This handmade farm using a mat, paint, and items picked up at a craft store is the perfect role-playing craft for kids.

My little man has an obsession with trains (as I think everyone knows by now). 

So what does this mama build him for Christmas? A train track? Nope. A barnyard! I know, I know. But, he loves it … in fact, he’s been playing with it so much that he’s broken it three times already and my glue gun is getting quite a workout.

Handmade barnyard
The barn was created using a paper mache trunk. You know the kind you find at craft stores in that long aisle of amazing paper mache bits and pieces needing a little love to dress them up.  Once the door was cut and the exterior painted, I bent a stiff piece of gray felt board into the shape of a barnyard roof and glued it down. Then all the other little accessories such as birds and stalls inside (which you will see in photos below) were added at the end, and again, all glued down.  Even the straw on the inside is partially glued so that a huge mess isn’t created in the house.

cardboard barnyard

handmade gift for kids

Remember the train track mat I made for Flynn last year? Well, having twins I had two of the portable cribs that were recalled.  Which meant I also rescued the other mattress to make the ‘farm’.  It took about four coats of fabric paint to cover over the pattern on the mattress, but doesn’t it make a great platform for the barn and farm animals to sit on?

re-use childs play mat

Homemade Barnyard

The added bonus is that all of the farm pieces pack nicely into the barn and the mat folds up so you don’t have to leave it up all the time.

Please pin this post for later:

Diy play barn and farm for kids

Grab these items to make your own barnyard before you go:


You Might Also Like These Too


karen January 2, 2010 - 3:43 pm

bravo my friend. bravo!

Adrian January 2, 2010 - 10:51 pm

What a neat gift! I’ll bet he will remember that one for years to come. I know my boys would have loved something like that.

Julie January 3, 2010 - 6:21 pm

SITS hello! That is a great idea! I have a nephew who got a barn this year, but yours is so much better.

Life with Kaishon January 3, 2010 - 7:35 pm

Oh my gosh. That is SO creative. I LOVE it! I love Mom’s like you! So cool! I am stopping over from SITS. I think your soon is adorable too. Look at that hair. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww!

Katrina January 3, 2010 - 6:18 pm

Wow!! That’s a beautiful farm!

becca January 3, 2010 - 6:21 pm

Ok, can I hire you? I thought I was creative but this is amazing! Fantastic!
Visiting from Sits!

Ali @PickleSugarPlum January 3, 2010 - 8:03 pm

another crafty creation! You are such an inspiration to wannabe-crafters like me!!! 🙂


MONICA January 3, 2010 - 9:43 pm

the barnyard came out great,how so very creative and fun!
stopping by from SITS

lisa Demars January 4, 2010 - 4:59 am

Aww love it..What a great idea..Wow you are one handy girl..That loves to crafted..Hope you have a wonderful day..

Dana - Old Red Barn Co. January 4, 2010 - 8:49 am

Adorable!! And so creative too. Love it!

Susan (5 Minutes for Mom) January 4, 2010 - 11:40 pm

That is amazing!!!! I am not surprised that he loves it.

Kristine January 5, 2010 - 10:56 pm

That is gorgeous. I love the matching play mat and that it all packs away.

Brooke January 7, 2010 - 10:18 am

Cute idea! And great idea with the pack and play too, I think we are done with the PNP’s….we did just use them at Disney in Dec though, I think we have graduated them, but I guess you could still use it, a cool new design though.

angie January 7, 2010 - 4:00 pm

What a fantastic gift. I LOVE it.

Emily January 11, 2010 - 8:32 pm

Very, very cute project! Not sure I’d have the time and patience for it but I love it!

vanessa @ silly eagle books January 12, 2010 - 6:41 pm

This is amazing. I’m going to link to this the next time I review a barn-themed book!

Carolyn August 17, 2011 - 11:20 pm

I love the way the roof lifts off the barn. Fantastic and lots of fun ahead.


Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More