Update: As you can see my children were quite small when we made this water blob. I have tried this years later with my bigger kids (aged 8 and 9) and they are just too big now for the water blob. This is better suited for either one child to play or toddlers to play- not bigger kids.
Here is a very easy and inexpensive way to bring tremendous fun to your summer this year! Make a Giant Water Bed for the kids to play- you won’t believe how much joy they will get from this project.
My kids still talk about this as the highlight of their summer (and that summer we also went to Disneyland so there you have it.)
We had a terrible heat spell this weekend so I decided this was the time to finally make one of these giant water beds for the kiddos (or water blob if you prefer).
This was fairly simple to do and the price of the materials was about $13 at Home Depot or Lowe’s. You just want to get a plastic sheeting (extra strength) and really good tape. The sheeting we used was Husky Brand and found in the section with the laminate flooring. The tape was Scotch Duct tape and it worked really well- that can be found over by the paint.
To start with you want to lay the plastic sheeting out- we laid it out in the driveway.
Next fold it in half and start taping all around leaving one small hole in one corner for the hose to fit. Make sure you tape well and really press the tape in to get a good seal.
Once you do that position the water bed where you want it. Try for a flat surface and obviously on grass. Our yard slopes down so it was a little harder to get the water even in the bed.
One little tip as you are taping your sheeting. Check out Stratco Fencing Catalogue to find awesome products for your outdoor area. We folded the sheeting over and then folded it up about 2 inches so the tape was not exactly on the seam of the two pieces. If you have it right on the seam all the pressure from jumping will be on those sides and you will have more leaks.
If you fold it up slightly and then tape it-the taped part will be on top of the water bed and less likely to leak.
Feed the hose inside the tarp. Try to push the hose to the far end of the tarp so you can fill more evenly. I propped the end of the hose up on a plastic tub and taped it gently in place so that water wouldn’t escape out when I was filling the tarp. Fancy right?
Once it is full just take the hose out and tape up the hole. We used the corner as our hole for the hose to make it easy to find and seal again.
It takes a bit to get the entire tarp filled with water- I added some blue food coloring once it was full and before I sealed the corner so it would look prettier. One or two jumps and the food coloring spreads out. You can also add little plastic fish and things but just be careful because you don’t want to pop holes in the tarp.
This is what the final product will look like. The girls had fun jumping on this for a bit (I jumped too and it is pretty darn cool!) I wanted to lay down and read a book on it myself.
But they started to get a little bored with the jumping and so….
I turned on the sprinklers.
And the fun really began. They LOVED it after the bed got wet and I had the sprinklers on low and they raced through (slip n slide style) for ages. In fact I finally had to yell to come inside and we left it all out there for after dinner.
It did spring one or two leaks- just grab the tape and patch them up.
Overall I’d say this was worth the effort. It was something new and different for the kiddos and I think it is a fun thing for bigger kids and really little ones. If you have toddlers you might consider putting large goldfish gummy candy or something inside because I can see them crawling around and really noticing the details of the water swooshing around.
I think if we go to Grandpa’s house or somewhere that we don’t have a lot of toys I would totally make this again.
And if you haven’t met all the neighbors in your community yet- I guarantee you will have people stopping by to see what the heck you have going on :).
This is part of the 30 days to a Funner Summer series.
You can catch up with the entire series by click below:
- Day 1: Get Organized! How to organize children’s activity bags.
- Day 2: End of Year Surprises for Children
- Day 3: Strawberry Lemon Slushie Recipe
- Day 4: Homemade Hamburger Seasoning to AMP up your burgers
- Day 5: How to make Giant Bubble Solution
- Day 6: How to Save Money on Road Trips
- Day 7: How to Create a Summer Schedule.
k lorene says
I made one of these last summer and it was the hit of the season!! My kidlets still talk about it and ask when I’m going to make another one.
I learned many tips/tricks/lessons with my first one, and I hope that means that this year’s water bed will be that much better!
So cool! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays 😀 Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.
Want to try this next summer. That comment about the neighbors was so true! This summer we made a giant piñata out of a cardboard box and hung it on the basketball hoop, we had a lady stop by from down the street and see what we were doing lol
what is the wight limit? Because I am 90 lb and I was wanting to know if it would pop. Please answer soon!
Epic!!! When i have my friends with kids over, I absolutely need to do this… I wonder if the sort of heavy-duty vinyl-repair patch stuff would hold better than the tape….hmmm. I use it to patch my actual waterbed which is nearly as old as I am. lol
please create video about how you make giant water bed and upload at youtube.
Miriam Bonney says
I’m 12 and I’m a bit big, but would this work for someone my size? (5′ 8″ 150 lbs?) I want to do the Water Blob this summer so badly! :]
Miriam- you can certainly try it but I don’t think it will hold your weight 🙁 I don’t want to discourage you but I’d hate for you to be disappointed too. I am 5’6 and 135 lbs and I know it wouldn’t have held my weight.
Well, I guess I won’t be making it! 🙁 I’ll make it for my younger brothers and sisters though! How much weight can it hold? At max?
Miriam my kids were 4 and 6 I think when we made this and I would say combined they were probably 70 lbs. Can’t say how much weight it would hold but you might have your brothers and sisters take turns. Too much weight would probably ruin it. Good luck!