Playroom Design: 5 things every great playroom needs

I'm a firm believer that children don't need an excessive amount of toys, but how you organize and display what they have can make a huge difference in how effectively, productively, and how long they play.  I spent a couple hours going through and organizing toys yesterday and I think it finally gave me the motivation to take on the playroom makeover I've been contemplating.  Kids learn by playing and when they have the tools, they expand their creativity, imagination and independence...and have plenty of good old fashioned fun!  In fact, just today my Baby Center email said that preschool age kids learn just as much, if not more, by playing as they do in structured classes.

I think playrooms work best with a variety of stimulation.  Here's my inspiration for the 5 things every playroom needs to promote productive play, fun play dates and happy moms!

1.  Energy expelling toys:
Obviously you have to do what you can with your space, but climbing walls, rings, ladders, swings and sports focused toys help kids get their energy out and build confidence.

Rock walls are a great idea and you really don't need that much space (pieces found here).  I'm also really liking the rings and basketball hoop on the door to save space!

2. Imaginary Play:
This could be as simple as a play kitchen or a little more elaborate, but toys and space that foster imaginary play is essential in a good playroom.  Imaginary play improves social, problem solving and language skills as well as creativity, educational comprehension and self-control.

I'm loving the stage and the market.  I think I'm going to attempt these...

This very doable DIY market from So You Think You're Crafty would be inexpensive to make, especially if you already have a similar bookcase or shelf at home.   And I can't recommend our DIY lego table provides hours of imaginary and creative play daily!

3.  Organization:
There's only so much floor space in any given playroom and with lots of toys and gear, wall hooks, shelves, baskets etc are key.  Keep in mind that kids like to see their options, otherwise they dump everything out (my pet peeve).   I walked the aisles of The Container Store yesterday and had so much fun and got SO much inspiration (yes, I'm a dork).  Think outside the kids' section and you'll find some great solutions and probably spend a lot less.
Playful Learning is a great blog with lots of play ideas and solutions.

This ball claw is great for the garage, yes, but why not in the playroom too?!

Visit Babble for the DIY instructions on this affordable way to corral toys.

This style files solution for organizing matchbox cars using a magnetic knife strip is one of my favorite ideas!

Apartment Therapy

Wire baskets can easily and affordably be screwed to the walls allowing kids to see what they're looking for, but prevents them from dumping all the contents!

4.  Arts and creativity: 
I'm all about arts and crafts (especially when done at school).  I rarely take all the supplies out because it's a pain and it's a mess!  But Sam enjoys painting and sculpting, so I feel guilty and I know I should  take more time for this, especially because arts and crafts improve motor skills, inventiveness and academic performance.   Keeping it organized and accessible is key!

A DIY magnetic chalk board (using eco-friendly paint) can easily be painted on a wall or plywood.  Magnetic containers like these Urbio container magnets for supplies are a great idea so you can easily move or remove them if the children will be unattended in the playroom.

5. Festive decor:
Finally, the playroom should be a special place for kids.  Festive and whimsical decor add a little magic...they're only young once!
House to Home

I'll share my progress and hopefully finished project soon!


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