We'll take a tour, then I'll give you some details about the project:
|Front of treehouse|
|backside of house with cargo climbing net (purchased from Amazon)|
|Bunk beds (Smile banner from target)|
|bunk beds with view of front window|
|view from inside looking at front door, chalkboard saved from being thrown away at my office!|
|bunk bed with view of back window (Dream Big sign from Target)|
|Front porch sittin' space :) (chairs from walmart, but purchased a few years ago, similar available on Amazon)|
|bunk bed testers, kids not for sale|
|Jake and his buddy Ben, testing out the top bunk :)|
Ok, let's break this project down:
There are a LOT of free treehouse plans out there (thank you, Pinterest) but we were looking for something very specific, as we did not want to build the house IN a tree, but rather, between 2 trees. So when we came across this free plan on www.woodworkcity.com, it was perfect! Link to full plans (with LOTS of pictures of their project) can be found here.
Brian started this project back in May, and it was a much bigger undertaking than he had bargained for. Essentially, it took him from mid-May through mid-July to finish it (and he still needs to add on a few finishing touches, like putting trim around the windows and installing the door) He was; however, working with limited time, considering he doesn't get home from work until 6:30pm and was often coaching baseball at night for much of May and June. If you are hoping to do this project and could devote more time to working on it, you could complete it in less than 2 months. He was working on it by himself for the most part, though we did have a lot of help from my father in law for 2 weekends and some random help from neighbors and friends a few times (thank you to everyone who was willing to lend us a helping hand and/or tools!)
He said that in hindsight, it would have been helpful to have (weather-permitting) scheduled a few vacation days all in a row to get a lot of the project done at once, rather than doing bits and pieces here and there at night and the weekends. He still wouldn't have completed it in just those few days, but at least it would have been more efficient than having to drag out all of his tools and supplies for just an hour or two here and there in the evenings.
Most of the supplies were purchased at Lowes. We lucked out in that we hadn't cashed in any rewards from our credit card in years, so we had a lot of points saved up to be able to order gift cards to Lowes...score!
Brian also made a trip to Construction Junction, which is kind of a thrift store for hardware and wood (it was about 30 minutes from our house, but he said it was well worth the trip there, he was getting stuff for about 1/4 of what it would have cost him at Lowes) Since it's like a thrift store, there's no set inventory, so it's hit or miss, but he was really happy to at least be able to get a bunch of his stuff from there.
I also posted on Craigslist and local Facebook yard sale pages that I was seeking free or low-cost supplies for a treehouse...I threw it out there figuring it couldn't hurt, and got a number of replies! One person responded that they had an entire deck they had just replaced and that the wood was in pretty good shape....Brian picked it all up, sent the wood through a planer, and that is what you see as the siding of the house (and what he's building the door with) Good as new! I had the same response from someone with shingles from their roof they'd had replaced....gotta love upcyling!
Links to additional supplies:
Cargo/Climbing Net: Amazon
Kids Adirondack Chairs: originally from walmart, similar found on Amazon
Dream Big sign: Target (dollar spot, not available to link to online)
Smile Banner: Target (dollar spot, not available to link to online)
The boys are so excited that it's done, and can't wait to have a sleepover up there! :) We're looking forward to them making lots of fun memories!