How to Make a Navy SEAL Sniper Ghillie Suit

Written by jeremiah blanchard
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How to Make a Navy SEAL Sniper Ghillie Suit
Cover and concealment is a priority for snipers. (soldier and his rifle image by Daniel Wiedemann from

Snipers play a deadly role in conventional warfare, and none are more feared and honoured than snipers in the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Navy SEALs. Snipers undergo rigorous training in tactical warfare and are experts in cover and concealment. Concealment is the most essential component of a sniper's skill set, and through the use of a gillie suit, a sniper can blend into any environment and use the element of surprise to his advantage. Constructing a gillie suit takes planning, considering the type of environment the suit will need to be used in. A gillie suit can be made form ordinary supplies available at most stores.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Jute or twine
  • Old hunting vest
  • Burlap sacks
  • Camouflage T-shirt
  • Scissors or knife
  • Safety pins

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  1. 1

    Use an old vest as the base of the gillie suit. An old hunting vest, or military load-bearing vest is ideal for this step. You can obtain one at any sporting goods store or Army/Navy surplus store if you don't have an old one lying around.

  2. 2

    Fasten twine or jute netting to the vest using jute or safety pins. Cut the netting long enough to drape over your head and shoulders, then attach it to the back of the vest. You can punch holes through the vest to aid in tying the netting in place.

  3. 3

    Cut open a burlap sack and fasten it to the net over the neck and shoulder area of the vest. Tie it in place, using jute, then put the vest on and ensure that the sack can drape over your head and cover your shoulders. Fasten another burlap sack to the middle region of the vest back, and ensure that the sack hangs down over the buttocks to mid-thigh.

  4. 4

    Fasten jute netting to the back of the burlap sacks, using jute or twine. Then cut pieces of jute or twine, or shred an old camouflage T-shirt to a length of about six- to eight-inch pieces. Tie the pieces of jute and T-shirt to the netting, and space them out all around the surface of the burlap.

  5. 5

    Take your gillie suit out into the field wherever you'll be hunting and select an area to set up a shooting position. Cut pieces of surrounding foliage and attach them to the back of your gillie suit. You can use safety pins or twine to tie the foliage into place. If you're in an area with a lot of fallen leaves, throw handfuls of leaves on the back of the suit and slightly push them on the suit. The burlap and jute will cling to the leaves and hold them in place. You can tie pine needle clusters, hay, large broad-leaf plant clippings or anything else to help blend in to your surrounding environment.

Tips and warnings

  • Remain still when out hunting and in cover of the gillie suit for the best results, movement will give away your position and scare the target away.

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