How to Make a Blanket Fort—Plus Ideas for Your Best Fort Ever
With physical or social distancing recommendations keeping everyone at home, schools, offices, and businesses closed out of coronavirus concerns, and the whole family stuck in the house, finding ways to keep everyone occupied and entertained is easier said than done. Bringing back an old favorite—the blanket fort—might be just the thing to boost everyone's mood, though.
There's plenty to watch during quarantine, sure, but even streaming TV shows and movies can get old after a few days. Fortunately, building blanket forts can take as much time as you like, be done over and over again with new twists and variations, and be enjoyed for minutes, hours, or days before you take it down and start anew. Whether blanket forts are one of the best things to do indoors (if not the best) is debatable, but what's not debatable is that learning how to make a blanket fort (if you don't already know) or teaching your kids to build a blanket fort is a whole lot of fun.
Between working through the list of spring activities you can still do and completing puzzles, try building a blanket fort: It may be the fun indoor activity you've been missing, whether you're stuck at home quarantining or it's raining out. With this guide to how to make a blanket fort and these smart blanket fort ideas, you'll have the knowledge you need to build all the blanket forts you can dream of.
How to make a blanket fort
The art of building a blanket fort is pretty simple. First, gather supplies for your fort's walls and ceiling, cushions for the floor, and clips and string for securing your walls.
Blanket fort supplies:
- light blankets, spare sheets, beach towels, and tablecloths
- sofa cushions
- laundry clips, clothespins, binder clips, or chip clips
- string, wire, or yarn
- Dictionaries, phone books, or other heavy (non-breakable) items
Clothespins are perfect for hanging linens and attaching sheets together. (Binder clips and chip clips work just as well.) Turn to string, wire, or yarn for expanding your fortress, tying your fabric ceiling to knobs, pulls, doorknobs, and even hinges for extra support. Use books to secure fabric on tables, bookshelves, and other raised surfaces, so fort-dwellers can crawl underneath.
When planning your fort, examine the walls and ceilings: You want to start high. Hang light fabrics (sheets, ideally) to securely mounted light fixtures, high shelves, curtain rods, or floor lamps and connect them to other sheets with clips to build a raised ceiling. Secure the ends of your fabric under furniture legs to make your fort bigger.
If you want to take your blanket fort to the next level, read on for creative blanket fort ideas.
Easy blanket forts
The true brilliance behind blanket forts is that one can pop up virtually anywhere—like under the kitchen table. A simple sheet draped over a table or desk of any size can create a natural nook for reading, drawing, or scheming. Scatter chairs around the room to make the fort larger.
Corner blanket forts
Choose a room with the right furniture and architectural details—sofa, ottoman, built-in bookshelves, securely attached curtain rods—for supporting your fortress. Hang your largest blanket or sheet from the highest possible point in the corner of a room and attach the edges to high-up shelves or other fixtures; use the room's corner as two walls for your fort. Bring in pillows and stuffed toys to make the floor comfy enough for lounging.
Whole-room blanket forts
Take over an entire room for a spacious, tent-like vibe. If there's space and you have a camping tent, consider pitching that tent in the center of the room. You can also build your own by hanging sheets across the ceiling and over the walls.
Clothesline blanket forts
If you have clothesline, yarn, or another sturdy string or wire, use it to loft your blankets. Hang the cord high across the room and drape blankets and sheets over it, securing with clips if necessary. Weigh down the edges of the fabric as far from the string as it will reach for a wider blanket fort. If you have the space, you can also hang two parallel cords and drape blankets across both for a larger fort.
Outdoor blanket forts
Take the clothesline blanket fort idea outside if you have the space and don't mind sheets and blankets getting a little dirty. (Picnic blankets and beach towels are good alternative.)