A new friend, Carol, sent me a DIY idea for a dog or cat bed that I thought was absolutely brilliant! It's made from an old sweatshirt, a pillow, and some other stuffing. She didn't know, but we'd been pondering how we could make our own just days before she sent this. So, we whipped one up over one weekend, and I thought I'd share our experience.
Very little sewing on this project. Only took about an a hour or so to gather, prepare and finish the project with stuff we already had around. Lindy isn't really sure about the bed, yet. She's never actually had one before. But, we are trying to train her because she's starting to have trouble jumping up to the bed. She tries it out every once in awhile. Beats the cold hard floor, I'm sure.
Here is the pic she sent that inspired us. By the watermark, it looks like it came from a facebook post by pensedenovo(https://www.facebook.com/AllGodsCreaturesPetServices/posts/165953616875336), but the author may actually be here: http://caninablog.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/ciccilo-mostra-cama-com-conceito-reciclavel/
An average size sweatshirt may be okay for a cat or small dog. But, you're gonna want a fairly large shirt for a larger dog. Our IG, Lindy, is a medium-sized dog at less than 20 lbs and shorter than 2 foot from nose to base of tail. I already had an old oversized sweatshirt that would be perfect. When Lindy was cold as a puppy she would actually crawl into this sweatshirt while I was wearig it. (There was plenty of room for both of us.) So, she even had history with it. :)
For the pillow, we had some used polyfil bed pillows that flatten out over time. When they get flat, I normally take out a seam and sew it in to a square size refluffing as needed. Then, I cover again with pretty fabric and use them to camp with. But, I had one left over that hadn't been repurposed, yet.
The side stuffing in the sleeve portion in ours is old carpet padding that we shredded up. This took most of our time, but the stuffing created a much denser walls that will hold it's shape better than the polyfil to provide more support. Afterall, we don't want her rolling off to the floor.
As for the sewing part. You want to close up the neck hole first. Then, sew a line right across the chest where the sleeve starts. Doesn't have to be perfect. Now, you just stuff the sleeve/chest portion with stuffing of any kind like old clothes, pillow stuffing, or carpet padding. You may even want to try plastic grocery bags. Close up the ends of the sleeves and attaching them together. Shove an old pillow into the belly portion through the bottom and sew up. The last thing is to attach the sleeve to the bottom of the belly portion where you closed it. We didn't sew all around this. Just tacked it in the center and a little ways up both arms. This will allow crumbs and lint to fall through, instead of accumulating in the bed.
Here's a whimsical variation using jeans: http://crushable.com/other-stuff/the-daily-wtf-here-is-a-dog-bed-shaped-like-a-lap-953/
And, a bed made from a suitcase: http://moxandfodder.com/2011/10/24/vintage-suitcase-dog-bed/ This is nice if you want to hide it under the bed or somewhere when not in use.
And, the same idea leaving the top on: http://www.atypicaltypea.com/2011/03/11/rethink-reuse-suitcases/suitcase-dog-bed/ Leaving the lid on might make it easier to toss all the toys in and tuck under the couch when company comes calling. (Might want to secure it so it won't fall down on the dog when in it)
Hope these ideas inspire you to make your own dog/cat bed for your pet, instead of purchasing an overpriced one from a store. Continue on crafting!
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