DIY: A Montessori Toddler Kitchen Makeover, IKEA HACK

I love the IKEA Duktig kitchen but I have to admit, previously Lake didn't really play with hers a great deal, it ended up being used as more of a storage space than anything else. I really wanted to make it more functional for her...

One of the first steps into moving towards the Montessori method and setting up prepared environments within our home was the Montessori toddler kitchen. Although some may argue that a play kitchen doesn't belong in a Montessori home, this kitchen is not used for play. It's set up to be a functioning kitchen, made for many practical life activities. 

So to remove the play element, I started by removing the top half of the kitchen, as it didn't really serve a purpose. Same with the play tap and hob. The tap was replaced with a water dispenser and the hob with a chopping board. 
I gave our kitchen a fresh lick of paint as we had previously painted it. I also gave the bowl and the top with a few layers of lacquer spray in attempt to make it more waterproof. And added a splash mat to the bottom, as I envisioned many spillages!
To the side of the kitchen I added a little cleaning station. I added some hooks to store her dustpan and brush and a tea towel for cleaning up spillages. I also made this little crochet basket, to store her spray bottle (its just water) and cloth. Just above, on the wall, I added more hooks to store her apron.
I wanted Lake to be able to help herself to drinks so, inside we store her cups and jugs. And for food/ snack preparation, we store a tray that includes all her bits for helping out. Finally I wanted her to use it for setting the table, so we also have her cutlery and place mats. 
I plan on introducing hand washing to this area too, but for now Lake has a set up in our downstairs bathroom, and I don't want to introduce too much in one go. 

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