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How to Put Up a Playpen

By C. Paul Martin ; Updated April 18, 2017

A playpen can be a very useful accessory for the parent of a small child. Not only does it provide an enclosed play area for your young one, but it can also be an excellent place for a nap. Unpacking a playpen can be daunting, however, especially with the most common model, the Pack n Play. Luckily, it is easy to master its erection and collapse.

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Unwrap the playpen by undoing the straps which secure the wrapper. This wrapper doubles as the baseboard, so set it aside for later use.

Pull out on all four bottom corners (feet) of the playpen. Between corners on each side there is a hidden hinge, so be sure to straigten the hinge to secure your work.

Pull out on all four top corners of the playpen. There is a hinge between these corners as well, but these are locking hinges. Be sure to straighten and then lock each of these hinges by rotating them to face down, rather than up.

Put the bedsheet on the baseboard, with the cushion side of the baseboard facing up.

Place the baseboard in the playpen to finish the erection of the playpen.


Collapsing the playpen is very easy. Merely reverse the instructions here. Some playpens even have a lift handle that collapses the rest of the playpen after the top hinges have been unlocked.


Some playpens do not use rotating hinges for the top frame, and these will eventually wear out. Be careful when selecting which playpen you use.

Though a playpen can be a worry-free place for your child to take a nap when away from home, your child will eventually outgrow its use. Be careful to note when he learns to crawl underneath the baseboard while in the playpen. It is then time to retire the playpen.

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About the Author

C. Paul Martin began writing in 2003 while studying at Christendom College, Va. He specializes in theological/ideological history and socio-historical topics such as the Reformation, the Crusades and the ideology of revolutions. Martin holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in history and theology, and is pursuing his Master of Arts in history at National University in California.

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