As much as I love to involve my little ones in the kitchen with me when I'm cooking or baking, I also love having them have their own little play space where they can come up with their own menus for dinner parties with Doggy and BunBun using just their imaginations. There is so much out there to put together a cute play kitchen area, and here we want to give you our top ideas for toys and ideas to make yours the sweetest play kitchen around. Inspired by this beyond adorable market stand I found on Pinterest (courtesy of domestic candy) I wanted to find simple, wooden pieces that would be durable and safe for little hands but that would also have some great design and style.
1. I'm a big believer of not using plastic toys as much as necessary and these adorable latte bowls from Anthropologie are great for a bunch of reasons. First, they come in great colors the kids love, they can be used in your own kitchen for everything from ice cream to cereal to, yes, lattes, and so much more! Plus they make cute play mixing and serving bowls for the kids to use in their kitchen, and because they aren't made of plastic the kids take extra care in playing with them rather than just tossing them around.
2. I love the idea of upcycling an old piece of furniture to make a play kitchen, and this one made from a set of drawers is cuter than anything I've seen sold in a store. Check out all the details on how they made it here to get inspired!
3. I'm putting this super cute egg set I found on Etsy on the kids' Christmas list because I love it so much. Made from solid unfinished wood these eggs are the perfect shape for little hands. Now I just need to find a play hen that they can collect them from!
4. This felt veggies set comes with a child sized string bag just like the one I bring to the farmers' market when we get our vegetables. This fun little set comes with an asparagus, onion, beet, lettuce and carrot, all you need to teach healthy eating habits during play time! It also comes in a fruit version too from Land of Nod.
5. Have a little sushi lover in your family? Check out this plush sushi set! You can buy them each separately or get all of them and have a complete set with a tuna, salmon roe, shrimp, wasabi and ginger!
6. Any little girl would love this sweet set of petit fours by Haba to serve at her tea parties. Each life sized treat is uniquely and intricately designed from polyester fabrics to look almost better than the real thing and come in a cute box set of nine, complete with individual wrappers.
7. I'm obsessed with this shopping cart from one of my favorite toy makers Plan Toys. PlanToys are made from natural, chemical free rubber wood and finished with non-toxic and child friendly colors. Better than any of the plastic of metal models out there, this one is a wood and canvas push shopping cart with peg handles that sits on a stable, three wheel base. There is a stopper at the rear of the cart to prevent the cart from tipping backwards and the handle adjusts to fit the child's height. Plus being great for their imaginative play, this is also a great way to encourage your little ones to pick up their toys!
8. Another great item from Plan Toys is this cute breakfast set which comes with a curved tray and includes 2 slices of bread, a bun, sausage, bacon, cheese, fried egg, boiled egg, plus salt and pepper. Perfect for those big enough to want to serve you breakfast in bed but little enough to not quite master a tray piled with real food and hot coffee...
9. Speaking of coffee, if you're the type who heads straight to the Keurig every morning, your little one might like to have a little coffee and tea maker of their own! Little ones love to mimic their parents behavior and certainly many of them (including my own) have seen mommy or daddy brewing a pot of hot coffee. This wooden, single serve style coffee maker comes with everything your child needs to start "brewing". The top of the coffee maker even flips open to insert a felt filter! Set includes: 1 coffee maker, 1 carton of milk, 1 sugar bowl with spoon, 1 coffee cup, and 1 single-serve felt coffee pouch/filter. And the best part is that it is made of wood with completely non-toxic, child-friendly paints and finishes.
10. My kids love going to the farmers' market every weekend, and they would love this Fresh Food Market set. This set is ideal for little ones to imagine and operate a store (or farm stand) where they can stand behind the canopied counter and weigh products, add up purchases and make change. The 23-piece set includes a stylish market stall, cash register with bar code scanner and card reader, a scale, 16 pieces of paper money and coins, and 2 pieces of credit card and membership card. I would add some empty milk bottles and other fun finds we pick up at the market to make the experience complete for them!