Olivia, my chocolate Labrador Retriever, is dressed in the Coolest Tootsie Roll Costume. I got the idea because she is brown in color, as are Tootsie Rolls, and I wanted her to be something on Halloween that you can't buy in the store for pets. I really like this costume because it still allows your dog to function. Olivia was able to walk, lay down, go the bathroom, all without disrupting the costume- or vice verse. It cost me around $15 dollars to make (with left over supplies for next year). I purchased the items at JoAnne Fabrics and the Dollar Tree. I used Aileen's No Sew Fabric Glue to attach the trims and lettering and Industrial Strength Velcro to secure the Tootsie Roll around Olivia. The other items I purchased from Joanne Fabrics were one yard brown felt, 2 yards of red ribbon 1.5" wide, and 2 yards white satin trim. I bought the white foam letters at the Dollar Tree. They sell them year round.
Step one: I traced the shape of a raincoat my dog wears onto the brown felt. Using a sharp pair of scissors, cut it out. The raincoat has Velcro under the stomach and in front of the throat. Essentially you are creating a curved blanket that has tabs that reach around your pet.
Step Two: Attach Velcro to "tabs". I purchased Velcro that is 1.5" by 3". The piece that is soft I keep whole. The rough sided one I cut in half width wise. I do this because the rough side can catch on the felt fabric and pull it. I then glued on a piece of Velcro to each end of the tabs. It also helps to keep the softer piece long so that you have more room to adjust it on your pet, kind of like holes on a belt.
Step Three: Add ribbon. Lay the felt on a flat service and place the red ribbon along the edge of the felt. I used Aileen's No Sew Glue to adhere the ribbon. This stuff is great. As strong as a glue gun without the heat.
Step Four: Add the White Satin Trim using the glue. Be sure to have the trim extend beyond the brown felt so that it looks like the twist of the candy wrapper.
Step Five: I placed the costume on Olivia and spaced out the letters evenly so that they would be centered. I used a pencil to mark the spots and then placed the costume back on the table and adhered the lettering with the glue.
Step Six: Find a brown dog. I have a chocolate lab so its perfect. The theme wouldn't work so well if she were a yellow lab. Buy Tootsie Rolls in the store and hand them out to the kids. Your dog probably won't mind being dressed up once everyone starts commenting on how cute she is. It also helps to make sure your pet can move comfortably in the costume.
FYI: The Felt is light weight. So you don't have to worry about making your dog too warm. Also, from the remaining felt, cut two small squares to place over the rough sides of the Velcro. If you are transporting this costume you will learn as I did that the rough side will catch and pull at the Velcro, so keep a swatch to cover that tab. The most expensive thing I bought was the glue, but use a 40% off and you will also have the glue for future projects.