In a child's mind, even the smallest nook or cranny can become a hideaway, a fortress, or a teahouse. Create your child's own pint-sized private world, ripe for imagination and exploration or even just an afternoon snooze. Use a corner of her room to erect a small fabric teepee (canvas over PVC pipe, wooden dowels, or even bamboo sticks from a garden shop work great) or a circus tent made out of a big, colorful sheet or parachute.
A playhouse can be fashioned from a giant appliance carton. Wallpaper or contact paper around the outside not only reinforces the cardboard structure (for hours of door and window-opening play) but also allows you to personalize it to your child's interests. Add carpet remnants to the floor, toss in fluffy pillows, make windows for peeking in and out, and Velcro a play phone onto the inside wall. You'll lose your child for hours!