If you’re looking for a lockdown project to improve your best DIY skills, get inspired by this creative dad.
Tom Cole, of Abergavenny, South Wales, decided to make the most of the fence to build his daughter Mila, three, an incredible playhouse – and it only cost him £ 10 by cleverly reusing everything from wood and screws to hinges and bolts.
Tom, 31, told discount community LatestDeals.co.uk “The idea came because the corner against the garage at the bottom of the yard was not being used. My daughter saw something similar online and asked for a tree house, but we don’t have a tree .
“I was a carpenter, but I got fed up with seven days of work and missed my daughter when I was growing up. I ended up in a total career switch last year and now I am servicing and repairing scooters.
‘The feel-good factor of this is much better than with carpentry. The guys I help now are so grateful. I get to know them and their family and they get to know me and my family. I often take my daughter with her because she is such a joy.
“I had wood and screws left over from previous jobs I worked on and spent a few years in the garden. I would save wood from the fire and skip and save everything I could.
“I have tins and tins with accessories. The felt for the roof kicked around in my uncle’s shed, which was converted a few years ago. I got the pallets from a local guy and he said I could get them for free.
“I’ve had quite a bit of him in the past with various projects I’ve done in the garden. I gave him £ 10 as a kind gesture for him to buy a few beers for himself. That’s all I have issued.
“The first job was stripping the pallets. That is the most difficult job. I did not concrete the posts because I don’t want any problems with the municipality, but that was my first job.
‘I have connected the uprights to the existing fence that is next to a private parking lot. Then I laid the deck down and placed the handrail on the upright top half of the steps.
“I used pallets to wrap around and then decided to put the roof on it, because I had a friend give me old wood. Then I built walls and roof and finally placed the bottom steps because I wanted to make it safer. ‘
Tom says the project was an ideal way to spend time with his daughter during the closing, saying she helped him throughout the process.
“I’m so glad I took the time to build it,” he added. “My partner works for the NHS, so it gave me and my daughter something to do together to spend our time.
“I’m so glad it happened now because I love sitting in the garden watching her play in it. I didn’t want to make it big at first, but I just went on stripping pallets and kept building .
“The total expenditure on this was just £ 10. I saved everything from skipping. Even the hinges and latch on the door come from an old garden gate. We love to sit and watch her play in the garden – we can have all the fun in the middle of our own backyard! I like to make things from scratch. “
Tom Church, co-founder of LatestDeals.co.uk notes, “Looking at Tom’s amazing tree house, I would never imagine such a cool construction costing just £ 10.
“It just goes to show that by asking friends and family for leftover and unused items such as pallets and felt, and by reusing everything possible, such as hinges and latches, you can create your own great garden construction while locked in place keeps prices really low! “