I’ve been asked many times to write a post about stylish storage ideas for hiding toys. I’ve hesitated because I’m no expert–just a frustrated mom trying to keep up and often grumbling along the way. I definitely do not pride myself on organization, but I’m willing to share what I’m doing in our home to (somewhat) keep my sanity.
Keep small pieces in pretty containers. When my kids were going through a Jenga phase (in our living room) a few weeks ago, I finally dumped the pieces in a blue and white bowl and got rid of the box. Any game with little pieces or crayons look better in something pretty if they’re going to be scattered across your coffee table anyway, right? I like to use blue and white bowls, pretty lidded boxes and wooden bowls.
Store games and art supplies in a grown up piece of furniture where they’re handy but hidden. Since I know they’re not going to run up and down the stairs to put their things away, I find it easier to just have “dump and hide” spots throughout the house. In our dining room/home office, for example, I use an antique chest to keep art supplies, paper, activity books, etc. While I think that shelves with storage cubes work great, I’d rather keep those in the playroom and use something with a little more character in the main areas of our home.
And along those lines. . . . Less sorting, more dumping. I’ve tried like you probably have to sort all of the crayons and Legos and blocks and markers and Lincoln Logs and Lite Brite pegs into separate bins/boxes/drawers/you name it. Ultimately, they all end up together and I end up mad that I wasted my time. So now I go with a more general dumping approach and use drawers and baskets and bins to corral all the things for quicker clean up. If they’re not sorted, not my problem. And guess what? My kids don’t care. Why should I?
Free reign on one space. I know this suggestion will make some of you break out into hives so feel free to skip ahead. But. . . I’ve found it takes a little pressure off if you can just designate a spot to pretend you don’t see. It could be a single closet or an entire playroom. (And, sometimes it’s the entire upstairs. . .) Close the door and walk away. I’m sure this is not the advice you came here to read.
Style shelves with toys. Not everything has to be out of sight. In fact, some of the more colorful toys make really great props and/or bookends–especially the things they don’t play with that often or the special ones you want to save from total destruction.
See more of our playroom makeover here.
What do you do with the toys in your home?