Sailboat Sandbox

I used to daydream about the adventures my kiddos would have sailing the Sandy Seas in the sandboxes featured in catalogs like Pottery Barn Kids… until I made my own – or should I say, until I in-listed my amazing dad to help me build one. My inspiration came from this fabulous Sunset book
Backyards for Kids: Playhouses, Sandboxes, Tree Forts, Swing Sets, Sports Areas, and More
If you get a chance, you might want to check it out. It is full of fabulous ideas for turning your backyard into a little piece of heaven for your kids!
I don’t have great step-by-step directions (we didn’t exactly follow their instructions) or photos because, even though I just finished today, this project was started long before Crazy Daisy existed, but I can give you the basics. We used lumber my dad already had to make a box and stained it. Then we bolted two 2×4’s so they were standing upright directly in the center of the boat (these would be used to support the sail). We measured and cut an old stair-railing to fit on top of the 2×4’s and screwed it on. I went to and ordered fabric for the sail. My fabric was 46-inches wide. Knowing the width of your fabric is probably one of the most important aspects of designing your project because if planned properly, the factory seams are left intact and no hemming is required. We made sure our sandbox was just wide enough to accommodate the fabric – no trimming, no hemming, no fraying – at least for the width. To figure out the right length to cut the sail, I measured from the top of the crossbar to about two feet above the box (60 inches for each side), added five inches to make it across-ed the top, and another 4 inches (once for each side) for the hem. To hem each side, I folded the edges in one inch and than again two inches. I sewed 1/4-inch seam on each side to make a channel for the rope to thread through. I screwed some metal eyelets into the sandbox corners and anchored the sail by tying each of the corners to an eyelet. That about sums it up! If you have any questions or need clarification, just leave a comment. I think it turned out pretty cute and my kiddos adore it. The fun part is, it was finished just in time to participate in The CSI Project Summertime Challenge.
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PS – If you are interested in Backyards for Kids, you can find it here

18 thoughts on “Sailboat Sandbox

  1. Debbi Does Dinner Healthy

    Great idea on the sail! Keeps the rain out and keeps it shady. I made my husband make a huge one for my kids years ago, he put little chairs in corner and it’s pretty nice. Now if I can just get them to KEEP the sand IN the sandbox and not throw it on the grass!

  2. Jasey

    Thanks everyone! Debbi, I totally know what you mean – I have a huge pile of sand on my patio right now…. haha!

    Happy Day!

  3. Jen @

    I love it Jaysey! You are so clever. I bet your kids just think that is so fun!

    Thanks so much for linking up to The CSI Project’s hardware Store Challenge! We hope you will come back next week for the Martha Stewart-inspired challenge — The MS Craft Department are our guest judges!!!


  4. Allyson/HBMomof2

    This cover is such a great idea. We have a sand box that we built into our back yard, but the kids don’t play in it when it’s too sunny. I just found my solution and now I am going to find a Joann’s coupon! Thank you for sharing the details on the tent part. Great hints!

  5. My Urban Child

    Nice sandbox love it, Thanks also for the info’s its a great weekend project! Definitely brought back memories of the sandboxes and various play structures my dad built for us over the years–I loved watching him and helping him too, guess that’s where my love of DIY comes from 🙂

    Backyard Sandbox


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