For my handsome godson's fifth birthday, I made him a play teepee. The teepee was intended for his fourth birthday, but I dramatically overestimated my sewing speed: it wasn't completed until 6 months too late.
I was a little unnerved that a teepee might not be the right gift for a young swashbuckler-in-training (our godson has a penchant for playing pirates). Jim however explained that it's a perfect Lost Boys compliment to any good Peter Pan pirate play... and not that betighted Disney Peter Pan but the unkempt archetype of the awesome (and quite funny) J. M. Barrie story. (Download the free book or audiobook from Project Gutenberg or enjoy a great (true to the book) film adaptation.)
As we walked into our friends' empty house to set up the teepee as a surprise, we stumbled upon the best Tick Tock (crocodile) puppet ever. (Its maker, Wild Republic also makes a fabulous 20" plush giant squid which makes me wonder what would comprise a 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea playset). This household (replete with imaginative older sister) is primed for Peter Pan.
When we set up the big teepee in the privateer's bedroom, it pretty much blocked all closet access (sorry, PirateMom). The teepee is big enough hold a couple sitting adults. The good news is it can fold up into a corner when not in use.
For the sewing geeks, I used Butterick pattern #4251 and decorator weight fabric. For the engineers, it's supported by six sturdy 84" tall 1" diameter PVC pipes. The fabric portion is about 6 feet in height.
It's the easily most rewarding thing I've ever sewn because I know the recipient loves it.
I owe a debt of gratitude to Zrecs mom Jenni for her great teepee which inspired me to return to this mostly abandoned project last summer. Their fort week has other great recommendations for the less crafty. You can also check out our easy pro-naptime crib fort.
Don't forget to enter our HABA discontinued dice dome giveaway before it ends on Friday.
***This is the independent opinion of the geek parents at Baby Toolkit, (c) 2008. We have no undisclosed relationship with J. M. Barrie, Jules Verne, or their estates, Project Gutenberg, Wild Republic, Butterick, or PVC makers.