When we moved into our current home a little over 5 years ago, we were thrilled to find a home that had a space we could turn into a fun and functional playroom. The wheels were spinning in my head with kids playroom organization ideas! We’d always lived in tiny places before where the play areas were in the bedrooms. With multiple children (who shared a bedroom), this made play and nap time a bit tricky sometimes.
When we moved in, there was a big “bonus room” that the previous residents set up as sort of a party room. They had a pool table, poker table, and stand alone bar. We knew that with little kids, that definitely wasn’t the right setup for us, but figured we could get creative and make it a perfect playroom/family room.
It’s a fairly large space, though, so we knew we’d need to figure out a few distinct areas with some clear kids playroom organization. Here’s how we chose our kids playroom organization design!
Fun and Functional Kids Playroom Organization Ideas
Of course, for a fun and functional playroom, the actual play area was the first priority. I was thrilled to have a space where all the kids’ toys and books could live, so we could keep the bedrooms primarily as sleeping spaces. This especially made sense when using the playroom for a large family since we knew we’d have kids sharing bedrooms. I loved the idea of not having toys as distractions in the bedrooms, and keeping those as quiet, calm spaces (or, as calm as we could hope with a bunch of little kids!).
It was also important to me that the toys and books would be organized and accessible, but not overwhelming. To do this, we knew we’d need to keep the scope of toys narrow, too. We mostly owned open-ended building toys, so it felt fairly straightforward to sort them.
Children’s Playroom Ideas: Our Toy Storage Solution
For our first playroom storage idea, we opted to place two of these cube bookcases on their sides end-to-end to fill out our large playroom space underneath the windows. I loved that this kept the storage areas low to the ground to be accessible for little ones, and there was plenty of room for both toy and book storage.
We opted to use a mix of these playroom storage bins to store smaller toys and these bigger fabric playroom storage bins to store larger toys (they used to come in yellow but sadly appear to not anymore). All of the toys go on the bottom shelves of the bookcases. Here are the various toys we have in them, sorted into the boxes by type:
- Toy cars
- Classic LEGOs
- Miscellaneous toy box (with this stacking animal puzzle, a doctor set, these colored counting bears, and a few other little odds and ends)
- Wooden blocks
- Play musical instruments (xylophone, little drum, musical mat, etc.)
Children’s Dress Up Bin
We’ve also accumulated a number of costumes that are fun for the kids to play dress up. While we’ve only purchased one dress up outfit for the purpose of dressing up, we like using this bin to store old Halloween costumes. We have things like old bandanas from our Newsies costumes, wigs, dresses, and more. It’s fun to pull them out for imaginative play! We use this bin as our dress up bin.
Children’s Book Organization + Seasonal Children’s Book Display
In addition to the toy storage on the bottom shelves, there were a number of shelves for books above. These are where we keep the majority of our children’s picture books, with one cubby for board books. On these shelves, we have all our favorite children’s picture books, as well as sections for civil rights books, books about women, Caldecott winners, and a few others.
One of my favorite kids playroom organization ideas are these low bookshelves as that means that the top of the shelves is still a very accessible height for little people. One of my favorite parts of our book area is using these shelves for seasonal and holiday book displays! It’s so fun to rotate out books to place on top for Black History Month, AAPI month, Halloween, and more. Plus, it’s more enticing for my kids when they can see the covers of certain books, and I find we all read them much more.
However, as we have quite a large number of children’s books in our home, we quickly started to run out of space while placing all our books in and on this shelf. We knew we’d need some more room, so we decided to separate out some of the books.
Travel-themed Children’s Bookshelf
Since we have a number of globally-themed books, we decided to put up another one of these cube bookshelves on the other side of the playroom to hold all of those. That’s where we store all the picture books we bring home from our travels, books about other countries, and our Global Children’s Book Club books.
Children’s Books About Art, Nature, & Creativity
We also decided to put all of the art-themed books near our arts and crafts area to hopefully inspire creation. That’s where we have books about artists and genres, creativity, science, activity books, and more. This is also where our library book basket lives. More about that bookshelf below in the Craft Area section!
Finally, we also have some children’s books in other rooms of the house. All the kids’ chapter books are on a bookshelf in the living room, while most of the board books are in the nursery. There are also a few picture books on the shelf in the big kids’ room, as well.
Kids Playroom Organization Ideas: Craft Area
The next most important piece to me of our children’s fun and functional playroom after setting up the books and toys was having a clear craft area. My kids love doing art and creating, so I wanted an area where they would have supplies and space to get messy and innovate. I also wanted this to be a multi-functional space for kids to do homework and other projects as they get older.
Craft & Homework Space
I love the idea of a bright and colorful playroom, so we purchased an orange table for the craft space. (The one we have is no longer sold but this one is similar.) I wanted something durable and relatively inexpensive so we wouldn’t be worried about dings, scratches, and stains. Instead, I really wanted it to be a creative space that allowed my kids to use their imaginations. We also got this bright yellow striped inexpensive playroom rug (along with a rug pad) to go under the table to add some color and protect the wood floors.
We also have some homework essentials on top of the art cart (more below on what’s inside). These are things the kids use frequently and need to be easily accessible. This art cart organization system will easily evolve into an organized homework space as they grow. Here’s what we have:
- Charging station for the kids’ school Chromebooks and kids Kindles
- Pencil sharpener (THE very best one on planet earth, forever and ever, amen)
- Tape dispenser
Here are some of our favorite HOMESCHOOL SUPPLIES.
Craft Area Bookshelf
The side of the craft area houses yet another bookshelf. As I mentioned above, this is where we organized all our books about art, science, history, animal, space, and more. We also keep activity books and any school workbooks here, have a shelf for library books, reference books like a thesaurus & dictionary, and bigger art supplies (like the spirograph and this string art set and this wooden art supply set).
Craft Area Art Cart & Hanging Art Supply Cups for Kids Playroom Storage Ideas
Finally, I wanted to create a space where art supplies were organized and easily accessible for maximum usage. Kids will love having everything easily accessible to them. We decided to hang our most-used supplies in these hanging cups. Here are some of the things we keep in the hanging containers for craft supplies:
- Pens & pencils
- Kid-safe scissors
- Colored pencils (I have surprisingly strong opinions about colored pencils and these are by far the best and they’re on a smoking deal)
- One-hole punch
- Paint brushes
We also have a metal wall file holder like this to hold different kinds and colors of paper for the kids to use. In all honestly, this regularly gets disorganized, but it’s nice to at least have a holding place. We have a white one but I love this yellow version!
We also have an art cart to organize items that don’t fit well in the cups. This art cart works significantly better than this one (two side by side) that we used to have where the drawers constantly bowed and fell off their slats. The top 4 drawers are for my 4 older kids – each child has one for their daily lists, cards or projects they’re working on, and other little things.
The other drawers house a variety of craft supplies. Here’s what we have in them:
- Crayons & washable paint
- Watercolor paint palettes (we LOVE these palettes – such beautiful and vibrant colors that last forever)
- Cards/fun paper for notes
- Perler beads + boards
- Dot markers
- Pom Poms
- Kid headphones (we like these and these)
- Crafting supplies like beads, pom poms, popsicle sticks, sequins, pipe cleaners, felt, and more (we like to keep these in individual ziplock baggies to keep things organized)
- Science experiment supplies (magnifying glass, supplies from this science kit, binoculars)
- We store this microscope in its box on the side of the art cart
Kids Playroom Organization Ideas: Floating Display Shelves
Finally, we installed these floating display shelves above the hanging supply containers. I don’t love LEGO sets (I much prefer the open-ended creativity of classic LEGO bricks), but my kids have ended up with a number of them from gifts and parties. We needed a place to display them, so these shelves keep them out of the way.
We also display the kids’ school ceramics, as well as the paint-your-own tea set up here. It’s a great spot for more delicate items that we want to keep away from tiny hands.
Combined Kids Playroom & Family Room Organization Ideas
With 5 kids, we knew we’d be spending quite a bit of time in our kids’ playroom. That meant that we really wanted it to be a fun and functional space for the whole family. We really wanted it to serve as a combined playroom and family room!
With this in mind, we painted the whole room white (so we could add in color with toys, crafts, and art) and kept one wall entirely blank so we could use it as a projector screen.
Functional Playroom & Family Room Furniture
In a space that would need to serve multiple functions of play, leisure, movies, and more, we wanted a comfy couch for lounging, reading, and relaxing.
We chose this couch that has great reviews and is nice and long to fit all of us. We got it with this ottoman to relax while watching movies. I love that it’s a neutral color so fits in well with all the colorful books and toys. It’s very comfortable and has held up well over the last several years.
I did want to add in some color with the rug, however, especially to mask any potential stains (which we hoped to minimize but figured would happen eventually). We decided on this fun and colorful playroom rug that would provide some camouflage but wouldn’t be overwhelming with crazy colors. We’ve LOVED it and it’s held up incredibly well. We’ve had this thing for over 5 years and while it has a couple of tiny marks on it, it is still in absolutely fantastic condition. I absolutely love this rug for a playroom!
Finally, we wanted a light that would add some interest to the room, especially since we have high vaulted ceilings in there. I wanted white so that it wouldn’t be too much, but also add a bit of texture. I love the one we chose because it’s whimsical (sort of looks like a cloud to me!), textural, neutral, and a large scale. It’s also not super delicate (it’s not glass) so I don’t worry about it breaking from an occasional flying stuffed animal.
AV Receiver + DVD Player
We knew we wanted to use our family room as a space where we could also watch movies, educational videos, and more. While our AV Receiver is no longer available, this one is similar. We also purchased this cooling fan for it and both have worked great. Finally, we set up a DVD player (similar to this one) in there, as well. All of these live in the games cabinet detailed below.
Our Family Projector & Mount
We decided to purchase this powerful projector so we’d have great color and clarity even while projected on a wall. Daniel mounted it high above the craft area near the ceiling so it’s out of the way of any kid activities. It’s been perfect and easy to use for a giant playroom TV!
This has been the best way for us to watch family movies and to have Friday pizza night as a family. Screen time is fairly rare in our family, and we never use screens during dinner on weekdays. But Friday night is special and we all look forward to watching a family movie together, and we love starting early during dinner so we can get through the whole thing before bedtime. Having a combined family room & playroom means our kids can eat dinner while sitting at the craft area, as opposed to being worried about the rug and furniture in the living room.
While we don’t do regular video games, we do have a Kinect that works with an Xbox. We have a couple of active sports games that we occasionally play as a family.
Family Games Cabinet For Kids Playroom Organization Ideas
We also love playing games as a family and have amassed quite a few over the years. I wanted a space to keep them contained and closed off from tiny kiddos, as well as organized and easy to find.
So we decided to purchase this white cabinet to serve as our family games storage solution. I love that it’s tall and roomy, has doors, and is a great depth for games of a variety of sizes. It was the ultimate solution for fun and functional playroom game storage and definitely is one of our favorite playroom organization ideas.
After a while, though, we found that a number of our games were getting crowded, difficult to access (we hated getting out games from the bottom of the stack!), and the boxes were breaking. So we decided to reorganize most of the games into these fantastic plastic game storage containers that are perfect for storing games. I removed any game pieces and cards from their boxes (and stored them in individual ziploc baggies when necessary) and placed the whole set inside one of these containers. With some games, such as ones that were a single deck of cards, we included multiple games in one plastic container. (For instance, we have Sleeping Queens, Cover Your Assets, and Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza stored together.)
After organizing all the games into their containers, I used my label maker to label the sides of the containers so we can easily pull out the exact game we’d like to play. The containers fit perfectly on their sides in the cabinet, so it’s all very easy to see and easy to return to the right spot.
We did end up leaving the games for the younger kiddos in their boxes in the cabinet. This is so kiddos who aren’t yet reading can easily recognize the games they’d like to play (and the younger kid games often have bigger pieces that don’t fit easily in one of the containers, anyway).
Heres’ a list of some of the best board games for families!
Puzzle Storage Ideas
We also have puzzles down on the bottom shelf of the cabinet so they’re easy to access for kiddos. We have a toddler puzzle similar to this, as well as a number of puzzles for older kids and adults. (Here are some we did over winter break as a family!)
Additional Craft Supplies
Finally, in addition to the games, we also have a few additional craft supplies that we don’t necessarily want accessible for the younger kids. This includes this dino soap making kit along with extra bars of glycerin, and extra supplies from this terrarium.
Decorating with Colorful Playroom Art
Aside from the actual functionality of the room, I also wanted it to be a place that felt happy and cheerful. Here is some of the artwork for a playroom that we have:
- Protect the Vulnerable Print
- A Subpar Parks print (we have Yosemite, which is not currently available)
- A big USA map with postcards of the National Parks we’ve visited around it (this is above our main kids’ bookshelf)
- Peel and stick world map
We also have several other framed prints on the wall above the art bookshelf. I like leaving white space near the craft area to hang up our kids’ creations, which we rotate regularly. We considered kids’ playroom wallpaper but for now, opted to just hang colorful playroom art.
And that’s it for our playroom organization ideas! I hope they’re helpful to you as you choose your own kids playroom ideas! No time to plan right now? Pin this post for later!