Like most houses with young children, we seem to have a never-ending supply of toys. It’s always a challenge to get them organized because there is just so much stuff. I started applying my own rules for my possessions to my kids. As a minimalist-in-training, I only buy something if it fits into one of the following categories: 1) I love it, and I mean really love it, 2) I need it, 3) it will make my life significantly easier. I apply these same rules to my “stuff” when I am decluttering – if it does not fit into one of these categories, I get rid of it. This was my first step in organizing all of the toys. I let go of the idea that I had to keep something because it was a gift or because my kids used to love it. If it did not fit into one of these categories, I donated it.
Once I had a lot less toys that I had to organize, the process was easy. I’ve never been big on toy boxes because it’s always hard to find what you want in them, and they don’t always look nice. For a more organized method, I went with cloth bins – one for each “type” of toy.
I then labeled the bins with Washi tape. If the tape isn’t sticking very well to the cloth, you can use electrical tape on the ends to keep it in place. I just used simple bin shelves to store the boxes, but you can get creative with this. I had a few extra, so I put some under our train table as well.
I then used pull out drawers to organize all of the art supplies. We have a plethora of coloring books, crayons, paint, and craft supplies – way too much to fit into a cloth bin. I then labeled each drawer with what’s inside. This also let me create “centers”, similar to how a preschool classroom is set up. Our playroom has an art center, music center, sports center, imaginative center, and literacy center.
The labels on the bins and drawers have been key in keeping the playroom organized. My husband can now clean the playroom and put everything in the right place. When I’m in a hurry and cleaning up, I’m not tempted to throw something in the closest bin because I know that it has a place and can easily find where it should go. It’s also been really helpful in teaching my 3 year-old how to read and recognize letters.
With a well-organized playroom, the kids enjoy using it so much more. They have a lot more room and they’re not so overwhelmed with choices. Also, there’s now enough room for me to use it as a workout room during their naps, so everybody wins!
So that’s all there is to it – my simple playroom organization method. Please leave me a comment to let me know how you keep your kids’ toys organized!