DIY Play Kitchen – Who Needs Pottery Barn?

Sophia’s Retro Play Kitchen

There are few things more satisfying than completing a DIY Play Kitchen for your kids.  It can be whatever color or size you want and they will play with it for years.  Of all the things I have built, this is certainly the one that has brought the most joy!

My daughter has always loved play kitchens.  She finds hours of fun in making dinners, having tea parties and washing dishes.  I think it is just precious.  Now my son plays too.  My heart melts.

When we go to the mall and “play” at Pottery Barn Kids, we spend at least 30 minutes with the play kitchen (and another 30 with a vanity – next project!) every time.  I think all of their little kitchens are to die for.  Having said that, my husband would actually die if I was ever to purchase one of these kitchen sets.  Currently the cost for a 3 piece kitchen starts at $450 and runs up to a whopping $879!  This does not include a 10% delivery and processing fee!

Here was the look I was going for from Pottery Barn.

Pottery Barn Kitchen
PB Retro Kitchen

So, I searched the web, found some wood and decided to build her a large kitchen of her dreams!  I happened to have had an old closet that had tile in it from before we moved the laundry area so she also has a white tile floor and a WORKING SINK!  We love this kitchen and we build it for a total cost of less than $150!  Pretty good wouldn’t you say?

Here is where I started.  I found a set of plans for a wood play kitchen at Lowe’ and then modified them to be closer to the retro look I wanted.   The plans were cute and I followed the dimensions but rather than fake on the sink parts and stove knobs I found the real thing for this kitchen.   I also built a drawer for below the stove to store pots and pans!  The shelves in all of the pieces are closet shelving.  The handles were a bit expensive at $20 all together but they were scratched or they would have been a lot more.  I think they really add something cute and retro feeling!  I also installed a little white shelf in the extra space to hold silverware and pantry items.  The paint was a can of red oops! for $5.  It is a little brighter than the perfect red but man is it close!

We have so much fun with this!  I found bins at Target to store dress up and other toys in cute khaki and red above the kitchen so that all the imagination fun mess would be contained in the closet and the kids would need to ask before we play with this!

Here is where I started after I cut my furniture grade plywood found on clearance!

A Long Way to Go
A Long Way to Go

Here is the basic box assembly of the sink.  All of the pieces follow the same simple assembly pattern.  After I did one with hammer and nails I got out the nail gun but it is possible with just a hammer!

The Basic Box

Without Further Ado – The Inside of the Oven.  The bare wood showing is from changing the door to open to the side inside of opening down.  Safety first! Little Oven

A Working Sink!  We love to wash our hands here and have tea parties with water.  No problem – it is just water!  I can trun off the valve underneath when I am not around so the kids can play and stay dry!  Can you see the water?  It’s on!

Working Little Sink

Working Plumbing
Working Plumbing

The Fridge fits everything!  I love that I can keep all the food in the bins it came in.  It’s easy to clean up and easy to transport to the table for “parties” or cooking school!

Little Fridge
Little Fridge

From Yucky… Old Laundry Closet

To So Yummy! Little Kitchen in the Closet

Good Luck and Enjoy!  Please feel free to email me questions!  Some of the instructions were a little confusing.  You could easily make one larger piece if you had less space and combine the kitchen elements too.  While this project took me a while to complete, I think it was totally worth it in the end!  I now have a WOOD kitchen that I can always change the look of with some paint and hardware and that fits my dimensions exactly.  The PB ones are made of MDF and while they do have some super cute accessories (which I could have figured out but chose not to) I think this little kitchen looks good enough to eat in!

DIY Play Kitchen


  1. says

    your play kitchen turned out great – maybe a little more functional than the PB set, very cool that they have a real working sink. I painted a bed red for my son a couple of weeks ago Pottery barn kids style and for very cheap – they have some great inspiration in their stores but I just can’t afford it!
    .-= Anna´s last blog ..Tiger Cubs =-.

  2. Amanda @ Serenity Now says

    How cute is that?! My girls would go wild for a kitchen like that…can we come over for a play date? ;) You did a wonderful job! Visiting from Kimba’s party. :)
    .-= Amanda @ Serenity Now´s last blog ..Personalized Trick or Treat Bag Tutorial =-.

  3. Kristi says

    That is the cutest thing ever! I just posted the same pictures of the pottery barn kitchen awhile back. I fell in love with the kitchen but refuse to pay that much for it. That was such a creative project. I could never build something like that. You did an awesome job…especially with the working sink!!

  4. Shelly says

    That is absolutely fabulous. I’ve been drooling over the pink retro Target ones (you know, the PBK knock offs) for years but can’t hit “Buy”. I know I could make my own, I just have been so busy with “house” stuff that “fun” stuff gets put down on the list. But you just moved it all right up.
    I’m dying over the sink. Great work!

  5. says

    YOU ARE OFFICALLY THE COOLEST PARENTS EVER! I have been thinking about making my daughter a play stove….but a WHOLE kitchen…with working plumbing!!!! WOWZA! AWESOME!!!

  6. Roeshel says

    Brittany – you have been busy! It’s awesome! Great job! Looks like a DIY Show Off feature to me! ;)
    .-= Roeshel´s last blog ..Fall Festival – Week #8 =-.

  7. Snafflesmummy says

    wow that is amazing. I bet that will be played with for years. You are very cleaver!
    .-= Snafflesmummy´s last blog ..Career Contentment or Lack of Ambition? =-.

  8. says

    Let’s talk money! Let’s see the wood – My home depot had this huge clearance pile of furniture grade double sanded plywood last year for $29 per sheet. I used 2. $60. I had scrap for the 4 foot piece from another project. Other wood trim pieces etc. were app. $5. The oops paint was $5. (at $70). I used extra base moulding from my house for the fake “ogee edge” on the counters = FREE. The handles were $20 (big discount) like I said (now at $90). I always have a huge box of nails on hand and I used my nail gun but this would probably run a couple bucks in nails. Then the SS sink (got a big discount online) and basic faucet and plumbing stuff was about $40 ($130). Clearly if you went a different route here you would save this entire amount basically! The knobs for the stove were $5 ($135) and then the shelving was about $10 ($145). So about $145 total for that Little Kitchen! Of course I did have wood filler and stuff like that on hand!

    • Rosemary says

      Your project is wonderful. We are going to be updating a very basic kitchen for my daughter that my husbands grandfather built. Where did you get the accessories like the knobs etc?


  9. says

    THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!! … IS SOOOOOOOOO AMAZING.

    My goodness. You put all other parents to shame. What a huge project, what an amazing accomplishment. It is indeed every bit as beautiful as the PB one, and in fact more real!

    I am completely wowed.

  10. Katie says

    I think the end product looks amazing. It was so much helping with you parts of this! Just seeting up the compression unit for the nail gun! Tons of laughs. I cant wait to come visit and have a tea party with Sophie and Miles!!

  11. says

    She’s going to blog about that retro kitchen. Mark my words. It will be a nostalgic post that will make her cry joy tears. Your DIY projects make me want to marry you. Is that unrealistic? :-)
    .-= Amy´s last blog ..No Girls Allowed =-.

  12. Buckeroomama says

    The play kitchen is awesome… and even more so because you did it yourself!!!

    (Following you from MBC).
    .-= Buckeroomama´s last blog ..Mini =-.

  13. says

    Seriously this is amazing! Im blogging about this on my up and coming popular baby blog!
    If you would like come check out my blog and enter my current giveaway at
    I hope you decided to follow me because I try to bring my readers a new and AMAZING giveaway every Monday!

  14. says

    Freakin’ Genius! I am in awe. And you made this while preggers? I’m gobsmacked! Your child are so lucky to have the coolest mommy ever.

  15. says

    Great Job!!!! This is awesome, you rock! Your little girl will always remember her little kitchen. When i was a child my Dad built me an A-FRAME house, it had real windows and an adult could stand in it.
    .-= Christine´s last blog ..Come Fly With Me! =-.

  16. says

    –>My mouth dropped open…I AM IMPRESSED. Plus, I think that kitchen is cleaner than my real one at home. ha!

    .-=´s last blog ..Wordless Wedneday – 16 Candles plus 34 =-.

  17. magda says

    First of all, I am so happy to finally know what DIY stands for. There is a reason I didn’t know. I never DIMS. How amazing and fun. I would feel so terribly proud and happy if…..So, for now I will share in your pride and joy. It is beautiful. Better than our actual kitchen. Can’t wait to hear what she wips up in there. xoxo
    .-= magda´s last blog ..Birthday? Check. =-.

  18. says

    I came here from A Soft Place….this is AWESOME! I am loving the sink, who would have thunk? A real sink?! And the red is so cool, just like the PB one. Great job! If I were a kid I think I would even want to sleep in there!

  19. says

    thank you thank you thank you for posting this and letting me know this is available!! I’ve never been in Pottery Barn Kids, but I have a LOVE for all things play. I was recently talking to my hubs telling him we HAD to find that Kitchen playset that I had as a child by Fisher-Price with the telephone, sink, dish drying rack, stove, table & coffee pot. :) this makes my day.

  20. says

    Wow! Thank you so much for that one! We want to get our 2-yr-old a play kitchen for Christmas!

    I saw you on MBC!

    Have a super day!
    .-= Laura´s last blog ..Never Leave the House Without a Bra =-.

  21. says

    Brittany is a very lucky little girl. What a beautiful play kitchen. What fun she will have! I love it!
    .-= Jan´s last blog ..Cottage Color Continuity =-.

  22. says

    These are so cute. I’ll be glad when my Gran daughter
    is big enough to play with something like this. Btw this
    Tee from the GrabBag! I have a award for you on my
    blog! Come and accept it Please! Thanks!

  23. says

    OK, I am thoroughly impressed. I’ve embarked on many a project myself, only to have them end up still a pile of wood in the garage years later. But, your’s looks absolutely wonderful!

    Thanks so much for the award. I’m glad you like my blog.
    .-= Zen Mom´s last blog ..Halloween Wonderland =-.

  24. says


    Girl, this is shocking. You know how like every Mothers wishes she could be supermom?… YOU SHOULD LEAD US. Seriously though, My Husband is a handi man (my trade as well) and I can’t imagine him doing anything close to that. Beautiful! Hope you don’t mind when I direct him to your blog. :)

    Can I move in with you for a month and you can show me your ways and make me creative and handy?
    .-= Eve´s last blog ..A cry for help =-.

  25. says

    Fabulous! I’m impressed that the sink actually works. I’m also impressed that you built it yourself! Love the red color you chose. I’m sure your kids will continue to get hours and hours of fun out of their new kitchen!

  26. says


    I am totally going to figure out a way to do this (w/o the working sink… there isn’t a good place for one in our house) I was just looking at my pb kids catalog and thinking “that could be made for soooooo much cheaper”

  27. Keri R. says

    Do you by any chance have those plans saved to your computer? I clicked on the link to Lowes but they dont have the plans posted anymore. :( If you do I would love for you to email them to me! Thanks so much! Your play kitchen is awesome!

  28. Janet says

    Do you happen to still have the plans? I absolutely LOVE this idea and am hoping my husband and I can make one for our daughter, but it looks like Lowes no longer has this up on their website.

  29. Krista says

    I LOVE the kitchen you made! I too, loved the Pottery Barn Kids one but could not justify the money. I had decided to to make this myself and found the plans at Lowes. Now that I am ready to buy the materials they have taken all the old project plans off the site and replaced them. I have contacted them and it looks like there is nothing they can do. Do you happen to still have the plans? Would you be willing to email them to me? Thanks so much!

  30. Katrina says

    Great job! That is impressive. I have also tried the new Lowes link that you have posted several times in response to other comments and it it also not working. Do you have the plans for the kitchen available in any other form? Thanks in advance. Kat

  31. says

    I hate to ask, but I am in love with this. I saw it on your blog shortly after you posted it. We were unemployed at the time and I was looking for DIY play kitchens. I desperately wanted one for my DD for Christmas. Didn’t happen, but now we have a job and are about to close on a house and I still want one. Sadly, as other people have mentioned, the links you’ve posted for the kitchens on aren’t working. I looked at the plans last year and even emailed them to DH, but I don’t think they ever made it onto our hard drive (or it they did that computer is currently non-functional). Its night unto impossible to find these plans just browsing the Lowes site (I could never find the last ones this way either). Any chance you have emailable copies? If not, that fine too… I’m not too afraid of making my own plans. =) Thanks again for the fabulous inspiration!

    • says

      Rosie – congrats on the new job in the family! That must have been so stressful! I am so glad that you like the play kitchen and I am SO sorry that the new links do not work. I spent hours looking and locating them! Grrrr.

      I am going to try again both online and in my computer because I KNOW I had them at some point! Otherwise, whate I know I have is my cut list with the measurements of each piece of wood. The assembly is fairly simple and I am sure I could make my own “plans” since Lowe’s is no longer making them available.

      The plans they had were not very detailed in terms of steps, and I am not sure mine will be any moreso. However, since the desire is there I am happy to re-create the plans if you think you will use them if I create them.

      Let me know and certainly send pics when you are done!

      • says

        You cut list/peice dimensions would be extremely helpful. I spent last night doing some drawing and figuring out what dimensions we should go for and how that translates into pieces for a complete project… so it would certainly be nice to have something to compare it against.
        By the way, after poking around on Lowe’s website I’m thinking that they took down the articles from past “Creative Ideas” magazines, which is probably where those plans were to be found.
        .-= Rosie T.´s last blog ..I swore I wouldn’t… =-.

  32. Heather says

    Me too, me too! Brittany I love your kitchen and also saw the plans on the Lowes website a few months ago. I printed them out to give to my dad (who is generously building it for my daughter) and he is just about to get started and one of the pages is missing! If you were able to e-mail the plans or cut list to Rosie, would you be able to e-mail it to me too? I would soooooo appreciate it!

  33. Erin says

    I have been looking for plans for a kitchen like this forever! It is super cute!! Do you have actual plans that you could give me? I am definitely a beginner so measurements and such would really help out a lot!! Thank you!

  34. Nicole J Sharp says

    I was wondering what hinges you used. I am looking into building a kitchen and your is great, like a lot of the ideas. Please let me know if you can.

  35. says

    Excuse me as I pick myself off the floor after falling over having seen this! Un. Be. Lieve. Able. I’m beyond impressed with your skill, motivation, passion, DESIRE to do all of this! I could never. My dad, yes. Me, No. I just don’t have the patience for it. I found my daughter’s kitchen at Costco… significantly less than PB but not nearly as WONderful as what you did here. I love it. And your kids should be SO proud, honored and thankful for a mom like you!
    .-= becca´s last blog ..“Am I the Only One” Tuesday – 2yo edition =-.

  36. Jaime says

    Would it be possible to either get plans or at least the dimensions of the sink and fridge? I have a wood stove from my childhood and would like to expand the kitchen for my kiddos. Thanks so much!

  37. Archie Slaton says

    I want to build on of the sets you made. Question, would you please share withl me where to find the decals for the stove burners and the hardware you used. Thanks! Archie

  38. misty says

    So going to steal this idea! You did a fantastic job. We bought our daughter a set not even a year ago and ALL of the doors fell off, and it was far from a “cheap” set. We are again, getting her a kitchen set for xmas. I have been reading review after review on all brands and do not feel confident buying any, even the PB sets got bad reviews. Thats when I started searching for diy’s. My husband is very “crafty” and I’m sure he is just going to be thrilled that I volunteered him to do this project “lol”. Again, you did a great job!

  39. Vickie says

    We too plan to “borrow” this idea from you!!! Would you mind sharing where you purchased all the adorable minature kitchen “items”, like the pots and pans. Thanks!!!!!

  40. Jennifer says

    Wow! This is REALLY GREAT!
    I sent the link to my dad and my husband, showing them that it CAN be done!
    My dad’s been a builder for 25 years and my husband likes woodworking stuff…. so hoping that they can pull it off!
    I looked for the blueprints online at lowe’ tho, and didn’t find any…. any tips?


  41. Laurie P says

    Thank you so much for posting this. I have been looking for weeks for a play kitchen for my daughter’s (3 and 6 months) for Christmas. After I laid eyes on the Pottery Barn kitchens, none of the more affordable ones looked like they were worth spending money on. I called my husband the second I saw this on your site and I think I have him talked into attempting it! It’s less than two weeks till Christmas, but his brother happens to be a high school industrial arts teacher, so I am hoping they can pull it off in time. Do you know about how long it took you to complete the three pieces? Once again, thanks sooo much for the inspiration!

    • says

      Thanks! I was really pregnant and so I think all together probably about 15 – 20 hours. The kids love it! And not pregnant with a helper I think you could definitely pull it off in a weekend!

  42. Nama says

    Great Job!!!!!!! What lucky kids!

    Just looking around for a replacement knob for the blue Pottery Barn stove I got on craigslist for my granddaughter. After her 3rd birthday party here I can’t find it anywhere. (small price to pay) I’d also like to find a cute coffee pot with at least some red. Any ideas?

    • says

      Thank you so much! I am designing a new and smaller play kitchen for them now because they want something that can be both a kitchen and a lemonade stand, flower shop, grocery store etc. It is so much fun to make things they really love!

  43. Chris Ode says

    Wow! Just stumbled across this today after getting an itch to build something similar for my son–beautiful work! And thanks so much for the details you included re. the original Lowes plans, costs, and your customizations–again, it’s gorgeous!

  44. Brittany Stewart says

    Love this kitchen! I have seen a lot of DIY play kitchens, (after my girls received their plastic playskool style one of course) but this one has to be the most detailed. A working sink, are you kidding me? This really is pretty amazing.
    Brittany Stewart recently posted… An Adorable DIY Advent CalendarMy Profile

    • says

      Thank so much! It was a lot of fun to make and the kids love it. Right now I am actually building a different one because I think they want more of a combo kitchen / lemonade stand, grocery store thing. We do not have room for both! This one will not have working water but it will be so super cool! Now to get it done by Christmas!

  45. Suzanne says

    Do you mind if I quote a couple of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back to your blog? My website is in the very same niche as yours and my users would certainly benefit from some of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this ok with you. Thanks a lot!
    Suzanne recently posted… weight loss program that worksMy Profile

    • says

      You may feel free to quote me as long as you limit the length of quote and credit my blog with a link back to the post on this site. Thanks and please shoot me an email when you post!

  46. Laurie says

    Good morning, Do you still have the plans for the Lowe’s kitchen? I had wanted to use those and saw them earlier this year. Since then, they took them down and have something that is made from a ready made cabinet. It would be so much help!


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