Everything Old Is New Again: Felt Playhouse Fun
At the moment my house looks like a dilapidated day care. Toys, books & baby gear are all taking over. With 5 kids cooped up inside there's play stuff everywhere. There's no point putting it away because every day we're still right here. Both the weather & our overzealous MI governor have made it impossible to take them to the playground that's literally 200 feet from my front door so I'm trying to find ways to keep things fun within the limits of our 4 walls.
Last week I remembered I had made a Felt Card Table Playhouse years ago and found it packed up in the basement. It was a magical moment for a mom running out of entertainment ideas.
This easy project is cheap and so worth the happy play time it creates. My 2 year old had never seen it so he was beyond thrilled and it's become his go to place to hideout. It's funny because I made it in my very early sewing days so it's definitely homemade-y. I free hand cut all the letters and just eyeballed placement. Perfectionist me now would be all rulers and measurements making it today, but I still love it because kids don't care about all that - just that it's fun.
The gist is that you make a square tablecloth that slipcovers over a fold-up card table. Decorate however, but much like giant cardboard boxes, it's a kid pretending magnet, except unlike the boxes, is a lot easier to tuck away when not in use and a bit cuter.
Felt is cheap and easy to use, but fleece, old sheets, tarps or whatever you've got in the house works since most craft stores are off limits and delivery from online can take ages. We're in a lockdown lifestyle right now so you gotta get creative, right? To maximize the play options, I made mine have different pretending themed sides, but a basic four walls with just an opening and a window or two is still fun too. The side with the flap door above was a grocery store (no toilet paper hoarding allowed though!).
Another was an ice cream shop:
A bank drive-thru:
And a post office.
Added bonus is that it just folds up so you can store it easily when not in use. I shared my basic card table felt playhouse plans here in case anyone wants to do something similar. And more details on the steps for each of the sides:
I had made a bunch of props for mine too, like the veggies for the market and these faux letters for the mail. Thankfully they were still in the bag to keep the pretend play going strong, but using toys you've already got or junk mail works too:)
And if you don't sew, I also made a No-Sew Felt Playhouse that can be made in just one day - the bigger kids could even help make it. A little imaginative crafting and play helps make the indoor same-y ness a little easier until the days get brighter ❤️