yay! i finally have a second to sit down and write this post. the babies are fast asleep, i’ve finished my instagram loitering (for the time being) so let’s do this. i’ve taken so many pictures of the process so i think it will be best to break this project up into several blog posts. but never fear, it will be worth it. i am working on free printable as well. if you’ve been following along with me on instagram, then you have an idea of what i’m talking about. if not, well, then let’s start at the very beginning. (a very good place to start…)
here is the “before” photo of the crib side of the kids’ bedroom. eventually the crib will be gone that will really open up that side of the bedroom. but that will be another year or two and i didn’t want to put off a fun play area any longer.
as usual, a space presents a challenge and i try to use my design skills to solve the problem. in this case i have been wanting to make a play kitchen and a dress up area for my little ones for a while now. here are some inspiration images that had been floating around in my mind.
this is hands down my favorite play kitchen, the definition of a chic play kitchen. the details are great without being over the top, and i just love how it leans more towards the realistic end of the spectrum when it come to the “finishes”.this chair cover kitchen is such a clever idea, especially when space is at a premium, as in my case. i don’t want the bedroom to feel too cramped with a bunch of different things going on. I thought this might work as a solution since the kids could use it at the dining table while i am nearby in the kitchen. the oven even opens! so cute.then there’s the ever popular pipe, board, and casters turned dress up rack approach. it’s great because you can relocate it through the room or the house. i really love the color combo here too. it felt playful and sophisticated, my fav!
i also really liked this minimalist approach. it also seemed like it would be a fairly easy diy. i thought about extending the legs beyond the base to create “feet” and then add a piece of wood across the bottom to create a shelf for accessories.
this option was nice and fairly compact. i really liked the idea of the mirror. have you guys seen this mirror from ikea? i had also toyed with using it as a dress up option because it’s not only a full length mirror, but it also has a back section for hanging accessories and a bar for hanging clothes. pretty perfect, right? well now with little brother on the scene, the thought of all that glass made me too nervous.
so i absorbed all that inspiration and kept letting it slowly simmer in the back of my mind. then, in the fall of 2014, i had a fun playroom project that i was able to work on. i love to be inspired by the things around me. for this it was the client’s existing play kitchen. it prompted me to create this playhouse silhouette and make a fun, defined area that in reality took up no space whatsoever. i really think this playroom project is ultimately what inspired me to do a spin-off for my own kids.
i had 70″ to work with and then it hit me. make a play village, a series of rowhouse-style buildings so that i could create a couple of play options in the small space. after taking tons of measurement of existing toys, my kids (anthropometrics are so important since they are a major determining factor in the functional use of a space and it’s furniture/fixtures), and researching future additions i finally came up with my concept. i’d would paint out 3 buildings and use shelves and hooks to further define the play areas and make them functional. it would keep the footprint minimal but still usable. the three buildings would be:
- a 20″ wide hospital/doctors office for “doctor and laboratory/scientific” play,
- a 30″ wide restaurant for “kitchen/food prep/party planning” play (e is always wanting to plan a birthday party for her “babies,”
- and a 20″ wide boutique for “shopping and dress-up” play.
below you will find my mind blowing layout sketch…haha! some ideas have since been added and others have been eliminated all together. but for my sketch i was more concerned about the width and placement of the items within the “buildings” than on the buildings themselves. that was pretty firmly established in my head, so i went to work taping everything off for paint.the first order of business was to truncate the ribbon i had originally painted over the crib. it was subtle enough that it wouldn’t compete with the new play village, and i liked how it was defining the crib area, but it needed to be shorted to allow for maximum use of wall space. my trusty assistant is always happy to help me paint.now that the ribbon was cut back to the confines of the crib, i could start taping out the play village. here’s a quick slideshow of the first phase of the taping process.
okay, so that is the basic overview of the play village concept. my next post will show the taping process more in depth as well as how to tackle the detail areas that you may have seen in a few of my behind the scenes posts here and here. i can’t wait to show you more! i’ll post a notification on my instagram account when the play village taping blog post is live. xoxo