What Are Fursuits?
Fursuits, for those unfamiliar with the furry fandom, are anthropomorphic animal suits that furry cosplayers can wear. These fursuits typically are modeled after the person’s fursona and are usually made out of foam, fake fur, felt and varying types of plastic. People who wear these suits belong to a subcategory of the furry fandom known as fursuiters. These are people who enjoy dressing up in fursuits and cosplaying as their fursonas. Fursuits don’t necessarily have to be modeled after fursonas either, they can be modeled after Pokemon or Neopets, any animal-like creatures.
Where Can I Buy Fursuits?
If you’re looking to get into fursuiting and lack the time and or skill to make the fursuit yourself, there are several places where you can get them. These can be second-hand, brand new and sometimes even custom fursuits made specifically for you.
If you’re looking to get your hands on a pre-owned fursuit, then sites like eBay, Facebook Marketplace or just general online marketplaces can be super useful. While you may not find anything you like specifically on the site, this is a great way to get in touch with fursuit makers and see what they’re all about. It also allows you to gauge the pricing of fursuits if you’re looking to make or commission your own. As well as ebay, sites like The Dealer’s Den cater specifically to buying and selling fursuits.
The Dealer’s Den is also useful if you are looking to buy brand new suits as some of the sellers on there make a living off of making these suits. However, if that doesn’t take your fancy and you want a completely original suit designed for and by you, you may have to dig a bit deeper. Likely the most popular site for commissioning fursuits would be Lemonbrat, but just because you make an order from them, doesn’t mean you are guaranteed to get your order. They say that the hardest part of getting your fursuit is actually passing the review phase in which they decide your fursuit is actually within their capabilities. This is why you shouldn’t overlook sites like Etsy where you have access to hundreds of fursuit makers who could be equally if not better equipped to make your suit.
Fighting Game Player, Sonicfox’s Fursuits
Image by Lara Lunardi via InvenGlobal
How Much Does A Fursuit Cost?
You might be tapping your foot impatiently right now wondering when we’re going to get into the actual cost, so let’s jump in right away. The baseline cost for fursuits will pretty much always be upwards of $2000 and while it may sound like a lot of money you have to understand 1: These fursuits cost a lot of time, effort and money to make in the first place and 2: there’s not really a situation in your life when fursuits are a necessity. If you don’t have the money to buy a fursuit, don’t buy a fursuit, it’s better that you are confident in your purchase so that you can get a high quality fursuit as opposed to getting a cheaper low quality suit because you couldn’t pay full price for one.
Also, prices vary from artist to artist. Some artists may use more expensive materials than others, some may deem your request harder to achieve, or they might just value their work more than others, in which case they will likely charge more. Some fursuits can cost as much as $6000 and this is typically with good reason.
Different Types of Fursuits
The cost and length of time it takes to make a suit also depends heavily on the type of suit you want. Some of these suits include: plantigrade, digitigrade, partial suits, half suits, quad suits, protogen suits and the list goes on. We’ll cover the aforementioned suits and their typical cost to catch you up to speed.
Digitigrade Suits: these suits refer to full fursuits that contain padding around the thighs so that they look thicker and therefore resemble that of an animal a bit more. Because of this extra padding, digitigrade suits will probably cost you around $1800 or about $4000 including the head, paws and tail.
Plantigrade Suits: Despite the name, these suits have nothing to do with the recyclability of the suit. Instead, plantigrade refers to the opposite of digitigrade, it means that the suit doesn’t have extra padding so that the hips and thighs resemble that of a human more than it does an animal. This makes it considerably cheaper, probably running you about $1500 for the torso alone and about $3700.
Partial Suits: Partial suits refer to suits that do not contain a torso or legs. This means it could be the head, paws and tails, or just the head and paws, as long as it doesn’t have a torso and legs. These are probably the cheapest on the list and will cost you around $2500, most of the cost coming from the head of the suit. For a few hundred dollars more, you can even get furry sleeves for all 4 paws of your suit.
Quad Suits: These are suits that allow the wearer to walk on all fours like their desired animal. You could probably imagine that this is a touch less practical to make than a normal fursuit which resembles normal clothes for the most part. This impracticality coupled with being one of the least common suits in the fandom makes these suits pretty expensive. The average quad suit will probably cost you around $6000 if you’re looking for a quality suit.
Protogen Suits: These are a personal favorite as they are a species of furries originally designed for space exploration and as a result have masks designed for such. Obviously these masks are not actually out-of-orbit breathing apparatus, in face, they might even obstruct your breathing a bit but that’s besides they point because they look awesome with their LED eyes and mouth. The only trouble is, most fursuit makers don’t work with electronics and circuitry meaning that it’s a pretty small niche making these suits pretty expensive. Most protogen fursuit makers charge upwards of $2500 for the head alone meaning that the full suit will probably cost you around $6000 to $7000.
Fuzzer Fox’s Fursuit
Image by Fuzzer Fox via AminoApps
How Long Does It Take To Make A Fursuit?
We won’t sugar coat it, from the point of your commission to the point of delivery can be a pretty long process especially if you’re hiring a popular artist. Most artists have a queue of commissions because of how long it takes to make these suits, meaning that the length of time it takes to make your suit depends heavily on your placement in the queue. The average time you will probably have to wait for a fursuit to be made is likely between 8 months to a year but there are definitely cases where it can take upwards of a year if not two.
As daunting as this sounds, it’s not all bad because you don’t necessarily have to order a whole suit at once. Instead, you can order the suit one part at a time so that there is some reconciliation for the time you have to wait. A head on its own can take around 3 weeks to a month to make, but this is of course subject to the same condition of your placement in the queue like the full fursuit. A pair of paws or feet can take around the same amount of time, meaning on a good day, within about 2 – 3 months, you can have a head and a pair of paws complete.
Can I Make My Own Fursuit?
If you understandably don’t want to part with a few month’s rent for a fursuit, you can always make the fursuit yourself for a much lesser price. Now, a lot of you reading this might not have any clue how to make a fursuit which unfortunately is going to be the cost of not buying one yourself. However, do not fear as there are hundreds of detailed guides online that can guide you step by step through how to make your fursuit. Youtube channels like Skyehigh Studios have extensive guides on how you can make a fursuit of your own, or if you’re looking for a written guide, WikiHow’s guide on how to make a fursuit head and how to make fursuit paws is also extremely useful, but just in case, we’ll give you a very brief rundown of what materials you may need when making your fursuit.
Materials You May Need For Your Fursuit
- 1 Inch thick foam
- Plastic Wrap
- Duct Tape (for marking areas of the suit)
- Faux fur or other faux fur alternatives if it’s too expensive
- Vinyl Fabric
- Sewing Machine
- Regular polyester thread
- Safety pins
- Long pins and or clips
- Muslin Fabric
- Seam ripper
- Large toothed zipper
A lot of that foam, plastic wrap and duct tape is going to be used for the head of your suit as the entire base of your suit will likely be made of foam. That muslin fabric with the help of the seam ripper will form the base of the torso of your suit and the vinyl fabric is used for the paws of the suit. While faux fur is preferable according to most guides, you are welcome to use alternatives if you don’t have the budget for it. The zipper is what is used to open and close the torso of the suit so that you can easily slip in and out of it and as for the pins, sewing machine, pins, clips and thread, they are pretty universal across the suit and will be needed for each part of it.
Reddit User u/TheHeroPirate Making His Own Fursuit Head
Image by u/TheHeroPirate via Reddit
How Can I Sell My Fursuit?
So, you’ve made your very own fursuit and you want to make a bit of cash for your effort? Well, lucky for you, it’s pretty easy and unsurprisingly pretty similar to finding a place to buy a fursuit. Probably the most accessible and quickest option would be to sell it on eBay especially if you’ve sold items before on eBay as your fursuit is more likely to appear higher on eBay. You can also sell it on The Dealer’s Den and on the Facebook Marketplace in a pretty similar fashion to how you would sell it on eBay.
Alternatively, you can advertise your fursuit on Furaffinity Forums which is an extremely active community of furries on the furry art site, Furaffinity. Here you can get in touch with people who may be looking to buy fursuits and show them your work. However, as with sharing details anywhere online, be careful about sharing banking details and transactions of this forum as, while a large majority of the people here are lovely, there are always scammers looking to get some money out of you.