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Ikea Duktig Play Kitchen Makeover/Hack

I have been anticipating Tinley's second birthday since before Christmas. I felt like we had an extremely lame 1st birthday for her (we were moving/signing papers that day...blah blah blah), and I KNOW she doesn't even care...but gosh dangit I DO! i wanted to make this birthday a LOT more special for her, and when i saw all these cute little kitchens with makeovers, i knew that's what i wanted to do for her.

I chose the Duktig one from Ikea (here) mostly because of convenience. i live fairly close to the one here in Utah, and so the kids and i went shopping one day for it (Tinley had no clue, remember she's two). and dangit that store sucks me in, and makes me want to #buyallthethings ! it's bad. i already know that this easel will be a present for Bronx on his birthday. but back to the kitchen.

so this is what it looks like out of the box, put together:

pretty boring and plain, am i right? i searched Pinterest and found this post with a whole bunch of great ideas, and these 3 ideas i really liked:

1 \\ 2 \\ 3

i battled between making it a coral kitchen or a mint kitchen. mint won out in the end because i thought there was more fun contrast between the mint and the gold, and i also knew Bronx would be playing with it, and wanted it SLIGHTLY gender neutral. all my painting supplies were picked up at Walmart, and here's what i used:

• this fabric was found at Hobby Lobby, and i made them into two cute little dish towels to hang on the front handles!
• you'll notice i added a side hook for an apron. that was also bought from Hobby Lobby.
• i covered the kitchen "counter" in a marble laminate i bought off Amazon here
• i also made a "backsplash" for this little kitchen. it's just foam board (from Walmart for like 88cents), i cut it down to size (19.5"x26.75"), and drew on it will a pencil and ruler, then traced over my herringbone tile pattern with a sharpie! i LOVE the wallpaper idea too that i've seen peeps do. so so cute. i attached mine just with sticky tack, so i can replace it with a different design easily if i want!

The hardest thing during all of this spray painting business was the waiting. i just wanted to coat everything once and be done. but of course you can't do that or you'll get one ugly kitchen ;) haha. here's what i did:
  1. primed the wooden pieces, let dry
  2. painted the pieces with "Ocean Mist" (or painted them with metallic gold for the faucet/microwave/stove top/handles), let dry (apply 2-3 thin coats). the trick is putting thin coats and letting them dry completely between coats. for example, on one piece i sprayed it on thicker, and the paint bubbled. it looks ugly. ahhh! (luckily it was on a piece not seen in the front!)
  3. apply 1-2 thin coats of clear gloss (letting them dry in between coats!), to help preserve and save your paint

when i was putting it together, here's how i attached the stove "knobs" (bought from Walmart). turned over the front wood strip piece, created 4 holes with a drill bit, then screwed them in. not hard at all. can you tell that Bronx was my big helper during all of this? :)

i was SO excited to give it to her on her birthday! i will spare you and not upload the video of her seeing it for the first time (my voice gets insanely high and annoying when i'm excited about something for her....)! she's played with it every day so far and i hope this is something she will love and create good memories with! also, if you were wondering, yes. yes, i do go in and straighten things up every few hours. yes, i may be slightly OCD about it right now.

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