How to Make a Free-Standing Homemade Baby Gate
Free-standing baby gates combine the protection of a child gate with the convenience and portability of a playpen. Free-standing gates connect across a room and secure at each end, or the gates form into various shapes to create an enclosed play area. Best of all, the gate collapses and is easily stored when no longer needed. Retail free-standing gates are available, but expensive. If you want to keep your costs low, build your own free-standing baby gate; it requires very little actual building experience.
Measure the length of the largest space you want blocked by the child gate. Measure how high you want the gate. Most gates are 2- to 2-and-a-half-feet high. For each three feet of gate length, you need two supports made of PVC pipe. PVC pipe and pipe assembly pieces can be found at all hardware and plumbing stores.
Collect four PVC pipe joints and two PVC clips for each three-foot section of gate.
Cut the PVC pieces to specification with the jigsaw.
Construct the gate pieces, gluing the PVC into the joints and clips with PVC adhesive. PVC adhesive dries in 24 hours.
Measure and cut the breathable fabric covering for the gate pieces. Add four inches to each end of fabric to allow for hemming, wrapping, and snap placement.
Sew the fabric with a one-inch hem the entire length.
Measure and place the snaps half inch from the edge of the fabric. Place the snap's mate 3 and a half inches from the ends of the fabric. This ensures a snug fit against the frame. Place the snaps every two inches along the top and bottom of the frame.
Place the fabric over the frames and snap in place.
Things You Will Need
- Tape measure
- 1-inch diameter PVC pipe
- PVC pipe joints
- PVC adhesive
- Breathable fabric (Cotton, lycra, cotton blends)
- Sewing machine
- Metal snaps
- Snap applicator
- If you don't want to cut the PVC pieces yourself, purchase the pieces from a retail hardware store. Most retail hardware stores have a table saw available to cut the pipes for customers and many do it for no extra cost.
- PVC adhesive is toxic when wet and releases fumes. Only work with the adhesive in a well-ventilated room away from pets and children.