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Fursuit Costumes

Updated on September 9, 2017

Fursuits are costumes that make a person look like an alter-ego that is partly or entirely animalistic. These costumes are associated with what is known as furry fandom, zoo- or anthropomorphism. Some of these costumes are professionally made and others are amazing amateur creations. At conventions there are often competitions for the best fursuit including a parade (see below).

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Animal patterned zentai
Animal patterned zentai | Source

Zentai

Zentai are body suits that cover the entire body quite closely, including the hands, feet and face. These can be use as an inexpensive and convenient base for a fursuit. You can get a very simple complete catsuit with ears and tail for less than $50.

However a fully pulled together look normally requires the addition of custom head-pieces, painted texture, and hand or foot pieces. People who use this kind of costume are sometimes called "spandex furs".

A mainstream example of this type of costume would be the musical "Cats".


Examples of zentai and similar body fitting fursuits:

*A note on rubber furs: Rubber fursuits (something of a contradiction in terms) are a kind of cross-over between the rubber fetish and the fursuit. Some are more like fetishwear and others more like traditional fursuits that just happen to be made out of rubber.

Semi-Fitted and Padded

Many fursuits are not skin tight by loose and incorporate padding to change the contours of the body.

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Mascot Style

The is also the option of a looser fitting suit more like a sports mascot costume. These can be brought pre-made but are far more attractive when scratch-made or extensively customized--as mascot costumes are not really designed to look good close up. Looser designed are often sculpted and padded to create a more animal-like body shape.

Adam Riggs has written a good beginner's guide for people just starting out making mascot-stye suits, however mast fabricators learn as they go. there is very little available in terms of full patterns or the range of relevant techniques related to padding, painting, trimming etc.

Examples of mascot-style fursuits and similar looser-fit costumes.

Partial Suit

Another option is to have a partial costume that you wear with normal clothes. This might include a full-head mask, mittens and tail--or other parts as required by species and parts of the body not covered by clothing.

Lauren, a habitual partial fursuit wearer, was featured on a 2011 episode of the reality show My Strange Addiction.

Examples:

Quadsuit
Quadsuit | Source

Quadsuits

Quadsuits are the least human-looking options, often involving arm-stilts and other props to create quadrupedal stance and gait.

Quadsuits can even be made strong enough to serve as mounts.

The preeminent maker of quadsuits is Lilleah West.

Examples:

Kigurumi

Kigurumi are suits that represent cartoon characters, many of which are animals. These include full fur suits with cartoon styling, or a pajama-style costume with an open face which is worn as street fashion.

Body Paint

Body paint isn't really a 'furry' costume mainstay--but it does make an appearance outside of fandom. For example:

Note: be aware that if you search for these terms you are likely to come across some adult/bondage material (a.k.a. puppy girls).

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