Reference Sheets 101

Good concept art shows clearly how your character will translate as a costume, and thus Strut Your Fluff requires ref sheets for accurate quote processing and costume construction.

What Makes a Good Reference Sheet?


1. A clear image 

Digital art is preferred. 

If your ref sheet is hand drawn, please either scan it or take a high-quality picture. 

Strut Your Fluff will NOT take descriptions only; a visual image is required.

2. Full front, back, and side views of your character

Omit appendages such as tails and wings in the back view, and arms in the side view. This is because they may block markings. 

Include tails and wings and any other extra appendages separately.

3/4ths views are not recommended because they cause blind spots on the design.

3. Simple poses

Basic poses are easy to read; dynamic poses cause blind spots. 

If you think the pose is boring, it is probably perfect.

4. 2-D shots of any intricate markings

Complex markings and tattoos need to be displayed separately and two-dimensionally for maximum accuracy.

5. Flat colors

NO SHADING. This changes your character’s real color[s] and will make choosing fur colors more difficult. 

6. Your character’s name, gender, and species


7. Your character’s color palette

This provides an at-a-glance view of what fur colors your character will need.



– Fur Colors

Not all colors are available in fur. And even then, some fur colors are rarer than others. A rarer fur will cost more and thus increases the price of your costume. You may have to omit or change a color in your design accordingly.

– Markings

Some markings are too complex to be done well—or at all. You may have to simplify your character before it can be made into a costume.

Keep in mind that complicated markings  will not only add to the price, but also may result in a costume more susceptible to rips and tears. More markings equal more seams, and seams weaken fabric. 

– Oversized/Special Features

For example, f your character has a six-foot-long tail, it will be a more expensive costume. 

Special features such as wings, indoor feet, interchangeable eyelids, padding, and curled tails will increase your costume’s price. 

– Species

Some species are more expensive than others when it comes to costume translation. Unique and complicated anatomical shapes and features take more time and resources to create, so don’t be surprised if the quote you receive for your warthog-scorpion hybrid is more than your red fox.