My dog loves to dig so for Halloween this year my dog Bunk went as a Diglett, one of the original / Generation 1 Pokemon famous for digging and being really annoying in caves. And when I say went I mean my dog tolerated me putting a costume on him that I made, he was compensated for his work.
The Pokemon index / wiki tells us that the Digletts are small, brown moles with two small eyes and a large pink/red nose. It weighs 1.8 lbs, is 8" tall, evolves into the Dugtrio at level 26. This is all very important information for making the DIY costume...
Anyways here is an instructable on how to make a cute Diglett costume for dogs who love to dig.
Step 1: Gather Tools and Materials
First step is to gather costume materials and tools. You don't need much other than simple crafts and hand tools. Materials are pretty low cost too, less than $20. Assembly time discounting time for the paint to dry is around an hour or so.
-A willing dog participant
-Stretchy brown sock
-Eyes: could use 2 buttons, 2 pomp pomps, 2 paper colored and cut to right shape. I used the latter
-Fill / Stuffing Material: I used polyester fill, but you could use paper, leaves, anything you like
-Cardboard packing tube, about 4 to 5 inches in diameter (enough to stretch sock opening out)
-Velcro straps or an off the shelf dog costume with straps (I went with the latter because it is easier)
-Textured gray spray paint, or whatever color you want the rocks to be
-Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks
-Exact-o knife or sharp knife you can cut paper outlines with
Step 2: Platform Prep / Remove Existing Costume Stuff
I went out and bought a cheap $3 dog costume at Target. First thing you need to do is modify the existing costume. Remove any frills, plush animals (the squirrel for me) and anything else so that the only thing that remains are the Velcro straps and the rectangular flap. You will use the center rectangular flap / costume wrap in the next steps as the base to mount the cardboard platform on for the Diglett.
*Your dog can play with the plush animal while you work.
Step 3: Cut Diglett Tube Base
Next step is to make the tube base that will act as a mount for Diglett sock.
Stretch and roll the sock onto the cardboard packing tube until it feels secure, a couple inches or so. Then mark the cardboard where the sock ends with a sharpie marker.
Cut the tube at the mark with a handsaw to make the Diglett tube base. Put this piece away for later.
Cut a second tube base to act as a tube base size guide for later steps.
Step 4: Cut Platform
For this next step place the modified dog costume onto your dog's back. Use this to judge by eye about how big the cardboard Diglett platform should be and how much area you want to use to attach the platform to the costume. You don't want to make it burdensome and it needs to fit in the middle of the dogs back.
For me it looked like a platform around 12 inches tall by 12 inches wide would work so I cut a flap off a cardboard box. You then want to cut the left and right side into an arc pattern so the final shape is somewhat elliptical.
Step 5: Attach Platform to Costume Wrap
Next you want to attach the platform to the costume wrap. You do not want to attach all of the cardboard to the costume wrap / rectangular flap because then you will have to bend the platform around the dog and you will not be able to complete the next steps to create the rock wreath. You want to just connect a center 2.5 inch or so wide strip at the center of the cardboard platform so that the sides remain freely above the dogs back.
Plug in your hot glue gun. Pick up a sharpie and a ruler, mark a 2.5 inch wide strip at the center of the cardboard platform. Next lay a bead of hot glue in a zig zag pattern on the center strip and quickly press it down onto the center of the costume wrap. Then use duct tape to reinforce the attachment. When you tape the cardboard go all the way around the costume wrap so that the tape overlaps itself.
Now take your Diglett head tube and place it at the center of the platform. Then use the sharpie and trace the outline of the head tube. This will be used as a guide in later steps.
Step 6: Cut Rock Wreath Base
Similar to the end of the previous step take the Diglett head tube and place it on the center of the packing paper. Then trace it with a sharpie.
Next take a sharp knife or scissors to cut out the circle you just traced. Then use your hot glue gun to glue the packing paper center circle to the center circle sharpied onto the cardboard platform.
Step 7: Form Rock Wreath Base
Now you will form the rock wreath base that goes around Diglett's head.
Bring back out your Diglett head tube and place it at the center cardboard platform / at the center of the packing paper. Don't glue it yet, you are using this as a guide for the wrapping procedure.
Start at one point on the circle and curl up the packing paper so that it becomes about as high as the head tube. Continue to curl and roll in the packing paper all the way around cardboard platform. It should look like a wreath.
Get the hot glue gun back out again. Take the edge of the wreath and fold it over the cardboard platform edge. Then crease it to make a flap. Then lift up the flap and squeeze in a bead of hot glue. Then press in the flap to secure the point on the wreath to the platform. Do this all the way around the wreath. It does not have to be a continuous series of flaps, just make sure multiple points of the wreath are connected to the cardboard.
Once the rock wreath is secure flip the platform over. Then duct tape the flaps down onto the platform for extra bond security. Then flip it back over again and check to make sure the rock wreath is secure and gets close to the height of the Diglett head tube.
*On a side note I thought about paper macheing this part, but was a little worried that it might get too heavy for my dog.
Step 8: Form Additional Top Level Wreath Rocks
Next you want to form the top level wreath rocks. These rocks will go on top of the rock wreath made in the previous step and will serve as a feature to fill in gaps and add more detail to the Diglett rock mound.
Get some more packing paper out. Cut it into 5 inch pieces or so then roll it up. Next fold the ends in and crease. Use your hot glue gun to apply a bead to the flap and press the flap ends onto the roll. For added security place a strap of duct tape over the flap ends.
Place the Diglett head tube into the rock wreath as a guide. Then create and place the top level wreath rocks around the wreath and around the head tube until it looks filled in like a Diglett would pop out of it.
Step 9: Paint the Rocks
Grab your wreath rocks and Diglett head tube then place it onto a surface you don't mind spray painting. I went outside and laid out some cardboard underneath my rocks. Then take your gray textured spray paint and spray the top surfaces of the rocks and outside of the tube. Wait for the paint to dry. Then flip and spray the opposite side. Continue to do coats until it looks filled in, so you can no longer see the original color. Then let it sit while you do the remaining steps to create the Diglett.
Step 10: Cut the Diglett Eyes and Nose
Get out your pink felt, brown sock, eyes, hot glue and sharpie.
Trace out an oval with sharpie on a piece of cardboard, this will be your trace shape for Diglett's nose. Should be about 2/3 the width of the sock I'd say. Then cut out the piece of cardboard and place it on the pink felt. Then trace it with the sharpie. Then use your scissors to cut out the pink nose leaving the black sharpie perimeter outline.
Now that you have the nose it is time to figure out the eyes. Diglett has oval shaped eyes. The long part of the oval eyes are vertical. I tried using glossy black buttons, black pom poms, and eyes sharpied and cut out from white paper. I went with the latter because I thought it looked most like Diglett's eyes.
Don't glue anything yet just lay out different noses and eyes on the sock until you like the look of it.
To make the colored paper eyes simply cut out two ovals on white paper then cut out two matching oval pieces of cardboard (you will use this later to mount the colored in part on to add depth). Then use black sharpie to fill in the white ovals, but leave a little white empty circle space at the top, it helps to look at a picture of Diglett for this.
You don't have to use colored in eyes, I think regular black buttons could look cute too kind of like a Coraline Diglett hybrid.
Step 11: Fill Diglett's Body and Attach His Face
Next get your brown sock, fill material, nose, eyes and that second head tube copy guide piece you cut earlier.
Take the fill material and stuff it into the sock until about 3/4 full. Then place the stuffed sock into the packing tube and roll the ends of the sock over the top of the tube. Add or remove stuffing as necessary to get that perfect Diglett shape.
Once you got the body the way you like then hot glue the pink nose onto the Diglett mid section. Then if you are doing my cardboard sharpied eyes combination then glue the cardboard oval pieces onto the face above the nose. Then hot glue the sharpied eyes on top of the cardboard ovals. If you are using buttons sew them on or hot glue them. The great thing about hot glue is that it is easy to remove you mistakes, remove the hot glue and reapply the facial features.
Step 12: Assemble Diglett Onto Head Tube
Grab the spray painted Diglett head tube.
Now do what you did in the previous step. Insert the Diglett into the head tube then roll the ends of the sock onto the head tube to secure the Diglett to the tube.
Step 13: Assemble Diglett Onto Rock Wreath
Now grab the rock wreath, top level wreath rock pieces and assembled Diglett onto the head tube.
Lay a bead of hot glue around the bottom edge of the head tube. Then press in the Diglett facing forwards onto the platform at the center of the rock wreath.
Then glue the top level wreath rock pieces onto the top of the rock wreath one at a time all the way around the Diglett. This will fill in any empty space. The Diglett should look like he is popping up out of the ground as Digletts like to do.
Step 14: Wear and Enjoy
Congratulations your Diglett dog costume is done! Now it is time to try it on. Ask your dog to sit, put the costume on its back and attach the straps. I ended up cutting my straps shorter to make it easier to attach for my smaller dog.
Make sure the costume is secure but not annoying your dog. As you see here Bunk wearing the diglett costume has only fueled his passion for digging. My other dog, Bestla, was also very curious about what was on his back. Interestingly it is a great mystery of what is actually underneath the Diglett, maybe its a cute dog.
Your dog is all set for Halloween or for any Pokemon gathering. Happy Halloween, have fun and catch'em all.