UPCYCLING STORIES II: Playhouse from recycled materials

We wanted to give our son something special for his second birthday. Something that nobody else will have. Something that one can’t buy. We wanted to invest our energy rather than money. To use our imagination and creativity rather than go for something completed.

We took a deep dive in our childhood memories. There was something that we both shared: a wish of having our own very special space. A den. A treehouse. A secret room. Space for treasures, prohibited books, adventurous games. Space to share with friends with pride and sense of mystery. Space where fantasy could flourish… That is how the idea of the playhouse was born!As we both are into upcycling it was very clear from the beginning that we won’t buy any materials (you might remember our story about furnishing house with the things found on the street that we shared in one of the previous issues of Vocalize). There are so many leftovers in the skips of building sides and houses in the process of renovation! These leftovers could be used to create amazing things – like this little playhouse.


Would you ever believe that this gorgeous little playhouse was built completely from recycled materials? Just the paint, the wood filler and some screws were bought in the shop.

There is a deeper message the playhouse carries and we hope our son will be able to hear it when older: there are ways how to use the waste we are creating as humans. Buying new doesn’t have to mean better. The most precious is authentic – with an imprint of our unique selfs.

The other very precious by-product of this kind of gift was that our son could learn about the building process and try to do various things on his own – measuring, sawing, hammering, drilling (without battery:)), painting with the brush. He learned how to use different tools and how they are called. Most importantly he saw us working on it and he got very concrete idea what does it mean to work. I found it very important in the modern world when the majority of work in western countries is to abstract for children (and often for adults too!) to understand. Now when we go to work our boy says with a serious face: daddy is going to saw and drill/mummy is going to sand and paint:)

Dreams are coming true. Never mind it is a generation later. Our joy might be even bigger – doubled by the sparkling eyes of our little one.

Photos Živa and Šimon.

This article was first published in the autumn/winter 2019 edition of Vocalize magazine


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