Sinterklaas (or St Nicolas for the French-speakers) is fast approaching. On Friday, kids in Belgium will be waking up to discover what the Sint (aided by the not-so-politically-correct Zwarte Piet) brought them in reward for being nice the whole year.
This weekend has therefore been engulfed by a shopping bonanza for Sinterklaas gifts, which are typically more important than the ones brought by Santa Klaus (also known as "De Kerstman" or "Pere Noel" in this part of the world).
Bibu, our five-year old, had a very detailed and precise idea of what toy he wanted to ask the Sint, so there was not much we could do to influence his request. For our baby Pingu, who's just about to turn 17 months, I got the idea of getting him a play kitchen, since he loves to play with pots, spoons and pans and is reportedly a big fan of his creche's play kitchen.
I then decided to go the recycled route for the play kitchen, as he's a baby still and has already too many toys and will inherit too many toys from his older brother. Also, I have no clue how long his Jamie Oliver wannabe period is going to last, so the thought of spending tens of euros on a huge play kitchen was not very appealing.
As mentioned before, I really like Les Petites Riens, so last Monday I headed to their Baby Paradise boutique on Rue Americaine in Ixelles to look for a used play kitchen. When I arrived, I was glad to see the shop full of people. There were two play kitchens in the back of the shop, one wooden and one plastic. I went for the plastic one, as it was much lighter to carry around and I reckoned easier to restore, as well. The cooking plates, which had been a sticker originally, had been peeled off and replaced by an array of stickers, so a little restoration work was needed.
I also picked up a couple of trays full of pretend fruit and vegetables and payed the total sum of 9 EUR for everything (yes, for everything you see in the picture)
After arriving home, I first gave the kitchen a thorough wash with detergent and alcohol, and popped the plastic accessories in a mesh bag and washed them in the washing machine (in the "delicates" programme). I then peeled off all the stickers and started thinking how to best restore the cooking plates in a simple yet nice way. In the end, I used two PÅNNA table sets from IKEA, one in black and one in bordeaux. I first took the measures of the cooking plates' base in paper and then cut the black PÅNNA in the correct shape and glued it onto the kitchen, smooth side up.
Then I used the two bordeaux PÅNNA to make the cooking plates. I glued everything onto the kitchen, et voila!
I cannot wait to see Pingu's little face when he uncovers his "new" play kitchen that the Sint has brought him!