From experience I knew we would need something durable, inexpensive, pleasing to the human eye, Washable, & comfortable enough to keep a growing black lab mix happy for at least 1 year.
This is what I used and how i did it. A mini style tutorial.
First look through the closet or the local thrift store for one of those floor length A-line skirts. Be sure it has a zipper on one side and the fabric is thick like a wool skirt or some other thick fabric. This zipper is very important which you will see in a few steps. You will also need around 1/2 yard of corduroy fabric for the beds base bottom.(must be a durable fabric)
First- the skirt. A size (US)10 in womens clothing bought at the local thrift store for $3. I really liked the fabric and thought it perfect for the need I had.
~You will need to cut the skirt in half as you see here. The bottom portion you will need to rip the seem out on one side- see the corner flipped up in the above pic.
~Be sure to also rip the seam of the waist band from the top of the skirt. You can cut the zipper attatched to the waist band off and just sew over the top to secure it for easier handling, as you can see in picture 2:
~*Be sure you cut the zipper ABOVE where the zip handle is. Best just to unzip it before cutting just to be safe.*~The top half of the skirt will be the pillow portion. Now if your smart and learn from my mistake, you will cut the skirt with straight lines and be sure to cut the top waist area into a flat line instead of the curve you see in the above picture.
~Unzip the zipper half way and continue to sew all open sides, being sure to go over that zipper area again. Now you get to use that zipper you rememebered to unzip.
~Turn the pillow right side out like this:~Time to stuff that pillow with fiber filling, scrap fleece, cedar shavings, or which ever it is your heart dsires for your dog to sleep on. This is where that zipper you left on will come in handy. You can change the bed filling or throw the pillow and base in the wash when needed.
~Now it is time to assemble the base.~The bottom half of the skirt needs to be laid out in one layer, then fold over to make a very long 2 layer rectangle- right sides together.
~Cut the side ends to make them straight.
~Sew the side ends but do NOT sew the long side.Turn the right side out and you will have the long side open. Iron the ends flat.
~Now sew the long side. **Whatever the outside of the fabric will be showing, that is how you need for it to lay for the next step.**
Click on the base picture above. You will notice how I sewed up the seam. This leaves an allowance on the outside which you will need to attatch the corduroy to the tube.
~ Leave a 2 inch gape towards the end for stuffing. Stuff it full- do not skimp or it will be floppy. Once you have the tube sewn& stuffed, you will need to cut out a "D" outline shape for the base. You will be attatching the above tube to it.
~Best way to determine your shape and size is to bend the tube on the fabric top /or newspaper and mark it with tailors chalk or a marker. Do not over think it. Simply bend the tube into a "C" to give the right portion of curve to your "D".
~Now cut out your "D" and attatch the "C" curve of the tube to the curve on your "D". Do not forget to pin it in place. Plus the fabric side of the D touching the C will be the bottom. Just trust me ont that.
This will cause alot of man handling and cursing under your breath at a wad of fabric. But you can do it. Just smash that stuffed tube down and feed it through the sewing machine. I do not have pictures to show of that step since both hands had to stay on the tube at all times.
~Flip and turn the base so the sewing seam is on the inside of the C. The pillow will hide this once in place.
~Now your base is done so put that pillow on the base!
Congratulations~ You my dear, have just made your very own dog's bed PLUS repurposed an old skirt. How very green of you!