If you know anything about me, you know that Nan my dog is pretty much the center of my universe. Think unhealthy love and obsession with an animal. She was in our wedding. My day is often planned around her. She brings an incredible amount of joy and love to me. So no one is better deserving of a DIY fancy dog bed than Nanna. Also reason why Nan needed a bed upgrade? We are a little sick of how much time she spends on OUR bed! Often, I find that dog beds are well – ugly. Owners must drive the market, and most dog owners want function over fashion. Like most things in my life, I want a balance of function with fashion. So I set out to make Nan a fancy dog bed, DIY styles.
Beyond, Nan’s new DIY dog bed
- Eco-friendly 30″ x 40″ dog pillow from Pillowcube
- 2 yards of ultrasuede material in royal blue (see below for why I picked this) – similar to this product.
- Matching thread
- 20″ zipper
- 4 1/8 of gold cording for flair
- Tacky craft adhesive glue
- Sewing machine, needles, scissors and patience needed
I found finding simple pet bed instructions online difficult so I ended up turning to a giant floor pillow tutorial and adapted it to my needs. In my usual style, I followed the instructions loosely and added in my own flair when needed. I was recommended by my local fabric store to go with ultrasuede material for it’s durability, softness and ability to be washed. It is often used for upholstery so I figured it would stand up to Nan. It was also reasonable at $12.99 a yard. I bought extra cording for the outside edges so that I wouldn’t run out.
I cut the fabric in the following dimensions:
- two 31-by-41-inch squares (top and bottom)
- two 7-by-41-inch rectangles (two sides)
- two 7-by-31-inch rectangles (other two sides)
I used 1/2-inch seam allowances, which means that I added an extra inch to what I wanted the final dimension to be (30 by 40 by 6 inches) to allow me to sew the seams 1/2-inch from each edge.
So you sew inside out, so the edges of the seams are on the inside of the piece. That means you put the two outside sides together and sew on the inside.
I sewed one rectangle (a side) to one side of the large rectangle (top). Each side of the TOP had a rectangle attached. This is sort of obvious, but make sure you sew the 41″ long pieces to the 41″ side of the top. Once I had all four rectangles sewed onto one big rectangle, I took the “bottom” large rectangle and sewed the gold cord to it.
You can see that the fabric below on the right is the “top” with the 4 sides and the left piece is the “bottom”.
The gold corn was a little fussy to attach. You have to try to get as close to the cord as possible without breaking your needle. We broke one needle.
This image also shows how we connected and made each corner of the bed. We were able to create a sort of triangle shape. Afterwards, I finished it off by hand to reinforce the corner. Once we attached the cord, we had to finish where the two ends met by hand. To prevent fraying of the cord, I used tack glue/adhesive to glue the ends and let them dry. Once they dried, I glued them together. I finished sewing it by hand once the glue dried.
We attached the zipper into one of the long sides of the “top” piece along the seam. Was easy enough but I have to say, in hindsight, I wish I had bought a larger zipper. It ripped open when I put the pillow form into it and I had to resew it.
The last step is sewing the two pieces together. The top and bottom inside out. Don’t forget to open your zipper first so that you have a way to turn it inside out!
So this bed (pillow and covering) is machine washable but does show Nan’s light coloured fur. That’s hard to avoid though. Simple, free solution? Throw on a dishing washing glove and run it over the fur. Better than a lint roller that’s for sure. The only thing I would change about this tutorial is making the pillow cover a little smaller. It is roomy, which is better than too small. I over estimated how much extra space I would need for the form. That said, I am sure the pillow will flatten a little with use.
Nan makes for a pretty good model. After shooting the images, she settled in and fell asleep. So adorable. Gets her stamp of approval. Pleased with how this DIY fancy dog bed turned out. Took longer than I had hoped it would take but it was worth the wait.
*Note: The pillow form featured in this post were kindly offered to us by Kevin from Pillowcube. The opinions and text are all mine. Don’t worry! We only write about brands we love!