Cats like to see and be invisible, watching from high places of concealment. They feel safe in places like that! I thought it would be a nice idea to make a sort of cat tent bed, and I’ll show you how easy it is!
I started with an ordinary piece of chipboard which I used as the base of the structure. I chose a piece that was big enough to hold an ordinary sleeping pillow, which I decided to use as a mattress for the lucky kitty – it’s big enough for two cats at a time, which is great if they like to cuddle up on cold days! I added a set of feet made from offcut planks, one screwed underneath each corner. This would also give enough depth to drill the holes to hold the wire frame described in a moment.
I painted the board using aerosol spray paint – I used purple because well, it’s one of our favorite colors, and we happened to have a few tins left over from another project! After that, I drilled a hole at each corner – about halfway through the board’s thickness – big enough to hold the end of a length of wire (the feet added extra depth underneath to add stability to the wire frame which holds up the tent dome). The wire I used was thicker than the coat hanger gauge wire, but coat hanger wire should do as well. Flexible wood dowels would also do the job – the dome doesn’t have to carry any real weight after all, so for that part I’d suggest using whatever suitable material you have handy! I used the wire to make a bow, crossing from one corner to the other diagonally opposite, inserting the one end into a hole first, then bending it to meet the hole in the diagonally opposite corner.
Make sure you measure the length needed to make a fair sized bow – or the resulting dome of the tent will end up being very low and your cats won’t be very impressed if they can’t fit inside! Fit the second piece of wire running between the other two holes in the opposite direction and position the junction point where they cross as close to the center of the board as you can. Tie the two wires togther at the center junction using cable ties. A sturdy one should do nicely, then add another over it in the opposite direction to secure them well.
After that, I draped a piece of material over the dome, and began to attach it around the base with a staple gun, folding the edges of the material over where they became awkward. I sewed them to the main tent at the base a bit later to eliminate flaps. Then I cut two circular windows big enough for the cats to enter and look through.
This little cat bed has been moved around the house a bit – since it took time for us to find the right spot for it. First it sat across the arms of an armchair, then I suspended it from the verandah roof in the back garden by nylon ropes at each corner, which I thought made a rather nice sort of hammock-bed – but disappointingly, the cats didn’t like the swaying motion that much! Lastly I mounted it in the corner of the catwalk in the lounge, and they like that place the best – and that was the right spot! (To read the catwalk article, go here.) In winter we drape a towel over the top to help keep the heat in, and there’s at least one cat up there during the day, having a catnap.
Well, I hope that’s given you some ideas for making kitty beds! Have an Easy DIY day! 🙂
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