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Play Kitchen: 5 Things to Consider When you Tackle Your DIY Project

Back in January of this year, I thought it was a great idea to tackle my first big DIY project.  I’ve learned so much in doing this fun project and I think it’s the first of many to come.  Many have already asked what is next.  Although, we do have some ideas, we are taking a break from big DIY projects because we’re moving from one coast to another very shortly.  Today though,  I wanted to share with you 5 things I learned along the way and encourage you to tackle your DIY project as simple as possible!

#1. Set a realistic budget 

When I first saw pictures of DIY play kitchens, I thought surely it doesn’t take that many supplies.  Well after at least 25 total trips to Lowes, Home Depot, Joann’s, Michael’s, Wal-Mart, Habitat for Humanity and the dollar store, I have to say that DIY play kitchens require a lot more than you think.  Believe it or not we even had a lot of things on hand but still found ourselves running to the store pretty frequently.  So, make sure you set a realistic budget by cushioning that budget so you don’t go over!

Shop sales, use coupons and borrow tools from neighbors, friends and family!  Also, ask stores if they offer any discounts: military, police or medical. Some might just give you a discount for asking, especially small family owned businesses. Shop second hand store, garage sales and Craig’s List. It really helps keep you within your target budget! Every dollar saved is one less spent!

#2. Set a realistic time frame to complete your project

I started planning in January and Finished by April 6th.  I thought I would have it done super fast, but realistically life is busy and I’m so glad I planned the months I did.  I was able to finish on time (with tons of help from my husband!) because we allowed plenty of time to complete it!

Really consider what you have time for and how you will incorporate your project into your weekly routine.

#3. Set realistic weekly goals

Every Saturday I planned out what needed to be done that week to stay on my time line.  Sometimes I had to research longer or spend more time browsing at different stores to find the best solution or price.  I tried hard to give myself only 3 tasks each week, that way I didn’t seem stressed or burdened by doing this project.

If you are already use to setting weekly goals, great!  If not, just jot down on a post it note or piece of paper your short list for the week.  Put it in a visible place like the refrigerator.  Resource it throughout the week, even if you don’t get it all done, just checking one or two things off the list makes you one step closer to finishing!

#4. Ask for help and know what you are good at

I took  wood shop when I was in 7th grade.  Which is equivalent to no experience at all! :) And considering I am quite a few years away from being 12, I don’t even remember what I learned! But thankfully I have a husband who did a lot more wood work growing up and really enjoys power tools! Asking for his help during this project was the only way I could have  completed this project!  I felt I was better at planning, decoration, shopping and sewing, than the other qualities that were needed.  So it was the perfect balance to complete this!

We also could not have done this with out our neighbor Brian helping us and loaning us his air compressor (ours broke at the beginning of this project), table saw and his brain for trouble shooting!

#5. Make it fun

I can’t stress this enough, but I’ll be completely honest, sometimes the play kitchen and I didn’t like each other.  I had set my expectations high and then when something didn’t turn out right, I was disappointed.  So I’m learning to just laugh at the mess ups, the flops and failures, you’ll be surprised how much better  “you” and the project turn out!  One way we had fun doing this project is, we took a date night to Lowes and Walmart.  I know, super exciting huh!  But it was a nice little date.  Have you ever taken a toddler shopping at Lowes before? Then you know how nice it is to go shopping without one! :)  Find ways to have fun as you tackle your DIY project.  It’s the best part of life!


Well these are my top 5 things to consider when tackling a DIY project. Next week, I’ll wrap this series up by sharing  the supply list and products I used during this project! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Have you ever done a DIY project?  What are some tips you learned during your project.  Please share in the comments! 


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