Mr. B Talks About the Fairy Playhouse

Hello, dear readers!  As promised, here is a post by Mr. B, attempting to describe how he built this fairy playhouse.  [See yesterday's post for more pictures.]  He's trying to leave for work, but he was kind enough to take a few photos and rattle off some instructions.  I begged him to do this, though, because this playhouse is kind of amazing.  We've had some major winds this spring, and this thing hasn't budged at all.  He also built it in about an hour and a half, because his supplies were already cut.  So from here, I'll let Mr. B take it!

First off, I was originally going to run to the hardware store to buy landscaping timbers, then just weave brush in where I could, to mask the timber.  Since we live in town, that seemed the most plausible idea.  I didn't really want to chop down my trees, and the neighbors get mad when you chop down theirs.

Fortunately, we live in Kansas, and we were plagued by snow and ice storms this winter, and I noticed neighbors were starting to stack broken limbs by the curb.  So, I raided the neighbors after all.  Between the ice and their pruning, I had a lot of supplies.

What was great about using their timber is it just required a few simple tools on my part:

An axe for trimming and shaping...

and wire and pliers for binding the material.

Start with a simple A-frame.  I attached one end of a long, thick branch to the fork in a standing tree (hee hee, the neighbor's tree - shh, it's practically in our yard), then braced it at the end with two more branches, crossing at the top, creating a bipod.  (It looks like an upside-down V in the front - Danzel)

This is the front of the A-frame, as taken from the inside of the fairy playhouse.

Then, to support the middle, I created another bipod off the original branch in the center, allowing the top branch to nestle into natural forks and crevices in the branches.

I bound all of this with wire.  (I used floral wire, so it would blend more.)  I also used the wire to weave it on each side, so that I could weave in the smaller branches and bind the entire structure together.  I wanted the weight and tension to help hold the fairy house up.

Then on the sides, I bound smaller branches to the bipods, so that the exterior branches could rest on them.

Keep in mind, as I built this, I had no idea my wife was going to make me blog about it.

I just laid a first layer of twigs and branches on top of the wire and larger side branches.  After getting it covered, I took greener, more flexible branches, and weaved them through the structure and wire to hold the side branches against the structure.  I did the same for both sides, looking for any natural knots, forks, etc., that I could also weave in to create more tension.

Wire binding the branches.  You can see where I rested the branches in natural forks, wherever I could.

That's really about it.  I just kept adding and weaving, until I felt I had a sufficient amount of siding on it, looking for large gaps to cover.  I used my axe to trim and create places for the pieces to rest, where there were no natural forks.  From there, it was time to decorate it!

This is what it looks like from the side.

I apologize if this is as clear as mud.  It's kind of one of those things I just started building, going off natural instinct and construction experience.  I'm glad I found a practical application for Marine Corps survival training.  I could have kept going and found greener branches to make it completely non-transparent, but I need to be able to see what the little farts are up to, too.

If anyone has questions, just let Danzel know and I'll try to describe it better.  I'm trying to make my lunch and get ready for work!

Thank you, honey!  I'm not completely sure I follow, but I know you built it without thinking you would be writing instructions for it.  The girls and I love it!

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  1. How neat!! I've REALLY wanted to do a bean-pole teepee of sorts for the past couple of summers, but just never have really made an build a frame and then plant climbing beans and morning glories around fun and pretty. Someday. ;)

    1. Okay, I LOVE the bean pole tee-pees, but we would kill it. Really. Gardens do not survive long in our care... I agree, though, they are beautiful. I hope you get to have one! :)

  2. I love it. We made a simple fairy house recently and pieces of it our missing (I think stolen by birds and squirrels for nests). I may need to make something more substantial next time.

    1. Mr. B had to replace our old small one. We got the fireplace working this winter, and he used the small one for kindling... Oops.

      We haven't had much issue with squirrels, because of the feral cat situation. There are fewer cats now, so the squirrels are starting to return...


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