If I had to think about one play element that has brought my daughter the most joy and occupied countless hours of her playtime, it would undeniably be the DUKTIG kitchen from Ikea. This investment has proven to be priceless, providing her with endless enjoyment and imaginative play.
This post aims to share our journey and creative ideas with it, highlighting the remarkable versatility it offers. Hopefully, it can offer you a hint of inspiration.
Diving into Makeover Inspirations
Before I got it, I had in mind to give it a nice renovation that wouldn’t demand an extensive investment of time or money. So, I bought vinyl paper to cover it, saving me the effort of painting. I used gold spray to give the metal a fancy look and got some wooden handles from AliExpress to add a nicer touch. Additionally, I added cabinet knobs to serve as ‘burner knobs,’ simply because I like the look.
This kitchen became my daughter’s second birthday present, and it turned out to be the best choice ever. Right away, she began mimicking how I cook. Those ‘burner knobs’ became one of the favorite elements. My daughter enjoys baking, pressing those buttons, and I even set the timer to sound as it finishes!
Initially, I added some small items like vegetables/pizza from Ikea, but soon it was brimming with gifts, including charming wooden pieces from Melissa & Doug and even empty containers I had left in the kitchen, each one a little treasure for her every time I handed her one.
Shop Ikea Play Kitchen Hack
But with almost five months to go before she turns three, and considering the indoor activities necessitated by the winter season, I was itching to dive into another playful project with the Ikea kitchen. The backside of this adorable kitchen is like a magical chameleon, ready to transform into whatever you imagine! I even saw someone who turned it into a post office.
Of course, I browsed the internet for inspiration, and because I had a vision of creating vegan ice cream recipes with my daughter, I considered setting up an ice cream store. However, I didn’t want to limit our creativity to just that. So, I decided to look for something versatile and easily substitutable. Enter Dan Deal/Max 20 – a treasure trove of possibilities. Chalk or pilot boards caught my eye; they’d be just the thing to smoothly transition our project from an ice cream menu to a coffee or flower shop vibe.
Revitalize, Reuse, Craft!
I’m totally convinced our home is a treasure trove of stuff waiting for a second life – we just need to sprinkle a bit of imagination on it! That’s my secret sauce for all those quirky, kid-friendly projects. Case in point: I dipped into the leftover room paint, which, by the way, reminds me of pistachio ice cream!
I promptly crafted a logo using Canva paper—far from flawless, but it allowed me to stay within my two-hour limit during a hectic day. Additionally, I refrained from painting on the wood, making it easy to switch to another project by simply removing the transparent vinyl covering the logo.
By now, you should know about my obsession with garlands, and suddenly I remembered I have this one with cute ice cream shapes made from pom poms that I created, thinking of birthdays. I instantly knew it would be the perfect addition to delight the stand.
Maximizing Fun Without Draining the Piggy Bank!
In addition to the Melissa & Doug ice cream booth, I incorporated some budget-friendly crafts, such as colorful fur balls. And, of course, those cute cups and spoons from Golda adorn the ice cream stand—simply because my daughter enjoys playing in the kitchen with them.
If you want to set up a stand without spending too much, there are plenty of options. Turn paper towel tubes into cones, shape play dough into ice cream scoops. I can imagine using kinetic sand, but be prepared for a bit of a mess! And, once again, let your creativity shine with different craft materials for decorating.
For instance, I repurposed a wooden box with divisions, transforming it into a makeshift cash register. It also serves as a handy place to store chalk for writing the daily menu and colorful paper, creating an inspiring space for brainstorming business ideas!
The finishing touch involved adding some charming lights, and with that, the shop was ready to be opened and unveiled with my daughter!
Getting the Most Out of Your Space
I’ve heard from many moms expressing their desire to get one, but space is a concern. However, I believe this kitchen can be accommodated both vertically and horizontally. Its simple aesthetic won’t detract from the style of your living room if you decide to place it there, as I did. Additionally, consider the convenience of having both a kitchen and a shop in one place.
I can vouch for myself—squeezing in this blank canvas project in my 64-square-meter apartment is like unlocking a treasure chest of playful adventures for you and your little ones! Trust me, it’s a space well-spent for endless fun.
I still remember the joy in my little girl’s eyes that morning when she spotted her little shop—inspecting every detail with excitement. Her first words were, “It has lights!”. Even though the only customer served for ice cream turned out to be her father, the smiles we shared and the fun we had together made it all worthwhile.