She uses their PVC products for many crafts and I love this one.
Older kids will have no trouble fitting these pvc pipes together to make a great playhouse that will keep then occupied for ages.
You can find out more about Amanda's company at the end of this article.
Indoors or out, kids love to play in forts and playhouses. If you’ve done any searching online for pre-made playhouses, you have probably noticed they don’t come cheap! Here’s a simple and inexpensive playhouse design your kids can use indoors or take outside for some imaginative fun.
· (12) 5ft. pieces of 1” size PVC pipe
· (4) 41” pieces of 1” size PVC pipe (this is for the lean to parts of the roof)
· (4) 1” size 3 Way Fittings*
· (4) 1” size 4 Way Fittings*
· (4) 1” size 45 Degree Elbow Fittings
· (2) 1” size 90 Degree Elbow Fittings
· Spare sheets and blankets
· Clothespins (optional)
*Most of these materials can be found at your local hardware store. The 3 way and 4 way fittings I found online.
If you can’t get your hardware store to pre-cut the PVC into 5 foot sections, a simple saw or PVC cutting tool (usually around 10 bucks) will do the trick. I know 12 pieces seems like a lot, but trust me, they will all be used! The smaller PVC pipe pieces will be used to construct the roof. This playhouse design features a square footprint, angled roof, and a PVC base around 3 of the four sides. Check out the frame below…
On the picture I’ve added in some notes to help you see what parts I used where. Here’s the key to translate what letter corresponds to what part:
A – 5 foot PVC pipe
B - 4” PVC pipe
C - 56” PVC pipe
D – 3 Way fitting
E – 4 Way fitting
F – 45 degree elbow
G – 90 degree elbow
H – 41” PVC Pipe
Start by taking four of your 5 ft. PVC pipe pieces and cut 4” off of each. These will form your corner posts later. Once those are cut you can start assembling the PVC frame.
I found it easiest to begin by creating the base of the playhouse first. Use three pieces of 5 ft PVC along with the 2 (90 degree) elbows and 2 of the 3 way fittings. You should have an open outlet sticking up from each of the four corners with one of the sides open (this will be the doorway area for kids to go in and out). Take the four 56” pieces of pipe you just made and stick one into each of the open three way and 90 degree elbow outlets (these are the wall posts). Attach a 4 way fitting on top of each post. Use four of the remaining 5 ft. pieces of pipe to connect these fittings in a square formation. This will be the top of the frame that supports the roof.
The trickiest part in coming up with this design was figuring out the best way to construct the roof. I knew I needed a square frame to keep the walls in place, but I also wanted that classic angled roof design. This is why we needed to cut the posts down from their original 5 ft. length. The extra four inch pieces fit down into the 4 way fittings allowing for another fitting to be added on the end.
The easiest way I found to attach the roof was to assemble it first, then add it on top of the 4” pipe pieces we just added. Follow the diagram using four 45 degree elbows, your four 41” pieces of pipe, two 3 way fittings, and the final 5 ft. pipe. Once it’s assembled attach the entire roof to the rest of the frame. This might be a two person job! When the roof is secured, take a few minutes to press all the parts in a little tighter. This will keep the playhouse from coming apart once the kids get ahold of it.
Tip: If you plan on taking apart and rebuilding the playhouse to bring it inside/outside or just get it out of the way, use a permanent marker to mark each piece with the corresponding letter from above. Print out the labled diagram or bookmark this page so you have it for reference when it’s time to rebuild. Simple!
Once your frame is complete, collect all the spare blankets and sheets from your house and start draping them over the PVC (I ran out of sheets for the picture, so I digitized what it would look like). Try using clothespins to hold the sheets in place. If you’re really ambitious, a sewn fitted drape to cover the frame would be awesome! That would also allow you to add in some windows or a more defined doorway.
If your kids are the more free-spirited type, let them figure out how they want to complete their playhouse. Even some tree boughs tied to create the roof would be cool! The nice thing about this design is that it’s not stricly for girls or boys or children ages this to that, as so many store bought playhouses are. This simple PVC design can be fun for kids of any age, and best of all – it’s cheap!
The creator of this project / article is Amanda Hill, director of content marketing at Commercial Industrial Supply, a pvc products supplier. Amanda has an extreme amount of knowledge on PVC products and accessories. As part of her job, she works with PVC materials applied to a wide range of applications. Learn more at commercial-industrial-supply.com
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