It’s decked out with:
- a burner made from a $1 circular cutting board and red craft paint
- a sink made from a $6 stainless steel mixing bowl and an old faucet
- a towel hook remnant from my DIY kitchen art
- vinyl lettering and burner dial cut with my Silhouette Cameo
I decided to make the sink vessel style so the inside wouldn’t loose any storage space, and to accommodate that I mounted the faucet on some 2×4 scraps. The faucet has 2 metal pipes (that would connect it to the water line) and I couldn’t cut them off, so instead I bought a set of spade drill bits and just made holes to fit them in, then used a rubber hammer to set the faucet in:
After drilling the holes I painted the whole thing and sprayed the hardware metallic silver. It is literally 4* outside right now so to spray in the house I just made a shadowbox out of an old cardboard box:
The burner is just hot glue gunned on, and the sink is currently loose but I think I’m going to hot glue gun that as well:
Overall, this was a weekend project, but I do plan to put a clear coat of polycrylic over the vinyl as well just to make sure it doesn’t end up peeling.
There’s about a million play kitchen tutorials in blog land, but they’re so customizable and really easy to make- and honestly, I really like to give him nice wooden toys instead of plastic ones (and things that have storage built in are always a plus because good lord to kids have a lot of stuff).
Building The DIY Play Fridge
When we last checked on on the play fridge it was a bit of a mess. Things have really turned around and I am so pleased with the final result:
I just want to give you a loose how-to for this because I really think there’s a million ways to do it. So, in a nutshell, here’s how I turned a kitchen cabinet into a play fridge
- Took off the knob and filled the hole, then removed the door and shelves to spackle and lightly sand everything. Wipe down with a damp cloth.
- Prime the outside with Rustoleum magnetic paint, about 3-4 coats. Prime the inside, the inside of the door, and the shelves with regular primer (either spray or roll on)
- Drill the holes for your new hardware- I went with a 5inch handle from Amazon.
- Paint the whole thing- I sprayed Rustoleum Midnight Blue on the outside and Rustoleum Aqua on the inside (if spray painting, do the inside first).
- Place felt sliders on the bottom so it won’t scratch your floor, I got a pack of about 20 at the Christmas Tree Shops for maybe $2.00 and use them all over my house. I also used 2 of them to cover the screw holes on the inside of the door (see below).
- Reattach the door, place the shelves, and let it cure for about a week- it’s going to take quite the beating, don’t skip the letting it cure part! The paint really needs time to harden and settle.
Optional things to include:
- Touch light- I found gravity did not care for me placing the light on the ceiling so I put it up against the wall. I used Velcro to attach it so it could easily be removed when the batteries need to be changed.
- Storage bins- all bought at the dollar store, $5 total.
- Food pyramid- I just googled it and printed my favorite, mounted it on colored paper, then stuck it on with double sided tape. The washi tape is just decorative.
I think the best part of this toy is that it can be a big huge mess, but then you just throw everything back inside and close the door.
For Christmas I plan to have a sink area done as well, I’ve already got the base cabinets for it. Because my nephew is only 1 I don’t feel too rushed, his main way of playing with this right now is to dump all the food on the floor and roll around in it.
I will say the magnetic part still ended up being kind of a downer, the Rustoleum paint works but really needs a strong magnet- the play letters were from the dollar spot at Target and I had to superglue stronger magnets to them to get them to stay.
Also, this thing ended up costing about the same as it would have to buy a good wooden one. It wasn’t really a money saver, just a lot of fun for me to build.
What do you think? Have you made any kids toys? What would you do to customize it more?