One of the most recognizable elements of the Furry Fandom is easily its Fursuits.
I’m certain any person who’s seen furries offline or online has noticed these unique mascot costumes. So today we’re going to take a look at these spectacular costumes.
Get ready for some extra fluffy action and I hope you brought a lint roller.
You might need it.
Fursuits? What Are Those?
A fursuit is any kind of mascot costume that at the very least includes a tail, a head mask and hand paws. As an example here’s own fursuit.
Furries also have their own words for the different kinds of suits out there.
Niko is a “ Mini Partial Suit,” meaning it’s the head, hand, and tail. Mini Partials can also include foot paws.
A step up from this is the “Partial Suit,” which is everything a Mini Partial Suit has plus arm sleeves, and sometimes leg sleeves.
Then we’ve got the full suit. This is a full on suit of fur, covering the head, body, legs, arms, and hands and feet and of course a tail.
The neat thing about fursuits is there seems to be no limit to the imagination.
Well, the fursuit maker’s skill and the depth of the furry’s pocket do serve as limitations.
Still, there’s plenty of nice things that furries do with their suits. Take for instance Cass’ full suit, with blue sparkly paw pads, nose, and a sparkling tongue.
Some suiters also come up with some neat additions to their already-completed suits.
Local fursuiter Motomo, a wolf-bat, got some small wings that he’ll sometimes attach to his back. These are pretty neat as they expand and retract with the pull of a string.
As far as which suit to get, it depends.
Sure there’s the issue of cost and care, but for some furs the choice might hang on other things.
I decided on a partial suit so I could wear different outfits for Niko that cover all kinds of wear.
Though, I have seen folks with a full suit that will also don a partial of their character at times. So, like most things furry, it’s on a scale, and it varies from furry to furry.
Okay! Where Do I Get One?
Aside from making the suits from yourself?
That’s a very time consuming, intricate, and expensive craft by the way.
The only other option is to commission suits from a fursuit maker.
And surprisingly, there’s quite a bit of fursuit studios/makers out there. In my own local Southern California scene there’s a few, and some makers even exist outside of America.
Yes, we seem to have infected the entire world with our furry nonsense.
Getting in contact with a maker is easy enough: track them down on one of their social media pages and shoot them a message. Plenty also have their own accounts on Fur Affinity, or even their own website.
Most suit makers will have some kind of description up on their pages or bios so you know if they’re open for commissions. They’ll often also have their own price estimates up as well, and if not, it’s a simple ask away.
For partials, giving some kind of picture or detailed description of your character to the maker will be enough.
Full suits it’s that and providing what’s known as a duct tape dummy to the suit maker. These are how they’ll be able to get a measurement on your exact body shape.
Trust me, you don’t want your full suit being either too tight or too loose.
It takes quite a while for even partials to get made. If it’s not a queue in the way, it’ll be the process itself.
But once you get that fursuit in the mail…all kinds of magic can finally begin.
Suits can also be pretty expensive.
Partials can cost several hundreds of dollars. Full suits breaking a couple thousand is also common. Depending on the maker and complexity, you could be looking at three or four grand.
Fortunately, some suit makers have payment plans that allow you to pay off your suit little by little.
Make sure you read your agreement though! It might include caveats such as the maker putting off work on the suit until it’s paid off.
Okay, But Why Fursuit?
Because, it’s fun! Every time I put on Niko I usually have a blast, especially if there’s karaoke to sing. With a fursuit you can bring your furry alter ego into the real world in ways that drawings and stories can’t do.
Some fur suiters, such as Telephone, are experts with how they portray their character. Telephone’s a unique creature of her own design called a Dutch Angle Dragon. People tend to fall in love with her cuteness overload.
Another neat aspect? Well sometimes it can help with folks who have anxiety, or get shy about being in public or doing other things.
I love singing, but I get nervous doing it in front of others.
When I don Niko I don’t mind it so much though. I had stage fright at first but the idea of being a happy-go-lucky singing bunny kinda helped break the ice.
Plenty of other furries have used their fursuits to help them overcome their own introversion.
A good friend of mine told me that his fursuit helped bring him out of his shell in a way that simply going to furry events out of suit wouldn’t be able to do.
What Else Do You Do With Fursuits?
Aside from the whole cosplaying aspect lots of things, actually.
There’s a huge list of things that furries will do in suit, such as the ever popular fursuit karaoke. Events such as Tail! and Biggest Little Furcon are great spots for that.
Fur suiters love to don their characters at local events, and even go out on their for a lovely night on the town.
Conventions also have a good host of fursuit activities to enjoy, such as the Fursuit Games.
Some cons will also bring out the game show element with games such as “Fursuit Price Is Right”.
Then there’s the ever-popular Fursuit Dance Competition where furs take to the stage and attempt to bust the best moves.
There’s lots of charity events too. In fact, furries tend to raise a decent pretty penny for their charity events. We like to help and give back to our communities after all!
Some furries will also produce various kinds of content with their fursuits.
“Furry YouTubers” that do vlogs like Majira Strawberry are not uncommon. And then there’s others like Ace of Hearts Fox who do sketch style shows with other fursuit friends. And yes, I have seen fur suiters do Let’s Plays. It’s…interesting.
So, that’s your primer into the wonderful world of fursuits! Have any other questions on the topic of furred fuzzy friends? Sound off in the comments below! Thanks again for reading, and I’ll see you all next time!
Special thanks to the fursuiters that appeared in this article, and their fuirsuit builders for making the magic possible. In order of appearance:
Niko Linni, built by Heads & Tails Studios Cass, built by Heads & Tails Studios Gypsy Rayne & Whisky Foxtrot, both built by Whisky Foxtrot Telephone, built by PhoenixWolf Fursuits Gus Boarberry, built by More Fur Less Morticus, Dr. Sput, and Audo Otter, built by Rad Pandas, Bad Doge Suits, and Heads & Tails Studios, respectively. Klace Husky, built by Battitude Studios