How to Make a Sumo Costume

by Shannon Johnson ; Updated September 28, 2017

It's easy to make your own sumo wrestler costume.

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Creating a sumo wrestler costume from scratch allows you to customize your costume to your own style and size. By combining aspects of traditional sumo wrestling with more modern aspects seen today, you can create your own unique sumo costume design.

Items you will need

  • Foam or washable cotton stuffing
  • Flesh-tone lycra body suit
  • Spray fabric adhesive
  • Fabric for loincloth
  • Wig
  • Hair ties
  • Hair pins
  • Hair sticks
  • Kimono or robe
  • Spray adhesive or hairspray
Step 1

Research traditional accessories and dress for your sumo costume and make a list of the materials you will need to purchase. Purchase a bodysuit that is comfortable and stretchy enough to accommodate the extra padding you will be adding. Wash the body suit and dry it completely.

Step 2

Flip the bodysuit so that it is inside-out. Lay out the body suit on a clean work surface. Arrange your costume materials in your work area, including sewing needles, thread, fabric glue and padding.

Step 3

Lay the body suit on top of the padding and mark the sections of padding you will be cutting. Use enough padding to stretch the material, shaping it into your desired sumo body. If you're using foam padding, cut torso-length pieces for the front and back; you'll want to cut them about 3 inches wider than your measurements to allow for a sewing seam. If you're using a stuffing material, no sewing is necessary.

Step 4

Secure the padding to the inside of the suit using a needle and thread or a strong fabric glue. Allow the glue to completely dry while the suit is turned inside-out.

Step 5

Turn the suit right-side-out and use the fabric you have selected to wrap the faux Mawashi around the legs of the body suit loosely. A Mawashi is the inconic sumo "loin cloth" or "diaper." Lay the front end of the fabric vertically and pin it in place temporarily. Drape the other end of the fabric around the waist of the suit and back between the legs. Tuck in the excess fabric.

Step 6

Use fabric glue to attach Velcro strips along overlapping portions of the "diaper" to allow you to remove it and re-wrap it once you have put on the costume. Alternatively, you may use fabric glue or spray adhesive to permanently attach the fabric to the suit.

Step 7

Check the padding and Mawashi you have created to be sure there are no loose or ill-fitting pieces. Use a needle and thread to stitch the loose portions if necessary.

Step 8

Style the wig you have purchased to construct the top-knot hairstyle worn by sumo wrestlers. Use spray and pins to secure the wig so that the hairstyle stays securely designed. If you do not plan to reuse the wig, use a spray adhesive diluted with water for a more firm hold.

Step 9

Once you have put on your suit, add other elements to the wig such as hair sticks. Put on a kimono robe to wear over the costume as an added accessory.

Photo Credits

  • Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images

About the Author

Shannon Johnson has been a freelance writer since 2008, specializing in health and organic and green-living topics. She practiced law for five years before moving on to work in higher education. She writes about what she lives on a daily basis.