Totally Customizable DIY Dog Bed Cover | Video Tutorial

AUG 25, 2017 updated May 14, 2021

Ever see pet beds with really cool covers and $100+ price tags? So do we. But what if we told you that you could totally customize a removable cover and even save a few bucks in the process? All you’ll need is a few yards of your favorite (or your dog’s favorite) design, a pet bed insert, and basic sewing tools. So, if you’re ready to whip up a pet bed to please your pup, grab your materials and let’s get started!

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Here’s the written tutorial, if that’s more your cup of tea!

Materials you'll need to construct your dog bed!

Materials – Here’s what you’ll need for this project

  • – 2 yards of Recycled Canvas
  • – 30”-34” zipper
  • – 90/14 heavy duty needle
  • – Pet bed insert

Prepping Your Fabric

Cutting out the pieces for our dog bed

Start by cutting out your fabric. Determine the size you want your bed to be and cut two pieces of fabric for the top and bottom of the bed and four pieces for the sides, being sure to add a 1″ measurement to each piece for seam allowance. In our example, we are making a rectangular bed (28″x36″x4″), so our sides are two different lengths. Your side pieces will need to be the same length as the sides of the top/bottom and in our example, about 5″ in height.  One of our long side pieces will be 6″ in height to accommodate the zipper.

Pro tip: We’re making a rectangle, since that’s what our insert is shaped like, but you could follow the same process for a circle or square bed!

Here are our fabric piece measurements:

  • -2 pieces: 29″x 37″
  • -2 pieces: 29″x 5″
  • -1 piece: 37″x 5″
  • -1 piece*: 37″x 6″

*The last piece is for the zipper. It needs to be slightly wider because you will use extra seam allowance in order to insert the zipper.

Inserting the Zipper

Measuring the zipper

Choose a zipper a few inches shorter than the longest side of the dog bed. For our 36″ dog bed we will be using a 30″ zipper. This allows you to have room on either side of the zipper for ease of sewing and a nicer fit.

Cutting Out the zipper

With the print side facing in, fold the 37″ x 6″ piece in half lengthwise, then cut along the fold line to create two pieces. Lay your zipper centered on the fabric so you have an equal amount of space on each end and mark where your zipper pull starts and stops. Set the zipper aside.

Sew the two cut pieces together with a 1/2″ seam, using a standard stitch length. When you get to the zipper mark, backstitch a few times, then change to a basting stitch to sew the area where your zipper will be inserted. At the second mark, backstitch again then finish the remainder with a normal stitch length.

Switch to a zipper foot, and insert the zipper facedown into the seam you just sewed.

Remove the basting stitch using a seam ripper, being careful not to rip out your back stitching.

You now have a centered zipper! On to the rest of the bed!

Assembling the Bed

Begin by placing two side pieces together with their short edges aligned (and right sides of the fabric facing in). With a ruler or tape measure, mark 1/2″ in from each corner and place a pin to mark those spots.

Sew the seam with a 1/2″ seam allowance, sewing only between the two pins. This means you’ll have a little 1/2″ flap at the beginning and end of the seam where the fabric isn’t sewn.

Finish sewing all around; you’ll end up with a circular loop of fabric. Now, iron all your seams open.

Next, grab the top piece and align one edge with one of the side piece edges. Pin the two edges together and sew them using the same 1/2″ seam allowance, being careful to start and end the seam a 1/2″ before the edge of the fabric. All three pieces (the top piece and two side pieces) should meet in the corner, with overlapping 1/2″ seam allowances. This way, when you turn it inside out, you’ll have a sharp corner.

When the top piece has been attached to the sides on all four edges, you’ll have a piece that looks like this!

Attaching the second piece

Repeat the process to attach the bottom piece of your dog bed.

Sewing all the way around the bed

Sew all the way around the rest of the bed.

Clipping corners to reduce bulk

Clip the seam allowance from the corner to remove some extra weight and help your corners really pop!

DIY dog bed: Turning the finished dog bed inside out | Spoonflower Blog

Unzip your dog bed and turn it right-side out.

DIY dog bed: Pushing out the corners of the dog bed | Spoonflower Blog

Push the corners out with a chopstick, bone tool or anything pointy.

DIY dog bed | The Spoonflower Blog

Stuff the insert inside, zip it back up, and you’re all done. This pet bed is pup-approved!

DIY dog bed: Pup on a throne of dog beds | The Spoonflower Blog
Dog approved designs by nouveau_bohemian, leanne, nouveau_bohemian and modfox.

Have a spoiled fur baby at home? Why not also make squeaky dog toys for extra happy pups!

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  • Do you have a pattern for oval dog bed covers? the dog bed I have now is about 7″ H x 31W x 38 L. I need to make a new cover for it but I don’t know what the measurements of the material should be. I will be using velcro instead of a zipper.

    • Hi Mary,

      We currently do not have an oval-shapped dog bed tutorial. Depending on your comfort level, you may be able to learn the basics from this tutorial and adapt it to fit your needs.

    • Hi Kerry,

      We haven’t tried out that type of project yet so I’m afraid we don’t have a tutorial for crate covers. Sorry I couldn’t be more help, but please let me know if you have any more questions.

  • Other than Eco-Canvas, any other fabric options that you recommend for the dog beds?

    • Hi Krista,
      We recommend Cypress Cotton Canvas or Dogwood Denim™, two upholstery-grade fabrics, for an alternative option for this project. I hope that helps, but if you have any more questions don’t hesitate to ask! – Meredith

  • The most affordable way to make a dog’s bed cover! It was really amazing and interesting to read this post. I have gone through each and every step thoroughly and would surely try it for my dog.

  • Hi Meredith .. Thank You so much for allowing me to download your great easy to follow pattern … Love it and so does my beautiful “Sheba” … I’m going to make some smaller ones for my gorgeous felines … all my furbabies are very very much loved.
    In Australia we have a store called “Clark Rubber” … I think purchasing from here will prove cheaper than some pet stores. Plus you can get whatever size insert you want … (which works for me).

    Happy Sewing … Joyful

  • This is great! Thank you for the pattern. Where do you buy “dog bed inserts”?

    • Hi Shirl,

      We found our dog bed insert at our local pet store but you could also look online at placed like Amazon.