DIY Play Kitchen from Entertainment Center

Have you seen these ideas on Pinterest to convert an entertainment center or dresser into a play kitchen? They are just so cute… so we decided to make one as Caleb’s Christmas present!

It started when I went to Salvation Army and saw an entertainment center that could easily be converted to a kitchen. For $24.99, I thought it was a steal! Then I got to the register, and the cashier says, “Would you take this for $14.99 instead of $24.99?” Ummm… YES!

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Project planning then commenced… As in, a very long Pinterest search (my favorite designs were this one and this one) and then a very engineering-like drawing of all the features to be added to the kitchen.

Our first steps were to remove the glass doors (obviously a bad idea to keep glass around for use by a crazy toddler like Caleb) and turn one of the small, bottom doors sideways to open as an oven.

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Thankfully, I have a very handy husband who could easily make these first steps happen.

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Mike was able to cut wooden doors in place of the glass doors, sand we started priming the shelves for the pantry.

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Mike cut a hole for the sink, and we primed the kitchen.

Then, we used paint samples we had leftover from our living room (Sherwin Williams Heron Plume) to paint the main portion of the kitchen.

In the meantime, we wallpapered shelves with stick-on wallpaper that we already had from Target, and I painted wooden knobs for the stove and oven.

Mike, being the awesome and amazing man that he is, put the faucet in (Home Depot for $12), put the backing and handles on, and hand-crafted a longer handle for the oven.

I used chalkboard paint for the pantry doors, and added decorative Washi tape onto the edges.

We had to paint the backing after it was put on (note: definitely try to paint it before it’s on! duh.), and used another paint sample of Sherwin Williams Popular Gray (aka our living room wall color). I used paint chips cut into rectangles to make the backsplash, sticking them on using E600 glue and putting two coats of Mod Podge over top.

I also Mod Podged the Washi tape on to make sure that it stayed down.

Next, I painted a stove with very imperfect circles.

In the end, I decided to switch the more colorful Washi tape for silver tape. I didn’t like the mismatch of color between the backsplash and the Washi tape. Indecisiveness, for the win!

Mike put in the hooks, and added a shelf and light. We already had this light sitting around since it was purchased in a two-pack when we bought one for our pantry.

I painted another door with chalkboard paint (because… why not?) and put the stove knobs on. Note there’s a hook on the outside for Caleb to hang his apron 😉

As another part to the present, we purchased play food that is sortable by color off of Amazon. Learning Resources seems to have quite a few play kitchen products that also aid in learning. I have my eye on these and these.

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And here is the final product!!!

It was super fun to wrap 🙂

Caleb really seemed to like it and, of course, took all of the food out of the bins.

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Although I think his favorite feature was the chalkboard.

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Or the shelf on which to run his new cars.

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Oh, and this is the oven. We didn’t quite make the shelf for the oven yet, but eventually we’ll do that. Note the cool spring action that Mike created – he was very proud of it (as he should be)… even Caleb seemed to understand the cool engineering feat.

The final tally:

  • Entertainment center: $15
  • Backboard: $8 (only used half)
  • Dowel: $2 (only used half)
  • Handles: $14
  • Hooks: $6
  • Chalkboard paint: $9 (barely made a dent in the can)
  • Faucet: $11
  • Dog bowl (sink): $6
  • Oven rack: $2 Savers find
  • Light: had it ($5.75)
  • Shelving paper: had it ($30 – will not use all of it)
  • Washi tape: had it
  • Paint chips: free
  • Mod podge: had it
  • Polyurethane: had it
  • Paint samples: had them
  • Paint brushes: had them
  • E600 glue: had it

The total cost was around $75, and many of the supplies have further use. You might say, “Whoa! That seems like a lot!” Here’s some perspective:

  • The main Pinterest kitchen DIY I liked cost $500 to create.
  • The price range for play kitchens is about $95 – $175. Most are plastic.
  • We got to customize our kitchen, and who knows… maybe our grandkids will be playing with this one day!
  • We kind of had a lot of fun making this.

Here is the final before and after:

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