basset hound halloween costume hack

basset hound costumeThe dictator demanded a basset hound costume this year.  She has a thing for dogs. We have a basset hound.  We are basset hound people.  So the costume request was not a surprise. The surprise was that no one makes a basset hound costume. As much as I enjoy a good DIY, making Halloween costumes always strikes me as time consuming and more expensive than buying one. What’s the point of a good DIY if it’s cheaper to buy it?

 Much googling (with no luck) and an epiphany that Halloween is in 8 DAYS! (crap), I accepted the fact that I would be making one.  And so I am posting this hack for the other basset hound people in the world, who maybe also have a 6 year old for whom no other breed will do.


  • Simplicity pattern #2855
  • 2 yards white plush felt
  • 2 yards brown plush felt
  • 1 yard black plush felt
  • lining fabric for hood and ears (less than 1 yard)
  • thread
  • zipper (14″ for size xs and 18″ for other sizes)
  • 1 pkg. of 1″ single fold bias tape
  • 1 pkg. of 1/2″ wide elastic
  • 2 large snaps
  • polyfill for tail
  • heat n’ bond (optional)

For most of this pattern hack, you follow the instructions given in the pattern.  But first, you have to turn the front, back, leg and tail pieces into basset hound colors.

Cut out all the pieces you need for the pattern and iron them.  Disregard pieces 2, 21 and 22. You won’t need them.

This is the color breakdown for the pieces you will be cutting:

  • white, brown and black: pieces 1 and 4
  • brown and white: pieces 3, 5 and 15
  • all white: pieces 2, 10 and 19
  • all brown: pieces 6, 7, 11 and 12

basset hound costume


Line up front and back pieces (#1 & 4) and pin together.  Mark lines on the pattern where you want the color changes on the fur to be.  Make sure the lines match up with each other on the front and back, so they will match up when sewn together.  Mark each piece with a pattern number, letter and color (ex: piece 1A-black).  Cut on the lines you made. I marked a notation each place I cut onto the pattern piece: “add 1/2″ here”, so I knew to cut an extra 1/2″ of material past the pattern piece, and to make my seam 1/2″ wide there (not shown).  That way, the pattern piece ended up the same size.

basset hound costume

Pin 3 and 5 together (sleeve front and back).  Mark into 2 pieces: brown and white. Mark the same way as above and cut.

Mark piece 15 (tail) into brown and white and and label and cut as above.

Now sew the pieces you have cut from the pattern pieces back together. Continue to follow pattern directions until you get to the ears.

basset hound costume

 I made a quick pattern on paper for the ears (here’s the PDF). Cut 2 pieces for the ears using the brown felt, and 2 pieces using the same fabric you used for the lining. Pin felt and lining right sides together. Sew a 3/8″ seam, leaving the top open.  Trim the seam close to the stitching, then turn the ear right side out and press flat with a warm iron.

  Hand stitch the top of the ears closed, then stitch onto hood. I stitched  the ear sticking up, lining side out, so they would flop over themselves a bit instead of lying flat.

basset hound costume

To make the paws, follow heat n bond instructions to adhere to a small piece of black felt (or skip and sew the paw pads on). Cut out 4 circles and 1 oblong shape for each paw, put them in postion on the gloves and iron (or sew) into place.

basset hound costume

basset hound costume


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