About Bilderhoos and its founders


Kieran, Jill, Sean, and David in our shop in Olympia in February 2015. Photo by Holly Graham.Bilderhoos, Inc. is a woman-owned, family operated, mom-run startup based in Chicago.  Up until recently we built all the sets ourselves from a woodshop in Olympia Washington. But we outgrew our own shop in our first year!  Currently our 'hooses are hand-crafted by another family-run woodworking shop in Pennsylvania, outfitted to build our unusual product, Bilderhoos 2.0 Architectural Play Sets. 

History of the 'Hooses

Little Jeremy and Max in Copenhagen in 1999.David built a visually similar set of boards for his sons about 15 years ago based on a set in Orstedsparken playground in Copenhagen, Denmark. (I believe that original set is still in use to this day!)  In 2014 Jill proposed the idea of adapting it and starting a business.  It seemed to her that there was a place for such a big, portable play set like this in the world: Kids would benefit tremendously from the stretching of every muscle -- from their brains to their little bodies -- as they build and think and build again.  

Since that idea took hold, it has been a flurry of creative activity from all of us.  We've been swept in to this business because we think it's a super concept and a unique product that kids can enjoy and grow up with. We build it to last, and expect that your kids can still be using it when they grow up and have their own kids. 


David's first set of 'popsicle sticks' from over a dozen years ago that sparked Bilderhoos.