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How DO you make those Animal Costumes? (Fursuits)
Making a neck for a fursuit head!  
16th-Sep-2012 11:41 pm
Someone on FA asked me how I make my necks! I took pictures of the process as I made a neck for the costume I've been working on in time for Rainfurrest.


I start out with 4 pieces. A front, a back, and two shoulder pieces (which are trimmed to fit) The width of the front and back pieces are determined by the circumference measurement around the neck opening of the mask. If you're following along at home, take a dressmaker's tape measure and measure around the opening and cut the two main pieces. The front and the back CAN both be the same size, but together their size should equal the circumference of the neck. Pin them on your suit to make sure the top edge matches up (where it fits to the mask), you can see my white back piece has a curved upper -- that's so it matches up with the back of my mask.

I sew down the front to the back on both sides, approximately 1 inch, though depending on the mask it might be a little more.

Now I add in the shoulder pieces! Sometimes these need to be played with but it is always a triangular insert to open up the neck at the shoulder for good coverage so your human neck doesnt peek out when you do that inevitable puppydog tilt-head-at-sound move that is pretty cute but usually results in skin showing. Give yourself a good several inches at the bottom of that triangle to make sure your shoulder has room.

I feel this is an important step, try it on! If you can move your neck all around (and your head fits through) and there are no huge wrinkles or ugly folds, you've got a good neck. Try to twist it around so the back faces front and look at that side, too. You want it to lay fairly flat over the front and back of yourself, and the shoulder inserts make room for your shoulders, of course. Trim up the bottom edge so it has a neat appearance, and now you're ready to attach it to your fursuit head!

I then sew the neck to my fursuit head, when sitting on a dummy head the shoulder inserts stick out a little. Brush out those seams and you're done!

If you find you've got some unsightly folds, but you can't reduce the size of the neck fabric without affecting the fit, I like to weave in some elastic thread to make the neck stretchy. Follow this tutorial for more info on that subject: http://fursuit.livejournal.com/4065775.html
On this particular fursuit, I wove in a small 4-inch patch of elastic thread on the back of the neck flap to help it curve in while still laying flat.

Hope this clears up the neck process! As always, I am happy to answer any questions!
17th-Sep-2012 08:29 am (UTC)
Oh beautiful. I always love seeing neck tutorials because I think it's one of the hardest parts. Do it right though, and it can really make a fursuit head look flush :) Thanks for another easy to follow tutorial!
17th-Sep-2012 11:54 am (UTC)
That's a very nice tutorial. Are you basing it off a template you made or measurements?
17th-Sep-2012 07:55 pm (UTC)
I primarily just use the measurements of the circumference of the neck. Each character has a differently shaped neck contrast (like the brown and the white ratio I used on mine, with brown being a little smaller) so really, the front and the back pieces can basically be squares/rectangles, the addition of those triangular shoulder pieces will still make it work fairly reasonably. I tend to like to round off my bottom edges, though, just so it has a nice organic look.

Edited at 2012-09-17 07:56 pm (UTC)
17th-Sep-2012 01:53 pm (UTC)
woooo a bib tutorial! my boyfriend is going to be relieved that I don't need to duct tape him into this head I'm making.
17th-Sep-2012 02:15 pm (UTC)
So simple... But this helps me SO much lol! Thank you!
17th-Sep-2012 05:32 pm (UTC)
This has been the toughest part for me over my last two heads. ;o; Thanks so much for sharing this!
17th-Sep-2012 10:51 pm (UTC)
I've been staring woefully at my latest two heads because I was unsure of how to do a neck for them.
Thank you so much for this. :D Your tutorials are always so helpful.
18th-Sep-2012 01:48 am (UTC)
thank you so much for this! I've been dissatisfied with the way I've done my necks, I'll be excited to try this method out!
22nd-Sep-2012 05:36 am (UTC)
Another excellent Tutorial, THANK YOU!
14th-Oct-2012 08:36 pm (UTC)
Can this neck be used for partials too ? (Gonna make mine a fullsuit later, but gonna go for a partial for halloween)
14th-Oct-2012 09:09 pm (UTC)
Of course! Necks look best tucked into clothes (rather than laying on top), so be sure to give yourself enough fabric to tuck it in properly!
14th-Oct-2012 10:28 pm (UTC)
Neat. WIll try that then. First sewing experience with fur ever ;/ Made a tail, but I guess taht's faar easier than making sure the headfur is correct and pattern making etc.

BTW saw the props vid you and Maly had in 2010 at rainfurrest on YT and wondered where you can like buy accercories.
Let us say a custom made plushie about 40/50 cm long. Any good ideas ? (Except making one cause fabric hereis Expencive...)
1st-Jun-2014 11:05 pm (UTC)
I'm curious as to how I'd get the neck piece to work for my upcoming suit that has a sort of feathery ploom.
21st-Aug-2016 05:18 am (UTC)
Maybe you could make the same pattern, but out of thinner materials, and then put in fake feathers for it, glue the inside and then glue/sew another bit of fabric on the inside to cover it up and make it comfortable on the inside and look nice,
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