I have an almost-2-year-old who LOVES to swing. I have often thought of how nice it would be to have a swing for him in our yard but I’ve just never gotten around to getting one for him. Then I saw this post on Pinterest:
And, just a day or two later I saw this commercially made swing that costs over $100:
These two swings morphed inside my brain. I uttered the words that daily test my husband’s patience. “I could make that!” I went rummaging for supplies. I knew I had an old pair of jeans with a poorly located tear that I’d been saving for just such a moment as this. I remembered the wooden ladder in the garage. Those rungs would be perfect! I could get a bit of rope at Dollar General for less than $3. I was off and running. Below is everything I learned. Be sure to read all the way through to the end BEFORE you start the actual construction process for yourself. This is VERY IMPORTANT!
Find an old wooden ladder. If you have a saw, cut 4 rungs out of it. If you don’t have a saw use the claw end of a hammer, a screw driver, a power drill and the heel of your shoe to break 4 rungs out. Or just go buy a saw. The other way can be difficult. Not that I did it that way. I’m just guessing. *ahem*
Drill 2 holes in each rung. Make sure that they line up to the width and length that you want them or else you’ll end up with 2 sticks that have extra holes in them. Not that I did that either. I’m just sayin’….
Cut the legs off your old jeans.
Lay your side dowels on top of the front and back dowels and thread your rope over, under, round and round the FRONT BAR ONLY.
Fling your rope over a tree branch and repeat step five with the back holes of your dowels and VOILA! You have a new swing for your little toddler that cost less than $3 and kept an old ladder and a pair of jeans out of the landfill.
Put the baby in and watch him fall in love with the new toy you hand-crafted with love. Uhm. Wait. Aw, crap. He doesn’t look very happy at all. Although, honestly, at this point I was laughing so hard I thought I might wet myself. I can’t even imagine what my neighbors must have been thinking! OK… that didn’t work out. Back up.
Find smaller pants.
Take your swing down and repeat steps 4-6. With the smaller pants I found I had to cut slits to fit the dowels through because the loops weren’t big enough. Be strategic about this to be sure the remaining fabric/seams are strong enough to support your little one’s weight.
Chase your now VERY reluctant child through the yard, catch him and jam him, totally unwilling, into the new toy you have lovingly hand-crafted for him. Twice.
Wait for a moment until he realizes that things have improved. Much better! I wondered if sitting on the seam of the jeans would be uncomfortable for him but he didn’t seem to mind at all. He wanted to swing for a very long time. I did trim the rope and straighten it out after the trial run. The pictures from “step eight” are actually the finished product. Enjoy!
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