Let’s talk PLAYROOMS.
Many of my clients are moms so we do kids spaces often. Playrooms are understandably the hardest space to keep organized because we are dealing with unpredictable, fun-loving, tiny, immature, imaginative, energetic people that occupy the space.
So if you’re standing there in a bomb-state room of toys and who knows what else is in there, know that you are not alone.
And there is zero judgement when we walk into a client space in that kind of state. I GET IT! I have seen it all.
Playrooms are rewarding for me to put together. I love as a mom being able to help other moms that are overwhelmed with what to do with the space and situation. I love how colorful they can be.
I also love when clients report afterwards that their kids seem to enjoy and use the space more and even be a little more calm about everything!
Imagine how you would feel if all your favorite things were all over the place and you couldn’t find what you need? OR, when you were told to clean up but you had no idea where you supposed to put things. Frustrating, right?
Kids are no different – organization helps them feel better, too.
I encourage moms to be realistic about playrooms. Yes, I can make it look perfect for you and you will have lasting results. But I have to break it to you that it won’t stay that way forever. It will be used and enjoyed by many – and THAT’S THE POINT. Especially if you have a family with lots of age groups. This room was a family of 5 (with triplets!) spanning a wide range of ages.
However, there are two things will SIGNIFICANTLY help a playroom get under control and keep it that way ::
- A solid system that works for your kids’ current ages and interests
- Regular edits. (You just have to do it.)
If you’re looking to pretty up your playroom, here are some of my tips. There’s a good chance it’s been a while since you did a good full clean-out. So first let’s tackle that – and let’s get your kids involved.
YES. Read on!
- Get the kids involved.
- If you’re feeling BRAVE and PATIENT, encourage your child to participate in the clean-out. Giving them ownership of their playroom and what goes in it shows them you value their opinion and will help build their sense of responsibility to care for their space. Plus, a first-hand peek at what THEY keep and toss during this process will help give you a sense of their current interests.
- Work together.
- Take care of eliminating the easy items yourself first (party favor items, random “collectibles,” broken crayons, dried-out play dough, etc. Kids will inevitably want to keep these so let’s just keep them out of this part!) Use the time together with your child on picking through bigger items like cars, stuffed animals, electronics, games, etc.
- But be realistic.
- Set a time limit of 10-30 minutes of your child’s active participation, depending on their age. Asking for hours of their time? NOT LIKELY. Take what you can get and consider it a success!
- Give to charity.
- Use this teachable moment to discuss the act of giving to others. Donate the toys that are still in good shape. Take your kids with you so they can actually see you do it and participate and talk about it.
- Record Memorabilia.
- If you have a particularly sentimental child who brings in (and leaves behind) every bit of artwork or scrap of writing (BOTH Reese and Maddix are like this) let them take a picture of it for your “family digital records.” AKA “let me take a picture of it and discreetly discard it!” Or you can do what we do at our house :: for those items that are truly memorable or important or art that just warms your heart, we record a short video of them stating her age and giving a summary of the piece of artwork or writing. It’s adorable, they love it, and I love that I don’t have to keep boxes of papers!
Now that you’ve cleaned it out and have an idea of what’s what, you’re ready to create a system.
- Group like items.
- Now that you are left with the “best of the best” of your child’s remaining toys, group the items together. Be sure to count how many categories there are and whether they will fit in the space you have to work with. Need some shelving? This is the time to consider larger solutions that could help.
- Think about accessibility.
- Consider their heights and what you want them to be able to easily access on their own – and maybe those items you do NOT want them reaching into without supervision (looking at you, PAINT.) Place items accordingly.
- Invest in matching storage solutions like bins, baskets, and boxes.
- If you are able to. It can make a big impact in creating a visually calm and neat space.
- Label, label, label.
- Once everything has its home, neatly label your storage solution so everyone knows where things go. If your kids are small, you could use pictures or drawings to show where things belong. Otherwise, use word labels as added practice to support your child’s early literacy skills.
Once your playroom is cleaned out, systemized, and labeled – and you’ve involved your kids in some of the process (mom award!!) – I promise you will find that clean-up time takes a little less time and the space stays in shape a little longer.
And if you don’t want to deal with it at ALL, don’t worry because I would love to do it for you. Click here to get started 😉