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ScrapBusters: Reflective Dog Bandana

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Little projects for your pets are always fun ways to use up scraps. For our cute doggy bandana you only need one 16" x 16" square and one 4" x 31-44" strip. We added a length of reflective tape so you can walk in the gathering dusk in style and safety.

Our bandana is sized for a dog with an 18-21" neck. I made the ties longish, because I thought they looked cool and floppy, matching my hound's ears. You can adjust for your dog, and his ears, by lengthening or shortening the length of your tie strip. Measure the dog's neck and add approximately 11-12" for standard ties, 22-24" for floppy ties. If you have a smaller dog, you should reduce both the size of the square and the ties. The diagonal measurement of the bandana should be about the length of your dog's neck plus 1" for seams.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

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  • ONE 16" x 16" fabric scrap square for the bandana: we used Pillow & Maxfield's Pretty Bird from Michael Miller Fabrics in Blue Bloomies
    NOTE: If you have enough fabric, cut the square on the bias
  • ONE 4" x 31-44" strip for the tie: we used Pillow & Maxfield's Pretty Bird from Michael Miller Fabrics in Moss Garden Stripe
  • 1 yard of 3M Sew On Reflective Tape or similar
    NOTE: Sew-on is better than stick-on; stick-on tends to peel off along the edges with wear and tear and if you try to stitch it down, the adhesive will gum up your needle.
  • All purpose thread in colors to match fabric and reflective tape
  • See-through ruler
  • Fabric pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
  • Straight pins

At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

  1. Fold the bandana square diagonally to form two triangles (and to get a bias drape). Cut in half along the fold.
  2. Place the two triangles right sides together.
  3. Pin and stitch both sides, using a ½" seam allowance and pivoting at the point of the triangle.
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  4. Trim off the corner at the point, being careful not to clip into your seam. Turn right side out and press well.
  5. Trim off the corners of the seam allowance so the top raw edges of the bandana are flush.
  6. Press the strip in half lengthwise, right sides together.
  7. Trim both ends of the strip at a diagonal. I trimmed one end one direction and the other the opposite direction. Why? I dunno; I thought it looked cool. You could do them both the same.
  8. Fold both the bandana and the strip in half to find their center points. Mark each center point with a pin.
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Attaching the reflective tape

  1. Pin the reflective tape in place approximately 3/8" from the edge of the bandana. Make a neat pleat at the point of the bandana. Trim tape flush with the top of the bandana at both top corners.
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  2. Re-thread your machine with thread to match the tape in the top and thread to match the fabric in the bobbin.
  3. Edgestitch the tape in place along both sides, pivoting at the point. Press from the back side.
    NOTE: We couldn't find any manufacturer instructions regarding ironing the reflective tape, and so erred on the side of caution and ironed only from the back through the fabric.
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Measuring and attaching the tie strip

  1. Line up the marking pins for the center of the tie strip and the center of the bandana.
  2. Pin the raw edges of the tie strip, stopping at each top corner of the bandana. You will leave this center section of the tie strip open so you can later insert the bandana.
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  3. If necessary, re-thread your machine with thread to match the fabric in both the top and bobbin.
  4. Using a ¼" seam allowance, stitch from one end of the tie, pivoting at the diagonal corners and stopping and back tacking at the first pin marking the tie opening.
  5. Remove the bandana from the machine and realign it to start again at the second pin marking the tie opening. Resume your ¼" seam allowance, stitching the remainder of the tie to the opposite corner.
  6. Clip the corners and turn the tie right side out. Poke out the diagonal corners on each end so they are as sharp as possible.
  7. Press the strip well, folding in and pressing the raw edges of the opening so they are flush with the sewn seam.
  8. Slip the top raw edge of the bandana into the tie strip's opening. You only need to slide it in about ¾ - 1". Pin in place.
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  9. Edge stitch around all four sides of the tie to reinforce the entire tie and close the opening.

Reflective tips on the ends of the ties

  1. Re-thread the machine again with thread to match the reflective tape in the top and thread to match the tie strip in the bobbin.
  2. Cut a small strip of reflective tape to match the diagonal ends of the tie strip. Pin these strips to ONE side of each tie end.
  3. Edgestitch the reflective tape in place around all four sides to hold it in place. Then, stitch an 'X' through this box to reinforce.
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  4. Tie on your doggie and go for a walk in the starry summer twilight... while it lasts.
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Project Design: Alicia Thommas Sample Creation: Liz Johnson



Comments (5)

MacCorgi said:
MacCorgi's picture
I do these so you can thread the collar through it and people love it.

the tie on it comes undone but putting the collar through it.

Beth T. said:
Beth T.'s picture
This is such a good idea. Can't imagine why I didn't think of it myself, but I'm happy to "borrow" the idea from you. Yay, Sew4Home!
Rose Mary said:
Rose Mary's picture
Love your blue heeler, our used to wear the bandanas...nice pattern & thanks for sharing. smilies/smiley.gif