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Whenever I'm cooking in the kitchen the kids want to be in there cooking with me. I want them to help, learn and experience cooking. However sometimes, it's hard and dangerous and I just want to get dinner done. So, in an attempt to distract, I've made the boys a cardboard oven. Now they can make their own culinary concoctions without mummy telling them that we don't need a potato in the spaghetti pasta sauce.

DIY Cardboard Play Oven for Kids
DIY Cardboard Play Oven for Kids

So far it's been good. They absolutely love the imaginative play and have made me many a meal that I have had to pretend to eat. All the knobs are movable so the kids can turn them round and there is a plastic window, to make sure they don't burn the cardboard cakes and treats. There is nothing worse than burnt cardboard.

DIY Cardboard Play Oven for Kids

The only thing now, is I think they need a fridge to go in their kitchen and I don't know where we are going to fit it.. Maybe I'll make a microwave instead?

DIY Cardboard Play Oven for Kids Instructions

The oven has probably been the most detailed cardboard creation yet and above is a little diagram on how I put it together. I started out with just a box and carved and built on to it until I was happy with what I had.

Tips and Reflections

  • I really tried to keep the edges as clean as I could, concealing as much fluting as possible. With a lot of the joins I would trim the edges of the cardboard (taking away a layer of card and fluting leaving just the back card of the cardboard) so as the joins would be a neat fit (as seen in the picture above).

  • For all the knobs I used teddy bear eye buttons (seen above) which just snapped in so all the knobs could turn and rotate.

  • To make the oven doors fold in at the side hugging the oven, I simply scored the inside of the cardboard, put some PVA into the fold and held the fold till it dried.

  • The oven door closes shut and holds because I cut a hole in the oven and stuck the cut out hole onto the door (with a sheet of acetate in between). So when the door closes the cut out cardboard inserts into the hole in the oven and holds it shut.

  • I would probably say this creation is not suitable for children under three years of age.

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