To create a perfect play place, start with a generic square playhouse (plans are easy to find online) or a pre-fabricated shed, available from most home improvement stores. Customize it with some paint, a few fancy features and a little imagination. Don’t forget to have a ribbon cutting ceremony and a proper transfer of keys.
For the actor or actress, you can create a stage to keep their attention for hours. Add a marquee out front, a ticket window and numbered bench seats that wrap around an elevated stage. Don’t forget to add storage for those all-important props, a changing area for your star and a curtained puppet stage.
Is there a knight or maiden in your kingdom? then you need a castle. start with a generic square playhouse and build on a tower, complete with rising staircase. You’ll need a window for Rumpelstiltskin and climbing wall up to the window. Interior decorating should be rustic with a plain wooden table and crate chairs. Top off your castle with a kid-designed crest and flags.
Princesses will adore having a Tudor style home just their size in their backyard. To your square playhouse, you’ll add window boxes for planting real or plastic flowers. Find or make a double Dutch door and install a few shutter framed operable windows to let in some light. put up floral wallpaper or sponge paint with sweet pastel paints stenciled with hearts. Add a loft accessible by ladder and your princess will be in heaven.
Do you know an aspiring fireman or firewoman? Paint your box red, install double doors for easy fire truck access, a proper firehouse bell and a hose. Install a pole leading from the loft to the floor so your little firefighter can slide down, uniform up and rush out to fight fires. Don’t forget the firehouse mascot – a Dalmatian made of wood.
Forts are classic and still tons of fun. these are ideal if you’re limited on space because forts are typically tall and narrow. Entry to the second story can be via ramp, ladder or even climbing wall. Sandboxes make great play places for short ground level surfaces. Or add a garden if your little one has a green thumb.
Tower play houses offer plenty of space for a swing, slide, pole or sandbox underneath since it stands on stilts. try a rope ladder up to the platform or set it up next to a tree and nail wooden rungs to the trunk for a ladder.
You aren’t limited to a themed play house, either. consider these mini-home additions:
oLandscaping with dwarf trees
oSkylights and sun roofs
oBattery operated door bells
oMilk crate chairs and climbing blocks
oCurtains and blinds
oAnything else your young one’s heart desires.
In addition to providing hundreds of hours of glee and entertainment, outdoor play structures also add to the resale value of your home. While the investment of a do-it-yourself playhouse will usually come in reasonably cheap, it can add 75% of it’s cost to the value of your home. You’ll recover much of the cost and get to take with you all the fun memories a wooden play house will bring.