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brown paper packages: {a place for everything}

Friday, January 21, 2011

{a place for everything}

If you've got kids, you've got toys, and finding a place for all of them can sometimes be a challenge.

I follow a few simple steps that help me keep everything in place:

1. Containers:

Whether you've got a large or small space, there are containers out there that will make it easier for toy organization. Not only will you keep toys together, but the room will seem bigger when you can hide all those toys away.

I have several different places I keep toys, and I love them each for different reasons.

In our playroom toy closet, the majority of toys are separated into categories and stored in plastic bins. I love them all to match--my favorite are the ones by Rubbermaid, with the latch lids, because most lids are the same size--and labeled. It makes the closet look so nice. :)

I used my Silhouette to cut out black vinyl (font = century gothic), and label each bin--no matter who cleans up will be able to tell what goes where. I would rather have less bins that are bigger, rather than a bunch of smaller bins, if possible. It cleans up the space, and I think I can actually fit more in that way. It also simplifies clean up, which is important for me, and my kids!

Anything by IKEA is fabulous--shelves with baskets are always beautiful, and I love them! However, I didn't have anywhere in my playroom for something like that, so I came up with a few other things that I have loved. If you don't have the space either, or are looking for something inexpensive, consider one of these ideas...

Old Dresser

I found this dresser at Goodwill for $20, and refinished it. It holds all my girls' dress ups--purses, wands, clothes, shoes, jewelry, etc. Each drawer holds different plastic bins, organizing different items. I love it, because it fits a lot in a relatively small space. This would work anywhere--in a playroom, or bedroom, even inside a closet.

Fabric Laundry Bin

After our laundry shelves were built, I decided to take advantage of all that potential storage, and move it down to the basement. It has three fabric bins, each deep and fairly large. They are perfect for those larger items, that are tricky to fit into bins and take up a lot of space--like our fairy wings, hat collection, and pom poms. I used my Silhouette to cut out labels onto heat transfer sheets, but you could just as easily do it by hand using heat 'n bond.

2. Clean out toys regularly

I have found that it is possible to have too many toys. My kids seem to play with the same favorites all the time, leaving others to collect dust on shelves. In my opinion, less is more--both for my kids, and for space reasons. Each year I go through all the toys (right after Christmas is a great time to do this, but anytime will do!), and donate/give away any toys that have not been used, or have rarely left the shelf. It will be less daunting for everyone involved!

3. Keep toys in one central space

We have lived the majority of our lives in small spaces--apartments and townhomes, as we went through school, and even a couple of years afterward. We're now in a home, with a lot more space, but my philosophy on this has not changed. I like to have toys in one central area, rather than scattered throughout the house. I have always designated a space for the toys, and made it work. Now it's our playroom, but when we had less space, it was sometimes a bedroom, and sometimes a corner of the family room. My kids still love to take toys out, and follow me around the house with them, but there is always one spot that they go back to.


There are a lot of great ideas out there for playroom and toy storage, and I will be highlighting some of my favorites very soon!


Just a reminder...tomorrow is the last day of the Silhouette deal of the week!

A Silhouette SD machine, 2 rolls of premium vinyl, 1 roll of transfer, and the Home Décor CD for only $225, which is a $395 value!!


Any premium vinyl is 25% off.

Just use the promo code BPP at checkout!



Blogger Michelle said...

Great post--I also love to see how other people organize, and especially when it is done so beautifully. Thanks for sharing.

January 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM  
Blogger Lyndsey said...

Great ideaa!! It must be in the air.. I just went through all my kids toys again.. ( I clean them out before Christmas to make room for new toys) I also clean them out before there birthdays.. I think it is a good lesson too - they get so much from our families so it is nice for them to give back some of there stuff to others. My son helped me this time and actually filled up a huge bag of stuff to donate all by himself!! It feels so good to de clutter!!!

January 21, 2011 at 6:29 PM  
Blogger Jo said...

Your organization skills are very inspiring!
I don't mean to be a geek but I also wanted to point out that grouping (or classifying) toys helps children learn as well. Classification skills are super important for young children to develop their language as well as concepts of the things in their world. Like for example putting all of the furry things with four legs together as animals, etc.
So not only are you getting organized - you are teaching too!

January 21, 2011 at 7:05 PM  
Blogger Laurieann said...

Thanks for the reminder to always have toys go BACK to their spot. I love the clean look of all the containers in the closet!

January 21, 2011 at 7:33 PM  
Blogger gigi123 said...

I really like the clear containers...been trying to find some simple ones versus the big rubbermaid ones.

Organizing shelves is definitely on the "TO DO" list these upcoming months♪☺

January 21, 2011 at 8:19 PM  
Blogger Just JaiCi's Crafts said...

I am LOVING how you did your Dress-Up clothes! My daughter just got started with dress-ups and I've been looking for a cute way to store them....I think this counts as cute!

January 21, 2011 at 8:43 PM  
Blogger Tammy said...

Love this! I really need to go through his toys while he's not at home. He gets rid of a lot, but I could get rid of more.

January 21, 2011 at 9:12 PM  
Blogger The Fifth Street Mama said...

Love the dresser for dress up. I can't wait until we get things in our new house like shelves and perhaps cupboards :)

January 21, 2011 at 9:47 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

these are such cuuuuttte ideas!!!

January 21, 2011 at 10:00 PM  
Blogger The Duckworth Family said...

i had to laugh as i read this post because it was SO me! Except the dresser. I can't seem to find good cheap dressers for their real use to save my life! Let alone for dressups...but we have under the stairs closet storage where they are all hung and then boxes. One thing I haven't done for my toys but did for our church toy storage and can't wait to do for mine is I took pictures of the toys. for example a few cars, then printed a page with half the picture, then the other half said cars. This helps my little ones remember where the toys go as well. Just a suggestion for those with really young ones if you want to mention that ever if your posts! Fun to see I'm not the only crazy one that makes my kids store all their toys in the same place instead of all in individual bedrooms!

January 22, 2011 at 5:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really like the dresser idea for my daughter's dress up clothes. Thanks!!

January 22, 2011 at 10:00 PM  
Blogger corners of my life said...

Many years ago we kept out toys sorted in plastice boxes. Every week when one little guy arrived at our play group the first thing he would do is dump them all in a pile. Seriously - every week without fail. Good thing sorting is good for kids!

January 25, 2011 at 8:14 AM  

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