Indoor Camping: Creative Play with our Felt Campfire
If you don’t plan to travel this year, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little bit of holiday magic at home with the little ones – we’ve got some awesome indoor camping ideas that will help you bring the excitement of the campsite to your very own living room! If you missed our DIY Teepee tutorial you can check it out right here, or scroll down to learn how to create your own gorgeous felt campfire, complete with marshmallow toasting set for hours of imaginative indoor camping play!
Time to Make: 3-4hrs
Skill Level: Intermediate
You Will Need:
- Printable template [CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD]
- Felt in yellow, orange, red, brown, and white
- Foam tubing 3cm diameter, with 6mm hole through the centre (approx. 1.5m)
- 9 x 20cm long, 6mm diameter wooden dowling rods (for 6 logs and 3 marshmallows)
- Fabric scissors
- Sewing machine (with free motion foot)
- Yellow, red, orange, and black sewing thread
- In-R Form
- Fabric adhesive (optional)
- Glue gun & glue sticks
- Dark fabric pen
- Straight pins
Rebecca Cole’s Indoor Camping Felt Fire:
Cut out two flame shapes, on the fold, from yellow felt. Stitch all the way around with a narrow 5mm hem. Cut out a slightly smaller flame shape from In-R Form and insert it into the yellow felt pocket. Once in place, stitch up the bottom.
Cut out two orange flame shapes from felt. Line up the bottom edges and pin in place. Make sure the shapes are in line on both sides (you can check this by pushing a straight pin through the tips of the flames and checking they line up on the reverse side). Top stitch around the shape through all layers, including along the bottom. Repeat with the red flame shapes. Repeat steps 1 and 2 to create a second matching flame piece.
Place the two flame shapes on top of each other. Sew a line of machine stitching down the centre. You will be challenging your sewing machine here, especially over the red section, as you will be sewing through 2 layers of In-R Form, and 12 layers of felt. If your machine struggles with this, you can always hand sew this section… although you will want to use a thimble!
The flames will naturally want to lay in their natural flat shape so to force them to sit at right angles to each other, fold the flames against their natural direction and secure with a stitch at the bottom.
The flames should now sit in a cross formation.
Cut out a panel of brown felt 21cm x 64cm. Using free motion stitching on your machine and black thread, stitch lines up and down the width of the felt panel, occasionally creating swirls for knots. The idea is to create a bark texture.
Take some smaller pieces of brown felt and draw 12 circles each 3cm in diameter (draw around the end of the foam tubing if its easier) leaving at least 2-3cm between each circle. Again, using free motion sewing, stitch rough spirals that fill each circle. Cut the brown panel into 6 even pieces approximately 21cm x 10.5cm. Cut around the circles leaving 1-2cm all the way around.
Cut 6 lengths of foam tubing, each 20cm long. Insert a dowling rod down the centre of each one.
Cover the end of the foam tube in hot glue and stick it to a brown felt circle so that the stitched swirl covers the end. Snip into the excess felt up to the foam all the way around at approx. 5mm intervals. Apply some hot glue to the base of the foam tube and fold up the felt tabs all the way round sticking them to the glue. Repeat for all of the 12 ends of your 6 foam tubes.
Spray one side of the ‘wood’ felt and carefully roll up the foam tube in the felt. This can be done with hot glue instead but I found the spray adhesive gave a better finish. If the felt sticks over the ends anywhere, just trim it away until it’s level.
Cut the remaining foam into 3.5cm pieces. Cut 6 x 5cm diameter circles and three strips sized 3.5cm x 10.5cm from white felt. Cover them with the white felt in the same way as you did the log pieces. Pierce a hole through one end of each of the marshmallows with sharp scissors (mind your fingers!) into the hole in the middle of the tube.
Squeeze a large amount of hot glue into the hole and push the end of one of the dowling rods into the foam tube.
Your campfire is now complete. If you want to, you can make more logs. And why not try pink felt for pink marshmallows? And enjoy your indoor camping adventure!
Want to see more crafty ideas for keeping the kids busy? Check out the rest of our kids craft projects, tutorials and articles right here.