Thursday, June 5, 2014

Making a Tee Pee from Sheets - a Tutorial

I suppose every little boy at some point gets into the "cowboys and Indians" phase during playtime. Of course, those imaginations work a whole lot better when they have a full-sized tee pee to go along with it. As my grandson's second birthday approached, my daughter kept dropping hints to me that he really wanted a tee pee for his birthday (or maybe that she just really wanted him to have one). Either way, I happily obliged with this request. 

Now the question remained: how on earth do I make this happen? It just so happened that I recently bought a new set of king sheets. The old ones got deposited in my charitable donation pile. And every time I walked by them, they starred me in the face, practically begging me to find a new use for them. After walking past them a few times, it suddenly dawned on me that these old sheets would be perfect as a tee pee. 

After about 13 hours of sewing, which I did three nights in a row, I finished just in time to send it to the Midwest for this sweet boy's second birthday. Thank goodness for priority shipping!  

When the package arrived, I gave my son-in-law specific instructions on what kinds of poles he needed to purchase from the hardware store to erect this tee pee. He was impressed I was right on with my measurements. I only knew exactly what was needed because I purchased one 2 in. x 4 in. x 8 foot piece of wood to measure so I knew how big to make the casings. I decided that the casings would keep my grandson and any of his wild friends from getting slivers. 


If you look closely at the above photo, you'll notice I added a buffalo on each panel. I only wish I had of been smart enough to think of that idea before I sewed the panels together! Then to finish off this tee pee I added self made brown piping and a feather accent on the top of the frame. This accent was made from three strands of cording that I braided and hot-glued 4 colorful feathers onto the ends.  



As you can see, this little boy liked his tee pee. I'm told he squealed with delight when he came downstairs and saw the teepee set up in his living room, filled with balloons. I really wish I could have been there to celebrate with him.  

How to make a tee pee from sheets - warning, there is a lot of sewing involved with this project, it's not complicated, just time consuming:
  • Fold the top king sized sheet into fourths.
  • Using a straight edge, draw a diagonal line from the bottom of the sheet to the top of the sheet.
  • Cut along this line.  This will give you 3 large triangles and two smaller triangles.  
  • Use one of the large triangles as a pattern to cut one additional triangle from the fitted sheet.
  • From the fitted sheet, cut out 5 strips of fabric 5" x the length of the fabric triangles diagonal edge.
  • Press under 1/4" on both sides of the longs stripes, making the stripes 4 1/2" in width.
  • Sew the large triangles together.
  • Sew 4 - 30 inches of seam tape together - these will become the ties to keep the tee pee door open.
  • 30 inches up from the bottom of the tee pee, sew one 30" seam tape to both sides of the tee pee opening.
  • Overlap the center of the small triangles and pin.
  • Sew the small triangles together from the top about 30" down.
  • Sew the small triangles to the large triangles (the bottom of this will be one large polygon).
  • Sew two more of the 30" seam tape ties 30" up from the bottom of the tee pee.
  • Cut a 12" circle at the top of the triangles to allow the poles to go out of the top of the tee pee.
  • Sew seam tape to the unfinished bottom and top of the tee pee.  
  • Once all triangles are sewn together, sew the strips to the wrong side of the center on each seam, tucking under the top & bottom edges.
  • Insert five 2 in. x 4 in. x 8 foot pieces of wood into the casings.
  • Go outside & set-up your tee pee.
I created this post for part of the Summer Fun Ideas which can be found over at Nap-time Creations.  xoxo Grandma


TeePee from a Sheet- XOXO Grandma... I am making this for sure!
Princess Slime- the Sewing Sparrow... this looks fun! Even for my boys
Grilled Bananas- For You With Love... These look so tasty!

Have a great summer and enjoying shade in your tee pee!
Linked to: Nap-Time Creations, Threading My Way, The Dedicated House, Diana Rambles, Simple Simon
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