School Projects

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Monday, October 31, 2011

A Birthday Tepee

Tomorrow if Ian's fifth birthday. For some reason, having a child who is five years old seems like a major milestone. It's a feeling I haven't had with his other birthdays. So, all the more reason to celebrate. Several weeks ago, I came across a note I had written myself, with an idea for a "tepee" for Ian. I'd gotten the idea from a blog (which I can no longer remember, sorry), but as usual, I couldn't be bothered with their way of doing it. I'd figure it out myself. As a cheap fabric option, I visited a local thrift store and bought 4 queen-sized flat sheets, for $2.99 each. I don't have a clue what that breaks down to per yard, but I know it's a good deal. They don't match perfectly, but I don't think that will matter. Here's the pile of goods:

Step 1: I sewed the long edges of the sheets together, until I had a huge loop of cloth. It was easy to get lost in the mound, and my poor sewing machine got a real workout.

Step 2: I turned down the "heads" of the sheets, to create a casing, and then fed a piece of rope through the casing. I left two openings in it, so that the rope could be used to hang the tepee from a hook:

Step 3: I stole the hula hoop from the garage (I'll be buying a replacement next spring), and measured down about 14 inches from the bottom of the casing. I put the hula hoop inside the tepee and then hand sewed another casing around the hoop. That part took several evenings! I'm sure there is a better way I could have done this, but the light bulb above my head never came on. Thankfully PBS had a couple of good shows on those night!

Step 4: I found an obliging nail in the basement, and hung the tepee up so that I could arrange all the fabric evenly. I think 4 queen-sized sheets might have been a bit much....
Later I found a big orange hook and screwed it into a rafter in a better location, so that the kids have a place to hang it and play.

Oh yeah, I did sew one hem only half-way, so that there would be an opening. Hopefully this tepee will save my poor old couch cushions from a little fort building wear and tear.

Happy Birthday Ian!


~ Tandis ~ said...

Very cute! I envision it hanging out in your woods next summer. :)

I remember thinking similar thoughts when Mia turned 5. Time flies.

Jessica said...

It turned out great! I love Tandis's idea about putting it out in the woods. Did Ian love it?

Dana said...

Yes he did. He took it straight down to the basement and got it all set up. I'm pretty sure it will end up outside, somewhere, somehow.