A play kitchen built from a salvaged cabinet

Guest post by Alison Headley
All photos by Alison Headley.

I made this play kitchen for my boyfriend’s nephew Henry, who is pictured above investigating his new present. I got the idea from this kitchen I saw on Young House Love.


To make it, I bought an old cabinet at the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store and framed it out underneath so it’d be a bit taller. The top is an old door from a different cabinet, with a piece of trim nailed to it for the backsplash.

The oven door was the hardest part. I had to jigsaw a big rectangle out of the cabinet door, frame it with mitered trim pieces, and glue a piece of plexiglass to it. I told Henry’s parents not to bring a level anywhere near the play kitchen or it’d probably explode.

Like the kitchen on YHL, this one has a metal bowl for a sink, with a real faucet and a hot-water handle that moves. Apparently Henry’s favorite thing is to give his toys a bath in the sink.

Henry’s other favorite thing is magnets, so I painted the other cabinet door with like 50 coats of magnetic primer. Boy, that stuff is temperamental. I had to stir it constantly, and there was still a huge chunk of metal shavings in the middle of the can that wouldn’t break up. You can see in the photo above that Henry already put some of his magnets on it.

You can see a few more photos on I Could Make That!

Comments on A play kitchen built from a salvaged cabinet

  1. I see these all over and instantly am jealous. I think I’m going to bite the bullet and just start scouting for a small side cabinet to do this.

    • Annie, I don’t know where you’re from, but if you live in the Madison, Wi area – I will gladly give you a small metal cabinet to repurpose for this. I have like six of them , one I’m planning on turning into a kitchen, too!

  2. Looks great!! I made a similar-layout play kitchen yesterday, but out of a cardboard box… way easier (though not as gorgeous). On the plus side, I could use a knife and packing tape. šŸ™‚ I am certain that you earned huge part-of-the-family points for this awesome gift!!

  3. Love it! We’re hoping to build a play kitchen for my daughter’s second birth, and will most likely go the re-furbished entertainment unit route, but this looks awesome!

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