by maipham

January 24, 2022

How to make a baby play yard

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I’m a mum who works from home. It's great to put my lovely son down and let him play safely while I enjoy a cup of hot tea, finish a few chores, or do some work.

Regardless of my best efforts, sometimes I need my son's attention. I'm attempting to exercise every day now. I also want my son to play independently, as this is a valuable skill.

This means I'll need a safe place to leave my son while taking care of myself. Self-care is critical, especially as a parent.

Furthermore, as my baby crawls, a large play area will allow my child to move around safely and engage in solitary play, which is essential because my baby must learn self-distraction. I'd still be watching. but from a safe distance outside my child's space.

So I decided to make a DIY play yard out of various fittings if your child is on the go! Don't freak out. You can make them a DIY baby play yard right now by following the plans I'll share with you! It only took one day, and it was well worth it. This DIY baby playpen is fully customizable and ready to provide your child with a safe play area! Let's look at how to make a baby play yard now.

What Is A Play Yard?

How to make a baby play yard

A play yard, also known as a playpen, is a safe, easily portable place for your baby or toddler to play and sleep while you're at home or on the go. Baby play yards can be simple or elaborate, with mobiles, lights, music, vibration, and built-in storage for baby supplies. The best baby play yards are adaptable, durable, and simple to fold. A good play yard will benefit you and your child for many years.

A play yard with a removable changing bassinet and table is helpful to have in your bedroom or living room during the newborn months. And once your child is mobile, you'll appreciate having a safe place to leave her while you prepare dinner, get ready for work, or take a phone call.

You may wonder if older babies can sleep in a play yard instead of a crib at night. It's perfectly safe and okay for short periods, but you'll probably want to invest in a crib for long-term use. Play-yard mattresses aren't as supportive and comfortable as crib mattresses, and most play yards are only safe for a kid weighing up to 30 pounds.

How to Make a Baby Play Yard

I've compiled a list of DIY play yard projects to keep you busy this weekend. Here you will find a variety of playpen projects for your children. Are you ready for the task? I am sure you are.

The best part is that you do not have to rob a bank to build any of these DIY play yard projects. Most of them are low-cost projects.

1. Wooden play yard

The first thing I did was construct a two-sided wooden play yard with a gate. This is useful if you want to put it in a corner. If you're going to build an entire square, you can copy the plans for each side and make two more.

If you have a larger or smaller space than us, the sides can also extend. Essentially, the entire plan is adaptable to your home and area!

The size is the next critical factor to consider. This playpen is 24 inches tall, a good height for your baby to stand up but not climb over, eventually.

We also made the slats 2 inches wide with a 2.25-inch gap between them. This is the same gap I used in our DIY mid-century modern crib, which is narrower than the most recommended width. #safetyfirst

The key to making this DIY play yard is to make each side and gate separately first. Each side comprises a simple square frame that has been glued together and nailed slats around the perimeter. To provide the most strength and durability, I recommend using a Kreg K4 Pocket Hole System and Kreg pocket screws to build the frames.

I joined the two side pieces underneath where the gate would be with a small piece of wood. This ensured that the two sides remained connected even when the gate was open.

After you've completed all your sanding and staining, it's time to attach the sides to the wall. Attach the sides to the wall with right-angle brackets, making sure the corners of the sides meet.

The last step was to secure the gate. We attached the gate to one side with simple hinges to be opened and closed. The gate is then secured with a hook and eye closure.

We are in love with how this DIY baby playpen turned out. It's easy to make and looks lovely in our house. This keeps our child safe if we need to put him down for a few minutes to play.

2. PVC play yard

How to make a baby play yard

This type of play yard costs less than $50 to make and is ideal for indoor use. This PVC play yard for kids is big enough for two toddlers, and they'll have a great time.

The making process begins with gathering the tools for making this baby playpen, which includes 5 pieces of 34-inch Diameter PVC Pipe, 8 pieces of 34 diameter PVC Elbow, 12 pieces of 34 diameter PVC TEE, a rubber mat, 100 pieces of cable tie, and a few other materials.

After gathering all the materials and tools, you will need to measure and cut the PVC pipe and prepare the elbow and tee and connect the PVC pipe. After you've combined all the pipes, you'll need to install the mosquito net for the fence. Assembling the base is the final and most straightforward step in this project.

3. Fabric play yard

While researching, I came across yet another inexpensive playpen that you can build for your child. Using fabric for the fencing is a great idea; the playpen would look fantastic with the suitable fabric. This playpen for kids costs around $90 to assemble.

To begin, the playpen dimensions are 6 ft x 4 ft x 2 ft, with each side divided into 2 ft sections for optimal stability. You may need to buy a plastic pipe cutter. The next step is to cut and connect the PVC pipes to match the dimensions of the playpen.

Use fabric for the sides and blankets for the bottom for the most comfort. I would suggest putting some padding on the pipes so your child doesn't end up hitting his or her head on the pipe.

Do Not Have Time? Some Products For You

If you do not have time to do these play yards, you can buy some play yards available in the market. One of these play yards I want to introduce is the 4Moms Breeze Go Play Yard. It is solid and long-lasting, with plenty of room for play and sleeping, and it sets up and breaks down in seconds.

When I put my son in a smaller play yard, he wants to get out right away, but not with the 4Moms Breeze Go, which has plenty of room for him to play. It's also small enough to fit in my master bathroom.

The play yard has a sturdy steel frame that raises the mattress a few inches off the ground. The mattress is firm and stable, with a little more padding than low-cost options. Baby food splatter easily wiped away from the nylon sides and mattress, leaving no stains.

The 4Moms Breeze Go has the appearance and feel of a traditional play yard. However, the only motion required for setup and teardown is pulling up or pressing down on the center; no top railing locking or unlocking is needed; no locking and unlocking top railings are required. It was simple to set up with one hand and dismantle it in under 5 minutes. Teardown and packing into the included travel bag require two hands. The bag itself is well-thought-out, with the zipper running diagonally down one side, making it easier to fit the play yard inside.

If your family often travels, then the Tiny Love 6-in-1 Here I Grow Play Yard is a good option. It provided the most comprehensive all-in-one solution for sleep, play, and diapering. It includes a bassinet, changing station, diaper caddy, and infant activity gym. The changing station was more extensive and durable than others I looked at, and the play yard provides plenty of space for infants.

While a play yard with a diaper changing station isn't challenging to come by, Tiny Love adds one more perk: an activity gym that can be used independently of the play yard. The gym comprises a mat and a detachable toy arch, nearly identical to Tiny Love's Gymini activity gym, one of our top picks in our guide to the best infant activity gyms.

Furthermore, the gym comes with a developmental guide that includes ideas for playing with your baby. The arch can also be clipped into the top of the play yard frame to serve as a mobile.

As simple to assemble as a folding camp chair, the Regalo My Play Deluxe provides a safe and spacious play area for babies. The Regalo My Play Deluxe play yard offers a safe environment for children to play in the backyard, parks, camping, and outdoor events. Any playpen will keep the baby safe outside — and a crib sheet can double as a sunshade in a pinch. But, the Regalo My Play Deluxe is as simple to transport and set up as a folding camp chair.

The hexagon-shaped play yard is 4-feet across, making it the giant playpen recommended in this guide. The larger size allows my son to play for extended periods before leaving and accommodate more giant toys. The canopy provides shade and keeps most flying insects at bay. But there is a small gap between the top of the play yard and the topper through which bugs could crawl.

The setup is straightforward. I could stretch out the metal frame and use my foot to lock each of the two levers while holding the baby. With a quick pull on a string, the optional umbrella-style topper opens. The most time-consuming part of the process is attaching the topper to the play yard with several bungee cords, which only takes a few minutes. It is approximately 40 inches long when collapsed in the carry bag.

How to Make a Baby to Like His Play Yard

How to make a baby play yard

Babies now have more accessories than ever before . The list of must-haves continues to grow: play mats, bouncy seats, baby carriers, car seats, and baby gyms. A playpen has remained a constant over the years, though some babies prefer theirs over others.

Begin using the playpen as soon as possible 

Even if your newborn isn't yet playing, put him/her in the playpen as soon as possible to get him/her used to it. If putting your baby in the playpen becomes a habit, he or she is less likely to question it.

Make it enjoyable 

Place your baby's favorite toys and blanket in the playpen to help her associate it with fun.

Give in small amounts 

Begin by putting your baby in the play yard for a few minutes at a time, so he/she doesn't associate it with being left alone for an extended time.

The word "play" should be highlighted 

Play with your baby so she understands the playpen is a fun place to be, not just a place to leave her when you're busy.

Talk about it 

When discussing putting your baby in the playpen, use a positive tone.

Please be patient 

It may take some time for your baby to be content anywhere other than in your arms.


Don't be upset if your baby cries every time you put him down.

At What Age Do You Stop Using Play Yard?

Most parents will stop using a playpen once their child weighs 15kg (30lbs) or stands 86cm tall and can climb out independently. Generally, when the playpen becomes unsafe.

Safety Notes When Using Play Yard

  • Never leave your baby in a mesh play yard with a lowered side. The baby could get tangled up between the mesh side and the floorboard. Because of the risk of suffocation, only one-floor pad (mattress) should use.
  • At no time should soft bedding or pillows be used in the playpen.
  • Never replace the padding or mattress in the play yard because it may not fit properly.
  • Check all padded parts for tears regularly and cover or repair any tears.
  • Always lay your little one down on his or her back.
  • The child's playpen should not place near any windows. Drapes and blinds have cords that can strangle the baby.
  • Toys should never be tied or strung from the sides of the playpen.
  • If you're going to use a sheet, make sure it's designed for a play yard mattress and fits snugly.

Wrap up

How to make a baby play yard

Now you know how to make a baby play yard, right? You can put your lovely baby down to play safely while enjoying a cup of hot tea, a shower or look after yourself too. But keep in mind some safety notices while letting your baby have fun in his/her play yard.

About the author 

Mai Pham

Mai Pham discovered her passion for writing a few years ago and she never stop thinking about it ever since. She finally took the leap and created Live a Worthy Life to brag about her smart ass (mainly just for fun). Enjoyed the fun writing brings, now with her new interest in everything-baby-related, she created Mommy Instinct, to tell mamas that it's ok that they mess up, that they don't know what the hell they are doing, and that it's okay to sit back and relax for a while.

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