How To Sew An Easy Pet Bandana: DIY Sewing Tutorial
And finally, our second DIY sewing tutorial that shows you how to create an easy sewing project (from start to finish) is here! You may recall our first DIY sewing tutorial from a few months back, on how to sew a shower cap. Well, this week we are all about how to sew an easy pet bandana!
My goal with this series of DIY sewing tutorials is to teach you how to sew up the easiest of projects from around the house. And to shift that mindset from "Add that to the Target list" to "Hey, I think I can make that!"
It's not the easiest of mindsets to shift.. But I am determined to make it happen. #motivated
So, this month, I am showing you how to sew up one of the easiest projects out there: A DIY pet bandana.
And no, I'm not talking about some cheap, crappy triangle of fabric that you get from the pet groomer. I'm talking a LEGIT, will-never-need-to-buy-a-pet-bandana ever again kind of pet bandana.
It's durable, looks GREAT, and uses up that extra fabric that always seems to be piling up in your sewing box.
BTW. Still on my kick of using old fabric for new projects, as you can tell. And that kick doesn't seem to be going anywhere.. Think: The Naoko Tank, the DIY patchwork pillow post from a few weeks back, and the Tartt Racerback.
Similarly, these were all new sewing projects that used up old fabric that was just sitting in my sewing box. #winning
Which brings us to this week's DIY sewing tutorial on how to sew an easy pet bandana.
You guys maybe have figured it out by now, but I LOVE MY DOG SO MUCH. Her name is Teri (the Terrier) and she is my sun and stars. My moon in the sky. My reason why.
I don't have children (and don't intend to) so she really is like my little fur baby. Yet, unlike a lot of people that are obsessed with their pups, I don't really like to dress her up.
(ALTHOUGH I do have a little fleece sweater for her that we got when we lived in NYC.. It matches the color of her fur exactly, and fits her like a little glove. It's so goddamn cute, I can't not put it on her when it's cold here in San Diego. So, like, twice a year.)
BUT I do like to let her wear a sweet little bandana occasionally.
I think it's cute without being weird. (As long as it doesn't have some weird slogan or branding on it.. Which this DIY pet bandana most definitely does not.) It's just a little touch that says "Yes, I'm a spoiled little betch" without saying "My mom wishes I was a tiny human".
So. What's needed to make up this sweet little DIY pet bandana? I'm so glad you asked!
How to sew an easy pet bandana: What you'll need
You really don't need much for this sewing tutorial. (Always an excellent thing to hear!)
While I created this bandana for my sweet babe (who is only 12 pounds) the same steps can likewise be applied to create a pet bandana for a 40 pound pup. Or even a 100 pound pup! Or a tiny 5 pound babe.
Follow the same steps, but just grab more (or less) fabric and tweak the measurements according to what your pups needs.
But first of all. Here's what you'll need to create a sweet little pet bandana:
- Fabric scraps (For this tutorial, I only needed a 20" x 20" fabric square. Adjust as needed for your pup!)
- Thread (I color contrasted my thread, just to add a little pop! But you can also match it.. The choice is yours.)
- Hand sewing needles (This is just to close up the sharp points of the bandana. A universal sewing needle should work just fine.)
- OPTIONAL: Muslin fabric scraps (To help with sizing the bandana.)
And that's it! But of course, I used a couple of additional tools as well:
- Sewing machine (Obvi)
- Sewing pins
- Seam ripper (To push out the bottom point of the bandana)
- Fabric scissors
- Iron & ironing board
- Measuring tape
And again, that's it! Really just basic tools are needed for this project, nothing out of the ordinary.
So. Ready to get started?
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 1
First of all, we need to figure out how big to make the bandana.
To do this, simply cut out a square of muslin (or whatever scrap fabric you have lying around) to get a general idea of how big the finished bandana needs to be. Fold the square in half, and simply tie around your pup's neck.
If the folded side needs to be longer (i.e. It doesn't tie or is too tight around your pup's neck) grab the measuring tape and note how much longer it needs to be. And if the triangular part of the banana needs to be bigger or smaller, measure and note that down as well.
Again, this is simply just to get a general idea of how big the bandana needs to be. Nothing needs to be perfect at this point!
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 2
With the measurements from step 1, draw out the revised square on a spare piece of muslin. (Or, again, whatever scrap fabric you may have laying around.)
Cut out the revised square, fold in half, and repeat the process from step 1. If the bandana is the size you'd like, then great! Move on to step 3.
But if the bandana isn't quite right (i.e. The neck is still too tight) simply repeat the steps until you get the size you'd like for your pup.
NOTE: If you have a pup about the size of Teri (A 12 lb Terrier babe) then you can just use the measurements that I did: 15" x 15 1/4". Note that this does NOT include seam allowances.
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 3
Cool! So at this point you should have a rough sample of the finished bandana, as well as the finalized measurements.
On pattern paper, draw out a square following the measurements from step 2.
Next, draw a diagonal line across the square, and cut along the line. At this point, you should have two triangles.
Add seam allowances along both triangle pieces. (I used 1/2" seams, but the choice is yours! Just easier for me to sew.)
NOTE: My bandana is not a perfect square, as you may have noticed. The added 1/4" may not seem like much, but it just fit my sweet Teri a little better. So there is a slight curve to my pattern pieces, just FYI!
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 4
And at this point, you should have a finished pattern for both sides of the pet bandana.
Pin each piece to the fabric scraps you will be using for this project. Then cut the pieces out!
NOTE: I pinned & cut my pieces on the diagonal, rather than on the grain line. Again, the choice is yours!
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 5
With the bandana cut out, it's time to start sewing!
Pin the two pieces together, right side to right side.
REMEMBER: The right side of the garment is the side that everyone sees once it's finished.
Make sure to only pin the two sides of the triangle, NOT the top that will tie around your sweet pup's neck. Stitch the two sides together!
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 6
Press the two seams of the bandana open, from the wrong side.
Once they are pressed open, trim the seam allowance in half. (Not 100% necessary to trim it, but I feel like it does help to reduce bulk.)
Also make sure to clip the bottom tip of the bandana. (That IS necessary.) And make sure to push out the tip as much as possible using your seam ripper.
Finally, after clipping, press the bandana flat from the right side.
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 7
Next, press the last remaining seam allowances INSIDE.
Make sure to press both sides the same amount, so that they match up. No uneven seams here!
When pressing, iron until about 1/2" away from the pointed edges. (And we will worry about those pesky corners later!)
Finally, pin all three sides together, to prep for the next step.
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 8
With all three sides of the bandana pinned together, it's time to topstitch them.
Starting with the top seam, topstitch the two layers together, sewing at 1/4" seam allowance.
Again--The 1/4" seam allowance is just my preference. The choice is yours with how close or how far away you'd like your topstitching to be from the edge.
Continue topstitching along the two remaining sides, making sure to keep the measurement consistent.
Try to keep away from topstitching ALL the way into the two upper corners--We will be finishing those little babes off here soon.
DIY sewing tutorial: How to sew an easy pet bandana: Step 9
And at this point, your pet bandana is pretty much finished! All we need to do now is finish off those pesky little upper corners.
I prefer to hand stitch these closed. Why? Because I think it looks better, and is just easier.
Fold the corners in as much as possible, and literally just slip stitch the seams together to close them off. (Not sure how to sew a slip stitch? No problem! Check out our very first hand sewing tutorial. Seems like we've got you covered.)
Finally, the most important thing to keep in mind when finishing off these corners is to make sure the seam allowance is 100% inside the bandana, rather than on the outside.
Furthermore, make your stitches strong and secure (hello, double thread) because these corners are going to receive the most wear and tear.
Press one final time after your hand stitching is complete!
How to sew an easy pet bandana: And you're done!
So. Not too bad, am I right?
Also, you may have noticed.. I hand stitched Teri's name on to her bandana, as an added little touch.
While totally optional, it's also pretty easy to do. I simply wrote out the letters of her name on a lightweight felt, cut them out, and hand stitched them on to the bandana. Super simple, and I feel like it just MAKES her sweet little bandana perfect.
With this easy DIY project, you'll achieve a few different things:
- Use up extra fabric scraps just laying around in your sewing box.
- Make a cute as little bandana for the sweetest pup in your life.
- And above all, you'll increase your sewing skills. (Because with every single sewing project, you're increasing that knowledge!)
But really. Seems like a win-win situation to me.
ALSO. I would LOVE to see photos of your pups in their bandanas. Any other pup related sewing projects you guys are wanting to make? Let me know!