Tuesday, February 3, 2015

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DIY Outdoor Fort!

When I started brainstorming ways to make a DIY outdoor fort, I had two rules: I wanted it simple and I wanted it easy to take down and set up.  This was the result.

And can I tell you...I *love* it!!

The kids love it too...which is why I love it so much!

Here's a peek at it from the outside:

Making it is super easy!  You need these

Simple Supplies:

* a king size sheet

* 4 washers 

* needle and thread

* scissors

* string or twine (I used kite string.)

Here's the Easy How-To:

1.  Spread the sheet out so you can work with it on the floor.

2.  If you are using a fitted sheet, snip the elastics so it lays flat.

3.  Securely sew the 4 washers near the middle so they form the corners of the roof of your fort.  Keep in mind that the space between the washers will be the "flat" space of roof.  Here's a diagram:

My little girl can give you an idea of how far apart I put the washers.  She didn't realize she was part of the tutorial...she just likes to sit wherever I'm working!  The 4th washer is behind her in the picture.  I wanted enough room for 2 kids to sit and 3-4 kids to stand inside the fort easily.  If you want a bigger play space, just move the washers farther out on the sheet.  

4.  Cut 4 strings about 2 feet long each.  Tie one end of each string to a washer.  Tie the other end outside to your tree, pole, or whatever will be holding up your fort!

That's it!  Super easy!!  Now go play in it with your kiddos!

When it was time to go in, our kids were worried that the fort would be gone when we came back out.  I told them it could stay up as long as the weather was good, so it stayed up for three days!  During this time, it was a hide-out, a spider-web, a jail, a space-ship, a dragon's lair, and much more!  The kids played inside it, around it, and with it!

They even put a chair in it and read!  Of course, when they were done reading the chair became "the President's headquarters!"

Besides being super cool, easy to make, easy to take down, easy to clean, and easy to set up again (whew! definitely an easy-to-work-with fort!), I absolutely loved the way the light filtered through the fabric and played on us when we were inside.  It felt magical.  It was a completely different sensory experience than what they usually get...even when they play with forts inside!

Have you made a fort outside before?  I'd love to see pictures!!

This post is also part of the Fort Building Challenge hosted by Building Blocks & Acorns!

Be sure to click here to see the schedule and a printable calendar with dozens of fort ideas this month!

Where's your favorite place to build a fort?  Snap a picture and share it with us here or on our PreschoolPowolPackets Facebook page!!

I may share at any of these parties!

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