TeePee Tutorial Part 2

Let’s Sew !!!

1.Begin by assembling your front panel. Take both of you front flap pieces.

NOTE: if you wish to line the front flaps this is the time to visit the upgrades post.


Two front flaps


High Tech design graphics.

Align the two flaps on top of each other , right sides of fabric together. Sew a one inch wide seam from the top of the flaps down the center, about 9″ down, i don’t measure.

Open the flaps so they lay as your full front panel, press open the seam you just sewed. Now press a 1/2 inch rolled hem the entire length of the front center edges. Sew the hem.


Finished front flap seam and hem, this extends the entire length of the front opening.


Front Panel assembled.This is the front panel sewn together with the front opening hemmed. Ignore the printed fabric, that is the front flap lining upgrade. If you wish to add that to your teepee.

Here are the upgrade instructions.

Good enough is good enough.


Mistakes, if you look closely you can see my iron rusted on my perfect new white front panel. Get over it! Move on! Have Fun!

2. Sew peak to each of the main panels.


Sew one peak piece to the top of each main panel. Place fabrics right sides together, pin, sew 5/8 inch seam.


Close-up of seam.


Fold the peak up to create your full panel. Press the seam flat. press all layers of fabric to the top. Now topstitch across the seam through all layers of fabric on the peak side of the seam. Reinforcement, reinforcement, reinforcement when you are sewing for child’s play!!!! I like to use a zigzag stitch, it enhances the TeePee feel. A straight stitch will be just as sturdy if you prefer.


Good enough is good enough. this is my “mis” alignment of the tee-pee peak and bottom panel for my front panel. i added more additional width for my center seam than was necessary. When you run into these “snags” just guestitmate your alignment and trim the extra off. It will be perfectly lovely. (or do a more accurate job with the original measuring than i did) This is not rocket science, it is fun creating.


My 4 assembled panels. notice i still have not trimmed my excess on the front panel. You won’t get to see the finished product until Papa gets to California. We are making this TeePee for our Cali Babies, papa needs to find dowels out here. It is going to be so adorable.

3. Hem the top edge of each panel.  Press a 1/2 inch rolled hem across the top of each panel and stitch across the top to create a finished edge. ZigZag or straight stitch, it is your design choice.Namafish.comIMG_4314


Hem top edge of each panel. A rolled hem is simple. Fold the fabric down 1/2 inch and press, fold again and press, sew through all thicknesses of fabric.

Now it is getting fun because your fabric mess is about to start to look like a TeePee.

NOTE: If you wish to add the window to the back panel, now is the time. Window Upgrade.   Tee-Pee-Tutorial/namafish.com

4. Sew the 4 side seams. 

With your 4 panels laid out as pictured above (if you have added the window be certain your window panel is across from the front panel) flip one panel on to the panel next to it. Right sides together, align and pin one of the angled side seams. Sew a 1/2 inch seam down the entire length of the side seam.


Side Seam alignment


full panel aligned, pin one side

on the back side press all of the 1/2 inch seam to one side of the seam, also….check out those Nama hands….i really am old enough to be a Nama…mind blown!


ZigZag through all layers from the front side of TeePee. Reinforcement is HUGE !! This image shows your peak seam reinforcement, your top hem and the side seam reinforced.

Continue working around the TeePee, completing the final three seams as you just did this first one.


Waaa-Laaa….you have something that looks like a basic TeePee. Adorable TeePee model not included.

5. Sew Pole Pockets


Pole Pockets

You will sew a pocket for the poles at each of the four main seams that connect your main panels to each other.

Lay the TeePee with one of the side seams facing up, you will notice that the bottom of the TeePee forms a peak at the point of the seam. i prefer to sew a small hem to create a straight edge where you will sew your pole pocket.


pole pocket hem

Fold the peak up to the inside of the TeePee, i fold up about a 6″ width, 3 inches on either side of the seam. Press and sew across the hem. The height of the hem at the center seam will be about 1.5 inches, tapering to nothing at the ends.Namafish.comIMG_4335Namafish.comIMG_4338

Once you have hemmed the the edge at each seam, Lay your pole on top of the side seam. Fold the TeePee over the pole to create a casing for the pole to slide into. Pin the two sides of fabric together to create a loose fit around the pole. Remove the pole and sew the seam where you pinned the correct width. the seam will be somewhere between 1″-2″ inches wide, depending on the diameter of your TeePee poles.

Hem Note: i cut my main panel pieces so the bottom of each side panel is along the finished factory edge (salvage) of the fabric. See Tutorial Part 1. When you can do this, you do not need to hem the entire bottom edge of the TeePee. If you have cut edges on the bottom of your main panels you will need to sew a 1/2 inch rolled hem along the entire bottom edge of your TeePee to prevent the fabric from fraying.

POLES  There are unlimited options for your poles, be creative and find something that will work for you. We like to buy wooden dowels from Menards or Home Depot. Menards in WI has a great selection in stock. We ordered online in Los Angeles and they were delivered free of charge to a local Home Depot Store. We have used 5/8″, 1″ and 1 1/4″ diameter dowels. The 1″ seems to be ideal.

Buy 4  1″ dowels, 72″ long.

Buy 4 1″ Rubber leg tips

Cut the Dowels to 66″ length (not necessary, our preference)

Place rubber tips on one end of each cut dowel.

That is it!!!

Your simple basic Teepee is complete!!

Slide your poles into each of the 4 pole pockets, make certain your rubber feet are at the bottom of your Teepee, you have a heap of fun about to happen!!

Upgrade  #3  Drill holes in poles and add ties at top of TeePee.

Upgrade #4  Add ties to the front flaps

Please Facebook me questions or suggestions so i can improve my tutorial. i would love to walk you through the process. You may also leave questions in the comment section.

TeePee Tutorial Part 1

TeePee Tutorial Part 3 Upgrades



TeePee Tutorial Part 1

Tim and i made a fabric TeePee and a fabric “cabin” out of PVC pipe and clearance fabric for our first two little guys 25 years ago.


That is Captain Hook and Peter Pan…as if you didn’t know. Vintage TeePee in background.

Last fall when we saw the rash of designer TeePees popping up everywhere, we said “We did that 25 years ago!” When we saw the price on those trendy TeePees we said…

“We have to do that again for our Grand-babies!” Continue reading

S’more Love, S’more Fun, S’more Forever

July 8,2014 by Nama

We had the pleasure of celebrating these two cutes on Sunday.

s'more-love-trough-tabletop-sterno-shower-party.jpg  //namafish.com

J.J. and Margit will say “I do” to their Happily Ever After on the Thirtieth of August.

We Celebrated in camp style at J’s childhood home.  It stormed, it rained, it was humid and there were bugs.  It was absolutely perfect as family and a few friends came together to reflect on love, commitment, family and forever.

s'more-love-trough-tabletop-sterno-shower-party.jpg  //namafish.com

i offered to put together a S’more Bar as the sweet treats of the day. Continue reading

Big Day

may 21, 2014

Happy Birthday to this amazing gift!IMG_0708

Our Blessing is 10 today. Each May 21st brings an avalanche of questions….is she really 10? How much did she weigh? Was she really born on the 21st? Was she really born in May? Was she vibrant and strong? Oh what i would give to see a squiggly newborn image of our Beauty.

In Him we Rest , He is writing Blessing’s story and it is beautiful with the details He has chosen to include.

We have a 10 year old and we have a Big day!!!!1238164_10103143007494667_8755854599589405550_n (2) We are headed to MSP airport to pick up these three. Image – our boy, who has to stay in California to pay the bills. 2:50pm, Sun Country=can not wait to hug Melissa, Kings and Rae.

IMG_3002We get to visit Legoland and have dinner with this big brother.IMG_0750We spent two hours making this crazy candy ball party game ~i’ll show you how later.IMG_0762Grandma Lovegreen and our Cody (actually Kaydra’s Cody) baked and decorated the cupcakes 
IMG_0761with a little help from this concentrator for Blessing’s Big party Thursday evening.

My Man wrote something i hope to share tomorrow and

Friday i hope to share lots of cuteness, celebration and thanksgiving for all of the Blessing we have been granted this week in this home.

Full Heart, Full schedule, need want Coffee!

Please have an amazing day loving those you have been blessed to invest in today.

For the record, our Blessing “styled”, on her own, the first image in this post. She asked for a photo shoot, and struck the pose all on her own. We also have this image of her from this week…IMG_0770

which comforts my Mamma heart and gives me hope for our teen years.


I Fix therefore I am – By Pappafish

may 13, 2014 by PappaThe-Art-of-Fixing-ThingsPart 1 of many (July 3, 2011) . . . .Hi, My name is Tim and I’m a fixaholic. I have been a fixaholic all my life, I don’t remember not wanting to fix things. It consumes me. My motivation in developing lingual skills came in an effort to explain to my father how to fix the broken latch on my crib. The solution was quite obvious if I remember correctly. Most people would be fishing, or boating, or beaching on a beautiful 4th of July weekend. Not me – I line up the projects from 5 PM Friday to 10 PM Monday night; repairs, reconditions, replacements.

imagesI’ve often wondered if I chose it, or did it choose me. Was it genetic, environmental or a random act of cosmic karma (all of which God is ultimately in control of). Was I a clean slate as a new born babe only to have the boney fingers of poverty and necessity write this epilog onto my sub-consciences before I had even written the introduction?

I chose a moderately paying career and a wife whose heart and passion are toward home and family. Wouldn’t have it any other way. And how ironic that I supervise a crew of men who “fix things”. This choice of conservative lifestyle has left us with the reality of an older home, pre-owned cars and “gently used” everything else. Is it any wonder then that my life is full of fixin’. Now did I subconsciously chose this life just so I could have things to fix. Had I chose a vocation of doctoring, lawyering, banking, I would probably have a new home, a new car, and a sunburn earned on the river or golf course rather than on a broken mower. No – I’ll have no part of that . . . what would there be to fix? Fixing brings a quality of life which I could find no other way. I feel the same rush of adrenaline from hearing the “schlanck” of golden brown bread bursting from the top of newly reconditioned toaster as Dr. Frankenstein must have from the reanimation of that lifeless corpse.

I have no choice . . . I . . . . Must . . . . . Fix!!


A week in review . . .

Dryer broke . . First attempt to repair lasted a mere day or two. Now I am confident that with the proper amount of duct tape and solder, a couple of electrical switches from Menards (one for heat – one for blower), and I could have had that bugger working for another year, maybe two, but that would be the folly of the single man. Being married 30+ years has given me the intuitive ability to know when to hold and when to haul. Now you might think that a fixaholic would find that hard to swallow, but my fixaholism is uniquely counterbalanced by another addiction: I-can’t-pay-retail-aholism. So my sweats and shakes from fixious interuptous were quickly squelched by the rush of surfing “Overstock.com”. Auction won, invoice paid, delivery within 7 to 10 working days. $700 dryer in the basement for $350. Handyman cocaine brother, handyman cocaine.

Driving 1998 van down the interstate. Hard to tell with all the vibration coming from the scalloped tires due to the bad tie rods but pretty sure that the tranny is slipping. Currently shopping Craig’s List, and Ebay – wait on in folks – fodder for future blogs.


Finally ready to go to bed at 2 AM Friday morn – hear terrible racket coming from frig. Tear apart ice-maker to isolate noise. Can’t leave is as is – something is definitely wrong. Can’t turn it off til morning – everything will spoil – 90 degrees in there. A few well placed fist bumps with the Frigidaire and an ice cube dislodges from the fan – I’m feeling fiiiiiine.

Friday evening – head over to Ty’s house (a repo house to a fixaholic is like a liquor store to a alcoholic). Working on pressure tank to eliminate air at plumbing fixtures. Great company (thanks for the help Corey) and maybe a fix – we’ll call it a draw until we get a little more data over time. As I walk through the house my pulse races like a child in Fleet Farm’s toyland the week before Christmas – so may projects, so may “fixes”. Just a little saliva seeping from the corner of my mouth. I quickly lick my lips to hide any signs before anyone can see.

Saturday morning – doing some dishes as an act of love for my beautiful wife – notice drain basket is broken – add to mental list. Remove old dryer from basement in preparation for new one coming in 7 to 10 business days. Notice need to clean out lint vent – jumped on it. I have a homemade cleaner stick all ready – foam rubber in a sweat sock taped to a layup stick (duct tape of course). Works beautifully – job complete in 15 minutes (also noticed need to fix vent cover/flap on side of house) added to mental list. Got dolly and moved dryer outside – noticed door handle on basement door about to fall off – added to mental list. Loaded mowers onto trailer – rider and push, noticed weather stipping falling off van door – added to mental list, then erased from mental list since we have to buy a new vehicle due to slippy-tranny. Checking email on computer – noticed water spitting out of window air conditioner – definitely something not right – added to mental list. Wife shows me broken coat hook ( 7 year old with hidden repelling skills) – maybe record fix/replace – like two minutes front to end. Went to Ty’s and mowed the lawn – flipped rider mower while loading – thinking burial at sea might be most appropriate, but spirit buoyed by thought of finding a deal on a new, or rather gently used one. Oil from upside down mower leaked all over neighboring church’s parking lot which I used to unload. Heading to Menard’s to buy oil dry (kitty litter). While at Menards – buy supplies for next 4 projects. Dryer vent for my house – dryer vent to fix Ty’s dryer vent issues, water line splice for Ty’s ice maker, clips for gas line temped through Ty’s basement with pieces of twine, and of course a roll of duct tape because you just never know. Saturday evening – very nice time with Parker/Kristi/Kaydra/Ble and K at China Inn. Had several glasses of “Pessi”. Can’t help but notice many things around that place that needed to be “fixed”. Spend time in between mouthfuls of Gen. Tsao’s chicken calculation time estimates on each project. Then home for some ice cream while I cap the night off with fixing Kristi’s car (which I have been putting off for many months now, so this is a good opportunity to get ‘er done).


Replaced right turn signal, replaced right headlight, straightened fender, replaced left headlight, troubleshot and replaced faulty light bulb that came with new headlight. Bright, dim, and directionals all working. Fixed front license plate holder, replaced rear license plate, fixed fuel tank cover – mosquitoes drove me inside or I would have gotten to the windshield washer line and the brakes. But at least now I have something to fix tomorrow . . .

To be continued . . . (because we live in a decaying world)

Summer Weighted Blanket

may 10, 2014 by Nama

I need to make Blessing a “cooler” weighted blanket for warm summer nights as our home does not have air conditioning. It gets hot and sticky here.

I am so very excited about these fabrics.IMG_0429

Blessing chose the Paris Fashion print for the front and i chose the buttercream to back the quilt.

I also ordered this 100% cotton batting.IMG_0427Look how thin it is, I think the 100% cotton fabrics combined with this cotton batting for cozy comfort will make a perfect summer weighted blanket.

Apparently the weighting beads alone can be irritating to some with sensory challenges. If you use two layers of batting placing the beads in between the two layers of softness the blanket is much softer and is often more likely to bring the comfort you are looking for. I’ll let you know how this all works out when i get to sew in June.

For now i am just so stinkin excited about this fabric……IMG_0439and in my world all things good are even better when shared .

The Gift

may 10, 2014 by Nama


Sometime a gift is so much more than the package that is opened. Even when the contents of the box are perfect, the bigger GIFT may be completely unseen.

Our Blessing has struggled with disturbed sleep from moment one in my arms, sleeping on my chest, on a mat, on the floor in the orphanage in Africa.

We have worked hard to figure out what may help her settle and what might be our ticket to a full night’s rest. Tim and i typically need to sleep separately allowing one of us to rest for tomorrow while the other one nurtures our Blessing .

Several experts had mentioned a weighted blanket through the years. For about 18 months i have intended to do something about a blanket.



We have tried so many things, invested much time , energy and $$$  yet we remain sleepless in Wisconsin. i am skeptical, i am processing, i am cautious.

Weighted blankets are really expensive, we have grand-babies in California and plane tickets are really expensive. Choices. Priorities.

i could sew, but last night was exhausting and i can’t think clearly, let alone weigh beads.  i will work on that idea tomorrow …..18 months of tomorrows.

A friend mentioned an organization that donates weighted blankets to struggling children. i reasoned that we were not candidates for the service, after-all  i could sew, we “could” find the $ in our budget and our girl’s diagnosis’s fall on the mild side.

 i don’t like to need. i don’t like to be served. i am a fixer, i could would handle this. i sensed there was pride holding me back,

i chose to swallow hard and summit our Blessing’s request, within days sponsorship came in and our girl was gifted with a blanket.


We anticipated the arrival of the box. “Mamma, is my blanket coming today ? “


 The wait wasn’t long, it arrived ! Blessing was thrilled ~ pink and purple with sparkles !

 i held my breath doubtful that it would be the help we had been looking for. i was afraid to hope this bundle of beads and polyfiber may actually bring comfort and rest to our 8 years of restless nights.

i was sooooo wrong.


Easy, calm, sound and peaceful sleep for our girl.

The science is beyond me but the results of snuggling our Blessing under the 9 pounds of plastic pellets in this miracle blanket are indisputable.

 i have been waiting to share, fearful this good thing would come to an end. A month into this journey i am convinced the science and therapy behind weighted blankets is nothing short of genius. We are all resting better in our fish pond, but the real gift goes so much deeper. This process has gifted us with some treasures we were not even aware we lacked.

We found a community of others walking similar journeys to ours.

We realized we are less alone than it sometimes feels as an organization jumped at the chance to come along side us, as a young single mom gave of her time, energy and love to actually construct Blessing’s blanket and as unknown sponsors gave the cash needed to allow Blessing’s blanket to be given.


Our girl is happier~calmer~more focused~IMG_0449

more obedient~less impulsive~doing measurably better academically~IMG_0443

funnier~more cooperativeIMG_0442~having more fun and did i mention Happier !

We have been so blessed by this process we are looking for opportunities to pass the blessing on.  We have ordered supplies to try our hand at sewing a  cotton summer blanket for Blessing. We plan to assist a friend in sewing one for her little guy who also struggles with sleep.

To all those who were personally a part of this gift to us


We are blessed to be resting calmly under our plastic pellets, and when i say we, i mean WE because everyone in the house seems to find a little extra weight very comforting.

Final Post Note : i have wondered what would happen if i took the blanket away for a night. Over Mother’s Day we traveled to Grandma’s house and i forgot our 9 pounds of  magic. That mistake got us four and a half  hours of restless, fitful, anxious sleeplessness…for Blessing and for this tired old mamma. We Love our Blanket !!

What is with all the pajama pictures ?

march 11,2014 a letter by nama from christmas eve 2013

 Family, Pajamas, CHRISTMAS and Sewing, four of my Favorite things.1513805_10100399598678575_1291245925_o

i thought  i would be THAT mom who sewed pajamas for my kids each Christmas. Kind-of my “bucket list” except i still have my issues with a bucket list philosophy.

Pajamas never happened. Until this year…..1492037_10100399598708515_1506870450_o

Humor me and play along, this is really more about my joy than your’s.

i planned, i calculated, i shopped at 5:30am on Black Friday.  When you need 22 yards, it’s worth fighting the crazies at Hancock.

And i sewed ….1538142_10100399598703525_1501616873_o

i worked soooo hard to figure sizes , i measured and Googled and guessed.

This may never happen again, some of you will wish to that end.

If they fit any of you, i will be happy.1505956_10100399598653625_1706959400_o

If they fit most of you and you use them, i will be surprised.

If you love them and they are perfect Christmas Fun, i will be delighted.

 This is my sewing corner.IMG_9808

i create, i pray, i measure, i dream, i cut, i hope, i sew, i give thanks, i am overwhelmed with joy and fulfillment in having been a small part of the creating of this picture.IMG_9811

i wait with full joy to see your futures and hopes unfold!

Proverbs 31 ESV

21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,

    for all her household are clothed in Fleece.

22 She makes bed coverings …..

24 She makes linen garments and sells them;

    she delivers sashes to the needy…….1508241_10100399598289355_571323460_n

This really isn’t about the garments,

Sometimes a mamma needs a tangible way to take all those prayers and dreams and turn them into something that touches her babies. Her babies that have grown big and left the pond, her babies that now gift her with precious new fresh babies. A mamma needs to believe she can still at moments in His New Ways give comfort and encouragement and warmth to the babies HE trusted her with. Babies who are now world conquering men and beautiful dancing women. Those who are fast becoming mature mamma’s and deep thinking theologians in their own rights .

So that is all, i sewed, i am happy, i had my bucket moment (or hours and hours and hours). Let me have a picture or two and we are good to go.1525812_10100399597810315_479469086_o

Do me one huge favor…if you find they aren’t working for you or you just aren’t feeling the fleece vibe, pass them on to goodwill, a sib who is loving them or someone in need. i would love to know that someone somewhere is using them. i don’t want to add clutter to your busy worlds . You may keep the prayers and love, just pass on the fleece.

i love you more than i ever could have imagined, you bring me more joy than i ever could have asked for !!


That is all there is to it, our Tylor took the pictures, i like them,they are current and easy to access.

Self Centered post note, i printed this letter and included it with each package but i still required that they all sit and quietly listen to me as i read it aloud. i ponder if that may be the homeshcool teacher in me, perhaps i know some won’t actually read every word and i need control. i suspect it is more like this… i have them all in one spot, held captives of sorts, i want to believe they still need to hear some of what i have learned, i long to imprint in them daily HIS truth and our love for them as we did when they were tiny. So i ask them to listen when i have Christmas spirit weighting things in my favor.

It is not easy to trust Jesus with your most treasured treasures, i pray i am learning.