Sew a Dog-Tidy

Introduction: Sew a Dog-Tidy

About: I'm enjoying learning to sew. I hope these sew-alongs help & inspire!

Show your love to 'Mans Best Friend' by making this stylish 'Tidy-Up' to keep all their favourite doggy treats & accessories tidy.

This one is for our new 'Best Friend' Mr. Frederick Peanut & his 'mummy' Caroline. X

Now, I did measure *most* of this project, but after an initial tape-measuring I confess to 'eye-balling' about 90%!

All measurements are approximate!

You will need:

1 m oil cloth
A coat hanger
Cotton fabric for 2 pockets
Plastic bag rings or large D rings
Length of bamboo cane
Tape measure
Sewing machine
Thread & elastic thread
Clear plastic 5" x 5"

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Step 1: First Things First...

It's a trial sewing with oil cloth.

Many tutorials recommend using invisible tape on the base of your presser foot.

I did this for the first time... I'm not sure it helped, though it wasn't hard to apply & certainly didn't hinder...

Step 2: Choose a Hanger...

... I chose mine because it is strong, slim & flat.

Mine was 14" long, so leaving 1" seam allowance I cut my width at 16".

I cut the length to 24" so it will finish up around 22" long.

Cut a back facing piece to the depth of the whole hanger and the same width as the main piece.

Carefully draw around the hanger & cut both the main piece & back facing to shape.

Step 3: Plan Your Pockets

I chose a patch pocket at the top, with a clear sash to slip a photo into...

Two plastic bag strap rings to clip leads onto...

A shirred patch pocket for poo-bags...

Three box pleated pockets for toys/ treats...

A bamboo bar with cut-outs to loop collars around.

Measure it all up and draw it all out on the back of the main piece. Remember to include seam allowance and a nice big turn up at the bottom.

(I tried to be quite precise with this, but It ended up just as a guide later on!)

Step 4: Top Pocket...

Cut out a piece of main oil cloth, mine is 11" x 5" (inc 1/2" turn over hem)

Cut a clear piece 5" x 5" for the window. Tape it into position.

Fold & hem the top. Fold & pin the other 3 sides.

Step 5: Lead Loops...

My loops have a 2" opening. The tabs ended up 2" x 2.5".

Cut 2 pieces 4" x 4". Fold into the centre & tape down. Top stitch down both sides.

Sew the ring on with a 1" turn up. Fold & sew a 1/2" hem at the top.

Step 6: Middle Pocket...

I've never done shirring before & was really looking forward to trying it...

I wanted my pocket to finish up 8" x 5" so I cut it 14" x 6" (hoping the shirring would half the width, but not confident it would quite make it!)

First, with your regular thread, hem all 4 sides of the pocket piece.

Hand wind a bobbin with shirring elastic (using no tension - do not stretch the elastic).

Load the bobbin as normal. (I didn't adjust either top or bottom tension on my machine).

This is how I did the shirring... (I've read a bit about it online, but I did feel a bit like I was making it up as I went along! It worked out nicely!)

• I back stitched 4 or 5 stitches at the beginning & end or each run.
• I hand-wound the machine 2 stitches at the end of each row to set the gap between rows.
•I did 6 or 7 rows at the top & the bottom of the pocket piece.
• I gently stretched the fabric as I sewed, but didn't stress about stitching over a few puckers.
• When I finished, I pulled the top thread through to the back & tied it off with the elastic.

It was great fun! I hope you're as happy with your results as I am with mine!

Step 7: Bottom Pocket...

This is 26" x 6" to finish up measuring 12" x 5".

Hem the top & bottom. You could hem the sides too, I just folded & ironed mine (the sides get stitched down when it goes onto the main body).

Lay it out & measure a 4" pocket in the centre. Fold back a 1" deep pleat at each side. Pin in place.

Fold back a 1" pleat in the other direction to create 'box-pleats' on either side of the centre pocket. Pin in place.

Measure the two outside pockets (4") and fold a 1" deep pleat at both ends. Make sure the side hems are turned under.

Pin & press the lot!

Step 8: Pin Everything On...

Check your layout on the back & pin all your pockets & loops onto the front.

They say to always use tape, or only pin in the seam allowance, to avoid unnecessary holes in oil cloth.

In my (limited) experience, the cheap ones mark but the more expensive ones are ok if you're careful.

Now, step back & take a look at it. Admire your work & make any lay-out-tweaks.

* Pin open the pleats where you are going to sew up the outsides & centres to hold the sides & create the pockets*

Get to the machine & sew everything on.

Back stitch at the beginning & end of each run. Leave long threads for pulling through & tying off.

Remove all the pins as you go along.

• Top pocket - sew 3 sides.
• Lead Loops - sew X & across top.
• Shirred Pocket - sew 3 sides.
• Pleat Pocket - sew sides (pinning pleat out of the way). Sew the bottom edge, holding the pleats down. Sew up the middle of the two box pleats (pinning the pleat out of the way).
• Collar Bar - sew up a 2" hem at the bottom.

Step 9: Sew on the Back Facing...

Pin the back facing on (right sides facing) & sew up both sides leaving a 2" gap at the top.

Clip the curves & neaten up the opening.

Turn out, press well with your fingers & top stitch down (remember not to sew the opening shut!).

Continue down to hem/ top stitch the sides.

Step 10: Cut Out the 'Collar-Bar'...

Mark the cut outs on the wrong side & cut them out.

Cut a piece of bamboo to fit.

Sew up the ends.

Step 11: Be Proud of Yourself...!

Stand back and admire your work!

I'm so happy with how this turned out & I'm sure Caroline & Mr Peanut (when he wakes up!) will love it!

Step 12: Other Variations...

These are bigger versions I have made for Tilly & Sweep.

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    3 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I hope I don't sound too dumb, however, what is 1m equivalent to in yards and what is oil fabric I haven't heard of it before. Great project and instructions. I'm new to this site,not sure how I will see your reply. Thank you in advance.


    5 years ago

    No problem. They've been given to their owners now & look great stuffed full of doggy things!