A-Frame Tents for your next camp-in!

This past weekend we had our first Girl Scouts overnight camp-in retreat for our Daisy troop! The girls had so much fun!

I won't lie, it was a ton of work and exhausting but an experience we shall never forget! I will post some of the documents and forms at a later time with the full camp-in details  but for now I couldn't wait to share our tents!

The girls flipped out when these came out. They couldn't wait to find out what they were. To start our evening off, I handed out the tent "kits" and gave them some ground rules...

  1. They had to figure out how to put the tent together
  2. Adults couldn't help
  3. Sister girl scouts were encouraged to help out one another

It was such a great activity that forced the girls to work together as these tents really needed two girls to put together. The girls were 6 and 7 years old and figured it out fairly easy so I encourage this for all levels.

Here is how to make them...

Materials (makes 1 tent)

  • (4) 1' x 2' x 48" or you can buy (2) 1' X 2' X 8' and cut in half. I got mine here: Menards
  • 3/4 drill bit
  • 3/4 x 48" dowel rod
  • 2.3 yards of fabric (44")
  • elastic band (about 1/4 inch wide)
  • Glue gun and sticks 

The wood ($0.95 per strip), dowel rod (50% off), and fabric (2.50 / yard) I got on sale. Menards has sales on this stuff very frequently so do your research and watch for sales. Same with Joann fabrics, they usually have a weekly coupon or sale on fabric. Total came to around $11 / tent.

What to do...

Cut the 1' x 2' x 8' into two 4' pieces. You should have four 4' long strips per tent. 

Use your 3/4 drill bit and drill a hole in the center, 6 inches down from only ONE ends of your wood strip. Do this to all 4 strips.

Cut the elastic into 3 inch pieces. You will need 4 3' elastic strips per tent. Take your fabric and hot glue the seam on the short ends (width, not length) of the fabric to seal in your elastic hoops. How do you do this? Create a seam by folding over 1' of the fabric... here is a video to explain the rest...

You can also hot glue the other two sides of the tent but if you are doing multiple tents for your troop you may want to skip that. You will get blisters on your thumbs if you glue a seam for the entire tent.. lol

Put together the tent with the dowel rod through the 3/4 hole you drilled. Once you have put together the tent frame, you can lay the tent cover over and use the elastic bands to wrap around the end of the legs of the frame.

If you are putting your tents on a slick surface you will want to put some hot glue on the ends of the tent legs or some rubber stickers to prevent it from sliding.

There were super easy to make and the girls went crazy over them! I highly recommend them for your next girl scout overnight indoors or a camping themed party! 

Stay tuned for the rest of our camp-in retreat details!

Posted on March 25, 2016 and filed under Create, Girl scouts.