Are you ready to build your own Mud Kitchen? Let me guide you with this DIY Manual.
But first, what on earth is a Mud Kitchen?
A Mud Kitchen is an outdoor kitchen for children to engage in imaginative, messy and sensory play. It is a place dedicated to making mud pies and any treat your child can concoct using nature’s finest ingredients.
I am a big fan of selecting low tox products and reusing and upcycling materials – so a deliberate focus has been placed on this.
The Manual below is inspired by the Mud Kitchen we have at home. It is minimalist in its nature, but if you want to get all fancy schmancy, feel free to add to it or chop and change as you wish. The renders are created to guide you in the creation of your very own.
As one of the 100 At-Home Activities to do during Isolation, why not give this a go!
So let’s proceed… LET’S GET DIRTY!
Allocate 2 hours for cutting the TIMBERRR.
The overall timeframe for the Mud Kitchen build is approximately 4-6 hours, depending on your skill level.
And chill mama, it does not need to be tackled in one go.
What you will need:
Super Glue (Check out https://www.greenbuildingsupply.com/All-Products/Paints-Coatings-Caulks-Sealants-Adhesives for low or no VOC options)
Door Hinges x 2 (100mm each) (There are plenty of online Vintage Stores to choose from)
Blackboard 400mm x 400mm (Available from any Art Store)
OPTION ONLY: Paint (Opt for low tox, water based. Check out https://www.greenbuildingsupply.com/All-Products/Paints-Coatings-Paints-Primers) Please note: Paint is only an option, used to seal the timber (if desired) as a final step
Timber (refer to quantities on the ‘CUTTING LIST’) (Available at Hardware Stores or Timber Suppliers)
Hand Saw (Especially recommended for beginners) (Power or Drop Saw only for more experienced users)
PPE (Eyes, Gloves, Mask, Ears)
Broom/Dust Pan (For cleaning)
Square (To mark timber before cutting)
Sink (1 off) 300mm x 300mm and 200mm depth (From Scrap Metal Yard or Hardware Store)
Door handle (1 off) 100-200mm (There are plenty of online Vintage Stores or Second Hand shops)
2 Rectangle Hot Plates made out of recycled timber off cuts (150mm x 400mm each) (Use recycled timber off cuts from the ‘CUTTING LIST’)
3 Small Stove Knobs made out of recycled timber off cuts (50mm diameter each) (Use recycled timber off cuts from the ‘CUTTING LIST’)
Find below CUTTING LIST for the entire build of the Mud Kitchen Project.
a) The below Cutting List is for the FRAMEWORK OF THE KITCHEN:
35mm x 75mm untreated pine – 20 lengths at 450mm. (This is for the framework of the kitchen. Untreated pine has been selected as it is strong and durable. This framework will be hidden by the recycled timber panels. There are also no treated chemicals on it).
35mm x 75mm untreated pine – 8 lengths at 1950mm. (This is for the framework of the kitchen. Untreated pine has been selected as it is strong and durable. This framework will be hidden by the recycled timber panels. There are also no treated chemicals on it).
b) The below Cutting List is for the recycled timber which will be used to CONCEAL THE UNTREATED PINE FRAMEWORK. My preference is to use recycled fencing. This can be purchased Online or at your Local Timber Yard.
15mm x 100mm recycled timber – 30 lengths at 500mm.
15mm x 100mm recycled timber – 20 lengths at 2000mm.
1. Use a Hand Saw (note: Drop Saw only if experienced) and start cutting the entire above Cutting List in the exact dimensions provided.
(Timeframe 2 hours).
See the link below for further guidance.
2. Grab 12 x 450mm pieces and make 3 x frames. Use your hammer and 50mm nails to put the frames together. Call the 3 frames A, B and C.
3. Grab another 8 x 450mm pieces and 8 x 1950mm pieces and make 4 frames. It should form a rectangle shape! Use your hammer and 50mm nails to put the frames together. Please call these 4 frames D, E, F, G.
4. Lay D from STEP 3 on the ground. Place the 3 x A, B, C frames from STEP 2 on each side of the D frame and one in the middle of the D frame.
5. Lay E from STEP 3 on top of A, B and C, parallel with frame D. See sketch below.
6. Nail A, B ,C, D and E down together. Hammer 2 nails on every frame.
7. Place F behind the back of the piece created in STEP 2. Hammer and Nail F down to the frame.
8. Place G on top of F. Hammer and Nail G down to F.
9. Now, the dress code requires us to DRESS UP (the frame!)
Use the recycled timber to dress the frame. This includes the 30 pieces x 500mm long and 20 pieces x 2000mm long of recycled timber.
Let’s get specific…
- To dress the frames A, B and C, use a Hammer and Nail and place each of the 30 pieces x 500mm long from left to right on both sides of each 3 frames. This accounts to 5 pieces of the 500mm long recycled timber on each side of the frame. 5 to the left of A. 5 to the right of A. 5 to the left of B. 5 to the right of B. 5 to the left of C. 5 to the right of C.
- To dress the frames D, E, F and G, use a Hammer and Nail and place each of the 20 pieces x 2000mm long from left to right horizontally of each 4 frames. This accounts to 5 pieces of the 2000mm long recycled timber on one side of the frame. 5 to left of D. 5 to the left of E. 5 to the left of F. 5 to the left of G.
10. Onwards with the Mud Kitchen build… Not to bore you, BUT it’s blackboard time!
To create the frame for the blackboard, use the recycled timber off cuts to make a 500mm x 500mm frame. Hammer and Nail the blackboard frame onto the backboard as shown on the diagram. Glue the 400mm x 400mm blackboard inside the blackboard frame.
11. Don’t knock it til you try it!
To create a door for the cupboard:
a) Cut the frame for the door first. Use off cuts 500mm x 500mm (4 pieces) from the recycled timber.
b) For the FACE of the door – Cut 5 x pieces of off cuts from the recycled timber 500mm long x 100mm wide. Place each piece in between the frame from STEP a), from left to right. Glue it in from the inside to set.
c) Use the 2 x 100mm hinges and screw into the side of frame C with the cordless drill.
d) Screw the other side of the hinge onto the door with the cordless drill.
12. Install the D Shape handle to the left side of the cupboard door. (Feel free to get creative with the style of the Door Handle!)
Your very own Mud Kitchen
13. Let this all sink in for a bit…
Once you’re ready, let’s create the sink!
To create the sink – cut a hole 10mm smaller than the sink you purchased. Use a Jigsaw and please ensure PPE is worn. Drop the sink down in position.
14. OPTION ONLY!
Paint the entire frame with the paint selected (sealer). This is to seal the timber if desired. Ideally, it will help prevent fading if out in the sun for an extended period of time.
15. Feeling hot, hot, hot…
It’s time for the Hot Plates and Stove Knobs!
Using recycled timber off cuts, create the Hot Plates and Stove Knobs.
a) For the 2 off Rectangle Hot Plates, cut 150mm x 400mm (for each one) with a circular saw or a Drop Saw, depending upon the size of your off cuts available. You can add less hot plates OR more – totally up to you!
b) For each of the 3 Small Stove Knobs, cut 50mm diameter with a drop saw. To create the shape of a circle, you will have to spin the timber around and get into many cuts. Be careful. If this proves tricky icky, keep it as a square!
c) Glue all the above pieces down in position on the top left of the Mud Kitchen bench. The positioning is ultimately up to you.
To kick off your little chef, gather some of your own child friendly utensils for reuse OR purchase some biodegradable cooking utensils on the market.
(If you have any questions on the build of your very own Mud Kitchen, send me an email!)