Fursuit Commissions (What You Must Know)

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Diving Into Fursuit Commissions (Furry Head First)

Now that you know more about furry fandom culture and fursuits, it’s time for the real fun to begin! You have grown tired of watching YouTube videos about the topic and finally pushed past any excuses holding you back. Now you are ready to give birth to your very own creation and start the fursuit commission process. But, with something as delicate, special, and expensive as a fursuit, you want to make sure you get it right the first time. Don’t worry because, in this piece, we literally have you covered.

In this article, we are going to skip the fluff and get straight into the good stuff. Here are the things you must know when it comes to commissioning your first fursuit:

  1. Spend Time Thinking About Your Unique Fursona
  2. Commission A Fursuit Reference Sheet
  3. Choosing The Best Fursuit Commissions Artists
  4. Helpful Fursuit Commission Tips To Remember

1) Spend Time Thinking About Your Unique Fursona

Furry reference sheet sketch

Before you jump in and start searching for fursuit artists open to commissions, don’t forget to work on your fursona character development. This is where most new furries miss the mark entirely and can be a costly mistake in the future — causing a need to commission an entirely new costume simply because they moved too fast in the beginning.

Consider this; if you were designing a house, you would likely spend many hours combing through every square inch of the architectural plans, leaving no detail uncovered. Why? Because your home will be a reflection of you, and also because the process is lengthy, expensive, and once it’s done, there is no going back.

The exact same is true with creating a fursona. Your fursona is an artistic representation of you in furry suit form, of course. In the next section, we will show you how to create a fursuit commission character mapping. This is an exercise for you to get your ideas down on paper in an organized manner. Consider around 5-10 statements that are the most important to the design of your fursona commission. 

Here are a few examples:

  • “My fursuit will be based on the physical manifestation of a fictional monster”
  • “I want to design to be round and chubby
  • “I want a short and bushy tail
  • “I want large eyes”
  • “I want large teeth protruding from the mouth”
  • “Blue and white will be my primary and secondary color schemes”
  • “I want my face to appear happy and inviting”

There is literally no right or wrong way to do this because remember this is solely for the purpose of getting your ideas down on paper. Thus giving you the ability to consider all the details of your fursona. If you need some help, try taking a look a different furry artwork to inspire your creative genius!

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Create Your Fursuit Commission Character Mapping

Considering a fursuit character mapping. Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Next, now that you have a list in-hand of statements that you want represented in your design, you will need to map them to the physical features of your fursuit. We recommend organizing the statements into the following categories.

Applying The Mapping

Below are examples of statements we came up with earlier.  Apply these statements to each corresponding category that is the most relevant to your design:

Example:

Fursona Character Manifestation

  • “My fursuit will be based on the physical manifestation of a fictional monster”
  • “I want to design to be round and chubby
  • “I want a short and bushy tail
  • “I want large eyes”
  • “I want large teeth protruding from the mouth”

Fursona Colors

  • “Blue and white will be my primary and secondary color schemes”

Fursona Demeanor

  • “I want my face to appear happy and inviting”

Keep in mind that getting all your statements into a single fursuit design may be either very expensive or simply impossible to produce, so try to maintain an open mind on your design. In addition, the more custom pieces that will be required to construct your fursuit could have other effects down the line.

If this is your first fursuit commission, we would advise sticking to a few statements per category to reduce overall design complexity for the fursona maker. Ok, now that you have a mental blueprint for your design, the next step will be to bring your ideas to life!

2) Commission A Fursuit Reference Sheet

Example of a fursuit reference sheet. Image by GraphicMama-team from Pixabay

Now that you know what you want, its time to commission a fursuit reference sheet. Think of this as your design blueprint that you will provide to the fursona artist to begin working on your commission.

Keep in mind that the artist creating your reference sheet will likely not be the same artist who creates your fursuit. This is often because fursona makers are busy creating the costumes themselves, and do not have time to also provide initial design work. If you are a good artist, you can also take a stab at creating the reference sheet by yourself.

Details Required

Your reference sheet will preview the front, back, and side profiles of your design. You will likely be required to submit a reference sheet even if you are not doing a full bodysuit. Here is a list of common fursuit commissions types.

Animation Styles

There are many different reference sheet animation styles in which the artist can create your design. Many artists specialize in a particular style, so make sure to tell them which type you prefer during the outreach process.

Finding fursuit reference sheet artists

You can find reference sheet artist both on social media, as well as on freelancer services such as Fiverr.

3) Choosing The Best Fursuit Commissions Artists

Researching fursuit commission artists. Image by GraphicMama-team from Pixabay

Now that you have your completed reference sheet in hand, you are ready to go shopping for the perfect fursuit costume maker, right? Not quite! Just like searching for any service, there are a few things you will want to consider first. Let’s review some of the big factors you will want to keep in the forefront of your mind when looking for a fursona maker:

Conduct heavy research on the fursona maker

One of the primary reasons people love shopping on Amazon is because there is a massive database of customer reviews. This helps new buyers feel at ease before hitting that “Buy Now” button. While most fursuit makers may not have an elaborate testimonials section on their social media or website, you can be almost sure that if they produce quality work, then someone will have tweeted or posted about their experience.

Take time to review an artists’ website, social profile, and research until you feel comfortable with their track record. If you find an artist with great designs, but a limited amount of public feedback on their work, it may be worth sending them a message and asking to see a portfolio. If they are just getting started taking fursuit commissions, this could be an excellent opportunity to negotiate a favorable price.

Price doesn’t always equal quality

We have all been in situations in the past after we bought a cheap and crappy product and thought, “oh well, you get what you pay for.” While this is generally the case in modern society, it isn’t necessarily the rule of thumb when it comes to fursuit quality or craftsmanship.

Often, the term “quality” can be a relative term, so again, your best bet will be heavily researching reviews, photos, and then comparing prices amongst multiple fursona makers. Also, research some of the materials used by a particular artist if they advertise the information on their website. The moral of the story is that if you find a great price for a commission, it doesn’t mean that you will receive poor quality.

Thoroughly review the artist’ pricing sheet

Sure, you can commission a fursuit to have multicolored dragon wings, a pair of both inside and outside paws, and cool LED lighting behind the eyes. But it will cost you! Before you go buck-wild on the upgrades, make sure to understand what elements of the costume are included in the base cost, and which are upgrades. Otherwise, your cost could balloon out of control.

4) Helpful Fursuit Commission Tips To Remember

Thinking about additional questions about the commissions process. Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

Consider the suit maintenance when designing

Fursuits, aside from being awesome, in reality, they function similar to a big fluffy towel and soak up a ton of dust and dirt regardless of where you are. When commissioning your suit to be aware that larger, and more elaborate parts to a suit could mean more maintenance and treatments needed to keep the colors fresh and robust.

In addition, just like normal clothes, specific faux fur colors such as white are more prone to showing dirt than others.

Make sure you have the money upfront

Often, many new furries will start a fursuit commission because they only have to put down 20 – 40% of the cost upfront, and figure that they will have enough cash for the remaining payments when the time comes. Remember that life happens, you never know when turbulent financial times will hit. A good rule of thumb is to make sure you have enough money to purchase the entire commission upfront, even if it’s not necessary.

Also, if you have payment issues, the artist may choose to never work with you again. So instead of burning the bridge to a professional relationship with a great artist, just wait until you have all the cash up front before placing an order.

Expect long wait times

Even after you have paid your initial down payment and the fursuit commissions process has begun, don’t expect to be suiting up at a furry convention anytime soon. Depending on waitlist and backlogs, it could take you anywhere from two months to a year to receive the completed suit. During this time, most makers will be communicating with you and sending you photo updates of the progress.

Also, make sure to factor in estimated shipping times into the wait as the fursuit maker may not be located in your home country.

Prepare yourself for possible rejection

The thought of a fursona maker rejecting thousands of dollars in new orders may sound crazy, but the truth is that many of the most popular artists do this all the time. In fact, many times they will post that they are closed for new commissions directly on their social profiles.


The fursuit business is booming, and often times artists are single-person operations, and realistically they can only handle so much volume at a time. So if you get a no when trying to solicit services don’t take it personally, because remember it’s just business.

Start Your Fursuit Commission Today

Now that you know more about what’s included in a fursuit commission, it’s time to start yours! If you take these tips we fully expect that your fursona will reach its full design potential.

However, the story doesn’t end here because now it’s time for you to get involved down in the comments. Tell us more about your experience with fursona makers down in the comments! Remember to share on social media!

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how do you know if a design is possible for a fursuit? i think wee can all agree that there is a lot more creative freedom with a fursona drawing than with a fursuit,so how do you know if your drawing with translate well in fursuit form?

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