I was thrilled when the terrific new shelter site, Modernize, approached me about a guest post. I had just finished transforming our bonus room from a junky space filled with toys to a functional but boho chic family room. So family-friendly design was very much on my mind. I love Modernize’s site for great home decor ideas and (of course) gorgeous photos. Thanks to Modernize Editor Katilin Krull for this guest post. Pop over to their site and prepare to fall in love!
by Kaitlin Krull
If you feel like your home is overrun by piles of Legos and thousands of stuffed animals, then it’s time to reassess your space. It is possible to keep a stylish and kid friendly home without throwing everything in the closet (though that’s an idea!). Check out these storage and decoration tips to help win the war on toys without banishing them completely.
Use clever storage
When your living space and play space are one in the same, furniture that doubles as storage is a must for keeping clutter away. Use lower open shelves on entertainment units to store toys (baskets or fabric boxes are aesthetically pleasing toy receptacles) and keep everything off of the floor. If you need extra seating, consider putting a tall shelving unit such as the Ikea Kallax on its side and installing cushioning on the top. After all, what DIY list is complete without a good, old fashioned Ikea hack?
Home decor is the icing on your home’s style cake, but many decorations are expensive and breakable, so remember to use sparingly. Keep more treasured items out of children’s reach and opt for fewer, less fragile pieces in shared spaces. A few heirloom toys on display in play rooms and bedrooms can completely change the feel of a room without adding to the clutter.
Bedrooms as play spaces
When your home is struggling for storage and play space, it’s a good idea to move most toys into the bedroom. Use the same toy organization techniques as above, but feel free to get creative, too. Loft beds save floor space and leave clever alcoves underneath for desks, reading corners, and further toy storage. If your children haven’t quite progressed beyond the oral fixation stage, make sure all choking hazards are kept out of reach. It’s amazing what a child can get up to after bedtime!
Nothing says family like the hundreds of pieces of artwork that come home from school and end up plastered on the refrigerator. While this is all well and good, some families would still like to display some other art as well. Modern art prints are perfect for shared family spaces, as the bright colors and interesting subjects appeal to all ages and keep your home creatively cool at the same time. Keep the kids happy too by framing a few of their own creations or scanning them and having them printed onto canvas. Who knows, you might end up with the next Picasso!
Keep it clean
Even the tidiest home can quickly regress into a toy infested hovel without a regular clean. Get everyone involved in daily cleaning and tidying with a chore list and schedule. By making it part of your family’s routine, you’re more likely to keep your shared space cleaner for longer. When it seems like your toy situation is getting out of control again, sort through everything and remove broken, unused, or unwanted items to free up space. If your children have too many toys, consider limiting the number of toys you have out and rotating in new ones on a monthly basis.
While keeping a clean and tidy house is an essential part of family living, it’s important to remember the preferences of your children, too. At Modernize, we are always looking for ways to cleverly style shared spaces to make everyone happy. With a little creativity and a lot of accountability, your home can be clutter free and child friendly at the same time. For a few days, at least.