You will need:
a mattress topper (100%cotton topped)
fleece washed a few times(of your choice) two colour's for this project (there is an easier way with just one colour) *WASH THE FLEECE 2 or 3 TIMES BEFORE YOU USE IT! DO NOT USE FABRIC SOFTENER*
sewing machine (It will take hours without)
Measure your topper to fit the base of your tray (you can put it in and cut it to fit if like me your useless at measuring straight)
Lay the fleece on the floor (good side down) then the topper on top cotton side down pin all the way round then sew, don't let it bunch up you may have to re pin as you go to prevent it a little bunching is not a major problem(it often happens to me)
Turn it over and it should look like this, trim the excess fleece and put aside.
Here is a link to zorb, but i would buy a brand cheaper: http://wazoodle.com/index.php/diaper-making/absorbent-fabrics/cat-zorb/zorb-super-absorbent-cloth-white-45.html
~~~~~SHOWER CURTAIN (or news paper) this is so if it does leak below the fleece, it will be on the news paper of shower curtain instead of the cage bottom :D
Here is a link i found that sells cheap cotton mattress toppers: http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/1274574/Trail/searchtext%3ETOPPER.htm sadly, it is in the uk so i am not able to purchase this, as i do not live in the uk.
This fourm can help you: http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/bedding/63244-u-haul-blankets.html
How To Make a Fleece Guinea Pig Mattress
by Jennifer Martin
Here's a quick and easy way to make a comfy bed for your guinea pigs to play and sleep
on, that is economical and a cinch to throw in the wash once a week. Invest an hour or
two of your time and you will be on your way to less laundry, happier pigs and a house
smelling of hay and sunshine! If you can sew a straight stitch with your sewing
machine, you can do this project.
1. Gather your materials. You will need:
• A walking foot for your sewing machine.
• A soaker layer -- to absorb the guinea pig pee -- this could be a towel or a
mattress pad or Zorb diaper soaker material. I’m using Zorb, which you can
buy online at http://www.wazoodle.com/ (NOTE: If you are using a towel or
mattress pad as your soaker, your Guinea Pig Mattress will only have TWO
• A fleece layer -- to wick the guinea pig pee away from the guinea pigs -- you can
use a neutral color and plan to purchase pretty patterns to lay over it, or you can
just go ahead and use the pattern. I’m using a sushi pattern because that’s
what I have.
• (Possibly) A bottom layer -- if you are using Zorb, you willl need an outer layer
to protect the Zorb from disintegrating in the wash, because it's really meant to
be used as the inner layer of a diaper. I’m using sport nylon, because it gives
the mattress some body and helps it lie flat on the bottom of the cage, but you
could use flannel or whatever you have available. (NOTE: You do not want your
bottom layer to be waterproof, or it will make the mattress difficult to wash and
deodorize. Above all else, choose a bottom fabric that can stand up to repeated
2. Prepare your materials
• Wash your fleece as directed in The Fleece Project. Do not skip this step or you
will have puddles of guinea pig pee all over your mattress! You will want to
wash your soaker fabric as well to prevent shrinkage later on. Also pre-wash
your bottom fabric if you are using it. Wash in the same temperature of water
you plan to wash your finished mattress in.
• Cut your fabrics according to the size of your cage. Allow 1/2" on all sides for
seam allowance if you want the mattress to fit exactly on your cage floor, a little
more if you want it to come up the sides a bit. I recommend cutting the soaker
and bottom fabrics a little larger than the fleece; you'll see why in the next step.
My 2 x 4 C&C cage is 27" x 56" so I would normally cut my fleece at 28" by 57",
but my fleece measures out at around 30" by 60", so I'm leaving it as it is and
just cutting my other fabrics a bit oversized.
3. Layer and pin your materials. We're going to set things up so that you sew the
mattress INSIDE OUT; we'll leave an opening for turning it right side out after the
sewing. This actually makes the sewing easier and makes the whole thing look prettier
in the end.
• Place your soaker fabric RIGHT SIDE UP (if it has one) on the table or floor or
whatever surface you're using to pin.
• Place your bottom fabric RIGHT SIDE UP (if it has one) on top of your soaker
fabric. (If you are not using a bottom fabric, skip this step.)
• Center your fleece fabric RIGHT SIDE DOWN (if it has one) on top of your
bottom fabric (or soaker fabric if you are not using a bottom fabric.)
• Now pin around the fleece, making sure to catch all of the layers in each of the
4. Now you're ready to start sewing. Install a walking foot and a new needle on your
machine. Begin at the middle of one of the long sides of the fleece, and don't forget to
backstitch at the start. Go slowly to avoid bunching and puckering. Work your way
around the fleece using a 3/8" to 1/2" seam allowance, and stop about 4" from where
you started, backstitching at the end of your sewing. (Because you cut your bottom
layer(s) a bit larger than the fleece, you're assured that you've sewn through all of the
layers all the way around. If you're like me, you're very glad you took this precaution.)
5. Now trim the excess fabric from around the fleece. Go slowly and trim fairly close to
the stitching. Clip the four corners, being careful not to cut the stitching.
6. Time to turn your mattress right-side-out. Reach in through the opening you left and
start pulling a corner through, and keep gently tugging until the whole mattress
appears. Presto! Push out the corners with a point turner, chopstick, pencil or whatever
you have lying around.
7. Now you need to topstitch around the perimeter of the mattress. This will close the
opening you left for turning the mattress and also stabilize the layers and give it a nice
finish. First pin the opening neatly closed. This is kind of fiddly; do the best you can.
You may want to do some fussing with the outer edges of the mattress to make them lie
flat. I like to pin mine to make sure my topstitching comes out evenly, but it's not
absolutely necessary to take this step. If you are an experienced or careful sewer you
probably don't need to. And the truth is, if your topstitching is not perfect, your guinea
pigs will still love you and they will pee on it anyway. So. Topstitch 1/4" (okay, I
usually do 1/2") from the outer edge, all the way around.
8. At this point, you might want to sew some quilting lines across the mattress to
ensure that the layers won't bunch up over time. I skipped this step because my
mattress is pretty small and I'm not worried about it bunching, but if you want to go
ahead with it, you could mark lines at 6-8 inch intervals with masking tape and sew
along the lines.
That's it! You're done! Admire your work, then tuck it in your piggies' cage and let them
commence with the popcorning while you throw together a spare one for cage cleaning
|How To Make Fleece Liners|
This particular liner was made for the FN cut out pan- do not make the cut out for regular pans.
(She also has a tutorial on making a sleeping pouch! to read it click HERE)
Tip: use fleece instead of flannel. It will hold its shape better, last longer, wash and wear better, (and it's a lot easier to sew!)
I measured the cage bottom with a tape measure and added about an inch or half an inch to each side for seam allowance.
Then I cut out the fabric and put it into the cage to check if it was about right. Then I put it down onto the fleece and cut out a matching piece.
Tip: for subsequent cage liners, you can use the first one you made and add seam allowance.
Put both pieces with the wrong side facing out and sew one long side and one short side. Flip it inside out and check if it still looks like it will sew to the right size when you put it into the cage. If you find that it is too long or too short, then you can sew the other two sides with more or less seam allowance.
Once you have three sides sewn up (two long, one short side), sew the last short side halfway from one side and then halfway from the other side, leaving a hole (so you can flip it inside out later)
Then do the corners. Sew a straight or curved line across each corner. When you turn this inside out, it will become a curved corner.
Flip the whole thing inside out and check if it fits right in the cage (and that you like the curved corners you have made). Then use a hidden stitch to close the opening.
Pin down the fleece flat and sew an inner stitch around the whole thing. It's up to you how wide you want the rim to be. This keeps the liner from coming open like a balloon and it looks nice. It also makes the edges thicker.
Let me know if you have any questions.