A dog bed is one of those things that’s a must-have for any pet lover, but finding one that can withstand a beating from our pups has always been a challenge. Jack and CC are big, slobbery knuckleheads (that we love so much, it hurts), and we often joke that if attending school was a thing, our dogs would be the smelly kids in class. Never mind that CC doles out tongue baths nightly and they get more baths than any pet we’ve known, no, these two can make a freshly laundered bed look filthy in less than a day. All that to say, our house wouldn’t be a home without them (Libby, too!), and while every choice we make is a direct result of ensuring their comfort, we’re always hopeful to merge their needs with our home’s style.
We’ve been using beds and mats from Janery for years now, including an extra wide foot-of-the-bed cushion that lives – you guessed it – at the foot of our bed. It’s made of two cushions with waterproof liners, and Jane whipped up a custom length in an outdoor fabric that would envelop both. We love it, but lugging it into any other room isn’t practical. Scott and I agreed that we wanted a couple of beds that we could easily kick from room to room; we wanted dog beds that didn’t look like dog beds, and they had to be affordable, (extremely) durable and able to hold up to endless washings.
As I was pulling my jeans out of the dryer a few months ago, I asked Scott, why aren’t denim dog beds a thing? A quick online searched proved that they are a thing, but I was having trouble pinpointing one that checked off every one of our wishes. If it was attractive, it wasn’t affordable. If it was affordable, it wasn’t washable – and the list goes on. Heavyweight cotton denim is a fabric that only gets better with age, wash after wash. I was determined to make our own.
SUPPLIES USED FOR 2 DENIM PET BEDS
Tip: The Etsy shop that I purchased our fabric from is no longer active, but I found that searching for all cotton denim brought up thicker options overall (as denim with stretch is typically a little more thin). Here’s a close match to the fabric we purchased.
This is probably my favorite part: I brought my fabric and zippers to our local dry cleaner, and I asked her if she could sew up two pillow cases! Knowing myself far too well, it would be weeks (if not months) before I pulled out my sewing machine, and even then, let’s be honest, we’re not on the best of terms. I asked her to make each case a 24″ square, which would allow our 26″ pillows to look and feel more full. We agreed on double stitched seams for extra strength and an invisible zipper. You can see above that our denim was a medium blue, but we ended up preferring the lighter variation on the underside! She sewed the cases so that the underside was exposed, and we couldn’t be happier with the results:
The pillows received a waterproof liner before we slipped on their covers (the Euro sham is usually sized as a 26″ square), and both the liners and covers have been washed and dried countless times over the last handful of months. Just as we hoped, the denim fabric has held up especially well, with virtually no sign of wear! If anything, it only gets softer with each wash.
For the most part, the beds hang out in our living room, but by the end of the evening, Jack and CC will have pulled them into the funny little nook. They’ll arrange the cushions so that they’re next to each other, or in the off chance that Jack isn’t around, CC will double up – à la The Princess and the Pea.
We love that these cushions don’t scream, ‘look at this doggie bed!,’ and I waited a couple of months before writing this post just to make sure they’ve lived up to our expectations. And they have! For two beds, our supplies totaled less than $90, and the cost of having them made was an additional $30. For something that has proved to be so durable – in such a classic, casual fabric, too! – we’re super happy.
Now just imagine if I could learn to sew and, most importantly, stick with it?