before & after {play kitchen}

So, be forewarned, this is not a fancy play kitchen that is even Pinterest worthy. I had great ambitions to make something like these, my inspiration photos:

Source: via aimee on Pinterest





But this old entertainment center is what I had to work with and I had a few stipulations.
1. I wasn’t going to spend more than $20 at the very most.
2. I had to limit the amount of physical changes to the actual entertainment center. Even though this will always just be a shelving unit in the closet, I wanted it to be able to continue to be a usable shelving/storage space when the days of play kitchens were done.
3. The top half would have to remain storage for toys etc.
and honestly I’m just not that DIY creative.

closet/play kitchen in process

Here it is in progress. Eventually the middle doors on the bottom will be thrown away, so I didn’t care to paint them. I painted one of them with magnetic paint and then sprayed it with silver in my attempt to mimic stainless steel. Like an idiot, I bought shiny, instead of matte, but oh well. It’s a well polished refrigerator. The other side is the pantry side.

closet/play kitchen in process

Again, in process. The open shelves on the two sides will eventually have a shelf in the middle (whenever I can convince my sweet husband to hang it). This will provide storage for these great little plastic itso bins from Target for silverware, dishes, cups etc.

Here is the magical after picture. Yep, I told you. Not big yee-haw. But, the kid’s love it and it works.

after: play kitchen

I scored the perfect bowl to be the sink and a little blue shelf at Habitat for less than $1. The most expensive piece of this entire kitchen was the sticky light that I stuck to the top to light up over the sink and stove.

I ended up using these wooden rounds from Hobby Lobby for the stove eyes and I let my little chick paint them grey and then paint the red swirls for the hot stove eyes.

play kitchen: after

The only other thing I would like to do is add some hooks for pot holders and towels and my husband needs to attach the round knobs for sink’s cold/hot. (these were also from Habitat for 10 cents each).

So over all, it may not be the most drop dead amazing play kitchen out there, but I used what I had and stayed well within my budget:

entertainment center: free (we had it already)
spray paint: $3.00 from Walmart
magnetic paint: free (we already had it)
2 knobs for sink: 20 cents
1 bowl for sink: 50 cents
blue shelf: 25 cents
1 cardboard J for the faucet: 99 cents at Hobby Lobby
rounds for stove eyes: less than $3 (seriously don’t remember)
handle for oven: $1.50
hinges for oven door: $1.50
stick on light: $7.99 at Home Depot

I think that’s it, bringing the grand total to less than $20. And honestly, my children pretty much play more with the food and less with the kitchen so all in all I’m glad I didn’t invest a whole lot of time, money and energy into it. It provides them a place to pretend to play, but I don’t feel bad when they don’t use it 🙂

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