Want to add a little flair or a splash of color to your dog’s collar? As easy as they are cute, this DIY pet bandana is guaranteed to have you and your pups (or cats!) jumping for joy. And with a free downloadable PDF pattern and video tutorial, you’ll be surprised how fast this project sews up. Have a cat or another type of stylish animal in your life? This tutorial works with any pet that wears a collar. Grab your favorite fat quarter of fabric and let’s get started! (Looking for a dog collar and leash pattern? We got you covered!)
How to Make an Easy Pet Bandana
- 1 fat quarter of fabric*—we’re using Spoonflower’s Lightweight Cotton Twill featuring Cactus on White by caja_design
- Sewing machine
- Rotary blade/fabric scissors
*Spoonflower’s Petal Signature Cotton®, Cotton Poplin and Organic Cotton Sateen are great options for a 100% cotton bandana. Use the Fill-A-Yard® 1 Yard Cheater Quilt template to create 9 unique bandanas for under $3 each.
1. Cut Out the Pattern Pieces
Start by cutting out the bandana template. To determine your bandana size, measure the length of your dog’s current collar and divide by 2. Choose the bandana template that matches this measurement. Next, lay the template on your fabric and cut around the template with a rotary blade or fabric scissors.
2. Hem the Bandana
Fold down the edges of each side of your bandana 1/4” (0.64 cm) and press. Fold under 1/4” again, and press. Now we’ve got our double hem. Pin in place and topstitch around the entire bandana to secure your hem.
3. Create the Collar Pocket
To create the pocket for the collar, fold over the top of your bandana so the edges match up with the corners at the top of the triangle portion. Pin in place and stitch across the long edge of your pocket on the front side of your bandana.
Pro tip: Test out your pocket size by sliding your pups collar through the pocket before stitching.
And you’re done—slip this on your pup for an extra dose of custom cuteness! See another take on this feline and fido-friendly project using Fill-A-Yard in this companion post.
How come the template is split in 2? Can you guys make one where it’s on one page? Kind of a waste of paper when it could be one page
Sewing patterns take up multiple pages as they reflect their real-life size, and different sizes need differing amounts of fabric. This bandana pattern is on two pages because while an XS bandana may fit on one page, the other sizes do not. This one PDF accommodates different size needs, in keeping with standard sewing patterns.
I am confused, what is the second page of the template for??
The second page of the template is the second page of the sewing pattern!
You’ll need to print out the pattern and tape it together. It will provide a template for the pattern which you can then create from fabric.
Could you advise what the length-wise dimensions should be for each size? I don’t have a printer at home and am making these for several different size pups + kitties!
Hi Emily, if you have computer paper or tracing paper available, tracing the pattern directly from your computer screen also works great if you do not have a printer at home! I can tell you that in versions I’ve made for my dog, the finished width has been 10″ (long edge), with two 8″ sides coming to a point. I hope that helps! – Theresa, Spoonflower
Fashion Forward Pets, What’s not to LOVE.
Sorry but very irritating to show the leash and then not have a pattern
We totally get that, and have received similar feedback before. Based on this, we have a separate pet leash sewing tutorial planned for early 2022! Stay tuned.
Is there a pattern for the leash yet?
Thanks for your interest! We do not currently have a sewing pattern for a leash but will consider it for future content. If you are searching for a dog leash, we recommend the small business Duke & Fox. You can also find the pattern for the bow tie here.
Very very easy to follow instructions. I love these. Thank you for sharing this ! I am going to try and make one reversible. These are to cute ❤️
These are really cute, i do love that they go over the collar too! Looking to try this myself but i also rather like the one that tie so there all the way round. Do you happen to have a template or video tutorial for that style?
Love all the fabric designs! 🙂
We’re so glad to hear you enjoyed the tutorial. We don’t currently offer a tutorial for that specific style, but thank you for the feedback!
Amy, thank you for the pattern and the instructions, it was fun making one for St. Patrick’s Day and Easter for my Bichon; looking forward to the tutorial on bow ties.
I have a Bichon Frise too and was looking for a pattern and discovered this one. I actually have some bichon fabric I can make this with which will be really cute. Thanks spoonflower for making such a great tutorial. I will be making a reversible one just to make it a bit more durable.
From Jodie Melbourne Australia
How awesome and easy!!! So much better looking than the rough edge bandanas I’ve seen. Thank you for sharing this 🙂 My Doxie twins will be looking dressed for any occasion!!
We’re so glad to hear you enjoyed the tutorial. It’s one of my favorites as well. I’m sure your pups will be the best dressed at the dog park!
Hello, what is the tool you’re using to assist with the hem that also has measuring sizes? Not sure what’s called. Thanks!!
I believe you are referring to the sewing gauge. It looks like it is also sometimes called a seam gauge as well. I hope that helps, but please let us know if you have any additional questions.
Great photos in your post, and a nice simple project. This post just got shared to my ‘sewing for dogs’ pinterest board! Have a great day! You don’t by chance have a post for making the dog leashes do you? The ones in the photo are so cute…
We’re so glad you enjoy this project. It’s one of my favorites as well — I love making bandanas for my pup and gifting bandanas to all her pup friends! We currently do not have a dog leash tutorial on our blog, but thats a great idea for the future. Thanks for sharing!
Is there a video/post about the tie on dog bandana’s?
We don’t have a tie dog bandana tutorial but we’ll definitely keep the idea in mind for a future tutorial.
Thank you for this nice pattern. Something NEW to do while quarantined because of the air quality.
I’ve tried this a few times now and the collar fits through fine but when I bend the collar to put it around my dog’s neck the bandana sort of crumpled up. Any idea why that keeps happening please?
I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble with your finished bandana! While it is normal for some fabric folds over the curve of your fur baby’s collar, if you are seeing a lot of crumpling, it could be that the size is too large.
Wonderful easy free pattern Thank you
I jiggled it to be reversible
Hi Cheryl I’d love to make this reversible. I can only think instead of the double hem is to sew patterned sides together then turn the right way around. I’d love to know how you made it reversible.
just wondering where I could find the tutorial for the bowtie and leash ??
You can find the DIY dog bow tie tutorial here. At this time we don’t have a leash tutorial.
Where do you purchase the clips.
We suggest taking a look at Etsy for the leash supplies. I hope that helps, but if you have any more questions don’t hesitate to ask!
I made a bandana for my cat. I used the XS size and my design \”Rats and peas -red coral\” 🙂
She didn\’t want to sit stil in front of the camera, but I managed to get two okey photos:
Oh my goodness! Your kitty is ready for her closeup! Thanks so much for sharing. – Meredith
When measuring by dividing the length of the dog collar, are we to assume this is the clip together type collar? If it is a buckle type collar there would be overhand so I\’m assuming that you would measure from the buckle to the hole you use to fasten this type? Is this correct…..
Thanks so much for your question! The collar I used was a buckle, clip-together style. I would suggest measuring from one end of the bucket to the other and making a muslin with scrap fabric first to make sure the size will work with your collar! I hope that helps, but if you have any more questions don’t hesitate to ask! – Meredith
Hi Meredith your pattern is awesome, Thank you so much! Are we allowed to sell the pet bandanas that we make from your pattern?
We’re so glad you’ve been enjoying the pet bandana pattern! We’d be happy for you to make bandanas using this pattern and you’re more than welcome to resell the finished bandanas. We just kindly ask that you don’t sell the physical sewing pattern! I hope that helps, but if you have any more questions don’t hesitate to ask! -Meredith from Spoonflower
When will the tutorials for the bows and belts be taken out? I need it so much!
Here is the tutorial for the doggie bow ties! -Meredith
[…] Pet Bandana […]
Thanks for the pattern templates. The size printed on the pattern eg 3.5″ is that the finished size or the cut size? Or do we need to add seam allowances?
Thanks for your question! The sizes noted on the pattern are the size of the cut lines and the seam allowance is included in the pattern. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. -Meredith from Spoonflower
When printing out the pattern, do I print to, Fit to Page? Or just print as is? Thanks.
Great question! When printing patterns, please make sure “Fit to Page” is NOT selected. If you have any other questions, please send us a message at email@example.com
-Meredith from Spoonflower
Happy to be able to use this for my fur-baby and those of my friends.
I’ve wanted to find something like this for ages. Thank you so much for doing this post. I love it. Can’t wait to make one…. or a hundred for my fur-baby. xoxo
This pattern is pup-approved! We can’t wait to see your version.
Is there a pattern template for the bowtie and measurements for the leash?
A bowtie and leash tutorial are in the works! The leash is 92″ long and was made with our Eco Canvas.
-Meredith from Spoonflower
Hi, i’d love to make on of your bandanas, the pdf doesn’t seem to print out could you possibly tell me the sizes please so I can make a template. Not sure why it won’t let me print it.
We’re sorry for the unexpected issue! If you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the specific issue you’re experiencing when printing, we’ll be happy to assist you further.
In the meantime, you can use the measurement provided on the PDF pattern to recreate the bandana. Once you draw the horizontal line, draw a line from the end to the opposite corner of your paper like the pattern shows.
My dogs collar is 18 inches, so divided by 2 is 9. So I would need to use the 7.5 inch template? Would I really need one that is bigger?
If you’re not sure about the sizing, we recommend printing out the largest pattern on paper and folding it over the collar to see if it will fit. Please keep in mind any seam allowances when doing your test!
I cannot get template to print. It is a cute idea and would really love to make.
We’re sorry to hear there was an issue with printing the pattern. Can you please provide more details about the issue?
I’m going to try this only making it double sided so I have two bandana’s in one! Thank you for this pattern!
Great idea, Christine! Your bandana will be 2 times the fun.
I am so excited to start this! Thank you for the pattern – seems so easy, even for this non-sewer. 🙂
Did you also make the bow ties?
We can’t wait to see your finished bandana! Stay tuned — a dog bow tie tutorial is in the works.
I’ve so needed this! Thank you.
We hope you find the video tutorial helpful for sewing up the perfect bandana for your pup!