Before and After: A Holly, Jolly DIY Playhouse Makeover

published Dec 1, 2021
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Credit: Matt Kolditz

There are lots of great things about being an adult: Staying up late! Traveling alone! Bar carts! But then there are some times when you see something and think, man, I wish I was still a kid. This playhouse project is one of those things. Matt Kolditz bought the whole assembly for just $20 at a yard sale, and it wasn’t in the best shape: “It was dismantled, faded, and peeling. Boards were missing, shutters were broken,” Matt says. “It was definitely well loved.”

But Matt and his wife, who have a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old, weren’t dissuaded. “We had seen cute playhouses redone online and thought it would be fun to do if we ever had to opportunity,” says Matt. Well, opportunity struck! They took the playhouse home and set to work.

First up: power washing, fixing broken boards, and painting. That process took about three days and $20, says Matt.

Credit: Matt Kolditz

The new black-and-white paint job has a picturesque look, and a newly chopped-in-half door leaves views to the inside open. The outside’s decorated seasonally, so Christmastime brings a red-and-white pom pom garland, a pair of evergreens flanking the door, and a tiny red mailbox for letters to Santa.

Credit: Matt Kolditz

If the front didn’t charm you, take a look at the side, where you can see a tiny wreath hanging over the shuttered window.

Credit: Matt Kolditz

Matt wired the inside, so a little pendant hangs for light. It’s a kid’s dream—even though, Matt says, his kids probably would have had fun in the playhouse no matter what it looked like. But having it look like this charming little winter-themed escape certainly doesn’t hurt.

Inspired? Submit your own project here.

This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: Before and After: The Most Magical Little DIY Playhouse You’ve Ever Seen