Sewchet

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Accessorise Your Pooch!

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We Brits are a nation of animal lovers, particularly cats and dogs and, generally, we look after them well and love to pamper them just a little.

There inevitably comes a time when we have to say farewell to our loyal companions and, whilst I have lost many a pet over the years, it doesn’t get any easier.

They say the best way to mend a broken heart is to find a new love and certainly the arrival of a new puppy in the family does wonders to heal the gaping hole left by the loss of an old dog.

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They also say that a puppy breathes new life into an elderly dog so, when our Yorkshire Terrier reached eleven years, we thought it would be a good time to introduce a puppy.

Yorkies have a life expectancy of 12-15 years so Fifi, who is now 12 1/2, is enjoying her old age with a new spring in her step with the companionship of a younger dog. Tess, who is now an 18 month Yorkie x Chihuahua, has benefited enormously from her older, wiser, calmer and well behaved mentor. When Fifi goes, we will have the comfort of having a dog in the family still. It’s a win-win-win.

Tess has the boundless energy found in one so young and they both enjoy long walks in the country, but recently Fifi has started showing her age. She often turns around and walks back home if we are in the fields behind the house and, if we are doing a lane walk, she plods along slowly unable to keep pace after a couple of miles.

I now get to the point of this story; I wanted to make a dog carrier to take with me on our walks so that Fifi could climb in andΒ  rest her weary bones as and when she feels like it and, yes, she does tell us when she wants a carry!

Minerva Crafts had the perfect pattern (Kwik Sew 3517) and fabrics for both a dog carrier and a harness and lead, so I got cracking and decided to make a matching set!

This is the parcel that arrived: –

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The carrier is lined and padded so is both comfortable for the dog and for you to wear across the body.

It incorporates a swivel clip to secure the dog to the inside of the carrier, but I chose not to include this as Fifi is an old dog and wouldn’t even consider jumping out – being restrained would make her nervous.

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I saw the matching accessories and just had to make those too!Β  The swivel clip could be used on the lead instead.

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I chose a ready-quilted fabric in a raspberry coloured faux leather which incorporated a layer of wadding so would be the perfect choice, adding structure and warmth to the carrier and harness, yet is also wipeable for practicality.

It also meant that I didn’t need to add the layer of fleece that the pattern called for as the wadding was padding enough.

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This Turquoise Blue crinkle textured cotton was the ideal fabric for the lining, adding a pop of bright colour.

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There was just one single pattern piece for the carrier which made it very simple to cut out.

I have to mention that I was extremely impressed with the quality of the paper used for the pattern – can you get an idea of how sturdy it is from this photo before I ironed it? It’s not transparent or flimsy and therefore doesn’t tear accidentally, unlike the usual brown tissue paper type.

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Always iron your pattern pieces!

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The carrier made up like a dream – the instructions were simple and easy to follow. You’re required to press at every stage which I couldn’t do with the faux leather in case it melted. When top stitching, it wasn’t a problem just rolling the faux leather out slightly over the cotton to get a crisp edge so being unable to iron it didn’t matter.

Here is the finished carrier….

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….and here’s Fifi trying it for size!

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She may look a little reticent in this photo, but she actually curled up happily and let me snap away until I got the pics I needed.

Then onto the harness.

Again, just one main pattern piece (plus a piece for a strap for the D-ring) so the lining and main fabric were simply sewn right sides together before being turned through a gap in the stitching.

Simples:)

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Sew the scratchy side of the velcro to the outside….

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…and the soft side to the inside lining. We don’t want friction causing any nasty sores, do we?

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I used the lining fabric as a contrast for the D-ring strap which was top stitched on securely.

Different coloured thread was used for the bobbin for a ‘blend in’ effect but opposite colours would work equally well if you prefer a contrast – turquoise on the magenta and vice versa.

How ‘Designer’ does that look, eh?

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I almost plumped for the turquoise cotton to make the lead, but in the end thought the quilted fabric looked more luxurious.

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It was a bit of a pig to fold and top stitch such a narrow, thick strip of fabric though, the cotton would have been a piece of cake to press and stitch but you can’t iron faux leather….

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Just look at Fifi’s hang-dog expression! She was itching to come to me but I wanted a photo from the back to show off the harness to best effect, so this is her being patient with me.

I sewed the ‘Large’ size harness believe it or not (Fifi only weighs six pounds!), but there was one larger and three smaller sizes on this multi-sized pattern. I’m guessing the variation in sizes would probably fit from a Chihuahua to a Westie.

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Here we all are, ready to go for a ‘walk’.

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I think I’ll tie it up a bit higher as I usually carry her under my arm and this feels a little low.

Fifi loved it though – she was almost asleep by the time No.3 Son had finished taking photos!

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Thanks go to Minerva Crafts for providing all the materials for these items – why not pop over to visit the others on the Blogger Network and see what they’ve been up to lately?

Author: sewchet

Sewing, Crochet and other loveliness!

43 thoughts on “Accessorise Your Pooch!

  1. I love these!! The fabric choice works so well, and definitely worth the effort with the lead! I’m sure Fifi will enjoy her walk and rides much more and leave the bounding around to Tess, while she has a snooze πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    • The lead was a bit tricky – it was difficult to get all those layers of quilted fabric under the machine foot as there are twelve layers at the point where the swivel clip is secured! Fifi already loves being in the carrier though as she is high up and can see everything that’s going on.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Your machine did a great job getting through all those layers…I think I would have been cowering behind two pairs of safety glasses waiting for my needle to snap and fly!!! I bet Fifi loves her new carrier, but should imagine she won’t see as much as you might think…being lulled to sleep instead πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You sew like a professional! Wish I was that good. πŸ™‚
    My doggie is now 9 years old. Your post was an inspiration. I am considering another doggie / puppy, but have been waiting for a bit. I know my doggie wont wear the harness, she does not wear any sweaters πŸ™‚ but I am sure she will enjoy the carrier as she loves being carried.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I used to sew professionally, working for a designer back in the nineties. We almost wish we’d got a puppy a year or two earlier as Fifi has no interest in playing with Tess and gets grumpy with her occasionally. They are inseparable otherwise, curled up together in the same box as I write!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a brilliant idea for a small dog and you have made all the items so beautifully! I’d need a backpack for Siddy though, he weighs a ton! I applaud all your reasons for getting another pup too – very sensible and far seeing. It’s hard though isn’t it watching beloved pets age. I’m sure Tess will enjoy her last years riding in style in her carry bag πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha ha! I’m picturing you carrying Siddy now! This carrier means Fifi doesn’t have to be left at home at all now because, although she’s light, your arms still ache after a while. She does love to be involved in outings so it’s perfect.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, such a cute post. Their little faces are adorable, so full if character. It’s so hard to lose a loved pet. Our cat, Mr Jinks’ is an old man now at 14 and it is showing. He’s still as handsome as ever though πŸ™‚

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  5. And another amazing job, Sheila! Love what you’ve done here and I’m sure your dog appreciates this very much too.
    I don’t know if I’m able to find the right words, but we seem to have found common ground – once again. We too have always had an older dog Γ nd a younger one (black labs), the younger one jokingly referred to as “back up dog”. Unfortunately we’ve lost both of them in not even five weeks time, our beloved Joni died last Monday, just 3,5 years old ….. I can’t even begin to describe how terribly sad we are ….. Give yours a big hug! Marianne xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh no, that’s awful! We lost a puppy at five months once but she could have been no more missed than if we’d had her for ten years. I love the term ‘back up dog’ – I’m so going to use it too!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. What a cool project, I foresee many happy stroll/carry adventures for you all, the fabric is super dooper, congratulations on such beautiful work,

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You amaze me with every single project of yours! Happy puppies!!! πŸ’™πŸ’šπŸ’›πŸ’œ

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Fabulous and a great choice of fabric. But how far will you get without being asked for orders?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Brilliant idea. beautifully made too. Unfortunately my boy is far too big to carry and even though he’s eleven I wouldn’t trust him not to teach a puppy all his naughty tricks.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. What a brilliant pattern! And all the things you made look amazing.

    Like

  11. Love it! Such cuuuute fur babies, you have! And yes, definitely the best dressed! Loved the fabric and craftsmanship. You are a sewing queen! Years ago I had bought a harness for my cat to take her out (funny right?) Because she’s an indoor cat and was always curious about the outside. We live on too busy a street now but I wish I would’ve taken her on a walk with it at least once! I would’ve probably gotten funny looks too. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • They are cute and detract from the sewing somewhat! I have seen cats on campsites where the owners didn’t want to leave them behind. They often had harnesses, but it was a strange sight!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. What cute little doggies!! You did a great job on the carrier. I love the colors. Your sons have such precious curls. Just adorable. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh my gosh I’ve never seen anything like this!!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Thank you for the great pattern idea,love the colours and puppies

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Aw, your dogs are luvly, what a brilliant idea so Daisy doesn’t have to miss out on the longer walks.

    Like

  16. Love all things dog related and love this! What a lucky pup to be carried in something so stylish – can’t believe how professional the finish is too!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Pingback: Sunday Sevens #77 | Sewchet

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