Straight Shooter Play Teepee

teepee4 This past year I toned down my handmade Christmas gifts because we moved into our own house right before Christmas- 5 days before, to be exact. Merry Christmas to me! It was crazy but so so worth it. I loved being in our own place Christmas morning- something we've never done before since we've always been traveling for the holiday. It was awesome! I'm still getting settled in, but I'm feeling sane enough to catch up on sharing some projects. By far my most exciting handmade gift was this play teepee for my girls. The best part? It was easier than I had planned- and it is getting lots of use!


I followed a tutorial on Strawberry Swing and other thingsย for a 5 sided teepee with slit opening and tie backs. I made a few changes to her tutorial, which I'll outline below. But first, this girl:



This teepee gets lots of love, and the best part is it folds up easily and stashes away in a corner. It's like an instant party with no clean up! Or a outside hideout (the cover is completely removable and washable). Or a secret napping spot. Actually that's not a bad idea... I may have to give that a go :)




SOOO the details.

Pattern: Tutorial from Strawberry Swing and other things

Things I loved:

  • 5 pole construction- I just like the shape better than the 4 pole ones I've seen, and it sits nicely opened up in a corner because of the shape!
  • Easy to make pattern (although my lines weren't straight, which is why you see some bagginess at the top. boo.)
  • I opted to use the existing hem of the canvas drop cloth to save me a step. It's my favorite shortcut of all time!
  • That fabric. Perfecto.

Things I changed:

  • Used 3/4" PVC. They just seemed sturdier.
  • Wrapped the poles with yarn- 2 reasons for this. 1- we drilled the holes 10" down, per the tutorial, and they were just too high and the teepee couldn't fully open. So we re-drilled 4 inches lower, but then I had to cover the holes. 2- The paint was scratching where the poles rubbed and it was making me crazy!
  • Painted the top portion of the poles with acrylic paint instead of spray paint because I thought it would be easier. It wasn't.
  • Changed the proportions of the two front panel pieces so the "door" opening met the top triangle piece
  • Cut the lower panel piece down the center and bound the center edges and bottom with bias tape.
  • Omitted the closure ties. My kids can't tie yet anyway so it would mean me untying and retying at their whim.

Things I'll change next time:

  • Cut those darn edges straight. Rookie mistake!
  • Experiment with larger panel size for a large outdoor teepee

Notions & Fabric

  • 9x6 canvas drop cloth from Lowes
  • Arrows in Navy Metallic by Cotton and Steel from Hawthorne Threadsย (much love for this fabric. For reals, y'all)
  • Sketch Basic in Cherry from Timeless Treasuresย (part of my prize package from winning Shorts on the Line- man, I lucked out!)
  • 5 PVC poles 3/4" size (10' poles cut to 6')
  • red premade double fold bias tape
  • gold acrylic paint

This is definitely a project I'd tackle again. I'm just as smitten with it as they are!