Some of you may remember when I made some play food for Helen last year. I guess my friend Anj also remembered, because she asked me to make some for her sweetheart of a daughter, who is getting a play kitchen for her 2nd birthday!! Awesome! I love play kitchens! I think for me, the play kitchen and Barbies are tied for favorite childhood toy. Endless hours in the basement playing with both of those! So of course I said yes to making the food, because what childhood is complete without play food? I couldn't deprive my little friend!
Now for the goods:
Looks like a good time if I do say so myself!!
I'd be happy to craft some play food for you too! Just email me or leave a comment below if you are interested!
What was your favorite childhood toy? Did anyone else love their play kitchen as much as I did? Did anyone else make menus and guest cheques emblazoned with the name of your "restaurant"? (Ours was Apple Tree Cafe!) (And yes, we did!)
This past weekend I tackled a little painting project that had been bugging me since June. Do you know how difficult it is it get fingerprint dusting powder off of anything? Almost impossible. So impossible that the only real solution was to paint!
Before. See that dirty place above the deadbolt? Yeah, that wouldn't come clean.
As promised, there have been some updates in the front entrance since the last time I showed it here. I really do have good intentions to do a photo house tour of the whole house someday, but for some reason I can't get past the front entrance! And anyway, since we got robbed in June, I am not sure I want to post our whole house on the internet! But today, entry ways!
A few weeks ago I took down that shelf that was on the wall next to the front door, repaired the drywall and painted some chevron stripes on the wall, making sure to place my stripes over the area that I repaired.
Then I built a bench from these plans (I shortened mine by quite a bit) and now the front entrance is "done". I use quotes because who knows...I may change something else in that area yet!
So I went about collecting the things I would need to make my own version of this baby. Maybe about two days after seeing this project, I was at MCC and saw some stacking stools that had that tubular metal look - not quite the same as the bench above (I would be waiting a lot of years if I was going to hold out to find Eames bases in Abbotsford!) but I thought the stools I found would provide the same sort of feel. And I took a picture of those ugly stools with their green vinyl tops. And then our house was robbed and I don't have that picture anymore. But that's ok, check out what I was able to make with my $7 stacking stools and big piece of reclaimed wood (which I got at Western Reclaimed Timber):
Just so you know, by "I was able to make", I mean "my dad did all the work"!
Here's how my smart Dad attached the legs to the top! I had no plan and was just going to wing it!
Love those old saw marks!
Visitors welcome at our house through either entrance! Feel free to sit down & enjoy the benches!
I made a car playmat for Helen (who else??), who will be turning 3 this week! I have to say, this is one of the coolest things I have ever made! (Helen doesn't read my blog, so she'll still be surprised by this on her birthday!!)
here is a stitched together view of the playmat! It's a bit wonky, but you get the idea!
Here's how I went about this project of mine!
First, I had seen on another blog two different painted rugs/mats. So that was sort of the inspiration behind this project. Also, Helen was about to have a birthday, so she needed a gift, and I have always made her something (so far...I need to lower the bar because I just can't keep up this pace for all the little children that are going to be in our family. And Dan is one of 5 kids, so you know that there will be a lot of little children eventually!!). So thanks for the idea and the how-to Sarah's blog!
You guys already saw my supplies:
- a piece of canvas (I just got half a meter from the fabric store)
- primer (had about 1/2 of that gallon left)
- exterior latex paint (you probably don't need exterior paint, but I happened to have leftover in green)
- acrylic paint (had a bunch, but also picked some up at the dollar store)
- white glue
- water-based wood sealer
- paint brushes & drop clothes
First step is to prime baby prime!
I only did one coat, and it was fine. The point is to soak it into the canvas so that your other paints don't.
Next, I painted the whole thing green (for grass!) And used chalk to layout my little town. I just did basic stuff with chalk - roads and a river.
Then I painted again! I used regular acrylic craft paint mixed with a bit of white glue. I was just following suggestions from the above mentioned blog, and also an e-how article on painting a canvas rug, and both recommended mixing the paint with glue to give it a bit more elasticity. Toward the end though I just used paint and I think it'll be ok. (Also, check out my completed screen porch in this pic! I did finish that project and it's fantastic! Come over anytime for drinks on the porch - bug free since July!)
After I had my basic layout, I started adding buildings and other details!
Here are some close up shots of the buildings.
I just realized that I didn't take a picture of the courthouse, or the school. Whoops! Oh well,you get the idea. For my buildings, I did collect some clip art pictures off of he internet just to get ideas for different building shapes, but some of them I just made up. I added parking lots, driveways and trees & shrubs as I went. I also tried to include stuff that Helen knows about (school, gas station, church, pizza place, pool, farm, river etc).
When it was all painted and looked how I wanted it to, I sealed it with three coats of water based sealer. I used Varathane brand Outdoor Diamond Wood Finish in a satin finish. The canvas was pretty rough before I sealed it - this really helped to smooth it out, and I hope it'll make this thing durable enough for years of play (after the sheer amount of time that went into this project, I have deemed it to be a gift for all current & future Wall children!)
Lastly, after the sealer had dried and sat for a few days (mostly because that's how I roll with projects around here!) I flipped it over and hot glue the edges to the back. They were still pretty rough from all the paint, and I had used pinking shears to stop the canvas from fraying on the sides, so it was sharp. My mat is by no means a perfect rectangle (which I think you can tell from the first photo!), but that was fine, I just glued about 6" of the edge at a time to make nice edges on the front.
There you have it! Can't wait to gift this and also show the family. I'm pretty proud of it! If anyone out there ever makes one of these, please let me know because I would love to see it!