#834 Building an amazing couch cushion fort in your living room

Sturdy and strongBuilding a family room stronghold is no joke.

No, it’s a kindergarten lesson in teamwork, trust, and the art of war. Follow these six steps to construct your domestic defense:

Step 1: Clear and collect. Get the coffee table, throw rugs, and plastic toys out of the way, then begin hunting for materials. Couch cushions are your obvious first targets but pillows, sheets, and sleeping bags will be needed too. And I don’t need to tell you that if your family just got a new fridge delivered, grab that giant cardboard box, because your fort just got a den.

Pouring the foundation

Step 2: Main construction. Some people opt for the sleeping bag carpeting technique. Others move directly into building sturdy walls and laying down a roof. Wall possibilities include turning chairs and couches around, tipping coffee tables sideways, or just piling up cushions. As for the roof, carefully toss a few sheets over your castle walls and hold the corners down firmly with Trivial Pursuit boxes, barbells, or an iron.

Good, well-fortified view

Step 3: Add-ons. Now it’s time to ammo up. Your fort needs windows to spot your enemies, a secret back door getaway in case of surprise attacks, and plenty of flashlights to navigate this harsh carpet-burny terrain. Plus, don’t forget a TV with Nintendo in the barracks for those long, lonely nights.

Step 4: Hiding spaces. All forts should include several hiding spaces in case of surprise enemy break-ins. Plan a couple behind false wall cushions or underneath a pile of dirty blankets. These also serve as excellent jail cells, where you can trap your victim, give them noogies, and force them to watch you play Zelda for three hours.

Trench food

Step 5: Rations. You will need a hidden pile of snacks to get through the day. See if you can make do with a pile of Cheddar Cheese Combos, open Froot Loops boxes, and warm cans of soda. Hey, we’re at war here, people.

Type fast for quick entry

Step 6: Finishing touches. Finally, it’s time to add extra perks like a Speak & Spell doorbell, cardboard periscope, or a wide strip of bubble wrap laying outside as an Intruder Alert System.

After that, you’re pretty much done. Your family room fortress is a tall, plush tower of strength, and you can just crawl in and enjoy defending your cozy new confines.

Just imagine what the inside looks like

Yes, as long as nobody’s parents buy the pre-packaged Super Fort from the Cranium buzzkills, cushion forts sure do give kids a great burst of creative energy on rainy days. They plan and design and build and ultimately sit back and relax deep in the bowels of their secret sanctuary. For kids, it’s nearly impossible to get away from it all, so the amazing couch cushion fort serves as much more — it’s an army barracks, a bat cave, a weekend at the cottage, and a trip down South, all rolled up in a pile of stained cushions, old blankets, and big ideas in middle of the room.


Together we are strong

Photos from: here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here

— Listen to my new podcast 3 Books with Neil Pasricha