How to Make a Bolster Dog Bed


This simple bolster dog bed is designed for a small dog, but the method can easily be adapted for any size dog bed. It basically consists of a square, flat section and a rounded, stuffed bolster section on two sides. The construction is fairly simple, requiring measuring and cutting of fabric and basic machine sewing.

Things You'll Need

  • Two squares of fabric measuring 3 feet by 3 feet
  • One rectangle of fabric measuring 6 feet by 2 feet
  • Sewing machine
  • Sewing needle
  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Polyester stuffing

Sewing the Dog Bed

Take the 6x2 rectangle and fold it in half length-ways with the right sides facing. Pin and sew the two shorter ends of the folded piece, leaving a ½-inch seam allowance, then flip it the right way around so that the two side seams are inside and the long side is open.

Press the piece flat, then sew a seam over the open side, leaving a 1-inch seam allowance and a gap of 3-4 inches at the end.

Stuff this bolster piece with stuffing, densely packing in as much as you can, then hand or machine sew the 3-4-inch gap closed. You should have a firmly stuffed bolster measuring almost 6 feet long and 1 foot wide, with two hidden side seams and one long exposed seam.

Take the two squares of fabric and place them together, matching the edges with the right sides facing, then pin and sew the square pieces together along two adjacent sides only, leaving a ½-inch seam allowance.

Turn the piece so that the right sides are out and the raw seams are inside.

Take the exposed, inch-wide seam of half the length of the bolster and place it inside one open side of the square cushion.

Pin and sew the half of the bolster in place along the side of the cushion, folding the raw edges of the square pieces under, sandwiching the seam of the bolster within the top and bottom of the side of the square cushion.

Stuff the cushion with stuffing from the one open side, less densely than the bolster section.

Bending the bolster at its middle, pin the other half of its outside seam inside the remaining open side of the cushion section in the same manner as the other half, so that two of the four sides have the bolster attached. You will have to manipulate the stuffing to keep it out of the way when pinning.

If you can fit the cushion under your sewing machine’s arm, machine sew the bolster to the cushion along the remaining pinned seam. Otherwise it will need to be hand sewn using small stitches.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consider the wear and tear your dog bed is likely to get when choosing fabrics: beds for more boisterous dogs who like to dig in cushions will need to be made of tough, hard-wearing fabrics like denim, corduroy and canvas. A cushion form can be used instead of polyester stuffing for the square cushion section.

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