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Playroom storage organization tips: how to organize your playroom to keep it cleaner and keep your kids entertained longer!

Do you have tons of toys, but your kids always seem bored? Are you wondering how to organize your playroom so it gets less messy? Do you want to make your playroom and clean and inviting place? This post can help!

I’m a mom of two toddlers sharing my playroom storage organization tips that helps keep our playroom clean and helps to keep my kids from getting bored with their toys. I’m not perfect; our playroom gets messy and my kids sometimes complain, but these tips help keep everyone happier and keeps mom a little more sane.

Try these 9 steps that I use to keep our playroom more organized and keep it from getting too messy.

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Organize Your Playroom Tip #1: Invest in a Storage System

Having the right playroom storage can truly help keep it more organized! My biggest tip for playroom storage and organization is to invest in a storage system (cube shelf, bookshelf, closet system) that is the right size and fit for your space and style. Choose colors that are relaxing, yet fun and inviting so that its a place that yourself and your kids want to be in often.

I wanted something that had low shelves that my toddlers could have free range access to as well as shelves that were high and out of their reach (more on that below). Cube storage seemed like the best option to fit both of these needs!

Toddler Playroom Storage Inspo

ClosetMaid 6-Cube Organizer – we use cube storage and have this cube organizer in bleached walnut. It’s a bit higher quality than other cube organizers we’ve had in the past and I love the clean elegant look of the bleached walnut. Use use two 6-cube units and one 4-cube unit to get the look above.

If something like this is out of your budget consider thrift shopping, visiting garage sales, or checking out online sales like facebook marketplace!

Playroom Organization Tip #2: Use the Right Storage Bin for the Job

After you have chosen your storage system, look for storage baskets and storage bins that fit the space. Here are some of my recommendations for storage bins:

  • Get a variety of size and shape storage bins to store toys of different sizes (we have L-weave Cube Baskets, 6qt Storage Bins with Lids, and 16 qt Storage Tubs with Lids)
  • Consider what toys you already have and buy enough storage bins to easily store those toys. I also like to buy a few extra so we have extra bins to use for future toys.
  • Dump out toys from original packaging; mis-matched packaging can make your playroom look messy and can be harder to stack and store effectively.
  • Sort toys into categories and store like items together (example, small matchbox cars, larger pull-back cars, or dinosaur figurines of different brands can be stored together respectively).

L-weave Cube Baskets – most 11 or 12 inch cube baskets should work in this storage system! We have these teal ones from target and they have worked perfectly for more than 2 years now. I love that it adds a little pop of color while also being too bright and messy looking.

Y-Weave 11" Cube Decorative Storage Basket - Room Essentials™ - image 1 of 4

6 qt Storage Bins with Lids – we also use clear bins with lids for certain toys. My go-to storage bins are almost always Sterilite brand and to keep things neutral we chose these bins with white lids, but they also make colored options too. (we also use larger 16 qt storage tubs!)

Rustic Floating Bookshelves – i’ve found that this is the perfect solution to store the millions of baby and kids books we have collected over the years. These shelves are very sturdy and durable and are the perfect height and width to store boardbooks or paperback children’s books.

Playroom Storage Tip #3: Keep Messy Toys Out of Reach

After you have toys sorted and stored away into baskets and bins, consider which toys you want your kids to have full access to and which ones you only want them to use during certain times. To help keep your playroom neater and cleaner keep messy toys out of reach so that they can only be used with your supervision. This may mean some toys up high where they can’t reach or even away in a closet or another room.

Toys that I like to keep out of reach include:

  • Small animal figurines
  • Small matchbox cars
  • Picasso tiles (my boys love building garages for their cars)
  • Arts & crafts like markers, crayons and paint (maybe that one’s obvious 😉 )
  • Play doh (this particular set is a winner for young toddlers)
  • Puzzles
  • Mega Bloks
  • Play food (we like this set because you can practice knife skills)

The list may be different based on what toys you have and what you feel comfortable letting your toddlers have access to. I like to put messy toys up high so that they can’t dump out all the baskets at once and make a mess.

Playroom Storage Organization Tip #4: Try a Toy Rotation

You don’t need dozens of toys to keep your kids entertained; try a toy rotation instead!

Not only do I keep some toys out of reach because they are messy, but I also keep some toys out of reach so that I can rotate them weekly. Having a toy rotation keeps my kids from getting bored with the same toys day after day and week after week. If they aren’t bored, they are less likely to pull down all the toys going through trying to find something they want to play with.

I keep the bottom section of our toy storage cube area open for rotated toys. I set the toys out where they are visible and accessible to my toddlers to encourage them to play with them whenever they want.

Here are some toys that I include in our toy rotation:

Clean Playroom Tip #5: Set Rules

Try and set playroom rules that include only playing with a few toys at a time and cleaning up one toy before getting another toy out. We have the Melissa & Doug Magnetic Responsibility chart that has helped a ton with making sure my toddlers cleans up better and follows our rules throughout the day.

Organize Your Playroom Tip #6: Teach Your Kids to Help

Teach your kids to help clean up their toys! Not only will it make it a little easier on your during clean up time, but it will also encourage them to clean up on their own (occasionally ;)). It will also help teach them that a big mess takes much longer and is much harder to clean up than a small mess.

Playroom Organization Tip #7: Do Small Pick Ups Frequently

Instead of letting your playroom accumulate toys throughout the day (or week), do small pick ups frequently. I like to do a playroom pick up before lunch and before bed, but may do it more frequently than that if I notice it getting extra messy.

It can be hard to train yourself to do this, but it makes it less stressful and easier in the long run with less toys on the ground.

Playroom Organization Tip #8: Declutter Often

Studies have shown that your kids are happier playing with less toys than you’d think! Too many toys can lead them to be overwhelmed and don’t actually make them any happier.

Go through your toys every month or two (definitely after birthday and holidays) and decide which toys that you can live without. Here are some tips I use to decide which toys to declutter. Be sure to get rid of:

  • broken toys or toys that have missing pieces that make them unusable
  • toys that your children have vocally said they don’t like anymore
  • toys that your children haven’t touched in a few weeks
  • toys that annoy you or you just don’t like for whatever reason (ain’t no body got time for that)
  • toys that you don’t have a space for (because they are too big or too difficult to store)

Consider donating these toys to families in need, selling them at a garage sale or online, or trash them if they aren’t in good condition.

Clean Playroom Tip #9: Be Intentional with New Toys

After you have gone through the decluttering process, be sure to be intentional with new toys that you bring into your home. Before brining in any new toys ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I have space for this?
  • Is this similar to a toy we already have? Do we really need another?
  • Do I think my kids will outgrow this or lose interest quickly?
  • Is there a smaller version of this toy that my kids might like instead?
  • Can I give my kids an experience instead of bringing something new into our playroom?

I’ve found that new toys are fun at first, but if we truly don’t have the space they just lead to toy overwhelm and clutter, which leads to boredom and stress.

9 Steps to Organize Your Playroom

To summarize, here are my 9 steps to organize your playroom and keep it less messy.

  1. Invest in a storage system (like the Closet Maid 6-cube Organizer)
  2. Use the right storage bins
  3. Keep messy toys out of reach
  4. Try a toy rotation
  5. Set rules
  6. Teach your kids to help
  7. Do small pickups frequently
  8. Declutter often
  9. Be intentional with new toys

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