Guest Post: by Ainslie Hutchinson
I had been planning on getting the girls a little kitchen for their joint Christmas present since about July last year. I did all the research and decided on the ‘Duktig’ play kitchen from IKEA. It ticked all the boxes as far as I was concerned and was the perfect size to fit in the girls play room. In the first week of December after dropping the girls off with their grandparents, I marched into IKEA, straight to the aisle and location to pick up the pack (which I had already noted down on a previous trip) to find that the shelves were empty. I flagged down a staff member and asked if the kitchens had been moved. ‘You want one of these play kitchens?’, she said. ‘Good luck! They’re sold out nation wide’. Oh great! I shuffled back to my car and sat there for a while trying to come up with a plan B. We already had the pots and pans wrapped under the tree! Friends and family had bought play food and utensils to give the girls! This is a disaster. I pulled out my phone and jumped on gumtree thinking there was a slim chance I might be able to find a second hand one that was still looking good. I found an ad for one being sold only two suburbs over from me and they needed it gone that weekend. I called the lady and she told me it had quite a few scratches and bangs but I was welcome to come and take a look. Taking full advantage of the girls being gone I raced over there to check it out. The lady selling it had three daughters between the ages of 6-10, they were all crowding around it and excitedly showing me all the different features. The older girls were sharing stories with me of how they loved to play with it when they were younger and the little one was hanging back a bit, standing with her mum. ‘She’s sad to see it go’ the mother said. ‘We’ve had it since she was a baby and they have so many other things to play with. It’s been so great, but it’s time.’
Although it wasn’t in the best condition, after seeing how loved it was by this family, I wanted to give this kitchen a home.
I decided the best way to make it new for my girls was to give it a little makeover. There was so much inspiration on Pinterest, it took me a while to figure out what I wanted to do with it. I decided to keep it classic, clean and simple and add some gold accents to make it a little more fun.
Here’s the original kitchen:
Here’s my finished product:
Here’s what I ended up doing:
- Spray painting the natural wood white
- Adding some more modern gold handles to the oven, and microwave doors.
- Spray painting the legs, sink, stove, hanging bar and tap in gold.
- Adding a subway tile splashback
What you will need:
- Can of white spray paint
- Can of gold spray paint
- White foam-core board
- Black texta
- Since mine was already assembled I had to pull it apart to spray paint. First prime and then spray all the pieces except for the fixtures and the bench top. I liked the look of the raw wood bench against the white kitchen so I left it as it was.
- Lay out all the fixtures and spray with gold spray paint. Pieces like the tap and the hooks are hard to get totally covered so you may end up needing a few coats. Leave to dry overnight before assembling.
- Assemble the kitchen as per instructions
- The last step is to add the splashback. I just drew on the tiles with a black texta and then hot glued it to the back of the kitchen.
It’s definitely not perfect but it was a fun little project and really took no time at all.
The girls spend hours each day playing with it and it has been great for developing their sharing/compromising skills as well as their imaginations!
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