Saturday, October 21

DIY Raccoon Costume {free pattern}

Is there anything as indecisive as a small boy deciding what to be for Halloween? I finally had to tell him "We are making costumes today. Whatever you choose right now is what you will be." After weeks of flopping from raccoon, to pumkin, to apple, to hotdog, to police officer, to minion (often all in the same day), he circled back around to good old raccoon. Thank goodness because it ended up being a really easy (and super cute) costume!



And he totally loves it. He's barely taken if off all week, and even wears it out on errands. I keep hearing things like "Look out mommy! There's a raccoon behind you!" "Watch how far raccoons can jump!" "Do raccoons eat cereal?"


This is one of those easy costumes that's made with a hoodie or jacket. Which is my favorite kind of costume. For the same $15 you can get a cheap pre-made costume, or a nice jacket he can wear for the rest of the year!


Here's all you need to make one:
  • gray hoodie or jacket
  • gray felt (we bought 1/4 yard off a bolt to have a long enough piece for the tail)
  • black felt - 1 sheet
  • white felt  - 1 sheet
  • 12" elastic (I used 1/4" braided elastic) you won't need the whole thing, but this way you're sure to have enough
  • mask pattern
  • black thread 
  • white thread
  • small amount of stuffing (optional, you can also leave the tail flat)
Raccoon Pose



Print the pattern (download it here) and cut out the pieces from the felt. Lay the white pieces on the mask and sew around the edges with white thread.


Lay the black pieces on top and sew around the edges with black thread.


Sew one end of the elastic to one side of the mask, even with the center of the eye. Place the mask on your child's head and wrap the elastic around to the other side to see how long it needs to be. You want it just snug enough to stay on, but not tight (if it's tight it will stretch the eye holes and be uncomfortable). One you determine the length, sew the other end in place and cut off any extra.


Front view with the elastic attached:


Try it on!


Now for the tail. I measured from his belt to his knees = 14". So I cut two pieces of gray felt 14" long x 6" wide. You can adjust the size for a larger or smaller child. Trim down both pieces free-hand to make a tail-ish shape. Then cut zig zag strips of black felt and lay them across the tail. Sew along both sides of each stripe with black thread.


Trim off the extra black felt, then stack the two tail pieces and sew around the edges, leaving the top of the tail open for stuffing.


Stuff it.


Sew the top closed.


Now cut out two felt loops from the gray felt (these are on the pattern, but make sure they will fit your child's belt!). Fold each loop in half and sew one at each side of the tail, leaving space in the middle (this will accommodate a belt loop if your child wears the tail with jeans). 


Last but not least, add ears to the hoodie. The mask also has ears, so he'll still have ears whether he wears the hoodie with it or not. These aren't on the pattern, I just cut ears from gray felt that seemed like the right size for his head. Also cut smaller black ears to layer on top, and sew around the edges with black thread. Hand sew the ears onto the hood of the jacket, near the front edge of the hood.


You're done!


Warning: when you let him try it on, he will never want to take it off.


We finished the costume with gray sweatpants, but you could even wear it with jeans.


And check out that little raccoon tail.


We were planning to break out our old favorite Yoda costume for the baby brother but he keeps asking "That's my a-coon?" So it looks like I'll be making one more mask.


We also made a $5 Obi Wan Kenobi costume for the biggest boy (we'll share that tutorial tomorrow, find it here) and all together it only took a couple hours... including lots of "help."


What are your kids wearing for halloween this year?

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