I decided a while back that I wanted to dress Gwen as a wolf for Halloween, so when we went to my mom’s at Thanksgiving I asked her to help me make a pattern for a wolf costume like the bear and rabbit ones she made for us as kids. I’d actually hoped she’d just make the whole thing for me buuuuuuuut no luck, I have to do it myself. After a week and a half of procrastination I finally got around to starting it last night, and in my typical fashion I decided to redo the pattern. Instead of a one piece hooded suit I decided to make the hood a separate piece (so that if I don’t have time to finish the whole suit I can still just put the hood on Gwen with some grey sweats & a quick tail and still have a lil wolf puppy).
You’re probably thinking WOW TANIE HALLOWEEN IS IN A WEEK AND A HALF THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO START SEWING COSTUMES but this hood is super simple and if you have basic skills with a sewing machine you can whip it up in about ten minutes. If you don’t have basic sewing machine skills or maybe you have a weird fear of your sewing machine (cough*me*cough) it’ll take a couple of hours to sew by hand while watching Gilmore Girls (YOU KNOW YOU’RE WATCHING IT, WE’RE ALL WATCHING IT). Faux fur is very forgiving so if your hood turns out a little wonky it’ll still look great. I didn’t bother taking pictures of the sewing process because I had no idea if it was going to turn out or not, but I’ve tried to make the instructions as simple and clear as possible. If you need help please feel free to contact me.
The pattern is for the hood & ears only but I’ve included some quick sketches of different types of tails. The hood is a simple 3-piece pattern (two of the pieces need assembly, see below) with two 2-piece ears. The pattern is sized for Gwen, who is a larger-than-average two year old. For smaller children scale the pattern down in size, for larger children scale up. If your child has a very large head you might need to cut a larger face opening; it fits Gwen perfectly but the face hole is too small her lil friend who is about the same age/size but has a bigger head I guess, or maybe just a bigger face.
Supplies & equipment:
• printer & printer paper
• approx. 1/2 meter of faux fur (enough to make the hood and a tail of your own design)
• fabric pen
• sewing machine OR needle & thread
Fur colour suggestions:
• wolf: any shade of grey/black/white
• bear/polar bear: brown/white
• tiger: orange & black stripes
• fox: orange & white for the tip of the tail
• cat: literally any colour
• lion: longer brown fur for the hood, shorter tan fur for the ears
• skunk: black for the head sides & ears, white for the head gusset
1. Download and print out the pattern. Cut out the 2 halves of the head gusset and 2 halves of the head side pieces and tape together at the dotted lines. Cut out the ear of your choosing.
2. Trace the pattern pieces onto the back of the faux fur, remembering to check the direction of the nap. You want it to run top-to-bottom on the head sides, front-to-back on the head gusset (top of the head) and bottom-to-top on the ears. If you make a tail the nap should run top-to-tail tip. You need one head gusset, two head sides (1 left and 1 right) and four ears (2 left and 2 right). Cut out all the pieces, including a slit in the top of each head side where the ears will go. When cutting faux fur you want to slide the scissors under the fur and cut just the backing otherwise you will be breathing in faux fur wisps forever.
PLEASE NOTE: the lines on this pattern are SEWING LINES not cutting lines. Please leave a 1cm seam allowance around the traced lines.
3. Pin together 1 left and 1 right ear piece, right (fur) sides together, matching the letters (A:A, B:B). Sew around the top of the ear from A to B, leaving the bottom open. Repeat with the second ear, then turn both ears right side out.
4. Pin one of the ears into the slit in one of the head sides, matching the letters (A:A, B:B). Insert the ear into the head side slit, right sides together, with the cut edge of the slit matching up with the open bottom of the ear. Sew across the slit and the bottom of the ear from A to B; repeat with the second ear and second head side.
5. Right sides facing, pin together the head gusset and sides, matching the letters (C:C x2, D:D x2, E:E, F:F). Sew each side of the head to the gusset from C to D, then sew the front of the sides together from E to F, leaving the face opening (between letters C and E) open.
6. Fold the edges of the face opening back 1cm and hem. Fold the bottom edge of the hood back 1cm and hem (optional; I didn’t bother hemming the bottom of Gwen’s hood and it’s fine). Turn the hood right side out and use a soft brush to gently loosen any fur that is caught in the seams.