Friday, May 22, 2009

DIY play sets

(Photo source)
One way to save money, be green, and spend some quality time with your child is to work on a useful project together. I ran across the toys above in my journey across the Internet today, and they are definitely on my list of things to do. Making your own toys is also a good way to teach children about conservation and caring for the environment.

This is a table and chairs set made of corrugated cardboard. The cardboard is doubled for added durability, and the design uses notches and grooves to hold all joints together. There is no need for nails, screws or other hardware. It is likely that you already have all the materials in your home that are needed to complete this project. The table in the photo is covered with contact paper (for drawers and cupboards), but you could use fabric just as well.

Unlike the toys we get at the store that are plastic and have an extreme amount of packaging, cardboard, packing plastic, and twist ties, this toy is easy on the environment and is biodegradable. The design was created by Anna Wulich of the blog called forty-two roads. After looking at her blog, I went to Martha to see the video of Anna's feature on the Martha show. She has plans available on the blog, or templates are available at Martha There are also pdf plans for a really great kitchen, and a washer/dryer set in Anna's Etsy shop.

In a previous jaunt across the Internet, I found a very simple tutorial from Cookie Magazine for building an adorable 4-room dollhouse. The original story I found about the doll house is on NieNie Dialogues, and Stephanie and her girls made these houses and decorated them with photos from magazines. Similar items could easily be adapted to a dinosaur cave or car garage for toy cars if you happen to be in need of toys for boys.

What DIY ideas do you have for using items on hand to make your own toys?


(this post can also be seen on Green Earth Journey, where I am a guest blogger today)

1 comment:

Splendid Little Stars said...

This is very cool and looks like lots of fun!