7 DIY Indoor Play Forts Kids Will Never Want To Leave!

7 DIY indoor play forts kids wont want to leave

Indoor play forts for kids are an amazing way to foster open ended creative pretend play.  Building forts as a kid was so much fun, I still have so many fond memories!  Especially when my dad would help out and by letting us use his big folding table, 2×4’s, old sheets, etc. Now I get to do the same with my children.

But the kids and I are always trying to come up with new and exciting twists on the typical, sheets, couch and chairs fort.

So I have scoured the web to find some of the best (and a few don’t even require sewing) DIY play forts for kids that are suitable to be built indoors!

✰ 7 Fun Filled Indoor Play Forts For Kids 

Fan (Air) Fort

This is such a great idea.  It is so easy to set up and take down again.  It’s basically a very low tech inflatable house.  Which means so much can be left up to your child’s imagination.  It really is a blank canvas.

Head over to Teaching Mama  for a complete set of directions.
indoor play forts for kids diy fan fort

Take a look at this video to see a fan fort in action!

Tension Rod Fort

Tensions rods have so many uses, just head over to Pinterest if you aren’t sure what they can be used for.  But did you know that you could make a fort with these?

In order to make this fort just like the one found on Ikatabag (pictured), you will need to be able to sew to get the tension rods in place and to add the features that make it look like a house.

Or if you are like me (I can sew a button that’s about it), you could try using safety pins to get the rods in place on the sheet and then let the kids get out their paint and markers to decorate the sheet to make it look like a house.  It may not look as nice as the one pictured below but it should do the trick.

Another reason why I love this fort is because like the fan fort, it can be taken down quite easily.

indoor play forts for kids diy tension rod playhouse

If you love this idea, but really don’t want to make it yourself.   Then the Land of Nod has you covered.  Here is their Hanging Around The Hallway Playhouse.

7 DIY Play Forts Kids Will Love - hanging-around-hallway-playhouse


 Under The Table Fort

You can make these forts as simple or as complicated as you want.  Take a look at this simple idea by Mama Papa Bubba.  As you can see there is no sewing required.

indoor play for kids like under the table fort

But, if you have a sewing machine and enjoy sewing, why not try something like this one by Artful Parent.

This adorable DIY kids for will lead to hours of pretend play. Click to find out how to make it.

If neither of these appeal to you but you still really want one of these forts, you can have one custom made for you right here!

PVC Pipe Fort

Here is another fairly simple fort you can make with the kids.  What I love about it is that you can dismantle and store it if you don’t want it set up all the time.  Once the work of getting all the pieces together is done of course.  Since this fort uses PVC pipes for its frame you will need a pipe cutter or hacksaw.

But if you have the exact measurements you need for the pipes, most hardware stores will cut them to your required size for you.

This fort, and the instructions are courtesy of Bits Of Everything but the instructions can be found on Or So She Says.

indoor play forts kids love pvc pipe fort

If you don’t have enough spare sheets around, perhaps an out of the box option is right for you!

Under The Table Hammock Fort

I wish this could be made for adults.  What a cozy retreat it would be.  But it’s meant for kids, more specifically toddlers.  This would make a great place for some down time and possibly and impromptu nap if your little one is fighting naps.

All you need is a fitted sheet and a table.  You can take it a step further and make it into a fort by covering the entire table with a sheet or large table cloth.  Head over to Just A Mum for instructions!

under the table hammock fort indoor play forts for kids
Simple Light Up Fort

No sewing required for this one.  All you need are some sheets, string, clothespin and a string of lights.  You will need a hammer and nails to secure it all into place.  But the take down should be fairly easy.  Here are the complete set of instructions courtesy of Art Bar Blog.

indoor play forts for kids light up sheet fort

Newspaper Fort

Do you get so many flyers (and newspapers) you don’t know what to do with them?  I know we do.  Here is a great way to use those papers!  And your kids can help from start to finish.  All you need are some flyers/newspapers and tape.  This should keep your kids busy for a few hours on a rainy/snowy day!  Head over to Modern Parents Messy Kids for all of the instructions.

newspaper forts diy indoor play forts for kids

Don’t have enough newspapers lying around?  Check out Crazy Forts!  They even have a glow in the dark option.

I hope that these ideas have inspired you to get to work on some indoor play forts for kids!  If you are still looking for more ideas, hunt around for some cardboard boxes as they can be used for forts and so many other things.  The possibilities are endless!

But, if after reading this, you think the whole DIY thing isn’t for you, check out the pre-made kids forts below!

DIY Indoor Play Forts For Kids! Watch your kids imagination soar with these! Click to see how to make 7 forts #diytoys #kidsactivities


  1. Rina

    Ah I love this article! So fun reading and thinking of ideas. I wish I would have thought of the fan blanket fort when I was a kid. I would put a bunch of couch cushions around and then lay blankets over them to create my forts. That is probably a common way of doing this. I love your ideas and might just have to make one for my husband and I. No one is EVER to old for forts 🙂

    1. Tanya (Post author)

      I love your attitude Rina! Play is important for adults too, not just kids.

  2. Andy

    Thank you so much for the novel and engaging article and of course for the fun ideas! Reading and looking at the pictures took me back to my childhood and you have officially inspired me to go make a new type of fort with my children after school today! I particularly like the air fort – never did that one growing up; time to teach the kids.

    Best Regards,


    1. Tanya (Post author)

      Thanks Andy! The air fort is great because it is so easy to set up and take down! I am sure your kids will love it!


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