Blanket Forts

If your kids have never built a blanket fort, they should.  Blanket forts are fun, and what is life without a little fun?

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There is absolutely nothing to learn from building a blanket fort.  It’s just fun, okay.  Don’t ruin it by making it a “learning experience.”  It’s fun.  Got that?

Blanket Fort Tips:

1. Bigger is better.

If you have more than two children you definitely need a second or even third blanket fort, or one with many rooms.  Every kid wants his or her own space.

If they can, they keep building until they fill our room! Inside the fort they have dividing lines made from chairs and pillows to separate out their "rooms."

If they can, they keep building until they fill our room! Inside the fort they have dividing lines made from chairs and pillows to separate out their “rooms.”

2. Tables are golden.

We use tables, chairs, and tray tables as the main structure.  The kids often use the couch as their middle wall, and build out from that in several directions as well.

A dining table makes a great sturdy structure.

A dining table makes a great sturdy structure.

Tray tables or chairs are excellent for holding up smaller rooms or edges.

Tray tables or chairs are excellent for holding up smaller rooms or edges.

Even a small folding table underneath helps create a really awesome open space.

Even a small folding table underneath helps create a really awesome open space.

3. Hardware strength clips and clamps are your friend.

Heavy books stacked on a table, the back of the couch, or a chair hold blankets up fairly well, but they tend to slide off and hit you in the head.  They don’t stay.  Clamps from the shop work much better all around.  You can also combine books and clamps to hold everything up.  My kids often have stacks of books inside too – because reading is about their favorite thing to do in their blanket fort nooks and crannies.

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4. Sheets are lighter than blankets.

We usually combine sheets and blankets and build huge forts that fill our rooms.  Then we put more blankets and pillows inside the fort to be their “furniture.”  Sheets are awesome for forts though, because they’re just easier to keep up given they are much lighter weight.

Sheets are even light enough that you can use command strips on a wall or suction cups on a window or glass door to hold them up.

Sheets are even light enough that you can use command strips on a wall or suction cups on a window or glass door to hold them up.

Another cool thing about sheets is that you can use the fitted ones snugly over chairs to help your fort hold.

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5. Building them is the funnest* part.

Teach your kids to use the clamps and a few basics of engineering and then walk away.  Yeah, the fort will fall a few times.  They will have to work to figure it out.  They will fail and fail, until they succeed.  Let them fail so they can feel the real joy of succeeding.  Check out this cool trick my kids came up with all on their own.

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An excellent A-frame structure from using chairs and a rope – that’s pretty neat.

6. The blanket fort is your home, your fort, it’s where you live.

Our kids each build their own rooms.  They usually also make little porch areas, common rooms like dining areas or libraries.  Sometimes they even build rooms for their stuffed animals.  The point is, make it your own.  Sleep in your blanket fort.  Eat in your blanket fort.  Don’t take your blanket fort down because it’s chore time, or bedtime, or dinnertime.  Long live the blanket fort!

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* For the purposes of this post “funnest” is a word.

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One Response to Blanket Forts

  1. Jared says:

    love it!

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