As soon as the weather started getting nice enough for us to spend time outside I began my campaign for putting up a wooden baby swing. Nick was oddly resistant to the idea. I guess he thought it would be really expensive? But I knew that it would pay for itself in endless hours of enjoying the great outdoors. I looked on etsy and other online sources, but I actually found the perfect swing at my neighborhood hardware store. I paid $35 and a few weeks later I had my swing, handcrafted from cypress by a man who lives just outside of town.
Of course, buying it was the easy part. It was up to Nick and I to figure out how to hang it. We took some nylon rope we already had on hand and created a loop with my keys strung on to give it some weight, then Nick threw it as hard as he could towards the branch that I wanted it to hang from.
We’ve used the keys-on-a-string approach to hang things before, but I guess they weren’t heavy enough for this job. So we strung a couple of wrenches on there instead. Success!
The only problem with this strategy was getting the wrenches back off of the rope without ruining our loop. So we tied another wrench to another string and tossed it over the branch as well, then tied that string to the original wrenches and pulled them back up and down the other side of the rope. I’m sure there’s an easier way to get a rope over a branch but we’re not really that good at this sort of thing. Nick got a good laugh at me shimmying the rope to get those wrenches back over the branch. Once we’d solved that problem we pulled the two free ends of the rope through the loop and pulled, making a knot over the branch.
Then we just strung the swing onto the rope and tied it up!
After googling to see what would work best, we secured the ends of the rope with three simple knots, then cut the excess rope and melted the ends with a candle to keep them from coming unraveled and compromising our knots. It feels pretty solid!
The swing didn’t come with a harness, so we poached one from a restaurant-style highchair we aren’t using. Jack would probably be okay without the harness but I didn’t want to chance it. If you wanted to try this at home and don’t have any unused baby gear to borrow a harness from you could probably track one down online (perhaps here or here).
Jack LOVES it. He could sit and swing for hours. And it’s kind of fun that the way it’s hung it can swing around in all directions, sort of like a tire swing.
I thought about painting or staining it, but in the end I decided to let it weather naturally so that it will hopefully look similar to the wood picket fence. I’m absolutely in love with the charming look and fun outside play it provides. Louisiana is absolutely beautiful this time of year and our shaded front yard is the perfect place to enjoy it. Have I mentioned that it’s also crawfish season? It’s okay to be jealous.