Monday, June 4, 2012

DIY Super Simple Backyard Teepee

So its my first post since my "true confessions" post. I'd like to just throw in a quick thank you to those of you who reached out and showed support! Thank you! It was so incredible to get such wonderful notes and comments. You'll never know how truly touched I am. 

Now, I may have considered giving up, but that doesn't mean I sat around and did nothing with my free time! Here is one of the projects I've been working on...a teepee!
My dog Caesar is, shall we say, special. He has had some strange challenges since we welcomed him into our family. Caesar is "blonde" which is basically the equivalent of being really fair skinned. He gets sunburned easily. I hope to eventually build a dog house for him but that isnt in the budget this season. So I needed to create a shady spot for him to hang out in. I found this great tutorial over at Sew Mama Sew on how to make a child's teepee.  I fully intended to make it exactly as the instructions were written but then I ended up at the Dollar Tree and Big Lots and changed my plans.  Here's how to quickly, cheaply and easily make a teepee!
Materials Needed:
6 Bamboo Sticks (approx 4 feet tall) *I picked these up at the Dollar Tree 
1 Lined Outdoor Tablecloth
2-3 Rubber Bands
Ribbon (fabric scraps will do too)
Embroidery Floss
Quilting Needle (a need with an eye large enough to thread the floss)
Clips or Clothespins

Begin by tying the rubber bands around all 6 bamboo sticks. Roll the bands down about 4 inches from the ends. Then spread them out into a teepee shape.
Next, unfold your tablecloth.
This is the tablecloth I got at Big Lots for $3.25.  Its a plastic cloth, lined with felt. Its oblong shape and the dimensions are 52in x 70in
I do not recommend just a plain plastic tablecloth.  You want one that is lined with something so its a little heavier weight.
Wrap your tablecloth around the teepee structure, pulling tight at the top and clip into place.
Next, take your ribbon and cut into 4 lengths. I didn't really measure this. I'm not so good with exact measurements on stuff. I just eyeballed it.  The ribbons will be used to create loops for the bamboo sticks to go through. This is optional, but its helpful if you move the teepee around.  I quickly hand stitched these loops on with embroidery floss.  I actually just crawled into the teepee and stitched them on while it was standing.  Here is a close up of what it looks like.
Yeah, its not pretty but who will see it anyway?
You will put straps on 4 of the posts leaving the front 2 posts for the opening without straps.
Next you'll need to stitch together the top of the teepee.  Again, I just stitched it while it was on the frame. I used binder clips to hold it closed.  Starting at the top I stitched X's down the front.
Lastly, I folded in the edges at the opening. I took 2 more lengths of ribbon and stitched onto the folds so that I could tie back the flaps.  Again, totally optional step.
I laid down an old beach towel and let Caesar enjoy his new summer home!
Of course, Sookie had to get in on the fun too!
This entire project cost $10. $6 for the bamboo sticks and just over $3 for the tablecloth. The rest I had on hand. It also took me a total of 35 minutes to complete the project, probably would have taken less time if I hadn't had to run back in the house every five minutes because I forgot something!
Hope you enjoyed the post and perhaps are inspired to make a teepee for your kids! (The non-furry kind will like this too!)

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