Remember back here when I decided to build Liv a little kitchen for Christmas (and shared all of the inspiration for my favorites)? Well five months later and…. it’s finished!!
It’s been one of those projects where I’ve sllloooowwwlly added and added to it over the months. It probably should have been considered finished in January when my Dad and I designed and assembled all of the little pieces (and when we revealed it for her birthday rather than at Christmas time). But then I added a faucet in February, baking racks and an oven light in March, redid the stove range and added a backsplash in April… and it slowly evolved into an obsession. I have to stop. So as of today, I’m marking it done and done!
I’ll be sure to share some of the how-tos and progress pics this week.
One of my main goals was to build a little kitchen that would work well with our big kitchen. That way Liv would have something fun and interactive to do while we were working in the kitchen (the hub in our house) and could participate in the ‘cooking’ – and we could have a toddler toy that wasn’t plastic or an eye sore in plain view.
The finished mini kitchen fits perfectly at the end of our island, and I chose all of the colors to be more upbeat, kid-friendly versions of the colors that we have throughout our own kitchen space.
After quite a bit of research (and hunting through Craigslist, thrift stores and what not for the right sized cabinet), I used the TROFAST toy storage unit and plastic bins from Ikea for the little wooden base, and a basic white Ikea desk top that fit the unit near perfectly for the countertop (can’t seem to find the link online at the moment, but it was 39″ long and we sheared off just a bit of the width at the back so that there was just a tiny lip over the storage unit). The orange door on the left and black oven door were both shelves built for the TROFAST unit as well that we converted with hinges.
Little extra features include a bar sink that works well as a faucet (which Liv has already requested ‘please make it work’, ha!):
A stove top:
An oven with two little racks and an oven light for baking:
Little knobs that spin for the stove and a handle, hinges + plexiglass for the oven door:
And for toy food storage, a large door to hide bigger bowls and tools, and a fabric curtain to cover up three plastic Ikea bins:
The dowel at the top of the curtain fits right into the notches that were already built into the Ikea toy unit (the fabric remnant is from Joann’s):
And the entire curtain can be removed during playtime to reveal the bins of felt and plastic foods, wooden cutting boards, aprons and the rest of that fun stuff:
Thanks, Dad for all of your help assembling this guy! He was my powertool man over Christmas and he troubleshooted problems like the oven doors, unbreakable plexiglass and installing the bowl for the sink. I added most of the little design details later when all mellowed down.
So much work! But Liv loves it and that’s what matters most. And I have loved being super creative with the design and build, troubleshooting how I could add a mini backsplash or what way to attach the oven racks into the inside of the oven . It’s what I live for! In retrospect it would have been cheaper and easier to purchase a pre-built kitchen, but sometimes you just can’t beat the DIY.
Be back shortly with the source list and the steps to build!
Tags: Accessories, Before & After, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Green, Home, Kitchen, Orange, Tutorial
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Family & Friends, Favorites, Handmade Gifts, Home, Olivia, Our Kitchen Remodel, Renovating Adventures | 10 Comments »
It’s perfect weather for an outdoor picnic, no? Hopefully you’re experiencing this beautiful sunshine wherever you are, too! Eating outdoors is the best (especially on a big grassy lawn at some fun park) and now that the Outdoor Eating season is approaching here in Southern California, I think more picnics need to happen in our house. Or, outside our house. Maybe on the new outdoor table.
Liv and I were experimenting with painting (her new very favorite-ist thing to do in the whole wide world), and while Liv took to the bright colors, I played around with updating simple rattan chargers from Ikea with white paint.
Turned out pretty cool! I really dig the look with that blend of the soft rattan and the stark white finish. Actually, this is just dawning on me – they kind of remind me of these.
The application process was more than basic. I actually tried spray paint first thinking that that might be fast and easy, but couldn’t achieve that gradiated effect I was picturing, so went over the work with acrylic and a paint brush.
Brush, brush, blot, blot…
Lots of blotting later…
Navy and maroon might be a new favorite color combination – kind of perfect for July 4th, no?
These placemats were so simple to create and at a couple of bucks a pop, a great housewarming gift idea as a pack of four or six, or perhaps as something special for a special lady/friend/mother in your life? Or even better, package up in a picnic basket with a fun outdoor blanket and a bottle of wine as a wedding gift (it’s that season, too).
Sorry, enough photos. The lighting was perfect and I went a leeetle overboard.
More handmade gift ideas found right here.
Tags: Accessories, Before & After, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Home, Parties & Entertaining, Tutorial, white
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Handmade Gifts, Home, Parties & Entertaining | 3 Comments »
I have a fun project to share with you today!
I’ve been on the hunt for a neat centerpiece (to either DIY or buy) for the big outdoor table that Kevin built on our new deck and am so happy with how this oversized planter’s box project has turned out. My favorite might be the pops of color in the form of five added geometric hexagons.
Succulents and I get along really well, and they look so pretty all together in one large container! I’ve been wanting to play with them more in our garden in unique ways, maybe even designing a succulent wall along the back bbq area.
The hexagon pattern wraps over the top edges of the box and along one corner as well, I love the symmetrical pattern and how the painted shapes work together but provide their own little bursts of bright, unexpected color.
I was actually inspired to finally getting around to finishing this project by Katie and Sherry’s Spring Pinterest Challenge:
It provided the inspiration needed to pull my materials together and take a couple of hours to build, stain, paint and plant my new succulent centerpiece. The goal of the challenge is to take a pinned idea and make it happen – here’s my pinned inspiration:
Let’s get into the nitty gritty…
The process for building my initial planter was pretty simple. To keep material costs on the low end, I purchased a single piece of 24×28″ plywood from Lowe’s and asked the technician to cut the board horizontally into three strips that were 24×6.5″ in size and the remaining 24×6.5″ piece into two 6.5″ square sides. That used up just about every inch of the wood perfectly (I had just one large rectangle left over).
Cutting plywood often causes freying at the edges so if I had needed a more exact cut I might have opted for real (rather than compressed) wood instead. But this worked out perfectly as the cuts were kept to a minimal and the plywood cost just $6! And all of the cuts were made at Lowe’s so I didn’t have to bring the board home, pull out the table saw and add that extra step to the process.
Thanks, Lowe’s man.
To nail the box together I used small tack nails that I had on hand.
As well as my trusty floral hammer! No need to dig through the garage and pull out a massive hammer from the tool chest, I really love having my smaller-than-average tools in my office and waiting for everyday use.
I placed a nail every 3″ or so along all edges of the box that met with another edge. 32 nails and one finger later, and the planter box was assembled.
To hide the silver tops of the nails, I used a stainable wood filer that we had on hand (but I would say that this step is optional).
And to remove any pesky store barcode stickers (why do they make them actual stickers??), a little Goo Gone.
We have a decently sized stain collection from various projects in our garage so I chose from two of the lighter finishes. I ended up using both the “ash” and “oak” (oak first followed by a quick layering of ash) to give the box a slightly birchy, slightly weathered look.
With the glare of the light it’s hard to see the finished stain coat here, but the coloring came out just as I had hoped.
I stained the first few inches of the inside of the box as well, the rest will be filled with soil and will be pretty much unnoticeable.
To make my hexagon painted shapes, I printed out a basic hexagon outline (using the Illustrator shapes feature) on to cardstock. Feel free to download my copy here. Laying out the cut out shapes in various formations helped me to come up with a final pattern.
Using that pattern as my template, I taped out the various paintable hexagons one at a time.
And slowly filled in the taped off areas with various colors. You can see that I left a sliver of wood showing between each shape, I love that little detail.
Press down solidly on those edges to prevent any under tape bleeding! And as soon as you’ve applied the paint to the wood, pull up that tape right away for a flaw free line.
Next up was planting. I found it was cheaper to purchase most of my succulents in one large prearranged plastic round planter from Lowe’s (that I broke apart and replanted), then supplemented with littler containers and cactus from our garden.
A new, pretty centerpiece that is just the right size for our 12 person table. This will look great in the summer for outdoor picnics and parties – I’m picturing a pretty table set in whites and navy blues, or even pinks and mint greens to compliment the colors of the planter box.
The hexagon shapes are definitely my favorite part.
Here’s a link to my previous Pinterest Challenge projects (including the fireplace facade that has an exciting announcement to make soon, an ombre step stool for Liv, faux gold mercury glass, a chevron cloth napkin project, a painter’s tape stenciled hallway and so many more fun ideas…).
Tags: Accessories, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Gold, Home, Paint, Patterns & Color, Pink, Pinterest Challenge, Teal, Turquoise, Tutorial, white, Yellow
Posted in Construction, Crafty Solutions, DIY, Downloadables, Favorites, Gardening, Handmade Gifts, Home, Our Yard, Renovating Adventures | 8 Comments »