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How to Make a Doggy Shirt for Toy Breeds Making Small Dog Clothes from a Sleeve
Nov 24, 2008 Joy Butler
Homemade dog clothes can be quick, easy and inexpensive. Very little sewing for this craft makes dressing your toy breed creative and fun.
The beauty of this project is that, because it’s made from a sleeve, there are very few stitches involved and one doesn’t even have to own a sewing machine to make this toy breed doggy shirt. Even those who don’t sew can make this simple shirt in a few minutes. The best material to use will be of a somewhat stretchy texture. The sleeve of an old sweater or sweatshirt from a yard sale works great. The sleeve band will serve as the collar. Doggy Measurements Measure the length of the dog’s back starting at the middle of the back of the neck to the base of the tail. Measure the distance between the dog’s front legs. Cutting the Material Measuring the sleeve from the tip of the band, cut it the same length as the dog’s back measurement. Dog owners who plan to hem should allow an extra inch for that. For those who really don’t like to sew, a hem is not required as sweatshirt material doesn’t ravel easily. Turn the sleeve inside out and lay it flat so that its existing stitch line is in the center facing up. Using a large jar lid and pencil, draw a half circle line on the cut end of the sleeve. The stitch line should be at the height of the circle. Cut on the line and remove the half circle piece. This allows for ‘tummy room.’ After the cut, several hand stitches will be needed on the existing stitch line to prevent it from coming loose. With the sleeve still inside out and lying flat with the stitch line in the center facing up, leg holes will be placed. Depending on the size, breed, and shape of the dog, the center of the leg hole will be approximately three inches below the tip of the sleeve band and approximately an inch and a half from the stitch line. This may have to be adjusted somewhat for individual dogs. Place a dot where the center of each leg hole is to be. Estimate the size the holes need to be, allowing room to pull the foot through. An inch and a quarter in diameter is a good starting point. The hole can always be cut bigger if necessary. Using an appropriately sized small jar lid, draw the circle and cut out the hole. The Fun Part
The project is now ready for the fun part. Turn the sleeve right side out and get creative. Use sequins, material paint, or lace to dress up the shirt. Designs can also be cut from other material and sewn or glued on. Letters can be stenciled on to spell out the dog’s name or cute lines such as ‘Spoiled Rotten’ or ‘The Boss.’ Many small dogs are cold natured so this pattern is designed long to provide warmth over the hip area but can also be cut shorter to fit just behind the rib cage of the dog. In this case, the half circle tummy cut would be eliminated.
Since this project is very simple, quick and low cost, dog owners who have two tiny dogs can have their pooches dressed like twins in a no time.