It’s hard to figure out what to buy a baby for Christmas. They can’t tell you what they want. And it’s even harder when they have older siblings. There’s only so many stacking blocks and V-tech toys a baby needs, right. That’s how I ended up buying the little guy a Play Food Set and Play Dishes. It was one of the few things he didn’t have and might want. Turns out I was right. He loved it! And so did his 3-year old brother. But watching them play made me realize they needed a kitchen. In fact, they needed a white kids play kitchen DIY. And I was the woman to build it. ;)
I started planning and checking out play kitchens online. I noticed that most kitchens were kind of a standard home kitchen. I didn’t want to build something I could easily buy. I wanted it to be a bit different.
What could I do that would be a bit different? Imagine me tapping a finger on my lip, deep in thought here. After a lot of lip tapping and pointlessly staring out windows, I had an idea. A DINER!
I waitressed my way through college. The best restaurant I worked at was kind of a greasy diner off campus that was packed with college kids on the weekend. It was an extremely fun, barely productive year or so. Diners are great, they totally deserve a tribute. I had my mission and was ready to plan.
Step 1: Build a Strong Frame
I tend to over-engineer things because I know it will be climbed on. So I added extra supports to the sides with scrap wood I cut into 1"x2" strips. I used MDF for the body, but plywood would work too.
Step 2: Add the Details
I used corner moulding and lathe to trim out the kitchen.
Wood cabinet knobs became stove knobs.
A cabinet pull and some hinges were used on the oven door.
I also added plexiglass to that door and a motion-activated light that comes on when the boys open it. They love that.
Mini clips hold customer orders.
A dinner bell and open/closed sign top off the counter.
A dish rack and rolling pantry finish the look.
Step 3: The Finished Diner
The Diner menu board and kitchen look so cute in our living room. The kids are loving it.
If you want the full build details or to see how I made the menu, follow the this link.