by Lauren Knight
Last week I talked about how and why we simplified our kids’ toy collection. Once we finished the purge and were left with the toys we wanted to keep, it naturally led to another question: How do we incorporate the remaining toys into our living space without their dominating our home’s aesthetic or interfering with its comfort?
My solution is twofold: First, try to stick with toys that are pleasing to the eye and have some sort of function. Second, use clever storage. I am a big fan of old wooden apple crates or wire locker baskets. You can find these on Etsy or in most antique stores; we found ours in Rothschild’s Antiques and The White Rabbit, located here in St. Louis. Look around, and you may be surprised by what your city has to offer in the way of creative toy storage!
The above apple crate is full of musical instruments for the kids…
…while the one above contains a collection of zoo animals.
Another tip: When storing toys that will be seen in a main living area, try grouping them in similar colors and keeping natural elements in the forefront. These playthings will blend into your adult living area and be visually appealing.
Also? If you aren’t loving something, change it! I painted our previously red play table and chairs white (and the play kitchen to match), then added some visual interest by stamping golden bees on the back before covering them in spray lacquer so they would be easy to wipe down.
Our antique corner cupboard holds both table linens AND trucks!
It’s all too easy to fall into the habit of accumulating stuff. But as we raise our children, it’s crucial to teach them that their things do not define them, nor do they provide the key to happiness. Thank you, SlowMama, for the inspiration to live more simply, more slowly, and with more purpose.
Lauren Knight, a mother of three boys in St. Louis, MO, blogs at Crumbbums.