Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Pretend Play: Wood Play Kitchen

This wood play kitchen was a "much needed toy".

Last fall, I LITERALLY stumbled upon Ana White at

She has plans on her site to build, from scratch, every type of furniture you could think of...and the plans are FREE!! I immediately set out to build my first project, a wood play kitchen, to gift to my 3 nieces at Christmas.

I started out with Ana's plan (which is originally for a stove), but I knew that I wanted to modify it and add a "sink". We were off to Home Depot, toddler in tow, to find the list of items Ana suggests.

A pile of wood, and 2 hours later, we were ready to start building. I first marked all of the boards to Ana's specs...remember toddler in tow. I then had my mom keep an eye on the toddler while I cut all of the pieces and laid them out for building.
I also pre-painted the boards so that I wouldn't struggle getting it perfect. I also cut out the hole for the "sink" (an 8x8 brownie pan), and nailed the countertop to the backsplash. Then I painted those two pieces with 2 coats of brown "stone-look" paint (looks like granite), and let dry overnight. I also spray painted a wooden "L" silver (faucet), and two wooden "people" from the craft store (faucet handles).

The next day, my mother held the pieces while I used an air nailer to secure them together. (toddler napping...)

The following day, I was able to start working on the oven door. We couldn't find the size acrylic that Ana calls for in her plan, so I used what I COULD find and modified the size of the door. This led to some hair pulling at first, but I eventually figured it out. I also placed a scrap piece of wood vertically on the top shelf, visually dividing the space so that it "looked" more like an "oven". I then nailed a scrap piece of 1x2 to the front face so that the oven door would have a place to "close". I used metal "L" brackets to hold the oven door securely at each corner, and plastic mirror clips to hold the acrylic onto the inside of the oven door.

I then added hinges to the inside of the door and attached the door to the frame. Next came "hardware". I had some leftover stainless steel handles from a kitchen remodel, so I used one as the oven door handle and one on the side of the kitchen to hold "towels"! (not pictured) I then added the faucet, faucet handles, and sink. The "burners" are Folgers coffee lids. The last piece of hardware added was a red plastic cap (coke bottle) onto the oven door as the temperature knob. I also nailed on the MDF backing to the entire unit (not pictured...forgot!).

Overall, this project was VERY fun and quite satisfying to build. The 3 nieces and my daughter had quite a "time" playing with it at our gift exchange! This project just gave me a MAJOR desire to build MORE, MORE, MORE!!!

***I am NOT LIABLE for any plans featured here. Please take every precaution and use your own discretion to make sure these toys are safe for children to play with them.

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