I kept seeing photos of cat tents on Pinterest and being shared on Facebook, but none of them had good instructions! I decided to make a cat tent for Luna and document it so you guys could make one too. :D

This cat tent is super easy to make - you really just need a t-shirt, some wire hangers and a piece of cardboard. As a bonus, it really only takes five minutes, so if your cat ignores it you didn't put too much effort in. ;)

Step 1: What you'll need:

  • a cat
  • a medium t-shirt
  • a 15 x 15 inch piece of cardboard (mine was 13x15 and a little wonky)
  • two wire hangers (like these)
  • tape
  • safety pins
  • something to cut the hangers with and help bend them - I used a large pair of pliers. :)

Step 2: Cut the hangers

Cut off both squiggly ends. I untwisted mine and then cut, but that's not really necessary. (though it was kinda fun!)

Step 3: Shape the hangers + reinforce the cardboard if needed

Shape the hangers so they look like the above - try to make them smooth and pretty uniform. You want two graceful curves that will go from corner to corner of your piece of cardboard.

(Lu did an excellent job of this.)

I also took this time to tape on a couple supports to the cardboard and tape all around the edges for a little more stability. This is really only necessary if you're using a piece of cardboard with a crease in it.

Step 4: Poke a hole in each corner

You should be able to use the end of the hanger to do this!

Make sure it's at least a half inch in from each edge and not too large.

Step 5: Tape the two hangers together

Cross the two hangers in the middle and make sure all the ends touch the surface you're working on. Tape them together really well so they don't shift.

Push the ends through the holes you just made in the corners.

Step 6: Bend the ends and tape them down

Bend at least an inch on the bottom of each hanger so it sits against the bottom of the cardboard. Tape the ends down flat against the cardboard - make sure you tape it well so it's nice and smooth and won't snag the shirt when you pull it over!

Step 7: Check and make sure everything's lined up

At this point you can bend the wire so that it looks nicer - fiddle around with it and use the pliers if you need to straighten it out a bit. :)

Step 8: Create the tent!

Pull the shirt over the tent frame and position it so the neck hole is in the front middle and the bottom of the shirt is trailing behind the tent frame.

Flip the whole thing up so the bottom is facing you and the hole is pointing upwards.

Fold up the excess from the bottom of the shirt and tighten it up so the neck hole is taut and safety pin the bottom in place. Then pull the sleeves tight and safety pin them in place too.

As you can see in the last image, it should be pretty tight over the frame. Keep tucking and safety pinning until it's ready!

(Yes, I know it would make sense to cut it, but I decided to leave it whole and safety pin it instead so it would be easy to remove and wash. :D)

Step 9: Give it to your cat!

I put a paper bag inside as a floor since it's been pretty hot here and a blanket would be waaaaay too warm. I also put a little catnip inside as a bonus.

As you can see, she was pretty stoked. :D

<p>cute i have 3 cats i could use this</p>
<p>Can't stop your cat peeing in the house? Then worry no more... VET reveals <strong><a href="http://catpeeing.weebly.com" rel="nofollow">how to stop your cat peeing</a></strong> outside the litter box permanently.</p>
Thank you so much. My cat Blaze loves his new tent. It was really fun and easy to make.
Thank you for this tutorial! Your directions were very easy to follow, and mango loves the final product!
<p>This was fun! And here's our boy...checking out the catnip, which apparently he approved because in the space of 3 minutes he was eating catnip, climbed in and went to sleep immediately (see the last photo). I used a flat priority mail box--didn't have to cut any cardboard that way.</p>
Fail! Don't waste your time.
<p>sassy t-shirt tent for a sassy cat!</p>
<p>thank you for the great tutorial! i followed your instructions and even took it one step further and tucked a second old shirt inside (tucked the sides under the cardboard) for more comfort and a finished look :D </p>
<p>Ooooh, good idea with the second t-shirt. :D What a cute little buddy, too!!</p>
Awesome idea ! !<br>Gonna make it for my lovely ladies!!??
<p>made two of them today, had a little trouble with the shirt, but eventually got it. a little catnip did help encourage them to enter but once they did can not get them out, until dinner time anyway. big hit for them</p>
<p>I love this idea! I am going to make more for family and friends. Thanks for the great idea!!!</p>
<p>Brilliant! I'm appalled at how expensive things like this for your pet costs at stores. I will definitely be making this! Thanks for sharing!!</p>
<p>I don't have a cat though I love the simplicity of this and the use of the head hole as the door. One of those 'I wish I had thought of that'. Cool</p>
<p>I had a little trouble making the sides &quot;smooth&quot; but Lenny seems happy with the results. Thanks for project instructions!</p>
<p>so easy and awesome. My cat is just so strange so we'll see if she ends up liking it. but it's adorable!! I couldn't resist a little campsite flag (: </p>
My Maximus waited patiently for me to make this!!
<p>that was fun!!</p>
<p>This is wonderful. Can't wait to build it. Thanks for including the floor size. To avoid a &quot;wonky&quot; floor; perhaps using a box with just the top trimmed off and padded with a cushion would work better. The sides of the trimmed box might add stability. Great project. </p>
<p>Loads of people have commented and said that worked really well! I think I may make my next one that way since both my kitties love boxes. :D</p>
<p>You should apply for the promotional DIY &quot;job&quot; on the Home and Family show on Hallmark Channel (one week on the show). This would be a great audition video and they love pet-related projects! I'm definitely going to make one for my 18-year-old cat who loves to go &quot;kitty camping&quot; under an afghan on my new sofa. The perfect way to get my sofa back!!</p>
I used a shallow box, cut the flaps off so they would fold flat and snugly against the inside walls of the box, bend ends of wire 90&deg;, then make an upward hook in the ends. the 90&deg; bends go in the corners with the hook parts each under a separate flap. You'll want to adjust the angle of the wire ends so they don't act like springs against the flaps.
Oh, and one hanger was a bit longer than the other, so I just wrapped it once around the other one to keep them from shifting. No wire cutters necessary.
<p>Thank you for sharing this. Great tutorial with lots of photos.</p>
Does this work for dogs?
Made without tape, glue, or wire cutters. Just a box with the flaps cut down to fit snugly inside box, and hangers that you bend a bit of each end on and put in corners and place excess wire behind flaps before you fold them in. towel inside for comfort. As soon as I finished it, I placed her in front of it, and she promptly slipped inside and took a several-hour nap.
Great idea!
I think mines is cute.. Thug life Tshirt is so cute?
<p>Thank you! I think, I'm going to make it as well!</p>
im going to make this✌
<p>She just loved it, was really inpatient while I was making the tent and then she started purring the second she put one of her paws inside :)</p>
<p>SkippyJon loves it! It's his new cave to plan sneak attacks. :-)</p>
<p>Hahah! Look at that sweet little face. Sure he's still an ankle-killing machine, though :D</p>
<p>so cute, he looks like a boss ha</p>
<p>Cool, here's our DIY project for the week-end, thanks a bunch!</p>
<p>We made it in 15-20 minutes. We put a box in the bottom instead of a sheet of cardboard - the box from the 24 pack of root beer bottles. We put some fleece in the bottom for her. It's the perfect size. She was napping upstairs. When she came down, she walked right over to it and climbed right in. </p>
<p>Awwww she looks so pleased :D</p>
<p>My little guy loves it! Thanks!!</p>
<p>Oh! How cute. :D</p>
My one eyed cat love it and sends her thanks.. :)<br>Thanks dor sharing..
<p>Oh yay! Hello one-eyed kitty :D</p>
<p>I love this Idea. I have an old cat and was getting a new kitten. I made one with the coat hangers but neither cat really liked it. I decided that I would try a metal framed lampshade (I took the fabric off) I had laying around to make one that was bigger than the first one. I had some big shirts, so I was confident one would fit around the larger frame. I cut a circle out of some cardboard for the bottom, and a smaller one for the top. I added some padding for a 2nd bed on the top (under the shirt). I used masking tape to hold the cardboard to the frame and used the same wrap and pin process. Both cats love it, and take turns sleeping in it. Thanks for the Instructable!</p>
<p>Really smart! I may have to start looking out for big old lampshade at the thrift stores :D</p>
<p>My little Ava loves this so much!</p><p>Thank you so much for this!!</p>
<p>Yay!! I'm happy she's happy :D</p>
Juni loves it!
<p>Looks pretty cozy in there. :D </p>
<p>Pretty Simple! </p>
<p>Great idea. Excellent directions. Wish I had a cat.</p>
<p>very very cool will have to try it and let u know thanks</p>

About This Instructable




Bio: part of the Instructables Design Studio by day, stitch witch by night. follow me on instagram @makingjiggy to see what i'm working on! ^_^
More by jessyratfink:Hand Sewing ClassSewing GlossaryWhat to Sew Next
Add instructable to: