Move over, Marie Kondo. We’re taking decluttering into our own hands with these organisational ideas for your kids’ spaces.
For the little kids
It’s the bane of every parent’s existence: the playroom. No matter how many times you tidy it, mess seems to reappear here almost as if by magic. Working smarter – not harder – to create an organised playroom is the only solution and now’s the best time of the year to start a new organisational routine/system for your family. We spoke to Carol Havener, organisational guru and founder of the must-have storage solution The Space Cube. Here are her ideas for ways you can tackle tidying up – for good.
“Let’s face it: kids have stuff, a lot of stuff,” says Carol. “A well-thought-out space with the right furniture and organising tools can make all the difference to create order out of chaos.”
A bench seat with underneath storage will serve two purposes: it creates a cozy reading nook, as well as bin storage for larger toys and books. Labelling the bins ensures everyone knows the contents and makes packing up that much easier.
“An art table with a paper roll is another great invention, that will ensure no more loose papers while also serving as a table protector when clay, glitter or glue are used,” says Carol.
A table with shelves or cubbies creates more storage for art supplies, and if you don’t have any spare floor space for an art table, you can even go with a wall-mounted desk that pulls down for playtime. Add a chalkboard for even more functionality!
“The most important thing to do before you update your little kids’ play area is to toss or donate any toys, books or art supplies that are no longer used,” says Carol. “Hanging onto extra items that your child has outgrown or art supplies that are dried out only adds to the clutter, making space for your child to play. More stuff doesn’t equal more creativity or fun – it actually makes it harder to enjoy what you have! – so be brutal when you cull your home and keep things simple.”
For the larger kids
As our kids get older, their spaces begin to revolve around one main thing: school. A homework station and a mudroom to hold all of that school and extra-curricular activity-related clutter are two great ways to keep the rest of your house from drowning in mess, but carefully consider how you’re going to set up these spaces.
“Keeping all your homework supplies together in a caddy cuts down on clutter, and means your kids know exactly where they can find a glue stick or stapler for that big school project,” says Carol. “Ikea’s rolling shelf carts tuck nicely into a corner or closet, while tabletop organisers like The Space Cube, a serving tray or Lazy Susan are great solutions for leaving supplies on a desk.”
When it comes to your mudroom, you can again employ the help of a bench seat to keep mess out of eyesight. Labels will be your best friend here, whether it’s to highlight exactly where dirty shoes should go or section off a shelving unit for each of your kids.
“If you’re really starved for a mudroom space at your place, try converting a closet into a one-stop shop for their school bags, sports uniforms, shoes and other uniform pieces,” says Carol. “Shelves, racks and rods ensure everything will have a space, and the best part is that you can close the doors and hide any clutter.”
- IKEA Kallax shelving unit, $145, www.ikea.com
- The Space Cube, $49.99, www.thespacecube.com.au
- IKEA Råskog trolley in dark blue (also available in white, black and turquoise), $69, www.ikea.com
- FCM 600m wall-mounted butchers paper roll holder, $218, www.fcmsales.com.au
- Grayson stackable storage unit (set of two), $189.95, www.hipkids.com.au
- Temple & Webster cushioned bench with shoe storage, $99, www.templeandwebster.com.au
- Typo 5 Drawer & Store, $34.99, www.cottonon.com
- Life Interiors Juliette velvet storage seat in blue (also available in blush, emerald, charcoal, cream and light grey), $399, www.lifeinteriors.com.au