Saturday, 25 August 2012

Summerhouse or Wendy House; what will it be?

This is DC's old den; it has served him well but is now too small. We decided to buy him a new one but since he's getting to the age where 'let's pretend' is becoming a big thing we knew we wanted to get one that would be big enough for us to get into without having to contort ourselves through tiny doors to 'have tea' or whatever other game DC might want us to play.
And that's when Granny offered to buy him a wendy house for Christmas. Yes, I know it's only August, but these particular "wendy houses" were on offer and so Granny snapped up a bargain. The wendy house is actually a grown up summerhouse which is good for two reasons: 1) it's plenty big enough for adults to get into without having to bend over and 2) if/when DC decides he doesn't want to play in it any more, we can adopt it as our summerhouse - huzzah!
The wendy house (because that's what we're currently calling it) was delivered one wet and windy day a couple of months ago, and has sat in many, many pieces in the garage ever since, waiting for the weather to be good enough and for hubby to summon up the energy to have a go at putting it together. And finally, the stars aligned and that day came.
Firstly, and most importantly, hubby spent about three hours preparing the base by levelling the ground in the area where we had decided to put the wendy house - under the tree over by the fence (in case you couldn't guess from the photos.)

Then hubby added several of our old fence posts (which we had handily kept when hubby and our neighbours replaced the fence in February) to add extra stability to the base.

That was definitely the hardest part and the part that took longest - but it's still the part that is worth spending the time on to get just right. Then came the fun part (and the speedy part) - putting up the walls! Hubby and I got this done one evening when DC had gone to bed and it only took about 30mins to get all four walls, plus the doors, in place.

Door frame/wall
Doors in place

Here's hubby demonstrating where I should hold the first piece of the back wall when I finally stopped taking photos long enough to help.

And that was enough for that night; with the grumpy face he's pulling I should have left hubby out there (and that's a screw in his mouth, not a cigarette - it wasn't that stressful that he had to turn to nicotine to cope.)
The next day hubby had a new helper - DC was very good at holding things and passing nails and screws where needed, while I went to the shops and let the men get on with things.

 By the time I came back from the shops hubby had both of the pediments on and the struts to support the roof; then it was time for me to help lift the roof pieces in to place. At that point hubby had to go round to our next door neighbours to lean over the fence and nail the back portions in place - luckily we have helpful neighbours who held the ladder while hubby did the leaning.

The following day hubby tacked the roofing felt in place and things were nearly water-tight.
You can see how the evening sun is shining so perfectly on what would (will?) make a great summerhouse...
And then hubby and I spent an hour or so cutting perspex sheets into 12 pieces to fit in the windows; being an overprotective mother (I'm not really, but there are times when I err on the side of caution) I convinced hubby that we shouldn't fit the glass that was provided, but use perspex instead. We're already glad we did when the three-year-old daughter of one of hubby's friend's came round and started hammering on the windows - no need for any heart-in-mouth moments.
A few more finishing touches such as a door handle and the trim around the roof and things are looking good! DC has enjoyed playing in his wendy house already; now it's time for the interior design fairy to get her paintbrush out (if the rain ever stops.)
How long before I kick DC out and claim this space as my own?


  1. That looks like a wonderful playhouse; or just the spot for a small table, a book and a cup of tes?!

  2. Yep, I'd have a lounger in there already.. only way to sit in the garden this summer it seems!

    Hi Justine. I just found your blog. You've done so much in a year! I am renovating too, slowly but surely. Jessica.


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