Golden retriever with a DIY dog bandana on for the 4th of July

DIY Dog Bandana

If you love your pet as much as we love ours, hopefully, this project doesn’t seem quite as silly. LOL. I would do just about anything for my puppy. Even dress her up a little. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Today’s project is perfect for just that. Raise your pet’s fashion quota with this DIY dog bandana. Works equally well for your cat, parakeet, or iguana!

This project is great for beginners who may be new to sewing. It’s also a fun and easy craft for you and the kids to make together. You do not need much fabric so it’s very inexpensive. I bought my fabric at Hobby Lobby, where they do NOT have minimum yardage requirements, in short, you can buy exactly what you need down to the inch. No wasted money or fabric. Love that!

Sewing tutorial for this DIY dog bandana, shown on a golden retriever

Making a Pattern

First, you will need to determine how big you want your bandana. This is completely up to you, obviously, there are no rules.๐Ÿ˜‰ If you’d like a pattern for the sizes that I created, you can DOWNLOAD a free PDF from the download page. Just sign up (subscribe) in the sidebar or at the bottom of the page. I created three different triangle shapes, one for tiny dogs, one for medium, and one for larger breeds like the golden retrievers below. I fit the shapes to a letter-size sheet so it’s easy to print. You will need to enlarge or decrease the sizes on a copier to fit your pet just right. Of course, you can adjust the triangle shape or make your own for a custom fit.

If you are creating your pattern from scratch, you may want to draw each piece out, with their corresponding measurements to figure out how much fabric to buy. First, determine the size of the triangle bandana piece that fits best. To determine the size of the triangle, grab a ruler or tape measure, and have your trusty pet by your side. Decide how wide you want the triangle to run from side to side, in the front of the neck. Then, determine how long you want it to hang down. Draw a triangle from those 3 points. Use that measurement plus add a seam allowance all the way around. Cut 2 triangles out of fabric.

For the neckband, simply measure your pet’s current collar. This is usually the perfect length with enough overlap for Velcro or other closure types. Now take the collar height (if you like the size), and double the height measurement. Add a seam allowance all the way around the neckband piece. There, you now have a custom pattern.

Sewing tutorial for this DIY dog bandana, shown on a golden retriever

Jack, Brody, and Cooper

These three sweethearts below were not so easy to coral for a photo, hence the serious looks! Cooper, on the right, is our 10-year-old golden retriever. We were babysitting for Jack (8 years) and Brody (7 months) when I took this picture. What a blast to be in the company of three!

IMPORTANT: Did you remember to add a seam allowance to your pattern? This is the area between the raw fabric edge and the stitching line on the pieces of material being sewn together. They typically range from 1/4 inch (6.4 mm) wide to as much as several inches. It’s up to you how wide you’d like to make yours. I typically use a 5/8 inch (1.5cm) seam allowance.

After you’ve determined the pattern sizes you need, you are ready to shop for fabric and gather your materials. Take the dimensions, the pattern, or your drawing itself to your local fabric store. Their staff will help you figure out the best way to layout the pattern on the fabric and how much fabric you need.

Sewing tutorial for this DIY dog bandana, shown on a golden retriever

Selecting Your Fabric

As you shop for fabric, consider a washable or easy to clean fabric. For added interest, you might want to contrast the neckband to the dog bandana itself.

Golden retriever with a DIY dog bandana on for the 4th of July

Prewashing Your Fabric

Once you have your fabric home, pre-wash it. This will prevent future-fit problems if your fabric shrinks.

Materials for great craft idea for kids, DIY dog bandana

Here are all of the materials that you’ll need…

Dog Bandana Materials & Sewing Supplies

Fabric
Cutting Board or a safe surface to cut fabric on
Straight Pins
Matching Thread
Paper Scissors
Fabric Scissors or Rotary Cutter
Pencil with Eraser
Straight Edge if you are drawing the pattern out
Pattern Paper or Cardboard for Pattern
Free Pattern Download optional, not pictured
Sewing Machine not pictured
Closure, such as Velcro tabs or Snaps not pictured

(affiliate links above in blue)

DIY dog bandana project, materials and instructions

Step by Step Instructions

Below are directions for how to create your DIY Dog Bandana. First, it’s time to cut out your fabric. Remember not to rush this step. Take your time, consider the direction of the pattern or stripes so they run the way you want, and make sure you added a seam allowance. Okay, it’s go time!

step by step instructions for a DIY dog bandana. A fast and easy project for kids.

The Neckband of the Dog Bandana

1. To determine the size for the neckband piece, simply measure your pet’s current collar. This is usually the perfect length with enough overlap for Velcro, strong snaps, or other closure types for the back. Now take the collar measure, double the height, plus add a seam allowance all the way around the neckband piece. Cut out your fabric.

Next, fold the band in half lengthwise, with the wrong sides of the fabric together. Press. Then on the top and bottom, fold and press the raw edges (seam allowances) inward toward the center.

The Triangle, Base of the Dog Bandana

2. To determine the size of the triangle piece, grab a ruler or tape measure, and have your trusty pet by your side. Decide how wide you want the triangle to run from side to side, in the front of the neck. Then, determine how long you want it to hang down. Draw a triangle from those 3 points. Use that measurement plus add a seam allowance all the way around. Cut 2 triangles out of fabric.

With the right sides of the triangle’s fabric together, stitch the 2 pieces together at the two bottom angles, in one continuous stitch. Backstitch at the beginning and the end to reinforce the stitching.

3. On the wrong side press seams open.

4. Turn the triangle to the right side and press again to finish edges. Leaving the top of the triangle open and unsewn.

Sewing the Two Bandana Pieces Together

5. Next position the neckband and the triangle pieces, so that the unsewn edge tucks inside of the open band, just within the length of your seam allowance.

6. Pin the neckband closed all the way across, securing the top edge of the triangle within.

step by step instructions for a DIY dog bandana. A fast and easy sewing craft for kids.

7. To finish both ends of the neckband of the bandana, one at a time, with right sides together, sew a vertical stitch on each end. Turn both ends out so you have a nicely finished edge. You may need to use a pointed tool to gently unfold the corner so it is square.

8. Press both ends of the neckband.

Finishing the Dog Bandana

9. Topstitch across the lower edge of the neckband. You can topstitch around the triangle too if you prefer.

10. Sew on Velcro tabs or strong snaps for closing mechanisms. Do one final pressing.

DIY dog bandana project, materials and instructions

You are done. Now, Fido has a fashion accessory. Enjoy your dog bandana!

Please let me know if you try this project in the comment box below. I would love to see what you create! Are you inspired to BLOOM and sew? Tag me @bebraveandbloom or use #bebraveandbloominspired.

Thanks for stopping by!

xo,
Cindy

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Sewing tutorial for this DIY dog bandana, shown on a golden retriever
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11 Comments
  • Donna Ondler
    Posted at 18:33h, 31 July Reply

    Cindy โ€œCooperโ€ looks adorable in his bandana โค๏ธ Iโ€™m sure she has more than one ๐Ÿ˜‰. She is such a sweetheart.
    I love your blog & have things in my shopping cart for my kitchens suggestions.

    • cindy munson
      Posted at 05:16h, 01 August Reply

      Donna, you are sooo sweet. Thanks for visiting. I really appreciate your feedback too! Cooper says “hello…ruff, ruff!”

  • Nancy Lynn Boyd
    Posted at 02:49h, 02 December Reply

    I can’t wait to make a few of these bandana’s for gifts to friends who has pups….

    • cindy munson
      Posted at 04:30h, 02 December Reply

      Nancy, that makes me so happy! ๐Ÿ˜€ I’m sure they will love them! Enjoy. Thanks for your message!

  • Carina Anne
    Posted at 11:47h, 03 December Reply

    I would love to get a copy of the bandana pattern ๐Ÿ™‚

    • cindy munson
      Posted at 04:00h, 04 December Reply

      Hi Carina! You can download a PDF within the post, by clicking the links marked “download”. Just follow the link & password in the email you will receive after signing up. This will subscribe you to my email list. I will also send you the PDF.๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks for stopping by!

  • Jaclyn
    Posted at 12:38h, 12 April Reply

    Such a cute & easy project, however the printable pattern does not seem to match the size if fabric that you are using. Also some of the pictures are confusing on whether this is a over the collar or bandana with snaps/velcro.

    • cindy
      Posted at 03:12h, 13 April Reply

      Hi Jaclyn, Thank you! I’m sorry you are having trouble. The instructions in the upper part of the post explain everything you are asking. To make it easier, I will also add them to the bottom section, within the numbered instructions. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.
      The triangle pattern is a guide, you will need to enlarge or decrease the size on a copier to fit your pet just right. It’s a simple triangle shape, so it may be easier for you to just measure your pet. First, decide how wide you want the bandana triangle to wrap from side to side, in the front of the neck, then determine how long you want it to hang. Draw a triangle from those 3 points.
      For the neckband, simply measure your petโ€™s current collar. This is usually the perfect length with enough overlap for Velcro, strong snaps, or other closure types. Now take the collar measure, double the height, plus add a seam allowance all the way around the neckband piece.
      I hope that helps to clarify.๐Ÿ˜ƒ

  • Linda Hewitt
    Posted at 09:27h, 09 November Reply

    I did not receive the download for the dog bandana, Can you email me the link? When I go onto the site its asking for a password which at no point have I been asked to set and can’t work out how to do it. Without this I can’t sign in??

    • cindy
      Posted at 17:43h, 10 November Reply

      Linda, I’m so sorry you are having trouble! I sent you an email but it bounced. Can you send me an email at hello@bebraveandbloom.com and I will send you a link. The password to the free downloads is also in the subscriber email you received. You do not need to create a password.๐Ÿ˜ƒ

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