Thursday, December 20, 2007

Recycled skirt into 2 piece dog bed- "mini " tutorial

After bringing Grizzle home, I knew she would need her own bed.
From experience I knew we would need something durable, inexpensive, pleasing to the human eye, Washable, & comfortable enough to keep a growing black lab mix happy for at least 1 year.
This is what I used and how i did it. A mini style tutorial.
First look through the closet or the local thrift store for one of those floor length A-line skirts. Be sure it has a zipper on one side and the fabric is thick like a wool skirt or some other thick fabric. This zipper is very important which you will see in a few steps. You will also need around 1/2 yard of corduroy fabric for the beds base bottom.(must be a durable fabric)
First- the skirt. A size (US)10 in womens clothing bought at the local thrift store for $3. I really liked the fabric and thought it perfect for the need I had.
~You will need to cut the skirt in half as you see here. The bottom portion you will need to rip the seem out on one side- see the corner flipped up in the above pic.
~Be sure to also rip the seam of the waist band from the top of the skirt. You can cut the zipper attatched to the waist band off and just sew over the top to secure it for easier handling, as you can see in picture 2:
~*Be sure you cut the zipper ABOVE where the zip handle is. Best just to unzip it before cutting just to be safe.*
~The top half of the skirt will be the pillow portion. Now if your smart and learn from my mistake, you will cut the skirt with straight lines and be sure to cut the top waist area into a flat line instead of the curve you see in the above picture.
~Unzip the zipper half way and continue to sew all open sides, being sure to go over that zipper area again. Now you get to use that zipper you rememebered to unzip.
~Turn the pillow right side out like this:
~Time to stuff that pillow with fiber filling, scrap fleece, cedar shavings, or which ever it is your heart dsires for your dog to sleep on. This is where that zipper you left on will come in handy. You can change the bed filling or throw the pillow and base in the wash when needed.
~Now it is time to assemble the base.
~The bottom half of the skirt needs to be laid out in one layer, then fold over to make a very long 2 layer rectangle- right sides together.
~Cut the side ends to make them straight.
~Sew the side ends but do NOT sew the long side.Turn the right side out and you will have the long side open. Iron the ends flat.
~Now sew the long side. **Whatever the outside of the fabric will be showing, that is how you need for it to lay for the next step.**
Click on the base picture above. You will notice how I sewed up the seam. This leaves an allowance on the outside which you will need to attatch the corduroy to the tube.
~ Leave a 2 inch gape towards the end for stuffing. Stuff it full- do not skimp or it will be floppy. Once you have the tube sewn& stuffed, you will need to cut out a "D" outline shape for the base. You will be attatching the above tube to it.
~Best way to determine your shape and size is to bend the tube on the fabric top /or newspaper and mark it with tailors chalk or a marker. Do not over think it. Simply bend the tube into a "C" to give the right portion of curve to your "D".
~Now cut out your "D" and attatch the "C" curve of the tube to the curve on your "D". Do not forget to pin it in place. Plus the fabric side of the D touching the C will be the bottom. Just trust me ont that.
This will cause alot of man handling and cursing under your breath at a wad of fabric. But you can do it. Just smash that stuffed tube down and feed it through the sewing machine. I do not have pictures to show of that step since both hands had to stay on the tube at all times.
~Flip and turn the base so the sewing seam is on the inside of the C. The pillow will hide this once in place.
~Now your base is done so put that pillow on the base!
Congratulations~ You my dear, have just made your very own dog's bed PLUS repurposed an old skirt. How very green of you!

Sweet dreams,



Connie Peterson said...

Now, how clever is that!!! You are amazing, girl!

I would make one, but Peanut loves the entire circle type bed. Wanna design one for her?


Maria said...

Oh, that is SO adorable! I will have to try that! We hope to get some kitties when the house is done!

barefoot gardener said...

I just wanted to let you know that you have RUINED me with that dad-blasted link to craftster! I can't get enough.

I love the dog bed, by the way.

The Unusual Farmchick said...

Maria- How exciting to possibly get kittens! You definatly need to make them one these beds.But enclose it as a circle by not ripping the seem side and just fold the bottom skirt half into itself. Stuff it and measure out the "O" in place of the "C" in my tutorial.
Barefoot Gardener- I warned you it was inspiring! LOL
& Actually Spinning grandma (I realy like calling you that) i am working on a design i dreamed about 2 nights ago.
What has this puppy done to me? I even bought a pattern for a dogs coat- butterick 5157. i will write up on that as soon as i get the first one done for Grizzle.(out of thrift find clothes of course).
I DO NOT- I repeat-DO NOT get into the dressing up of an animal. But the poor thing shivers outside when we take her out. Call me a softie...

Connie Peterson said...

I was against coats for dogs, too, but I've never had a short-haired dog before. Peanut gets cold and loves her coat! My sister's fox terrier will not go out without hers and actually leaps into it, if Candy holds it right.

Now, I have to figure out a way to not only make booties that fit (I have one that is almost right) but convince Peanut to wear them. The other day she had a hard time going potty and walked back to the house on three legs! I read tbat feet and ears get colder than the body!

Let me see the design for round beds once you have designed it, please!!! She "only" has two and loves her beds!

Blessings ........ Spinning Grandma

claribell said...

hey, we got matching puppies!!!......

well, Lucy's got socks.

The Unusual Farmchick said...

She looks just like the sister of my grizzle! She was adopted a few days before we got there, but their picture was online together.
What breed(s) is she?

Unknown said...

greeeeeeeat sight, was flipping thru your pictures, the waterfall was wonderful what lucky children with excellent childhood memories. Loved the black lab with small girl on the couch, looks like they both had very active day.Please send me tutorial on building underground greenhouse want to try it, also live on small farm with labs , horses, wildlife and I play at gardening.thanks deb

Unknown said...

Hi Darling,
I'm writing you from Italy.
I started last week a sewing course and your post with this project is really nice. Shall I take it as sample for my cats?
Come and have a look to my blog and keep in touch
Love Sonia

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