We decided to get the girls a play kitchen for Christmas this year (really we got them a whole toddler room, but the play kitchen was a component). It’s a little premature given that they just turned one, but we wanted to go ahead and furnish their room with classic pieces that they could grow into. [Update: This is a favorite from two and now at three at well. It’s been played with daily.] So, I began searching for the ideal play kitchen and that’s how I came across the IKEA Duktig play kitchen. I fell in love with its simple, wooden design, but wanted to fancy it up a bit. With a few easy updates, the girls play kitchen is officially fancier than my real kitchen.
The play kitchen arrived the day before we left for Christmas in Memphis in a box smaller than our coffee table (in true IKEA fashion). So, needless to say, I did not get around to assembling it in time for them to unwrap on the holiday. But, I finally had a chance to work on it this past weekend and am super excited with how it turned out.
Here is my take on the IKEA Duktig play kitchen hack.
I decided to go with grey for the kitchen to match the little table and chairs that Brooklyn and Blakely got from Nana and Grampy. When I was checking out examples of grey play kitchens, I came across one that was grey on the outside but the interior of the shelves and cabinets and the appliances were white. I liked the way it popped and brightened up the kitchen, so I decided to do that as well. This made the painting a little more challenging, but I think it was worth the extra hassle.
I took a leg from the grey table and an existing white board from the kitchen to the hardware store to get a paint-matched quart of grey and white paint. I highly recommend to prep everything by wiping all of the pieces and surfaces down with Klean-Strip Quart Easy Liquid Sander Deglosser to rough up the surface so the paint will better adhere. If you want to take your paint job up a notch, I have a blog post specifically dedicated to tips for painting IKEA furniture. I also got a can of white spray paint (the kind that says you can paint on plastic) for making the sink a farmhouse sink and a can of metallic oil rubbed bronze spray paint for the handles and faucet.
The trickiest part of the project was figuring out what to paint grey versus what to paint white. I laid all of the parts out to paint prior to assembly. My Dad later told me as we were assembling that he would have painted after assembly, but I think I still preferred doing beforehand so I had less taping off to do. I am a very messy painter! Luckily, most of the pieces that needed to be white were already white. Most of the other pieces had to be painted grey on one side and white on the other (with the edges grey). The two sides to the hutch have to be painted partially grey and partially white on the same side, and the feet of the kitchen had to be painted grey on the white side as well .
All the white pieces in the back were already white. All of the grey pieces in the front had to be painted white on the other side.
I chose to do a “marble” countertop to keep it light. You can fix adhesive vinyl at your local hardware store, but it’s been bitter cold here so I Amazon Primed (that’s a verb right?) some Decorative Self-Adhesive Film, Grey Marble, 17.71″ x78″ Roll. To make the countertop, you simply peel off the back and stick to the wood countertop piece. I started on one side, made sure it was even and then peeled and unrolled at the same time pressing the vinyl from middle to the edge as I went to ensure an even stick with no bubbles. You will want to make sure you leave enough on each end to bend down over the small depth side of the wood piece. Flip the countertop over once the whole top is applied and stick the vinyl down the depth side. Then use a razor blade to cut it along the edge. At the corners, I cut a diagonal line from the top edge to the bottom edge and overlapped the vinyl. You can also use the razor blade to cut out the sink and stove top from the bottom side. I did not bother cutting the screw holes. When it came time for assembly, my dad just used the screwdriver to puncture the holes when he needed them.
The original play kitchen does not have a back behind the countertop. A lot of people will decorate a foam board and attach to be a backsplash. I ordered Art3d 12″ x 12″ Peel and Stick Kitchen Backsplash Tile, White Subway Backsplash (6 Pack) peel and stick subway tile backsplash from Amazon. The 6-pack is the perfect size to cover the space behind the countertop. I was about to have to brave the cold and head to Walmart to buy a foam board, but we had just received and assembled our shelving unit for the girls’ room, and it came with an extra backer board piece the EXACT size needed! I just took the backsplash tiles, peeled off the back, stuck to the backerboard lining them up according to the instructions and cut off the excess using the razorblade.
The only other modification I did before assembling was spray paint the sink white (I highly recommended using the liquid sandpaper beforehand) and the handles, faucet and edge of stove (already taped off if you leave the plastic protector on) oil rubbed bronze. This was a super easy step!
The most time consuming part was assembly. Luckily, my Dad was over at the house and helped me assemble all of the pieces. We followed the instructions provided to a tee, except with one of the cabinet doors, we drilled holes on different edge so I could hang the door with the handle on the side as opposed to the top. To do this, I just lined a piece of paper with the edge of the pre-drilled side, poked holes in the paper where the existing drill holes where, then moved the paper to the side that needed holes and had hubby drill new holes according to the paper marks.
Then I had hubby use small nails to tack the Backsplash on the back side of the play kitchen.
Finally, I hit up the TJ Maxx clearance section for some accessories for the play kitchen. I scored this fake plant, cutting board and bamboo knife (which wasn’t sharp), little broom and dust pan (because Blakely loves to sweep) and these two white baskets for under $20!
Here is the final product!
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