Child's Teepee Sewing Instructions

Updated February 21, 2017

Making a child's tepee that can fit indoors in a playroom or bedroom will give your child countless hours of playtime while stimulating his imagination and teaching him about history. After sewing and assembling the tepee, you can let your child help you decorate it to add to the educational experience of this craft project. Basic sewing skills and the ability to follow patterns are necessary for sewing the tepee.

Cut the fabric into four triangles that are 3 feet wide, 4 foot 5 inches tall, with the top peak cut at 2 inches wide using the sewing scissors.

Pin two of the triangles together with the outsides facing each other. Sew a seam up one side that is 4 inches in from the outside to join the triangles using the sewing machine loaded with upholstery thread. Sew another seam that is 1/2 inch in from the outside. Remove pins.

Pin another triangle on to one of the sides of the connected triangles. Repeat seam process. Remove pins. Repeat with the last triangle, and sew both sides in the same fashion to connect all four triangles into an inside-out tepee. The channels sews in the triangle seams are to accommodate the support poles when fully assembled.

Cut a slit up 36 inches from the bottom in the centre of one of the triangles to become a door flap. Fold the inside of each flap in about 1/2 inch, and sew a seam to prevent unravelling during use. Turn tepee right side out.

Insert poles into the seam channels while tepee is on the ground. Stand the tepee up. Have one person hold the top of the poles together while another person pulls the bottom of each pole away from the centre. Tie the top of the poles together at the top of the tepee fabric using the rope. Lashing skills are recommended for tying the poles together. Check the base of the tepee for stability. Spread the poles out a little more until the base is secure. Decorate to your liking.

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy fabric (4 feet, 7 inches by 8 foot, 6 inches)
  • Upholstery thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Sewing scissors
  • Straight pins
  • Dowels (5 feet tall by 2 inch diameter)
  • Rope
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About the Author

Gabrielle Black has been a professional writer, artist and designer since 2002. Her theatrical designs, puppet design and construction have been featured in "Theatre Design & Technology" magazine and she has written numerous articles for various websites. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Luther College and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Idaho, both in stage design and painting.