Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Toy Storage

I get questions often about how we store toys and so today I thought I'd create a post showing how/where we store everything and hopefully answer all of your questions in the process.  

Keep in mind that we are out of the "big toys in the family room" phase but I was right there with you with a baby swing and play mat and allllll the things everywhere for years and years. 

The majority of the kids toys are stored in their rooms.  This is one side of Mason's closet...

... and this is the other.

In the picture above we have bins (I think I picked these up at Walmart) that we use to hold building toys like  Magformers, ZOOB, etc.  And yes... we have a ton of books :)  Luke has always been SUCH a reader that we have a pretty big collection that Mason (and soon Griffin!) can pull from.

In the photo below the drawers were an IKEA find probably 10 years ago...

... and we use these small bins to hold all the tiny pieces and collections of things that kids seem to accumulate :)   (the boxes are a life saver and are $30 for a set of 12!)

Sidenote: He has a rod with hanging clothes on it on the left side of his closet (dress shirts and sweaters and jackets) and then the rest of his clothes are stored in his dresser.

In Luke's room he has four really big clear storage boxes under his bed where he stores Legos.  I love that they hold a ton, he can pull them out easily but you really can't see them unless you're looking for them...

The boys pull them out, dig around and then shove them back under the bed.  They're awesome.   (The bins are IKEA and we just leave the lids off so it's less for them to mess with)

Luke has a whole mess of NERF guns/pieces/bullets in that little black caddy thing and then the bins on the shelf above have K'Nex, Snap Circuits, etc. in them. 

There is a walk out attic in Mason's room where we keep a few other big bins of Legos and lego instruction books.  The kids pull these out into the playroom, build and play and then toss everything back in the bins and put them back in the storage space.  Super easy.

The struggle is REAL with Griffin's toys mainly because the American Girl doll stuff is BIG!  I'm learning to embrace it like I've learned to embrace LEGOs and I know that one day she won't have a giant school house and ice cream truck in her room and I'll miss it :) 

My favorite thing about the day bed from IKEA are the giant drawers underneath.  Those same plastic bins hold LOL dolls, hatchimals, etc....

... and then she has a couple of larger ones to hold tea sets, etc.   These bins (and the smaller ones) are my favorite because the lids are attached which means you don't end up with a ton of bins with no lids.

As far as toys downstairs... we keep puzzles, wooden trains and tracks, Playmobil and Lego Duplo in the closet under our stairs...

This space was obviously super hard to photograph...

These storage pieces used to be in Luke's room but when we redid his room we moved them down here and they're great because when the kids play with them (or when our nephews come over and play) they can pull out the drawers, take the whole drawer out into the family room or front hall and play - and then when it's time to clean up they just refill the drawers and bring them back.  The low storage piece is full of Duplos and the taller one is full of wooden train tracks and trains.   Trains and Duplos are things that we've had for probably more than 10 years and they're still things that they play with.

In the family room, these two baskets in the little nook hold play food and magnatiles - again, both toys that my kids play with often and are great to have accessible when our nephews come over.

Our coffee table has two drawers where the games that we're playing a lot of at the moment typically end up as well as books that the kids are reading.

And last, these cabinets in our laundry room are where we store OSMO components, workbooks and a few other random things.

Those top two bins are OSMO...

... and then the bottom shelf has workbooks, kinetic sand, the table cloth we use when painting, etc.

And there you have it!  All the toys and where they theoretically belong :)

When we moved into this house a few years ago I said absolutely no toys downstairs... and that lasted about 12 hours.  We did make a rule that if the kids play downstairs during the day, it has to get cleaned up before bedtime but if they play in their rooms they can leave things like Lego creations, battle scenes, a doll playdate (yes, she has those - hahaha), etc. out as long as they'd like.  It's helped keep the downstairs toy mess under control and has really helped foster them playing in their rooms and the game room upstairs.  It's hard to strike a balance between letting them be kids and not feel like our house is out of control - so being able to have our downstairs picked up and reset at night is the solution that works well for us.

If you have any questions leave them in the comments!

Happy Wednesday, friends!!!

PS - this post contained affiliate links... thank you so much for reading and supporting my blog!


  1. These posts are so motivating! I find myself constantly wrestling with wanting a clean house and letting them be little and enjoy really playing without being too preoccupied about cleaning everything up afterward. Sometimes I lose the battle. :) But now that my bigger kids are 14, 16, and 18 I don't ever have to clean up their legos or dolls on the ground. Ha! So I guess I should learn from my own perspective- these are sadly temporary problems to solve. Thanks for taking the time to get all the pictures and descriptions. I'm off to go organize some toys. :)

  2. Everything having it's place is so important, and y'all have it down!

  3. I love it! Thank you for sharing
    I'd love to see more of Griffin's bookshelf - my daughter is a year younger than her and I love "looking forward" to wha'ts next and would love to see what beginning reader books / chapter books to read together G likes

  4. With 3 boys (12. 9 and 9) I could have a Nerf Gun store (along with a library!) I bought cloth clothes hampers for the guns and it works great! I also have containers for the bullets and other parts of the guns. :)

    1. nerf guns take up SO MUCH SPACE and YES... we have pretty much an arsenal, too! :) hahaha

  5. First, I've been searching for toy storage for all those tiny toys that little girls love (but are the biggest hazard to baby brother), so thank you for sharing! Can you please share bath toy storage? We have way too much for bath time, and every sticky bin falls off our shower walls.

    1. We've been out of bath toys for a while now... but when my kids were little we had a small plastic basket that we kept them in but would drain as well.

  6. Please come to my house. Like right now. Drop everything and head here ;) .

    1. are there candles burning? Have you baked something? I'm there.

  7. The best thing we ever did in our house was designate a playroom for the kids - with a door. Their bedrooms are not very big and their closets are tiny, so having a place where everything lives and being able to close the door on the mess, i mean, their creativity ;) was a blessing. Now at 14 and 10 I kind of miss the toy stage...

    1. That's kind of how I view their rooms... our playroom is open and the mess gets picked up at night but their rooms are theirs to do as they please!

  8. You have nailed the toy storage issue!

  9. Love your storage solutions! Seems like it keeps toys out of the way, but still fun! Can I ask what matress you chose for the Ikea Hemnes bed? The reviews seem so mixed!

    1. We have a regular Serta mattress on there (that's what we did for all three kids since they all had this same style bed) and it's worked perfectly


Blog design by Get Polished | Copyright 2016