Monday, August 8, 2011

{toy} organization

Inspired by all the organizational bliss found on Pinterest and my friend Theresa's battle cry that the buck stops here, I decided to figure out a system to add some order to Dylan and Ella's rooms.

I had made some attempts in the past, but my main problems were that nothing matched (i.e. it wasn't pretty), containers weren't labeled (i.e. my systems fell apart quickly), and it wasn't user friendly (i.e. my 4 & 6 year old had no idea what Mommy expected when she said please, pick up your room).

I am finding that there are a few keys to organizing:

1) Purge, purge, purge. It is so much easier to organize your stuff when there is less of it.

2) It needs to be pretty. It might seem unnecessary but you are so much more likely to stick with a system if the finished project looks neat, fresh, and well, pretty.

3) It needs to be simple. If you come up with some crazy system that is difficult to figure out or impossible to maintain, you won't keep up with it.

Dylan's toys fall into three main categories: cars, trains and Legos. I found some large bins at Costco (2 for $10.99) for his bulkier toys like Duplos and car track pieces. I think utilizing space under a kid's bed is an important tip and the large bins fit perfectly under there.

I used IHeart Organizing's ziptie method to attach the labels I found on Better Homes & Gardens website.

For his closet, I found some slightly smaller (but still large) bins from Target to fit on his shelves ($4.99 each). These work great for toys like his Playmobil collection, Hot Wheels and regular Legos.

My absolute favorite part of this project are the labels. I printed them out at home and then brought them into Staples and had them laminated ($1.79/sheet).

Ella's room was a little more complicated because she has a bigger variety of toys. I started with under the bed storage (clear boxes, $5.49 from Target)...

and then worked on her closet shelves (the same bins as Dylan's only hers are white)...

and ended with her 9-cube shelf (I already had the bins - $6.99 from Target - I just added the label tags).

I used Velcro to attach the labels (as suggested on Tip Junkie) on Ella's under-the-bed bins and her closet bins because I figured it would give me some flexibility to switch things around and change things out as she grows up. I used ribbon on her fabric drawers because it's a little girl's room and it's just cute that way.

The kids are actually pretty tickled about their newly organized rooms and I don't mind helping them pick-up at night any more.

The real kicker is that after I cleaned up their rooms and reorganized their toys, I found I had some empty floor space in the closet. Want to find out what I'm doing with that space?

I'll save that for another post ;)


  1. LOVE! It is a harmonious melody of organization. Can't wait to see the surprise:)

  2. Amazing, of course! I am getting SO anxious to get the basement done so that I can organize the toy room down there and make an official decision as to which toys belong upstairs and which belong down! Oh... and of course, finally purchase my Ikea shelf! :)

  3. Followed you over from Delightful Order. Loving your blog :o)

  4. Very nice job! I love how your daughter's 9-cube looks, we have one of those in our toy room too!

  5. Great Organization!! I featured it today at my Delightfully Inspiring Thursday party.

    Feel free to grab a button for your blog, if you'd like.


  6. This is so informative! I love how your organized everything. You have a super cute blog, by the way!

    I would love to have you link this up to my first link party--


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