Make: Zilla Costume

by Cat on October 27, 2010

Shinmin’s owl-tastic costume is one tough act to follow but here it is…my Zilla costume. I am STILL not finished with it but thought I’d share what I have so far!  If you’re wondering,  ‘Zilla is the nickname for my 1 1/2 year old.  He has the heaviest feet…can trample over anything (including his mom’s).  It was only appropriate I pay homage to that.

The costume cost under $20 to make…I had leftover scrap, but you really only need felt, glue, eyes, cardstock and some day-glo vinyl or fabric and an old hoodie.  Time…well time is another matter.  I have to confess, I looked forward to mindlessly gluing the scales as stress relief but after about 300 hundred of them I was ready for this thing to go live!

above: fabric…three different shades of green wool felt, day-glo parachute fabric

above: an old hoodie got scaled beyond its wildest dreams.  I used Alene’s glue and started piecing from bottom to top.

above: I may have made the eyes a little too big… we had to take Zilla to an event when his costume was half way finished.  a dad exclaimed, “how cute!  a fish!

above: I love me some accessories.  I think that’s my favorite part of costumes.  I made a flaming bottle cozy for his sippy cup.

above: I am literally still working on this tail.  If anyone has suggestions on how to attach it please email me!  Basically you cut round circles out of cardstock and then glue the felt front to back.  Then run a string and stitch each piece together so that the tail can “swish” when they walk.

And here he is!  Zilla!  I still have to create a skyscraper and plane out of felt which I’ll post later on.

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{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Shinmin October 27, 2010 at 4:46 pm

WHOOOOAAAHHHH! Zilla totally stomps crazy owl out of the water (no, tree… Or is it skyscraper?). This costume is not only amazingly cute, the execution is very sophisticated. Those 300 scales are very couture! And since “couture” is, by definition, hand made fashion, this costume is couture zilla!

We should start another category on this site called “momma couture” dedicated to hand made fashion ideas – from funky hats to glamourous dresses.

Brava momma Zilla!


aya October 27, 2010 at 5:38 pm

Nolan’s so cute! Your zila costume is amazing, Cat!


jackie October 27, 2010 at 5:48 pm

oh my, this is amazing. you and shinmin need to go into business right this minute.


tori October 27, 2010 at 1:17 pm

i second jackie – you mamas are amazing! absolutely AMAZING!


candace October 27, 2010 at 1:22 pm

I am seriously addicted to this site now. You ladies can MAKE things! I cannot believe the Godzilla costume. Well done!


Cat October 27, 2010 at 3:26 pm

Thanks everyone! Send in pics of your costumes…we want to see! Shinmin–Your owl will forever haunt me with its fabulousness. And I’m going to have remind him later in life that he was wearing “Couture Zilla.” Seriously, I burned my hands last year and now I can’t feel sensation in my finger tips from all the cutting and scale pressing.


meg October 27, 2010 at 3:49 pm

that zilla costume is awesome! i need you to make my kids’ costumes. :))


Jenn White Topliff October 27, 2010 at 8:36 pm

WOW – Cat, that is incredible! You and Shinmin have done the designing moms proud! I’ve been working on Grace’s “Pigeon” costume for weeks now. The pigeon is a character in Mo Willems’ book series about a very convincing pigeon who wants to drive a bus, eat a hot dog, have a puppy and stay up late! I went so far as to buy a sewing machine and take sewing lessons to learn how to use it – and I’m hoping to be done by this weekend. Will send pics as soon as I’m done… hoping to follow in your and Shinmin’s sensational footsteps!!!


Cat October 27, 2010 at 9:19 pm

Jenn…we MUST see this when you are done. Send pics STAT!!


Laura Kleinhenz October 27, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Wow, my daughter’s name is Willa and her nickname is Willa Zilla — so fun to find another Zilla out in the world. I wish I were 1/100th as inspired as you are. Fantastic!


Cat October 27, 2010 at 9:13 pm

hi laura–oh it’s so great to hear there’s another Zilla out there in the world! does she have a mean stomp as well?!


Elisabeth Dunker October 28, 2010 at 12:01 am

So great :)!


heidi October 28, 2010 at 9:52 am

OH MY GOD! that is sooooo adorable Cat. dang!


jaime October 29, 2010 at 3:48 am

This is amazing. So creative. The bottle of flames is bay far my favorite part. Well done!


Holly October 29, 2010 at 7:44 pm

Wow, that is really impressive, and super cute! I love the idea that when he puts the sippy cup to his mouth he shoots flames – so clever.


alicia February 17, 2011 at 9:07 am

that is great-my 8 year old chose to dress up like a komodo dragon-eep-how did you make those “feet”????


Cat February 17, 2011 at 11:47 pm

I have to confess those feet were wool socks I bought at this shop:
they are adorable!


Martina August 1, 2011 at 10:58 am

it looks so cute thank you for this great post


tracey September 12, 2011 at 8:14 am

this is adorable. what did the skyscraper and plane end up looking like?


Cat September 12, 2011 at 8:58 pm

hi tracey,
glad you enjoyed it! here is the link to the follow-up post for the burning plane and skyscraper :):


Kat September 21, 2012 at 1:20 pm

What was the blue fabric for? Also is the flame the dayglo fabric?


Cat September 21, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Yes, the flame is the dayglo fabric cut into little shingles and then glued around the bottle.
the blue felt was for the little burning buildings (in a subsequent post) that I crafted and velcroed to his zilla suit. hope that helps!


Stephen @ Feeding My Folks October 16, 2012 at 6:28 am

This is so creative! I might make a grown up version to wear on Halloween this year. Neat!


Kristen October 25, 2012 at 2:12 pm

How did you end up attaching the tail? I love the idea for this tail rather than just a stuffed tail, but unsure how to attach for easy removal!


Cat October 26, 2012 at 8:34 am

I glued a felt tab to the tail and made a buttonhole so that I could fasten it on/off. Hope you have fun making your own Zilla costume!


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