Store-bought dog coats are expensive and limited in size and body-style to specific breeds. But you can make a dog coat that acts like a warm winter cape, which will fit every breed. It’s a great solution if you want to add a layer of warmth on top of a pet sweater. It’s also a great dog coat to wear by itself. Of all the dog clothes I’ve crafted over the years, this dog coat is probably the easiest to make and certainly the easiest to put on. Best of all, if you use faux fur (as I did) you’ll be able to make this dog coat with hardly any sewing. So here are the steps for this easy-to-make dog coat.
#1. Measure Your Pet for Her Dog Coat
Using a soft (tailor’s) tape measure your dog’s length from collar to tail, as well as your dog’s girth around her stomach. This will give you a general idea of the amount of fabric you’ll need for this easy-to-make dog coat.
#2. Choose the Fabric for Your Easy-to-make Dog Coat
Even if your dog is large, the dog coat is likely to take up less than one yard of fabric. Therefore, you don’t have to worry much about the cost of the fabric. Choose something that will be warm but not heavy, as well as water repellent or resistant, or even completely waterproof. The faux fur I chose was luxurious to the touch, extremely thick, and made of polyester which was water-resistant.
#3. Fit the Fabric Around Your Dog
This easy-to-make dog coat works like a winter cape. With your dog standing up, drape the fabric over his body. Pull the fabric around his neck and secure the fabric together using a safety pin. Next, secure the fabric under your dog’s stomach and again fasten the two sides together with a safety pin. Make this dog coat fit snugly for warmth and comfort.
#4. Cut the Dog Coat Pattern
While your dog is still wearing the fabric, use scissors to carefully cut the dog coat around the shape of your dog. Keep the fabric long on the back, so it covers the tail, but trim it as you move beneath the stomach. Make sure the dog coat covers the ribcage completely but ends after it. Otherwise, your dog is likely to soil his beautiful dog coat when he urinates. It’s a good idea to leave a one inch margin all around for later corrections or hemming.
#5. Create Symmetry for Both Sides of Your Dog Coat
Now take the dog coat off your dog, but make sure to leave some mark on the fabric to show you where to connect the coat around your dog’s neck and stomach. I put a safety pin on either side of the fabric to mark the spot.
Next, I folded the dog coat lengthwise in half. The two sides were not exactly symmetrical, so I cut around the coat, catching both sides with the scissors at the same time to make the dog coat even all around.
#6. Hem the Dog Coat All Around
Because I used high-quality faux fur, I didn’t even need to sew a hem around the dog coat. It was perfect as is. If you need to hem the fabric, just make a 1 inch fold inwardly all around the dog coat and sew it in place.
#7. Sew the Clasps or Tie-downs for Your Dog Coat
I used a large clasp at the neck so I could snap the fabric in place after I draped the dog coat over my dog. For the stomach I could have used another clasp, but I decided to use a ribbon instead. This made my easy-to-make dog coat even more versatile. My dog can wear it as is, in which case I tie the ribbon tightly. Or she can wear her fall sweater under her dog coat for extra warmth in a snow storm, in which case I just have to loosen the ribbon.
#8. Add Extra Clasps or Ties for Large Dog Coats
The larger your dog, the more fabric you’ll be using for this easy-to-make dog coat. In that case, add more clasps beneath the stomach to secure the dog coat comfortably in place. If you opt for ribbons, as I did, just sew more sets of ribbons in a line.
Tip: You can use velcro instead of ribbons, if you prefer. However, I find that velcro will become clogged with fur in time and stop working.
I hope you enjoy this easy-to-make dog coat that’s sure to keep your pet warm and happy on cold winter walks. For more easy-to-make ideas, here are 10 things you can make-for-your-dog , from a dog sweater to dog stairs or a pet patio door.