Money Saving Tips and Building Your Own Furniture
If you are like me, then you don’t have $300 to spend on a Sensory table or $500 to spend on an easel. If you husband isn’t “handy”, I’m sure you know SOMEONE who is. Here are some of our money saving tips. My husband is not a carpenter, so the “directions” are the best I could do. LOL
[SIDE NOTE - All you REALLY need for some sensory fun is a large storage container]
My husband made this sandbox from scrap wood at home depot. I think the wood cost us about 3 dollars! Have you SEEN the price of wooden sandboxes? WOW!
These are the corner board my husband used to screw the sides of the sandbox together. He also put boards around the top for seating.
Easel – The base is a post that was cut and sanded to a shape we liked (you don’t have to do that), then a notch was cut out for the 2×4 legs and frame. He used trim to hold the plexiglass in place. The plexiglass thickness is 1/4 inch, it’s 3×3, and it’s 10 inches from the ground.
A closer look at the base. We cut out a notch and screwed the legs into the base.
A closer look at the trim. We used the trim to keep the plexiglass in place. We nailed in the bottom and sides first while holding the plexiglass in place for a tight fit – this is a two person job. Then we put on the top wood and the trim on the top last.
Sensory Table – top is 2′x4′, legs are about 1.5′ tall – but you would want to make it to fit the height of the child. The bin is a Sterilite storage container – its 22″x15″. We simply place it on top as a template, traced it, then cut a hole just inside the line on the table to drop in the bin. I painted it white so that when we do activities with color, the true colors show.
(Another option is to find a coffee table from a yard sale or off of Craigslist and cut a hole in it big enough for a container.)
This is the cover my husband built for our light panel. You will need plexiglass and wood. (I wish I had more specifics, but I dont. You will need to build it to the dimensions of your light table or panel. All supplies were bought from Home Depot) The plexiglass simply sits in the frame (its removable for washing). The frame has a lip on it (to discourage spills from making it to the light panel – but I always stand by with paper towels during water play, just in case).
A closer look – my husband pretty much eyeballed it to get the right fit. He nailed 4 boards together for the frame, then added an edge with a thinner board, and dropped in the plexiglass.
Plexiglass is removable as seen here – it just lifts out.
This is the frame (he also cut out a notch for the chord – seen here).
This is the light panel cover ON the light panel.
For DIY light table click HERE and HERE
For DIY sensory swing click HERE
For DIY mirror exploration station click HERE
For DIY bead maze click HERE
For DIY activity table click HERE
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