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Another colorful recycled kitchen...

Posted by mama_goose (My Page) on
Thu, Sep 27, 12 at 19:26

...with an industrial vibe.

I'm still trying to decide what to do about the flooring in my kitchen. I don't want to lay the sheet vinyl until I've replaced the flooring in the living room, and finished the flooring in the play room. Well, anyway, it's a long story and it's been driving me nuts, so I decided to take a break and have some fun. This is for my grandson's birthday:

Kitchen center side., I used some old cabinet doors and drawers, some metal wire shelving pieces I picked up at a yard sale for $1.00 each, metal tape for trim, and various pieces of scrap wood. Also used a left-over piece of plastic from a ceiling light fixture for the backsplash. I used a popcorn can and a scrap of ducting for the stove hood.

I had read a thread in Home Decorating a few months ago, about what to do with an old entertainment center that no one wanted, so I started looking for one that would fit on an old rolling cart that I'd been using to store paint cans. I found one on craigslist for $30.00 (less than the cost of lumber to build it.) On the way home I stopped at a yard sale and found the wire shelving pieces for $1.00 each. I bought a 6' 1x10 board, a rubber sink stopper, a couple of L-brackets, some spray paint, and two inexpensive touch lights. Everything else was already laying around the house or garage, left over from other projects. The cabinet is attached to the cart top and bottom, with L-brackets for safety. It's very stable--I can stand on one side without tipping the cart, and it can be rolled from room to room, or out on the front porch, when I need to set up tables for family dinners. I forgot to take a pic before I started re-working it, but here's an early one:

Before, I had already removed the top divider and cut a hole for the drop-in sink. Forgot to take a pic before I started work. I re-used the luan backing and almost every piece of the divider and shelves, in addition to a whole bunch of little scrap pieces.

The over-the-sink light is one of the extra LED flashlights that I used for under cabinet lighting in the kitchen, and I added the touch lights to the oven and fridge. The cabinet doors and drawers are all from my old kitchen. The 'barrel hood' is a popcorn can, cut to shape, painted, and trimmed with metal duct tape. The top of the hood is a scrap piece of expandable ducting:

Open doors..., ...to show the contents. The fridge, freezer and oven were painted inside. There is an over-the-sink LED light ($10.00) that is on a 30 minute timer, in case someone forgets to turn it off, and it can be removed for use as an emergency light. It was an extra from the under-cabinet lighting in my kitchen.

The crisper drawer is a $1.00 plastic bin:
Crisper drawer, Crisper drawer is a $1.00 plastic bin, without the lid.

Remember the sink from the old school cabinet that I put in the kitchen? The backsplash is a left over piece of plastic from a shop light fixture, sanded to prevent knuckle scraping. The stove burners are DVDs (obviously, lol.):

Sink and stove top., The small sink is from an old cabinet that we bought. I added a marble top to the cabinet, and kept the too-small sink for future use. The stove burners are DVDs.

There is a fold-up cutting board for counter space, and a 'gray water' collection system ;), for supervised water play:

Cutting board., Fold-up cutting board to increase counter space. 'Gray water' collection system. ;) We use another old laundry detergent jug with a push-button spout for a water tank (for supervised water play.)

The oven rack is from an old toaster oven. I've been using it as a cooling rack, but it was perfect for this:

Oven., Another old cabinet door and drawer. 'Window' was cut out and scrap piece of plexiglass was added. The rack is from an old (long gone) toaster oven. There is an inexpensive touch light in the top.

I bought a couple of cans of spray paint, to repaint the cart, and because my grandson wanted a blue fridge, but the green, white and gray paints were leftovers.


The other side of the cabinet is a work shop, with bins for scrap wood pieces:

Work shop side, Work shop (back side) with bench folded down. The cabinet is on an old rolling cart that I picked up in a junk store years ago. I've been using it to store paint cans, but I thought that it would be perfect for the play center--we can roll it from room to room, or out the French doors to the porch.

I used the extra set of folding hinges, from the table in the guest room, for the work bench:

Work bench., Work shop side with bench folded up. The bench was a plant shelf that used to be mounted in front of a window. The window was removed during a remodel--I cut a couple of inches off the depth, and the shelf was perfect to re-use as a work bench. The compartment on the right is just the right size for tackle box storage.

And even the sides are used for storage, books, and hooks:

Right side., Racks for books with food names in the titles. There is room to add hooks for pots and pans. I used part of the 6' 1x10 to make the cabinet longer. That was the only piece of lumber that I had to purchase--the rest was scrap.
Left side., More room for hooks. The cabinet is attached to the cart with screws and L-brackets, top and bottom, for stability and safety.

When the grandkids outgrow it, the cabinet can be removed, re-worked, and used for craft storage, etc., and the cart can be taken back to the tool room. This has been a really fun project, but it took much longer that I thought it would--don't all kitchen remodels? ;)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

Oh my gosh, that is toooo cute! You have got to send that in to the Before and After blog. So much detail to make it just perfect.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

Darling. So creative!!


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

oh mamag you are just amazing! just out of curiosity what did you use for the fridge handles?

very lucky gkids to have you!
and I looove that it's on a cart w/wheels. I've been thinking a lot about putting wheels under a number of furniture pieces I have.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

marti, thank you! I found the Better After Blog, but I probably won't send it in. There sure are some cute pics out there. If you ever have time (haha), and you'd like to include it in your blog, I'd be honored.

shades, thank you! On one of my google image searches I found a pic of your bedazzled kitty perch.

desertsteph, I cut the fridge handles from a left over piece of 1x lumber, using a jigsaw. I sprayed them black, then put a strip of metallic tape along the front edge. They're modeled on the shape of my real fridge handles. Thank you!

BTW, when I googled 'kitchen center' I found the following link. Who knew those things were so expensive?!! My recycled one was about a tenth of what they charge.

Here is a link that might be useful: Wooden play centers.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

WOW! Soo impressive. You can market these as kitchens on the go...what a great concept! I really like and am in awe of your creativeness.

I know your grandson will LOVE it.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

GREAT JOB ! especially agree with getting the (little)men to cook when they are young. Everyone should know how to cook, it's a skill more important than money in the bank.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

GREAT JOB ! especially agree with getting the (little)men to cook when they are young. Everyone should know how to cook, it's a skill more important than money in the bank.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

go_figure, thank you! Yesterday was Family Dinner Sunday, and I'm happy to report that the kitchen center worked as expected. We rolled it into the LR to set up tables for dinner, then rolled it back to the play room, later.

It was a hit, not only with my grandson, but also with my 8yr old niece and nephew. I offered to make one for them if my brother can find another old entertainment center. He declined, lol.

EATREALFOOD, thank you! Today my grandson played 'restaurant'--the menu was: 2 frozen pies, spaghetti and meatballs, and a sandwich.

My FIL is in his 80s, retired USAF, a very traditional gentleman. When he stopped by one day, I was excited to show him the almost finished project. I said, "Look at the kitchen center I'm making for K's birthday!" His response was, "Hmmmmmm." I couldn't understand why he wasn't more impressed until I said, "And look on the other side--it's a workshop." Then he was impressed ;).


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

Oh, MamaG, you are such an amazing woman, and a wonderful example of what grandmothering is all about.

With a twist! Not many grandmothers have such abilities....so your younger generation, grandies and nieces and nephews, will have a long memory of what strong women can do, at any age.

You're the greatest!


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

That is so gosh-darn cute! If my Grandkids were closer...


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

that is very cool. bet the kids love it!


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

I just came across this post mama goose and had to say how impressed I was at your kitchen. It is so cute! I absolutely love it! Your grandson is very lucky.


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

moccasinlanding, thank you, I'm blushing. I built my first header last week-end, for a small chest-of-drawers I'm recessing in a knee-wall in the guest room. LOL, after that I decided I need some help with the framing for the closets!

Deedles, energy_rater and Kali, thank you all so much!


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

mamag, you are a genius!!! My 2 Grands are 5 houses down the street, and come over often, and although I have toys, the little kitchen would be something they would enjoy for a long time.

I have a couple of questions:what are the oven and refrigerator made from? They look like cabinets, are they? I know the sink is made to work, but is anything else?

Again, it's an awesome idea! ;o)


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RE: Another colorful recycled kitchen...

Hi, patty_cakes, thank you very much! The oven and refrigerator sides are pieces of the entertainment center that I removed and shifted to make boxes the correct size. I used left over doors and drawers from my old kitchen cabinets (I never throw anything away), and some odds-and-ends hardware. The 'cooktop' is scrap pieces of luan backing and 1/4x3 trim, with piece of 1x6 where the knobs are mounted.

Nothing else works, except the touch lights in the oven, fridge, and over the sink. If you click on any of the pics it will take you to my photobucket album, which I made public, so everyone can see how to make a play center--it was so much fun.

A trip to the Restore would probably provide most of the pieces needed for the project--no two will be exactly alike anyway. Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: google search on play kitchens from entertainment centers (oh so cute!)


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