HOW TO MAKEOVER THE IKEA DUKTIG PLAY KITCHEN

006 MASKING TAPE AND PAPERSTEP 1: READ THE INSTRUCTIONS

First, you’ll need to familiarise yourself with the Duktig instructions and the components, so you know which bits you need to paint. I decided to save time and paint by leaving the inside of the cupboards, the cupboard shelves and the microwave unpainted (these areas will also get a lot of wear and tear, so paint would probably get scratched off anyway) so I used paper and masking tape to cover up the areas that didn’t need paint.

Use spray-paint in a well-ventilated area – ideally outside, but check the weather forecast is dry and not breezy. Always wear a mask and gloves and avoid breathing in the spray. I used the cardboard box that the kitchen came in to protect my paving slabs, plus some bin bags, paper and plastic sheeting, and I still managed to spray-paint parts of my patio, so be careful as the paint particles mist out further than you’d expect. Wear old clothes!

007 PRIMER STAGESTEP 2:  PRIME AND PAINT

I used PlastiKote Primer in White on every element I planned to paint, then let it dry for 24 hours. Next, I applied a top coat of PlastiKote Multi-surface Spray Paint in Matt Grey to the cabinets and the main body of the kitchen, a top coat of PlastiKote Multi-surface Spray Paint in Gloss White to the sink and used PlastiKote Metallic Gold on the taps, the hob surround and the hanging rail plus hooks.

008A GOLD PAINT IKEA DUKTIGYou need to allow plenty of time to do this, as for many of the elements you need to spray one side, then wait until that side is dry before turning it over to spray the reverse. Ideally, you need to allow at least 24 hours between sides / coats. If you have the time, the paint and the energy, two top coats would be better than one.

009 GREY PAINTTIP: Even if you are planning not to paint the inside of the cupboard, the oven and the microwave, you will need to paint at least a 2cm strip at the entrance to the microwave and around the other two doors as these areas will show, even when the three doors are closed fully. You will also need to paint the edge of the middle upright panel that separates the oven and cabinet doors. I only realised this once I’d built the unit and I had to re-spray areas, which was really annoying and involved a lot of masking!

009A STRIP009B STRIPSTEP 3: COVER THE WORKTOP

Use a sheet of sticky-back plastic to cover the worktop. I used D-C-Fix Original Marmi Deco Self-Adhesive Film in Grey (67.5cm x 2m), £5 from Wilko.

Apply it slowly and carefully, working from one end and smoothing as you go to remove air bubbles. Pierce holes in the film where there are pre-drilled holes for screws etc – this will save headaches later on! Cut out large holes for the hob and sink afterwards, from the reverse, using a craft knife and/or scissors. I turned over flaps of the plastic to create a neat edge. You will need to make lots of small cuts at the curved corners…

010A WORKTOP…in order to fold the edges over neatly:

010B WORKTOPSTEP 4: SWAP THE HANDLES

You could spray paint the three grey plastic handles, but I chose to swap them for some brass ones I found on eBay for £1 each.

011A HANDLESLuckily, the grey plastic Duktig handles are the same size as many standard kitchen drawer handles, with 128mm between the centres of the holes for fixing screws, which means you have a wide choice of lovely handles you can use instead, if you do decide to swap them. Make a note of the length of your new handles, too – mine look fine on the oven and cupboard door, but are a teeny bit long for the microwave, because I didn’t pay attention when ordering these late at night!

Beware – the IKEA pre-drilled holes for the plastic handles are very large, so your new handles might look a bit weird inside them, and sit too close to the door face to be of much use:

011B HANDLES011C HANDLESI got around this issue by ordering some inexpensive little brass drawer knobs to use as oven control dials…

011D HANDLES…and I used the brass surrounds from the knobs to cover the huge pre-drilled holes and ensure my door handles were fixed in the correct position. I guess you could fill the holes with filler and paint, but I don’t think it would look so neat.

011E HANDLESSTEP 5: PUT IT ALL TOGETHER

Follow IKEA’s instructions to build your beautiful kitchen, taking care not to scratch your painted surfaces with tools! Once it was constructed, I measured the size of the cubby hole openings and cut two sheets of cardboard to fit, then covered them with Liberty-print fabric and super-glued them in place. I also super-glued a vintage ceramic tap insert that I found in a junk shop to the tap, to give it an authentic look. To make a splashback, I covered a piece of thick cardboard (cut to size) with more of the marble sticky-back plastic and super-glued it in place. Then, I added the brass oven dial knobs (which turn round and round, as they don’t have their surrounds, but I think this is more fun to play with than fixed dials!) and screwed a small brass hook on to the side of the unit so there is a place to store a bag and an apron. I had to use a drill to make two small holes in order to fit this hook as the MDF is so solid it’s impossible to just screw into otherwise. Finally, I bought an iron-on Liberty-print fabric initial for £1 from GemimaLondon on Etsy and personalised a small white muslin cloth as a mini tea towel.

001 IKEA DUKTIG KITCHEN MAKEOVER ELLIE TENNANT