Dreamy Custom Treehouses

The sky's the limit with Barbara Butler's playful, innovative treehouses.
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Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Photo By: Courtesy Barbara Butler

Terra Verde Treehouse

California-based designer and builder Barbara Butler created her Terra Verde Treehouse to sit securely on two support posts and the large branches of an old oak tree. The 6' x 8' clubhouse has a cedar shingle roof, board and batten siding, hand-made glass windows, and a 120' zip line from an upper deck that doubles as a take-off platform.

Roughhouse Treehouse

Butler's Roughhouse Treehouse was built for public use in the Turnberry Town Square Children's Park in Las Vegas, Nevada. This rustic, Tom Sawyer-style structure conforms to ADA Handicap Accessible guidelines and sits around a tree transported from Texas.

Southampton Treehouse

Two stately trees support this customized Southampton Treehouse, which uses a 16-foot long swinging bridge to connect a big clubhouse to 3 levels of decks. Kids can soar on its exciting zip line.

Marsh Point Treehouse

Palmetto palms and hanging Spanish moss surround Butler's Marsh Point Treehouse in Florida. Cut-out shapes let light into the interior. Kids can shimmy down the pole attached to the small tower when it's time to call it a day.

New Treehouse

Barbara Butler's New Treehouse is a hideway for children who like a bird's-eye view of their surroundings. A bright purple ladder leads into the house, while a tunnel slide lets visitors make a fast, fun exit.

Old Oak Treehouse

Built around an oak tree sitting over a peaceful valley, the Old Oak Treehouse has a balcony like the one Juliet might have used to see her Romeo. Winding steps lead to a two-tiered deck and clubhouse. Rope-net railings keep kids safe; tempered glass windows open to the sunlight and fresh air.

Magical Bridge

This elevated deck, surrounded by a large tree, is part of Butler's Magical Bridge Playground in Mitchell Park, in Palo Alto, California. It's designed to be fun and accessible to everyone. The entire playground can be used and enjoyed by adults and children with wheelchairs, visual impairments, autism or sensory and cognitive issues.

Adoorable Treehouse

No, that's not a misspelling. Butler constructured her Adoorable Treehouse from doors that a client had salvaged and collected over a period of years. A redwood frame surrounds the doors, while a single, glass-paned French door serves as a skylight.

Casa de Arbol

Casa de Arbol is a Mediterranean-style treehouse painted in Tuscan colors. Butler built the treehouse to accomodate a long, twisting branch that goes through the house and back out again. A slide for exiting is just visible to the right of the treehouse, underneath a rope net ladder; a disc swing hangs underneath the deck. Other play features include a rock climbing wall and a flagpole flying a Jolly Roger.

Castle Fortress and Winding Tree Fort

Built in Maryland, the Castle Fortress and Winding Tree Fort gives kids a rustic "jail" to play in. Underneath the deck, there's room for a swing glider and other play features. Butler used winding steps to lead into the multi-level treehouse in the background.

Coyote Valley Treehouse

Double, S-curved "winder steps" take kids to the large deck and clubhouse of this Coyote Valley Treehouse. Tucked away in a peaceful valley, the rustic house sits securely between the branches of several big trees, so the children have beautiful views all around.

L.A. Fortress

Butler's L.A. Fortress, built in California, has lots of opportunities for climbing, including a rung ladder and rope ladder, and monkey bars for swinging on. "Wavy" and tunnel slides make it easy to slip out. Each end of the structure nestles into the surrounding trees.

L.A. Fortress Climbing Holds

This view of Butler's L.A. Fortress shows climbing holds that kids can use to enter the structure. A rope hangs nearby for anyone who needs it. The green bridge leads to a tree-shaded deck on the left. Look closely to spot the bucket on a pulley in the middle of the image; it's great for sending up nibbles when stomachs start growling.