One of the best things we acquired recently (and when I say “recently”, I mean “more than a year ago”) was this Little Tikes kitchen. We received it from our old church. It had been donated to them years and years ago, and actually Andrew says that it is the exact same one that his mother donated to the church. So, in essence, our daughter is playing with the same kitchen that once belonged to her father and uncle. So it’s a pretty special kitchen.
I was happy to receive it, too. It’s such a cute little kitchen. Except, I wasn’t such a huge fan of the colours. But that’s so easy to change! I decided to do a little DIY project with it.
Here’s what you need:
Plastic play kitchen
PLASTIC spray paint – I purchased the spray paint from Rona. It’s meant specifically for plastic furniture that stays outside, so it works really well for a toy like this that will potentially be wiped down a lot.
Newspaper and Masking tape
Here’s how you do it!
Step One: Decide what you want to paint
For me, I was not a big fan of the bright yellow and green, so I knew that I wanted to paint the roof section as well as the sink/stove top sections. I didn’t paint the actual phone, but I did paint the phone holder.
Step Two: Take it apart
There are quite a few little bolts like the ones pictured above. I used a wrench to get the yellow plastic part off, and then a regular screwdriver to get the bolts out. It was actually significantly easier than I anticipated and didn’t take very long at all.
Next, I needed to figure out how to take off the sink portion. The tap came off very easily, as did the knobs. There were hidden bolts that were made of plastic under the sticker, and those were pretty much ruined when I tried to remove them. It was hard to get this portion off.
Under the sink, I had to take off a metal loop, and then the sink/stove top came off!
Step Three: Clean it!
As you can see, the inside of the sink/range was pretty dusty. This kitchen is from the 1990’s and was well loved. I just hosed it off because it was spring at the time.
Step Four: Remove Stickers
This was actually much harder than I thought it was going to be. After sitting there attempting to peel the stickers off, my husband and I found that the best way to accomplish this easily was to use a hair dryer! He was able to get all the stickers off in one piece very easily just by using heat. Pro tip 😉
We just removed the stickers on the sides and the one going around the roof portion, but we kept the stove top stickers, and the stickers to indicate the vent on the inside of the roof.
Step Five: Cover the stickers you wish to keep
Here are the parts that I wanted to paint. I needed to cover the grills and the vent stickers.
I used newspaper and masking tape.
Step Six: Paint!
I chose to do the roof of the kitchen a mint green, and the sink/stove top in silver. I wanted it to look similar to a stainless steel counter top.
Step Seven: Let it cure
The best tip that I got from a friend who had painted a different Little Tikes toy was that they didn’t leave it for long enough. I think I left it for too long though. I let the first few coats cure for about 4 months. Not because it needed it, but because I had a baby right after I started. That step is totally optional 😉
I did my final coats after four months, and then let it cure for about a week. If you’re wanting to get it done faster than I did, waiting a week will be long enough to let it cure.
Step Eight: Put it back together!
Et voila! It was hard to remember which bolt went where after more than four months, and I did have a black bolt left over that I’m not sure where it came from, but there you go!
And my daughter loves it.. which is really the important part 😉