Illusion costume - The Big Bad Wolf carrying Little Red Riding Hood

Illusion costume - The Big Bad Wolf carrying Little Red Riding Hood

My neighborhood always has a big adult-only Halloween Party every year. The party includes a costume competition. The first year I decided to make my own Halloween costume was in 2020. The party was planned at the last minute since no one knew if we would be able to gather due to Covid. I hadn’t thought about or shopped for a Halloween costume when we decided to attend the party a few days later. 

I was going through a box of old Halloween Costume pieces when I found a Wolf Mask and Red Cape. I suggested to my husband that we could be Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf. My husband didn’t want to wear a mask all night and passed on that idea. I briefly considered just dressing as Red Riding Hood by myself but decided that was lame, she needed the wolf!

I continued looking through costume pieces we had at home and didn't find anything I remotely considered.  I jumped on Amazon to search for costumes, but the few I found and liked had shipping times that wouldn't arrive before the party. 

I was thinking up ways to convince my husband to be the wolf to my Little Red Riding Hood when I got an idea! What if I dressed up as both the wolf AND Little Red Riding Hood all by myself? I decided to dress as Little Red Riding Hood and make it look like I was being carried around by the wolf! 

To make this costume I needed: 

Wolf Mask

Red Cape 

Large Square Box

Rectangular Box

Wooden Dowel

Panty Hose

Poly Fil  

Work Gloves (furry wolf gloves would also work)

Flannel Shirt

Men's Blue Jeans

Men's Shoes

Duct Tape

Safety Pins

Hot Glue and Hot Glue Gun


Assembling the Wolf

I already had the cape and a red dress in my closet, so I knew the Little Red Riding Hood portion of the costume didn't need any preparation. I needed to work on making a fake top half of the wolf. 

For the wolf's torso, I started with a rectangular shipping box. I glued a little poly-fil to the outside of the box to try and soften the edges a little bit. The box would serve as the wolf's chest.

To make the wolf's arms, I filled a pair of women's pantyhose with Poly-fil. On the foot end of each side of the pantyhose, I used safety pins and hot glue to secure a pair of work gloves (these were also filled with poly-fil).

I spread the legs of the pantyhose apart and secured the waist portion of the pantyhose to the backside of the rectangular box. I used a combination of duct tape and hot glue to keep the pantyhose attached to the box. It didn't matter how it looked because it would all be covered later. 

I needed to attach the mask to create the wolf's head I poked a hole in the top of the box and ran an 18 inch wood dowel rod through the hole and into the mask. I secured the rod with some duct tape and hot glue. 

I now had the structure for the fake wolf's upper body. I dressed the box with one of my husband's flannel shirts. I put each stuffed pantyhose leg into an arm of the shirt and buttoned the shirt over the box, tucking the extra fur from the mask inside the shirt. 

Preparing the Box 

After the wolf's upper body was made, I needed to prepare the box that Little Red Riding Hood would be carried inside of. I cut a hole on the bottom of the backside of the box just large enough for my upper body to fit through. See diagram below for how the box was cut. 


I used hot glue to glue the work gloves to both sides of the box, so it would look like the wolf was holding and carrying the box. I then secured the chest of the wolf to the large box just above the hole I had made for my body. I used a combination of duct tape and hot glue for this. 

I knew I would be squeezing in and out of the hole in the box at least a few times, and didn't want the hole to rip further. I used a lot of duct tape on the edges of the hole for reinforcement. 

Getting Dressed in the Costume

The night of the party I started by putting on the red dress (not the cape yet). I added a pair of my husband's blue jeans to my legs under the dress (I used a piece of rope to hold them up since they were too big on me). I also slipped on a pair of my husband's shoes to make my feet look bigger! 

I lifted the dress to my waist and slid my upper body into the hole on the big box just below the wolf's chest. Once I was through the hole, I made sure all of the extra dress material was pulled through the hole with me. I had my husband hand me the cape and I put it on while inside the box. The extra fabric on the back of the cape helped hide the extra dress fabric as well as the hole. 

The Illusion

When I arrived to the party, everyone was trying to figure out who was carrying me around. It took everyone a minute to realize I was the legs of the wolf and the upper body of Little Red Riding Hood! I won a few hundred dollars in our neighborhood costume contest and my love of illusion costumes was born! 

I had so much fun with everyone try to guess how my costume worked! I knew right then, if I could create this fun illusion at the last minute, I could really make something great with some time to plan! 

The following Halloween, I started working on my costume months in advance and created my favorite costume ever, my Headless Marie Antoinette Costume

*I personally purchased every product that was used to make this costume and nothing was provided to me. 
**I have included affiliate links to the products I used and can receive a small commission if a purchase is made after you click on a link in this tutorial.

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Profile Image Miranda Weldon

Miranda Weldon

Miranda Weldon is the owner and Chief Crafter at MagpieTayleetot. An accountant by trade, who left the world of finance in pursuit of more creative ventures. This mother of two and Class "Room Mom" to many, loves to DIY snacks, party supplies, and more! Miranda is a self-taught seamstress of 15 years who always prefers to make things herself.

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