Monday, July 20, 2009

Home Made Tee Pee

This was such a fun project, and Mia got to help with almost all of it!
Ages 2 and up with adult help.
Bamboo or dowels (6)
Fabric for panels: we used felt scraps for more structure. Felt, canvas, or any thicker fabric will hold up best.
sewing machine and thread
Ribbons and decorative accents (we used pipe cleaners, and sparkle tulle and lace)

Step one: We cut down Bamboo and trimmed it and cleaned it ourselves, but it would be alot easier to buy dowels! We cut them about 6 feet tall and cut 6 of them. If you use bamboo, be sure to cut the branches close to the stalk or sand them down so they are not pokey.

Step two:
Gather the rods at the top, about 4 or 5 inches down and tie with twine or rubber bands.
Step three: Stand the structure up and spread them out evenly to your desired width to get your basis for your fabric panels. Easy to do this on a rug so the ends dont slip. Measure the distance between the bottoms of the rods. Ours averaged out to about 20 inches. Then measure up from the base of one rod, to the place where the ties/rubber bands are. This will be the measurements for your panels (plus seam allowances). We added a half inch on each side for seam allowances.

Step four
: Cut six triangle panels. We alternated colors for a circus look. Then cut panel number 6 for the back in HALF longways for closing up.

Step Five: Fun part! Pick lots of ribbons, fringe, etc., and sew onto the individual panels how you choose. We just made a huge pile and Mia picked a few of her favorites. I sewed them in horizontal stripes

Step Six: Sew all of your panels together at the side seams, right sides together leaving the whole thing open at the back where the two half panels will meet, you will sew this closed at the end. I did not do it like this in my picture, but it will make it easier for you!

Step Seven:Sew channels over each seam on the inside except for the back closing seam which is still open to make this easier. I used ribbons and scrap pieces of fabric about 2 inches wide to allow for passing the bamboo through. Leave the top and bottoms open. You can finish the ends by folding under.

Step Eight:Sew the back seam together, right sides together.
Step Nine:Untie your rods and thread them through the channels. Stand the whole thing up again and spread it out, aligning the rods and evening it out. Then retie it at the top where the ends of the rods stick out. Be sure to catch them individually as well as in groups. If you just wrap the whole thing, it will not spread out easily and the middle ones will slip. IF you are using dowels, rubber bands will hold it better. Also be sure the fabric is all the way down to the floor on each one before tying.

Step ten:. Cut the front panel about halfway up on both sides INSIDE of the channels you have sewn for the door. IF you are using a nonfray material, this will be fine, but if not, you might want to finish the edges before assembling, after sewing the channels. We tacked some ribbons at the top edge of the cuts to hold it up when it is rolled up!

Step Eleven:
Extra decorating. We made stars out of silver pipe cleaners and hung them on the inside, and Mia picked a purple sparkly tulle for an outer addition. We use it on a plush rug so there is a nice seating pad :)

I have not yet taken a picture of the actual completed project, but will add it soon!

Have fun and feel free to send me pictures of your own to add!

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