How To Make An Indoor DIY Swing from a 2×4 and Plywood Scraps

Be the coolest house on the block by making an indoor DIY swing for the kids! You’ll need just a 2×4, and some scraps of plywood to make this simple swing.

Be sure to also check out how to hang a swing chair (indoor or outdoor) and see more of our favorite hanging swing chairs, plus how to make a DIY swing from an old chair.

How to make a DIY swing for an indoor swingset for kids

How to Make a DIY Swing for Kids

Hi everyone! It’s Jill from The Rozy Home! Summer is knocking on our door here in Texas and that means one thing – stir crazy kids who are full of energy because it’s too hot to play outside. Or maybe I should change that to – who can’t play outside because of the bazillion or so mosquitoes hovering about. Yes, summer in Texas is brutal.

Last summer we did all we could think to do to keep our kiddos entertained during the sweltering heat but let’s face it, those long, hot days when I have to work and they can’t go outside means they are stuck inside with not much to do. I really think at one point I’ve seen the kids literally bouncing off the walls.

One of the ongoing projects in our home has been our playroom. We wanted to make it a space they could use all year, but mainly during the summer. Initially, it was closed off by the previous owner in an attempt to sell the home as a four bedroom (except the space he made had no closet, so it was just a big room).

A year or so after moving in, we knocked the wall down to open it back up. After a few years, though, I started a business and needed a dedicated office. I decided to put up another wall, but only take what I absolutely needed (you can check out that project here).

When all was said and done, we were left with a big empty space for the kids. After throwing out a million or so ideas, the hubs and I decided that we would make the kiddos indoor DIY swings. Both of our kids love to swing and they loved the idea!

Since the playroom is downstairs, we knew we had strong joists in the ceiling (something we saw first hand during our bathroom remodel) so we knew they could support the weight of the kiddos. All that was left was to make the swings and hang them to make our own swing set in the basement.

We could have hung premade swings or made a simple wood slat swing, but I wanted to use up some lumber scraps AND give the kids a cushioned swing seat, so this DIY swing is built more like a box seat.

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How to Build an Indoor DIY Swing Set

Materials (for one swing)

If you can use scraps, the cost of lumber is F-R-E-E!

Tools Needed

  • Drill
  • Stud finder
  • Brad nailer
  • Kreg jig

Total Cost: Around $30

Step 1: Create the inner swing support

Cut your 2′ x 4′ into (2) 13″ pieces and (2) 20.5″ pieces.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - frame

Drill pocket holes on each end of each 20.5″ piece using your Kreg Jig.

Attach the 20.5″ pieces to the 13″ pieces using the 2 1/2″ pocket screws.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - pocket holes

Note: I also like to nail the pieces together for extra peace of mind, and you can use wood glue as well.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - inner support frame

Step 2: Create the outer swing shell

Cut your 1′ x 4′ x 8′ into (2) 14.5″ pieces and (2) 22″ pieces. (Measure to find the exact fit.)

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - outer wood shell

Attach the 14.5″ and 22″ pieces to the inner support creating an outer shell.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - nail on the plywood shell

I like to use brad nails for easy cover-up later, but you could use regular nails or screws if you prefer.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - wood box swing

Step 3: Attach the top and bottom to the swing

Attach the 16″ x 22″ x 3/4″ plywood piece to the top and bottom of the outer shell using a brad nailer.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - wood box swing from scraps
DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - nail top on
Building an indoor DIY swing for kids - box finished

Add wood banding to the edges (optional)

For those who don’t like unfinished edges, wood banding is wonderful (and simple to apply). Simply cut the strip about 1″ longer than needed and apply it to the edges with an iron. Once you’ve ironed it, smooth it with a block of wood and trim the excess off.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - iron wood banding
DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - smooth wood banding
DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - apply and trim wood banding

Step 4: Stain or paint the DIY swing

We opted to stain our swings using Sherwin Williams Sherwood stain in Dark Walnut. Sand with 100 grit sandpaper before staining.

Step 5: Add the eye hooks

Measure and mark 1″ in and 1″ over at each corner of the seat top.

Installing a DIY indoor swing for kids - add eye hooks to hang swing

Using the 5/32″ drill bit, drill a hole.

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - add eye hooks to hang wood swing

Screw the eye hook into each hole (I have found that threading a long screwdriver through the eyelet helps tighten the eye hook).

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - eye screws to hang rope wood swing

Step 6: Attach the swing hardware set to the ceiling

First, determine how much space you want to give the kids to swing and place the swing hangers a safe distance from the wall.

We didn’t want them going crazy, so we allowed for 3 feet clearance (36″ from the back wall). Measure out the desired distance and, using a stud finder, locate a ceiling joist for each of the two swing hardware screws. The pair of hangers will be 22″ apart to match the width of the DIY swing seat.

Installing an indoor DIY swing for kids - attach swing hanger hardware to ceiling

Using a drill bit (refer to the package for the appropriate size) drill a hole into the stud (joist).

Installing a DIY swing for kids indoors - dill holes for swing hanging hardware in ceiling

Next, twist the swing screw into the ceiling. Again, use a screwdriver through the loop to make it much easier.

Installing a DIY swing for kids indoor swingset -  use screwdriver to tighten swing hardware to ceiling

Step 7: Attach the DIY swing to the swing hardware

Thread the kernmantle rope through the swing hardware in the ceiling and tie each end around the screw eyes on the DIY swing. That’s it!

You can also use the same concept to attach the swing frame to the top beam of a wooden swing set, if you’d rather – just make sure that you prep the wood for outdoor use.

Note: If your children are young or have balance issues, use a clamp to stop the rope from causing the swing to tip frontward or backwards.

Installing a DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - use climbing rope

We have had the DIY swings in the playroom for 6 months and I am happy to report there are no holes in the wall.

If you are worried your kids won’t be as diligent, you can always add plastic bumpers to the back corners of the swings to shield them from impact with the wall.

Additionally, if you are worried they will be in the way, you can add another eye hook to the bottom (underneath) side of the seat and attach it to a hook in the wall (an idea we toyed with but ultimately decided against).

DIY swing for kids indoor swingset - made from scrap wood, hung using climbing rope

These DIY swings have been a huge hit for the kiddos – and their friends! Our next project for the playroom? We are creating indoor monkey bars along the walls and ceilings!

Safety and Liability: Please remember, this blog is for entertainment purposes only. As with ALL of our DIY projects and tutorials, be certain to read over the complete tutorial before starting a project. Build at your own risk and be smart, be safe. We will not be responsible for any injury or damage incurred while following a tutorial from our site. None of our posts should be considered expert advice; please consult a professional when needed, read all safety and instruction manuals, and take all safety precautions. All projects performed following instructions found on this site are done at your own risk.

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How to Make an Indoor Swing - this is so perfect for a basement rec room or kids playroom!

First published 13 June 2015 // Last updated 18 Jan 2024

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Jill has been working for years to make her house into her forever home. With a love of high-end details, Jill works to recreate a high-end look on a DIY budget.

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4 Comments

  1. Hey!! So I’m really wanting a swing in my room but my room isn’t very big and I’m not sure how to get it to stay in the ceiling