Saturday, August 23, 2014

Craft: Pet Bed

Earlier this summer, my friend shared that she had learned a local animal shelter had a great need for pet beds.  My daughters heard the news and immediately wanted to help.  They remembered seeing a DIY rag rug that could be used as a pet bed in the May/June 2014 issue of American Girl MagazineCoincidentally, my husband had sorted through a pile of t-shirts to donate to the Vietnam Veterans earlier that weekend.  The girls went through the pile and chose five t-shirts (men's size large) to use for this project. 
  1.  We purchased a sink mat from Dollar Tree.  
2.  We cut the shirts into 2"x5" strips.

3.  We used five men's size large t-shirts to complete two mats.  We cut about 100 strips from one shirt.  UPDATE:  We ended up using half of a sixth men's size large t-shirt for an additional 44 strips.

 4.  We tied the strips, working horizontally and vertically to make sure all of the white plastic was covered.  The magazine instructed us to tie the strips in double knots.  The result felt hard, and the girls didn't think a puppy would find the mat very comfortable.  We decided to cross the left and right ends of the strip and then pull the left end under the right end to secure it tightly (no knot).  We also found the process moved much faster when we flipped the mat over to the back side.  We threaded both ends of the strips through the mat, working down an entire row.  Then we flipped the mat back over and tied the entire row. 
5.  Well on their way!  This sink mat is only 12.5"x11"--fine for a small dog.  My girls wanted to tie their mats together with extra strips or yarn for a larger dog. 

6.  As you can see, we occasionally skipped a horizontal or vertical row.  The rug still looked full and felt comfortable on the top. 

 The finished product ready for donation!

Girl Scout troops of all ages could make these rag rugs for their own pets to use or to donate to local animal shelters.  Not only could this craft satisfy a service project requirement, but it could be tied in with the Brownie Pet Badge (Step 2:  Keep a Pet Comfy) and the following Daisy Petals:  considerate and caring (spring green petal), friendly and helpful (yellow petal), using my resources wisely (green petal), and make the world a better place (rose petal).  If the girls enjoy projects that involve cutting and tying, maybe they would like to make a blanket for Project Linus Just a thought.  If you are interested in seeing how our troop got involved with Project Linus, check out this link.  Thank you for reading!

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