The Saga of the Play Kitchen

One thing I've learned this holiday season is to not procrastinate on assembling Christmas presents. Oh Jennifer, you may say, that is a parent's right of passage. What parent hasn't stayed up until 2 am on Christmas Eve putting together a toy for their beloved child? I know my mom did it when she made me a handmade cloth baby doll long ago.

Oh no, my friends, this wasn't time honored procrastination. This was pure stupidity and certifiable insanity.

It all started when I saw this blog entry showing a handmade play kitchen made out of an old entertainment center. We knew we wanted to give Sebastian a play kitchen but the idea of a handmade one was really appealing and special. No one would have a kitchen like him and it would be special because we made slaved over it. Ideas flowing, I then saw this blog and this blog, all re purposed entertainment centers. With these in mind we set out to find an old entertainment center on Craigslist. We succeeded and brought one home for $20.00.

In July.

Fast forward to December 18th. Not one thing was done to the entertainment center/kitchen. It sat in the garage covered with crap. Naturally I was freaked so I made my husband drag it to an easily accessible area in the garage and I took off all of the hardware and doors, and got to sanding. That must have spurned my husband on because he finally got off his butt and got to work with me on it. The next 6 days were play kitchen hell.

Alex attached the back and I filled all the holes with wood putty.

Kitchen is sanded and primered. Alex cut the hole for the sink and put in a board to separate the under sink cabinet from the oven. I spray painted the oven black, totally hotboxing myself in the process. I also spray painted the stove top and side of the fridge silver to resemble stainless appliances. I so don't recommend that, as silver spray paint is the devil and shows every imperfection and fingerprint. At this point I had lost about a quarter of my brain cells.

Under sink cabinet and wall color added. Cabinet dark brown color painted. Inside of fridge painted.

"Granite" counter top in place and "back splash" affixed.

As we were nearing the finish line we realized we were screwed, literally, when it came to the oven door. The hinges we had wouldn't work properly and the oven handle screws were too short. At that point I was too exhausted to care.

Then came time to move the behemoth into the living room. Going through the inside garage door wasn't an option and paint was scraped off in the process. So it had to go out the garage door, into the snowy, icy night, and back through the front door. Did I mention I was too tired to care? That was a good thing because those nicks would have made normal, rested me cry. We got it set up, I retouched the nicks, and was finally off to bed.

The semi finished product, set up for Christmas morning.

Detail of the sink, stove top, and back splash.

Inside of the fridge.

We still need to hang the oven door after getting the correct hinges and longer screws for the handle. We also need to print out the "view" for the larger window ( I had a small one, it looked stupid) and hang the rail we bought for a pot rack.

That may be done by next Christmas.

Though it almost killed us to get it (mostly) done by Christmas morning (I was up until 3 am completing finishing final touches and set up) and took much blood, sweat, tears andswearing,we did it and we were reminded why we even did it in the first place as Sebastian saw his kitchen for the first time. He ran to it, immediately checking out the cabinets and accessories and has been playing with it over and over, ever since.

Supply List

Those other blogs have lists of supplies they used on their play kitchens with prices. I did that on some things but honestly, I can't remember how much everything cost and my sheet where I itemized some items got tossed with the used wrapping paper so I'll try to do my best remembering below. We initially thought this project would be cheaper than a store bought kitchen but it turned out with the cost of paint and wood, it really wasn't. This isn't to say it couldn't but we tend to go big.

Entertainment Center- $20

Canadian Tire
Spray paint
Brushes (foam brushes are my new husband)
"Granite" Contact Paper

Home Depot

LAGAN faucet- $22.99
TEKLA tea towel- $.49
SAXNÄS frame- $5.99
KOSING handle- $1.99
KOSING knobs- $.99

Dollar Store
Mixing bowl for sink - $2
Back splash tiles (floor tiling)- 3/$1
Stove top(selfstick blackboard paper)- $1
Fridge door baskets(plastic baskets)- 3/$1

Habitat for Humanity Re-store
Oven/Stove knobs- $1


Kelley said...

That thing ROCKS! Sebastian is really going to appreciate that for years to come. I totally bow down to your repurposing skills!

kate said...

Oh my gosh, that thing is awesome! Great job!

SCBride2007 said...

What an amazing job!!!! You have totally inspired me!

JackiJaguar said...

That kitchen is bad ass.

Boxoftrix said...

Hi I just found your blog while searching for play kitchen make overs. I have enjoyed reading it and realised that your little boy was born 3 days before my little girl! I hope all is well with you and that you blog again soon.