HOW TO CREATE A PLAY AREA IN YOUR CURRENT LIVING SPACE
Are you a mom overwhelmed by toys? Babies come with a lot of stuff and as someone who leads a somewhat minimalist lifestyle, it’s something I struggle with.
As soon as our sons’ toys started to take over our living room, I knew it was time to create a designated play area. I needed a landing zone for his stuff… you know, for my own sanity. After briefly contemplating a move to a larger house, I decided it made the most sense to create a designated space in our main living area, where we spend the most time. We just had to rearrange a few things, no biggie.
If you’re tight on space and considering a play area in your current living room, here are my go-to tips to do so with functionality and ease. In fact, these tips can apply to any type of designated area (think: gym, office) in your current living space!
DESIGNATE A SPACE
How are you utilizing your current space? Most of us have an untapped area at home that could be used more efficiently. Audit your main living space and choose a section, corner or nook that could serve as a zone for your child’s items. A rug is the perfect way to distinguish the area from the rest of your living space - I opted for a non-toxic, high-density foam mat that is both comfy and cute!
DETERMINE YOUR NEEDS
Struggling with where to start? Close your eyes and envision your ideal space. What does it look like? What purpose does it serve? What problem are you trying to solve? These questions are helpful in creating a space that serves your current needs. I wanted a space that was organized, practical and easy to maintain. This meant storing all like items together, setting up larger items in an ideal location and using storage baskets to contain items.
Toy rotation for the win! Not only does toy rotation cut down on clutter, it prevents your little one from being overwhelmed with options. This is a great thing to keep in mind when gathering items for your play area. If you have lots of toys and don’t have room to keep everything out, store some in a designated space and swap them out twice per month.
Once you’ve determined the must-haves for your space, sort them into categories (this will help determine your storage needs!)
USE CUTE STORAGE SOLUTIONS
Am I the only new mom who swore that I wouldn’t let my house become strewn with bright plastic toys? Ha! That didn’t last long. Toys certainly aren’t the most aesthetic, but cute storage can go a long way. Invest in storage solutions that match your home decor for a more uniform look. (Bonus points if you can repurpose or use something you already have!) Baskets are great because they conceal clutter in plain sight and their easy access makes them incredibly handy. I used large rope baskets, a storage ottoman and a book rack to contain our toys, stuffed animals and books.
I’m so happy with the way everything turned out. We are already enjoying the new space and look forward to seeing how it grows with us. I’m excited for you to implement these tips to create a functional play area of your own! If you need assistance, or someone to hold you accountable, I'd love to chat!