Our relationship with the Grand Rapids Griffins Hockey began with the feet. The Griffin’s mascot is named, Griff. Griff’s mascot feet were old and tired, and Sean Grabowski, the mascot performer wasn’t happy.
More than most performers, professional mascot performers rely on having all of the parts of the mascot costume work for them. The feet are especially important. Athletic mascot performers run up and down the stands in big feet (sometimes w/ big claws). The performer needs to have their foot firmly secured into the mascot shoe.
At our mascot studio, we have spent hours fine-tuning the inner structure of the mascot foot. Next to sculpting and building the head, making feet/shoe/boots for a mascot is the most complex and time consuming. The small details take time and—-well, engineering.There are buckles and straps and foam and leather and soles that have to be cut and there are doohickies and various types of elastic and webbing and something called “cloud”,
Soon we were building the whole Griff mascot from the wispy head feathers down to the soles of the feet.
The Griffin is a mythological character. He is part eagle, part lion. This means we got to make wonderful silver wings put hints of feathers on the Griff’s head and give the guy really furry leg and feet. The Griff is the King of the Beast and the King of the birds, so we muscled him up a bit too.
For us, muscles are foam, foam, foam, foam. All of that foam is covered in athletic mesh. We use a foam that is designed to have water flow through it —-so its washable and it tough.
The Griffins were our first introduction to the world of hockey. We’re big fans!