligrade suits which make the suit resemble that of a hoofed animal like a horse or a rhino. This is achieved by making the hands and feet of the suit a lot more cylindrical and flatter at the sole.
What Was The First Fursuit?
It’s safe to say that fursuiting has been around for a while, whether the suits have been digitigrade, plantigrade, protogen, or whatever, but when was the very first fursuit made? Believe it or not, the first “fursuit” (or concept of it) dates as far back as 1947! This was a German Sheperd suit that appeared in Edwin Corle’s book Three Ways To Mecca and played a pivotal role in the novel.
Okay, but you’re not satisfied with that, you want when the very first physical fursuit was made. This dates about 40 years after Edwin Corle’s book, at the first Confurence: Confuerence 0 in 1989. There, appeared the former Disney Mascot wearer Robert Hill in a fursuit based on the character Hilda the Bambioid.