Dog Training, Behavior Specialist & Dog Psychology

DIY: Modern Dip-Dyed Rope Dog Leash

dyed rope leash bay area dog training primal canine

We found this great DIY project on, These type of leashes are great for your everyday dog owner and can be costly if you go and buy name brand. Enjoy,

Photo: Capree Kimball


Colorful rope dog leads have been all the rage in the pet accessories world lately -- and I am obsessed! But, with prices ranging anywhere from $70 to over $150, they're a little outside most people's "dog stuff" budgets. If you'd still like to get your paws on a stylish leash for your pooch (in whatever color your heart desires) without breaking the bank, give this easy DIY rope leash project a whirl!

I am head-over-heels for the rope leash look. As a visual reference, here are a few awesome shops and brands that make them.

1. Mungo & Maud 2. RESQ/CO 3. Found 4. Grey Paw (at $35, definitely the most affordable option)

Many of these use traditional nautical splicing and whipping techniques, but today we're going to employ a bit of a shortcut! (If you want to learn how to splice rope, there are tons of video tutorials on YouTube, FYI.) So, are you ready to make your own rope dog leash? Awesome. Pawesome. Here's what you'll need!


Photo: Capree Kimball



  • 2 to 2 1/4 yards 3/8" thick cotton rope
  • Fabric Dye
  • (2) Rope Clamps
  • (1) Snap Hook
  • Rubber Mallet
  • Large Cooking Pot


The rope clamps and snap hook can be found in the rope section of your local hardware store. Finding 100% cotton rope can be a little tricky, though. I ended up finding the braided style at JoAnn's in the trim section. You can order the 3-strand style from Knot & Rope Supply for pretty cheap. (I happened to have some on hand prior to this project.)




1. Determine about how long you want your leash to be (anywhere from 4-6 feet is pretty standard) and cut it accordingly. Be sure to tape or tie off the ends so your rope doesn't unravel.


Photo: Capree Kimball


2. Soak your rope in some warm water. Meanwhile, prepare your dye according to the instructions on the bottle. You won't need very much! A bottle of RIT Liquid Dye will go a long, long way.


Photo: Capree Kimball


3. Now for the fun part! For an ombré/gradient/dip-dyed effect, quickly dip and remove your rope from the dye. Then, re-dip at different heights/levels, until you're happy with the gradation. Want your rope all one color? Submerge the whole rope in the dye, stirring constantly, until the desired color is reached.

Note: I made two versions of this leash using different kinds of rope and found that the 3-strand variety creates a smoother, more subtle ombré effect.

4. Remove your rope and hang it up (outside or in the garage), dark end at the top, to allow the dye to creep down the rope. You can help it along by squeezing the excess dye/water down the length of the rope.


Photo: Capree Kimball


5. Once you're happy with the way the gradient is looking, rinse the rope in cold water until the water runs clear -- or -- use some RIT Dye Fixative before you rinse out the rope if you want to super-seal the color.

6. Allow the rope to dry thoroughly. This may take up to 24 hours.


Photo: Capree Kimball


7. Now that your rope is dry, it's time to attach the clamps and snap hook. Decide which end you want to place the hook. Feed the end of the rope through the ring then fold the rope over, creating a small loop.


Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball


8. Place the clamp on a flat surface with the prongs facing up. Lay the base of the rope loop inside the clamp, between the prongs. With a hammer or rubber mallet, hammer all four prongs securely over the rope.


Photo: Capree Kimball


9. On the other end, fold the rope over to create a 6-7" loop (bigger or smaller depending on how big your hands are and what feels comfortable to you). Then, repeat step 8.

Now, after you've attached the rope clamps, you could call it a day -- you have a perfectly functional leash at this point. (Heck, you could skip the dyeing altogether and just attach the clamps and snap hook and -- BAM -- you'd have a leash.) If you really want to take this project into über-stylish territory, though, you'll want to add some finishing touches and cover those ugly clamps up!


Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball


There are multiple ways to cover the clamps: you could wrap them in twine/yarn/string/leather cording/etc. etc. I chose to use up some leftover leather (from this project) and create a sleeve with some colorful stitching. If you'd like to do the same, read on!


Photo: Capree Kimball


Materials for Creating a Leather Clamp Cover:

  • Leather
  • Craft Knife
  • Embroidery Floss
  • #18 Darning Needle
  • Ruler
  • Hammer
  • Self-Healing Cutting Mat





Photo: Capree Kimball


1. Cut a strip of leather about 2.25" wide, or wide enough to cover the length of the clamp.


Photo: Capree Kimball


2. From this strip, cut two pieces of leather, both about 2.5" long or long enough to wrap around the clamp.


Photo: Capree Kimball


3. Soak one of the leather pieces in warm water until it becomes soft and malleable. Stretch it out a bit then pat dry.


Photo: Capree Kimball


4. Fold the leather over. Take a hammer and your darning needle and create some small stitch guides/holes anywhere from 1/8 to 1/4 inch apart. You only need a few light taps from the hammer, don't go crazy.


Photo: Capree Kimball


5. Lay the leather on a flat surface, then position and place the clamp on top. Cut a length of embroidery floss and tie a knot at the end. Anchor the floss to the rope itself by looping and tying the thread a few times.


Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball


6. Stitch the two ends of the leather together with a simple whip stitch, pulling tightly. When you reach the end, anchor the floss to the rope as before. Cut the thread.


Photo: Capree Kimball


7. Repeat steps 3-6 for the other clamp. Allow the leather to dry out completely (it'll tighten up around the clamp as it dries) and you're done!

Now for some pretty, pretty pictures!


Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball



Photo: Capree Kimball


And, of course, obligatory photos of my dogs:


Photo: Capree Kimball


Happy leash making!

DIY Designer Rope Leash

designer rope leash primal canine dog training

from - So mom noticed lately that I’ve been ooh and ahhing over this trendy rope leash from Mungo & Maud. And while I’ll always think it’s super stylin’ – $110 for a new leash for me just wasn’t in the budget.

Instead, on a recent trip to a tack shop in Delaware – mom came up with a plan to make me my very own Rope Leash. For $5!

D.I.Y. $5 Rope Dog Leash

Supplies: cotton horse lead rope, hammer, rope clamp

Step One: You will need to obtain a cotton horse leadrope. I got mine at a horse tack shop in Delaware for $3. You can also get one online at most tack supply places like here. Or check your local horse supply store.

Step Two: You will need to buy a clamp to make the end of your rope into a handle. I bought a package of two (you know, incase I need a rope leash for my best pal Trooper) for $4.39 (about $2 for each one) at the local hardware store. Most hardware stores should carry them in the rope section, and you can find some online here.

Step 3: Figure out how big of a handle you want at the other end and adjust your rope into the clamp accordingly. It also helps to have a cute little dachshund around for supervision.

Step 4: You will need the help of your dad to hammer the clamp shut around the rope.

Then Tada! You are ready for your next walk in your stylish dog leash!

If you don’t have access to a horse lead rope, you can also use any cotton rope. You will just need too metal rope clamps and a snap for the end – all supplies can be found at the local hardware store.

Yeah, you know you want to beg your mom or dad to make you one of these bad boys!

I think I need one of these in every color! Almost as good as the real thing…..

Rope Leash from Mungo & Maud

19 DIY Projects For Dog Lovers

primal canine dog training puzzle toy

via What happens when you combine two of the greatest things in the world, crafts and pups?   Immediate explosions of awesomeness, that’s what. Make one of these projects below for your furry friend or your dog-obsessed friend! (Main image via Simmer Till Done.)

DIY dog bed

1. DIY Suitcase Dog Bed: Is your pup’s bed an eyesore in your home? Try making one from a vintage suitcase! Click here for the tutorial.

diy dog bookends

2. DIY Dog Bookends With a couple of plastic dog figurines, two blocks of wood, some spray paint, and a bit of superglue, you can make these stylish dog bookends! Image via House of Fifty

diy dog treat

3. Dehydrated Sweet Potatoes: Want your pup to have a healthy, all-natural treat? These dehydrated sweet potatoes are just the thing you need! Click for the tutorial.

DIy dog treat

4. Chicken Broth Ice Cubes: Mix it up in the treat department and freeze some chicken or beef broth in ice cubes! Image viaFunnyFur.

dog food on chair

5. Chair Dog Dish Holders Does your pup make a mess during dinnertime? Solve that problem by getting the bowls off the ground! Image via Nest Full of Eggs.

DIy dog toy

6. DIY Denim Dog Toy: Want a sturdy and cheap toy that your dog will have a hard time destroying? Try this knotted denim toy! See the tutorial on Instructables.

dog hanger

7. Dog Hangers: Want to spice up the rack in your closet? Print off a photo of your pup and attach it to a flat hanger with Mod Podge or glue! Image via Incredible Things.

dog car seat

8. Car Seat Protector Love taking your pup for rides but hate the mess of hair that is left behind? Make this easy seat protector! See the tutorial here.

DIy dog treat

9. Pumpkin Peanut Butter Pup Treats: Did you know pumpkin soothes your pups stomach? Make these special (and easy!) treats for your pup with a bellyache. Click here for the recipe.

DIy dog shampoo

10. DIY Dog Shampoo: There are many different kinds of dog shampoos to buy in the store, but did you know you can also make it? Check out the tutorial here.

DIy dog food holder

11. Hidden Dog Bowls: Hate the way your pup’s dishes look on the floor? You can creatively stash them away in an old dresser drawer! See more here.

DIy dog treat puzzle

12. DIY Dog Treat Puzzle: Tips on how to make a puzzle toy out of a tennis ball! See how to make it here!

DIy dog sweater

13. DIY Dog Sweater: Have an old sweater lying around? Turn it into something that’ll keep your pup warm! Clickhere for the tutorial.

DIy dog silhouette

14. DIY Dog Silhouette: Are the walls in your home a bit bare? Liven them up with a silhouette of your pup!Tutorial here.

15. Tiny Plush Pup: Make these tiny little pups yourself with this tutorial! Makes a great gift. :) Click here for the directions.

dog popsicle

16. Pup Popsicle: Freeze your dog’s favorite toys into a bucket and watch them spend hours licking away to find them. (Good for hydration, too!) :) Image via ActiveDogToys.

diy dog necklace

17. Plastic Dog Necklace: Make a cute necklace with a chain and a little plastic dog! Inspired by a Modcloth necklace. Tutorial here.

t shirt dog toy

18. T-Shirt Dog Toy: How to make a tug toy out of old t-shirts, on theBarkPost!

19. DIY Dog Pillow: Snuggle with the likeness of your pup when your pup won’t snuggle. ;) Make a pillow replica with the tutorial here.