DIY Dog Clothes

DIY Dog Clothes

Your dog is and always has been a very important part of your family. You make sure that she (or he) has the very best, from dog food and medicine to outstanding veterinary care.

But the one thing your dog may be lacking is proper dog clothes. Instead of just buying dog clothes off the rack, try making your own unique versions. While you may not think that dog clothes are a necessity, they do have a practical side and can keep your pet warm in the colder winter months.

When you start looking at the cost of ready-made clothes for your dog, it quickly becomes apparent that some dog clothes are almost as expensive as clothes made for people. That’s why a great way to save money when you want to get clothes for your dog is to think about DIY dog clothes. To make them even less expensive, you can use old clothing that you’re considering giving away, or you can purchase clothing from a thrift store.

How to Make DIY Dog Clothes

Don’t want to pay for expensive dog clothes? Choose the more affordable option and create your own homemade dog dress, sweater and so much more. A baby’s onesie is the perfect garment to use when thinking about DIY dog clothing. With just a little effort, you can make over the onesie into a t-shirt or bodysuit for your dog. If you don’t have a baby who has outgrown a onesie, you can purchase one from a thrift store for minimal cost.

What Size Baby Clothes Will Fit my Dog?

To make sure you have the correct size for your dog, consider that onesies for newborns will fit a dog which is under 15 pounds. You should choose a larger onesie size for a larger dog. Below are step-by-step instructions to make a t-shirt for your dog from old onesies.

DIY Dog Outfits from a Baby Onesie


  • Onesie
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread or sewing machine
  • Fabric pen


1. Place the onesie over your dog’s head and put his/her front legs through the arm holes to make sure the onesie fits your dog well.

2. To create a t-shirt for your dog, use the fabric pen to draw a straight line cut at the bottom of the onesie. Now, cut along the line you have drawn so that you remove the snaps. By hemming the edge of the shirt with either a needle and thread or a sewing machine, you can create a t-shirt for your pup.

If you have decided that you would prefer to make a bodysuit for your dog, you will need to follow a slightly different method.


1. After you put the correctly-sized onesie on your dog, use a fabric pen to make a mark on the onesie where your dog’s tail is located.

2. Take the onesie off your dog, and cut a hole for the dog’s tail.

3. Fold the material over where you have made the cut so that you no longer have a rough edge. Using a needle and thread or a sewing machine, hem the edge for a cleaner look.

4. Put the onesie back on your dog and fasten the snaps together.

But you are not limited to only using onesies when thinking about how to make clothing for dogs. Consider using your own old clothes to make one-of-a-kind dog clothes. A Frugal Cafe blog post, the author, Vicki McClure Davidson, has some wonderful ideas about reusing women’s long-sleeved t-shirts and fleeces to make jackets and sweaters for your dog.

Though you may not think it’s necessary to provide your dog with clothes, that added extra layer of a water-repellant raincoat will really help keep your dog dryer when they are forced to go outside during adverse weather conditions.

You can find patterns online for almost any type of dog clothing you want to make. Some of the best sites to visit are How-To Dog and Craftstylish.

One of the easiest ways to approach DIY clothes for dogs is to take one of your old sweaters and use one of its sleeves as a smaller sweater for your dog.

DIY Dog Outfits from a Sweater


  • A sweater that you no longer use
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Needle and threat or sewing machine
  • Fabric chalk


1. Measure along your dog’s back from the bottom of their neck to the top of their hips.

2. Measure along the dog’s stomach from the base of their neck to their hip in the front.

3. Use the first set of measurements to measure from the cuff of the sleeve inward so that you know how much of the sleeve to cut off to make the dog’s sweater. Draw a line with fabric chalk where you will need to cut.

4. Use the second set of measurements to make markings at the bottom of the sleeve for the holes for the legs of the dog. For a larger dog, you will need to measure upwards of four inches, but for a small dog, the upward measurement will only be two inches.

5. After you make the mark for the legs, you need to cut a hole in the sleeve that is at least two inches wide so that your dog’s legs can fit through the hole comfortably.

6. Hem the edges of the sweater where you made the hole so that the material will not fray.

7. If you have a larger dog, and your dog will need more neck room, you can cut across the wrist of the cuff.

Golden retriever puppy wearing a sweater with text that says "Consider that onesies for newborns will fit a dog which is under 15 pounds."

If your excuse for not making your own dog clothes is that you don’t have or don’t know how to use a sewing machine, think again! There is a method that allows you to repurpose old pieces of your clothing into dog clothes without the use of a sewing machine. A post at  shows you how you can convert that old t-shirt you no longer wear into a piece of dog clothing.

DIY Dog Outfits from a T-Shirt


  • One of your old blank t-shirts
  • Fabric markers
  • Scissors


1. Smooth out the shirt and fold in half vertically.

2. Fold the shirt down from the top and make a cut away and along the fold.

3. After you make the cut, all of the top of the shirt should be open. This means that you will have taken off the collar along with the tops of the sleeves.

4. You should next fold the bottom of the shirt up at an angle toward the outside of the shirt and along the fold. Next, you will need to cut along the fold.

5. You will now be able to remove the t-shirt’s whole bottom hem so that the fabric can stretch more easily. This bottom hem can now become a tie that will go around the dog’s neck.

6. To make identical dog shirts, take the scissor along the folds in order to separate the shirts.

7. Make sure that the shirt fits on your dog by centering the shirt on the back of the dog. The sleeves of the shirt should be near the dog’s waist, and the bottom at the dog’s collar. The shirt as it would have been worn by a person is now upside down.

8. Take the shirt off the dog and place on a flat surface so you can decorate it with the fabric markers. Be creative with witty slogans or, if you’re talented at drawing, put a unique picture on the shirt.

methods for making DIY dog clothes

It’s also possible to make a dog jacket from repurposed clothing. This project is both cheap and easy.

DIY Dog Outfits from Track Pants


  • Fleece track pants
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Pins


1. Measure your dog’s back starting at the top of his/her tail and going forward to his/her neck.

2. Measure around the neck.

3. Measure the chest and around the girth.

4. Take off the cuff from the sweat pants unless the opening is large enough for the dog’s head to fit through.

5. On the fabric, near the cuffs, mark the distance between the dog’s front legs and cut the opening in the fabric of one of the legs of the fleece pants so that the dog’s legs can fit through them.

6. Move the fabric so that the pants’ side seams go along the pet’s side. Cut the fabric along the leg in order to better measure the back of your dog.

7. Put the jacket on your dog to see how well it fits him/her.

You can even use an old fleece jacket to make a sweater for your dog.

DIY Dog Outfits from a Jacket


  • Fleece jacket
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Pins


1. Cut off the sleeve to match the measurements of your dog’s back.

2. Take off the cuff of the sleeve, as it will likely be too tight for your dog’s neck.

3. Measure the distance between your dog’s front legs and mark it on the cut sleeve.

4. Cut the holes so that they are big enough for your dog’s paws to fit.

5. You can even roll the edge of the sleeve back to make a collar for your dog.

6. Now you have a jacket made for your dog with very little cost or effort and no sewing!

We can offer you 100% cotton t-shirts, which are the perfect canvas for making dog clothes. With the use of fabric tape, you can tailor the shirt so that it fits on your dog. Through the use of fabric paint, vinyl transfers and iron-on transfers, you can make your dog clothes so that he/she will stand out in a crowd.


  • 100% cotton t-shirt
  • Iron-on letters
  • Fabric paint
  • Iron


1. Place your dog’s shirt on a flat surface

2. Iron the shirt in order to smooth it out to get ready for placing your letters on the shirt.

3. Lay out the letters on the shirt exactly how you want them to appear when you iron them on.

4. Iron each letter and then iron all of the letters together.

5. Turn the shirt inside out and iron the letters from the other side.

6. After the letters have cooled down, line the letters with fabric paint to make them stand out.

DIY jackets for dogs

Very Vinyl

By using heat vinyl transfer sheets, you can create unique dog clothes for your dog and to give as gifts. Vinyl sheets can be purchased at minimal costs from various sites.



1. Place the heat transfers on the onesie and create any pattern that you want.

2. Make sure your iron is on a cloth setting. After you put a cloth over the onesie, press the iron down for 60 seconds on the cloth. Do this over all parts of the onesie until heat has been applied to all of the transfers.

3. Remove the clear plastic covering that was on the transfers to reveal your finished product.

Websites for Doggy Apparel

If you really don’t think you can tackle the project of making clothing for your little pup, how about considering purchasing unique custom-apparel? At Cotton Creations, you can pick from a variety of products and make them your own. We have everything from bandanas to t-shirts.

All of our personalized items have been tested multiple times to ensure their safety. These items are very durable and come in a variety of colors and sizes for very low prices. You can even upload a photo of picture of something that you have already created or choose one of the designs from our design catalog.

Bandanas are one of our personalized items and are the perfect accessories for your pup! Our bandanas come in a variety of colors with plenty of unique slogans to make them truly stand out. If you really want to make sure your pet will continue to wear their bandana, make sure to tie it loosely and start out by leaving it on your pet for short period of time, rewarding them after each interval. Make wearing the bandana part of a routine. We all know how much dogs like their routines! If wearing a bandana is part of their routine, they are less likely to object to it.

You can personalize your dog’s bandana to highlight special events such as holidays or birthdays or even a trip to the groomer. And if you have your own business, we offer great wholesale prices for those personalized dog bandanas that you want to sell.

Though you may be having difficulty deciding which product to select, don’t worry. We have a team of designers who can provide you with an honest opinion about the products that would be best suited to your pet, and we offer only products that we would want to see on our own cherished pets.

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