Saturday, October 25, 2008

A Homemade Play Kitchen

I finally finished the play kitchen for Neva!! I began this journey over 6 months ago with the following goals:

1. To spend under $50 total
2. Use as much recycled materials as possible
3. Limit my driving to acquire these materials, only stop somewhere if it is on my way somewhere else.
4. Make it really cute and have fun doing it

Fortunately for me there are 2 huge construction salvage yards and a handful of thrift stores close to my house, not to mention garage sales on the weekends. I started doing some research on the internet and found some good inspiration. There were homemade kitchens made from old wooden entertainment centers, bookshelves, end tables, cupboards, and computer desks.

After 1 hour at a construction salvage yard I found what I was looking for. It was 3 separate pieces priced at $10 each, but got them all for $20!!

The cabinet on the left and the bottom were just old kitchen cabinets, the piece I put on top, well I am not really sure what that was used for, I just knew it worked. The small cut out rectangle on the back was there when I bought it, but the square cut out on the "cook top"my husband did to put the kitchen sink in.

I took off all the hardware that came with the cabinets and spray painted them silver. I got all my paint at our local recycling center. On Saturday mornings they have a free paint drop off/pick up. You just take what you need and give what you don't! So I got the silver spray paint, white paint for all over, and red accent paint! All for free and all recycled. I scored on the faucet, it cost me $5 and is one of those with hot/cold written on the porcelain handles. It was gold but way cuter silver. I also got new pulls and wooden knobs at the salvage yard for $1 total.

My hubby, attaching thing 1 to thing 2. If you notice the now much larger cut out on the back. I had him make it 11x17 so I could put laminated photos in there, so Neva has a changing view out of her kitchen window!

Almost done! After lots of coats of white paint and red accents, it is beginning to take life! We put in the 2 shelves in the fridge, remember these were originally horizontal cabinets. And one shelf under the stove top to serve as the oven rack.
It's done and better than I could have imagined!

Opened up and ready to be played with!

OK, so I found the "kitchen sink" at the thrift store for $2. Made the "utensil holder" out of a coco powder can, sewed the curtains by hand (don't have a machine), found a curtain rod not being used in our house, bought the burners from Michaels, they were just unpainted wooden discs (2 small/2 larger), wooden knobs from salvage yard and printed a photo taken in Sicily of these really colorful boats when we were there getting married. I plan on changing the "view" depending on the season!

I found the chalk board at the thrift store for $1, painted it red (I think it was blue) and used the same ball ribbon to hang it as I did on the cherry curtain ties. That night I was making Pumpkin Curry Soup, so I made it the "Special"! Notice the "bakers rack" against the back wall, I got that at the thrift store for $2 and plan on using it to store her spices, tea cups, bowls tins full of felt food, etc. But there is not a great place to hang it right now, so I put it away.

So here is the official run down:

$20- 3 cabinets (recycled)
$2- kitchen sink (recycled)
$5- faucet (recycled)
$1-pulls and knobs (recycled)
$1- chalk board (recycled)
$2- bakers rack (recycled)
$12- fabric and ribbon (new)
$4- printed and laminated photo (new)
$12- wood discs for burners (new)
Free- paint (recycled)
Free- wood trim and shelving (recycled) thanks David!

$59 TOTAL!!

I feel really good about that, had so much fun doing it and love the way it turned out. I want to find some sort of oven knob to put on and thought about putting Neva's initials on the fridge doors (is that too over the top?)

So many friends have told me to start selling these things! I thought about it for a minute and decided against it. I do hope it can inspire others to make one themselves all you need is your imagination!


Heidicup said...

omg katlen,this kitchen is GORGEOUS.i am so blown away by your creativity and sense of design!and i cant believe it only cost $59! you have a real talent!

Megan@SortaCrunchy said...

Hi! I clicked over from MDC, but I wanted to say this is GREAT! My daughter (3) looked at the pictures and said, "OH! That is BEAUTIFUL!!!" Great ideas and amazing inspiration, mama!

Marina said...

Hallo! I clicked over from MDC as well and wanted to say GREAT JOB! I love how you used recycled materials. That is the kids cutest kitchen I've seen and ever so much more special since you made it!

sadiecakes said...

Over from MDC. Just wanted to say you did an absolutely beautiful job.
It's as nice or nicer than a "new" one!


lljoyce said...

Kate - this looks great! When are you going to come to IL and build one for Brian? I'm sure he'd like his in blue or green. I'll have to remember this and ask you for tips in a year when he'd be ready for his own kitchen. I love doing stuff like that...just need to find the time.

Grace said...

Hello! I came over from Megan, who came over from MDC :) Anyway I am in love with your kitchen and wish that I could go back in time and make our own. (we bought one) Yours is sooooo cute and so fits my style.

ingrid said...

This is totally fabulous! Well done!

Astrid said...

I absolutely love it - that is like the sweetest play kitchen I have seen! I may just feel inspired and team up with my boyfriend to make one for the girls - well done! :)

Alexandra said...

Also linked from MDC....just adding to the "I thought it was great" crowd....well done!

Jenny said...

Love, love, love this set! Great job! I posted a link from my page. Thanks for sharing!!

Tara said...

Found you via MDC -- what an AMAZING kitchen! I am blown away by your creativity and talent!! WOW mama, you have seriously done an amazing job!!

Nicole said...

This is beautiful Kate! You are inspiring. My friend Matt builds a lot of playthings from recycled and found items. You guys would get along. I love it.

JenniC10 said...

Just wanted to let you know that I loved your play kitchen so much that my husband and I were inspired to make one somewhat similar using a cabinet that we found at Habitat for Humanity's Restore. It turned out great, if I do say so myself. :) Thanks for the inspiration!!

Pampered Mom said...

I saw your post over on MDC before Christmas. I showed it to my parents and they fell in love with it. They made one for our kids this year - thank you so much for giving us the inspiration!

Anonymous said...

Your kitchen is amazing!!! Thank-you for sharing the pics.


Restyled Home said...

This is unbeilievable! What a wonderful thing to make for your daughter. She is a lucky girl!!


MN Mom said...

Wow! I was searching handmade play kitchens and yours came up. It is wonderful. Every detail is there and the best part it will be a keepsake for generations to come.
Way to go Dad!

PortlandSimmons' said...

beautiful. After reading this I was inspired to go to our recycling center and get my supplies there. A great adventure. The only downfall was that they didn't have paint. I ended up spending more money on 1 quart of paint than I have the entire rest of the project! thanks for the great inspiration!

Jenn said...

I love this idea! Thanks for sharing! Just wanted to let you know I linked to you on my blog:

javieth said...

When I bought my house through costa rica homes for sale
I expected to have a big stove in the kitchen with a huge space, now I am really happy because I can cook every kind of recipe in my huge stove. I really love it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great idea! I used your tips and made one for my children, they love it! I really appreciate that you shared your tips, I would never have thought of it myself =).

Christine said...

This is so cute and creative!! Love it!