January 17

For Christmas we wanted to Santa to bring a play kitchen for Rose. I had a few different options that I liked: Pottery Barn kitchen (very expensive), Playschool plastic kitchen (Big bulky and to cutesie for my liking), Ikea kitchen (economical but involved traveling to the store in another state), or make one myself (fun to design but a big project).buy or make? 1kellygreenshoppe

There are lots examples of really fun DIY play kitchens from Pinterest that gave me ideas. Refurbishing a entertainment center seemed like a novel idea cause they are reasonably price on Craigslist and I could make it look exactly like I want.

But then I looked at reality and saw the unspoken costs involved. So I asked myself when is it ok for me to forgo making and just buy it from the store. When should a crafter see the writing on the wall and realize that they should just buy it?

buy or make? kellygreenshoppe

1. Do you have the tools needed?
One can not justify the cost of buying power tools to make something especially if the needed tools cost more than what the item would cost from a store. I agree that if you would use a chop saw everyday then it would be worth the price but unless you are going to become a carpenter at night the purchase would be a waste of resources.

2. Can the look or quality be duplicated?
If you have in you mind a very specific look or high quality can it be remade by your self?

3. Do you have room to devote to your project?
If it is a big project it could take several days or weeks to finish it. If so ask yourself can you and your family stand the mess that long? We live in an apartment so I don’t have an out of the way space to make such a huge mess. Plus it would be a battle to keep Rose out of it.

4. Would it be a constant reminder of stress?
Did you and your spouse have a major blow out while making the project? Did you want to pull out all your hair half way through? If a project caused so much angst and it is sitting in your home do you want to be reminded of those bad feelings. For Rose’s room I made a ruffled curtain. It turned out great but sometimes when I see it I am reminded of how much work it was to cut the fabric, sewing each piece, ruffling each piece, and placing each layer. Also if we move her into another room with more than one window I will have to sew another one.

5. The biggest question to ask yourself-  Do you have the time?
Our time is the most valuable resources that we have and once it is gone we can not earn more. So ask yourself how is your time be best spent and be honest with yourself.

These could be applied to when to do your own home improvement, making your own beauty supplies, or sewing your own clothes.

In the end we chose one from Ikea and Rose loves it.