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When you Spend £400
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When you Spend £400

Exploring Different Types of Playhouses: Which One Is Right for You?

Playhouses are a cornerstone of childhood outdoor play, offering a sanctuary where children can unleash their imagination, enjoy physical activity, and learn valuable social skills.

Playhouses offer a secure space for kids to express themselves, fostering development and interaction. With a vast range of designs and sizes available, there's something for every preference and garden space.

This guide will help you with buying a playhouse fit for your kids, focusing on style, size, safety, and exciting accessories to enhance the play experience, ensuring it becomes a cherished part of their daily adventures.

What's Your Style? Discovering the Best Playhouse Design for Your Child

Selecting the right design is pivotal in finding a playhouse that resonates with your child's imagination and blends well with your outdoor space:

Wooden Playhouses: These timeless structures, often referred to as a Wendy House, offer robust durability. Wooden playhouses offer versatile thematic customisations, ranging from simple cabins to elaborate fairy-tale cottages. They seamlessly blend into garden settings and, with proper treatment, endure the elements for lasting enjoyment. Equipped with features like verandas, window boxes, and loft spaces, these playhouses enhance functionality and appeal.

Wooden cottage playhouse

Plastic Playhouses: Ideal for young children, these playhouses, also known as garden playhouses, come in a variety of bright colours and are made from durable, weather-resistant plastic. They are lighter and generally easier to assemble and relocate, which is perfect for families who prefer a temporary setup or have limited space. Their modular design often allows for easy expansion or reconfiguration, catering to evolving play needs and spaces.

Tower Playhouses: These structures are fantastic for adding an element of adventure to your garden. Elevated from the ground, the tower playhouse often includes features like slides, climbing walls, or swing sets, making them an excellent choice for promoting active play. The elevation provides a unique viewpoint for children, fostering a sense of independence and adventure as they play in these exciting outdoor playhouses.

Big or Small: How Do You Choose the Right Size Playhouse?

The size of the playhouse should correspond to your available garden space and the number of children who will use it:

Space Considerations: Measure your space to ensure the playhouse fits comfortably, leaving enough room for other garden activities. For compact spaces, consider a playhouse with a vertical design that maximises the play area without expanding the footprint. Ensure there is sufficient clearance around the playhouse for safe entry and exit. Always check with your local authorities to find out if planning permission is required.

Playhouse Capacity: Larger families or those expecting frequent guests should opt for a bigger model. A spacious playhouse not only accommodates multiple children but also provides room for growth and the addition of interior play elements. It's important that the playhouse does not feel cramped and that it supports the children's ability to play freely and comfortably.

Adaptability: Some playhouses offer modular designs, allowing for expansions such as extra rooms or annexed play areas, which can be added as your needs evolve. This flexibility is ideal for adapting to the changing needs of growing children and can accommodate new play interests or an increasing number of children. Consider playhouses that can adapt not only in size but also in function, with the ability to add new features like climbing walls, slides, or even educational elements over time.

Safe and Sturdy: What Features Should Your Playhouse Have?

Safety is the foremost concern when choosing a playhouse, closely followed by durability:

Construction Quality: High-quality construction using safe, non-toxic materials is essential for garden buildings. For wooden playhouses, look for certified, sustainably sourced wood. Ensure all materials are finished smoothly to avoid splinters or sharp edges. Moreover, verify that the playhouse structure is robust, with particular caution of playhouse bases that can withstand both active play and adverse weather conditions without shifting or collapsing.

Wooden cottage playhouse

Safety Standards: Playhouses should adhere to rigorous safety standards, including stable construction to prevent tipping, rounded corners, and secure fastenings for doors and windows. Safety hinges on doors and windows prevent them from slamming shut, protecting little fingers from injury. Additionally, it's crucial that any paints or finishes used are child-safe and contain no harmful chemicals or lead.

Maintenance: Wooden playhouses require periodic maintenance to remain safe and attractive. Check for and seal any cracks or splinters annually, and consider reapplying a weatherproof stain every few years. Regular inspections of the roof and floor with a spirit level can prevent minor issues from becoming major hazards, ensuring the playhouse for your children remains a secure place to play.

Which Accessories Will Elevate Your Kids' Playhouse Fun?

Accessories can significantly enhance the playhouse experience by increasing its utility and appeal:

Functional Add-ons: Elements like slides, swings, or even a climbing frame can be attached to many playhouses, extending the play area and adding physical activity. Consider also adding rope ladders and monkey bars to encourage agility and strength training in a fun, engaging way.

Creative Play: Inside, consider accessories like play kitchens, tool benches, or art easels to encourage imaginative and creative play. These can be tailored to the interests of your children, making the playhouse an exciting space for creativity and learning. Adding costumes or a puppet theatre can further enrich the creative environment, offering more avenues for storytelling and role-play. 

Children playing with wooden playhouse with a mud kitchen accessory

Learning and Growth: Incorporate educational toys such as weather stations, growth charts, or even simple telescopes to blend play with learning. These tools can help children learn about their environment and foster a curiosity about nature and science. Adding elements like a clock or a small garden kit can also teach responsibility and time management while connecting them with nature.


Choosing a playhouse involves careful consideration of style, size, safety features, and the potential for added fun with accessories. By selecting a playhouse that fits well within your garden, meets high outdoor playhouse safety standards, and stimulates your child’s imagination and physical activity, you will provide a safe, engaging, and enjoyable outdoor space that your children will cherish throughout their childhood.

Ensuring the playhouse is adaptable and grows with your child enhances its value, making it a lasting investment in their happiness and developmental progress.

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