Saturday, February 18, 2012

Cloth-Quick Project-Bumpered Dog Bed Tutorial

We have 2 dog beds.  We have 3 dogs.  We have a problem.

The wife’s Mom gave us 2 small bumpered dog beds a few years past.  The pugs never liked them.  They always gravitated to one large bed or to whatever blanket may have been left on a couch or floor.
When Sophie joined the mix all of a sudden the small beds were a hot commodity.  Now it is like Thunder Dome every night as the pugs race up the stairs to claim one of the coveted spots.  While they sometimes end up all snuggled together and cute like the picture above, more often there are nips, barks, and scuffles.  After being woken up in the middle of the night for the umpteenth time by growling savage beasts defending their turf I decided to make an additional dog bed.

Project Ranking
Difficultly – Easy
Frustration – Low
Makeability – 100% worth it

Polyfill or some other type of stuffing/filling

Cut List
1 piece 70 inches x 20 inches
2 pieces 21 inch diameter circle

Step 1: Fold your 70 inch piece of fleece in half the long way and pin along the open bottom to make a tube shape.  If you have a wrong and right side to your fleece you will want to pin your pieces wrong sides together as we will not be turning the pieces out.  Sew the pieces together using a 1/2 to 3/4 inch seam.
Step 2:  Fold your “tube” in half and match up your open ends.  Pin ends together.  Starting at the sewed seam (not the folded fabric part) sew together for 4 inches using a 1/2 to 3/4 inch seam.  DO NOT sew completely shut!  You need an opening in order to get the PolyFill into the “tube” later on.

Step 3: Unless you happen to have a 21 inch diameter circle lying around you will need to make a pattern.  An easy way to do this is to take a piece of poster board (or craft paper, old wrapping paper, etc.) and using a pen and piece of string make a half circle pattern.  Tie one end of a string to a pen and measure string out for half your diameter (your radius).  For the dog bed you would measure 10 ½ inches.  Hold the string at 10 ½ inches along one edge of your paper and extend the string attached pen out to the middle of your paper so that the string is tight.  Draw a half circle with the pen.  Cut out your half circle from your paper.  Fold your fleece in half and line up your straight edge of your half circle on the fold of your fabric.  Trace and cut your fabric and you should have a 21 inch circle.  Cut a second circle and you are done.
Step 4:  Pin your 2 circle pieces together and sew using a 1/2 to 3/4 inch seam leaving a 5-6 inch opening for stuffing.  Stuff your circle with your desired amount of stuffing.  I would recommend that you don’t go super crazy and stuff it really full.  You want some padding but if you get it really full you will have a hard time sewing the tube onto the padded circle.  Sew your circle piece completely closed.

Step 5: Pin your tube to your completed circle piece by matching up the sewn ends.  Your “tube” will most likely be a bit larger in diameter than your circle so you will have to bunch up the fabric a bit as you are pinning.  No big deal we are making a dog bed after all!  Sew using a seam allowance that is ¼ inch larger than you have been using.  So for example if you have been sewing at ½ inch use a ¾ inch.  This will ensure you are out past your seam so you won’t see it later…again this is not a really big deal as it is a dog bed.

Step 6:  Stuff the “tube” to desired fullness.  Because the “tube” is so long you will want to stuff from both ends.  Once stuffed, pin the open tube ends together with their seams facing the same direction as the existing seams.  Sew with a ½ to ¾ seam.

Step 7:  Turn your pieces so that all of the seams are facing into the dog bed.  With all of the stuffing in place you probably won’t even be able to see them.

Step 8: Buy, or better yet, adopt a dog from your local human society and place him/her in their newly crafted bed!
NOTE:  If you already have a dog you can skip step 8.  If you don’t have a dog and don’t plan on getting one I am not sure why you followed this tutorial.


  1. i'm in love with your dog. And with your tutorials.

  2. I have a pug so this tutorial is perfect! AND I just bought the brown dog print fleece for the inside of this - it's a sign I have to make it!

  3. I love this bed style, thanks for sharing it with us. I have four chihuahua's and have made each of them a bed. I cut the pattern down some to fit their small size. I also made one for my grand-puppy, a beagle. That one is full size. He won't sleep in anything else now. My son's mom-in-law loved it so much I am making her one for her beagle. It's funny, I picked the same material as you did. Everyone who sees the beds loves them. Thanks again!!!! Fran