How To Create Your Own Ghillie Suit by James L. Bruner
Creating your own Ghillie Suit can be as simple or as ellaborate as you like. Remember as with any do it yourself project the fancier you get the more costly it can be. Ghillie suits have been used in the military for years but have also made their way into the hunting community. Suits of this nature are exactly that. They should be used to represent the natural sorroundings in the area you hunt. That’s the beauty of a ghillie suit. It can be changed to replicate the area you’re currently hunting by adding or removing some key elements found within the suit.
To get started you’re going to need some netting. A natural fabric netting works the best and the weaving is best when kept in the 1″ spacing. This allows for easy additions of new materials. What you add to your suit is totally up to you but the easiest and most readily available products are rags and yarn. Fabric from an old camo hunting suit works well and saves a lot of time, and money. Strips of material are cut into different lengths ranging from 6″ to 15″ of random widths. You’ll see the picture of the suit appearing when you begin to tie each strip of material into the netting. The different lengths will give a more 3 dimensional layered appearance which effectively conceals a human outline.
As not everyone will have an old camo suit laying around you’ll have to make due by creating your own. This is where some old rags come in handy. Try to pick rags that will be quiet when used and are also light in color because they will need to be soaked in dye. The dye used should be the natural earth tones and dye colors can be mixed to create your own unique style. Some suits incorporate the use of yarns.
Yarn can be purchased in many different colors and sizes. They are easy to work and nearly silent during moments of movements. On a sidenote: Yarn is very effective but is prone to absorbing odors and snagging on brush as well as harboring insects that hop a ride during your stay in the woods. The choice of materials to use is a personal preference. Remember this is project that can be done with very little out-of-pocket cash if you keep yourself somewhat limited.
Incorporating natural looking elements are a huge plus when making your suit. Synthetic leaves, ivy, moss, and grass, can be purchased at most crafting outlets and really help your suit melt into the sorroundings. Synthetic products can consist of softer silk-like material which help keep the noise factor down. Once again it’s a personal preference giving thought to just how much you actually want to spend.
While in the field you can mix and match natural leaves and sticks into your suit for a full effect. Try to position any added material so that it does not impede your movement when drawing your bow or shouldering a rifle. As might be expected this suit could weigh a ton, (especially when using yarn), if the suit should get wet. A good application of permadri or scotch guard will help keep a number of elements from penetrating your suit while preserving it’s natural look and completing it’s functionality.