ne of the most asked questions in my inbox is about the desire to know how and where I hide my girls' toys in our home. I'll be honest - I am very good at hiding toys but what you see on Instagram and in my feed isn't exactly reality. Sawyer's play mat is probably tossed to the side, and Sloane's activity of the day has been relocated to a spot where I'm not filming. So by no means is my home toy-free, nor is it always perfectly tidy. But my mind does better when a space isn't riddled with toys, which is why so many of the kids' toys and gear end up in the basement. However, I know as well as anyone that the reality is where you are most of the time is the same spot the kids want to be. Since I don't want to be in the basement with an array of toys all the time, the girls are on the main floor most of the time during the day. This means I have to have some toys on the main floor so I'm not the constant entertainer. I will say it was a tough toss-up between entertainer and bringing toys up as the toys are still toys that I don't want to stare at. But I have come up with a few hiding spots for the toys so they aren't in my face all the time and so everything has a home.
Hiding Kids’ Toys in the Built-Ins
I’m smart enough to know that this comes with a caveat – not everyone has built-ins and not everyone can change what they already have. So, if you’re building or renovating now, consider adding built-ins to your home; shelves are pretty, but remember closed storage is key with children. We are lucky – we had built-ins, and they just so happened to be drawers that can hide and hold a lot. When we first moved in, those closed drawers hid my decor, adult games (totally nerding out with Settlers of Catan), candles, and more. However, as Sloane got older and the toys took over, my items got the boot. She needed an accessible spot to reach her toys and the spot needed to be a place that was hidden from my sight for sanity purposes. Long story short, if you have built-ins that can hide kids’ toys – that’s a great spot for them to go. You can sacrifice whatever you had in there for the good of your eyes and peace in your living space. One more thing that helps, even when items are hidden in built-ins is to keep them in little containers whether they be mesh, plastic, or boxes I find everything helps.
Hiding Kids’ Toys in Furniture
Hiding Kids’ Toys in Baskets
If neither of those are feasible options for your home and space, there are always baskets. While I love baskets, if you can still see inside them, it may make your brain a little nuts. Two tips there – either find baskets with lids or toss a blanket or pillow over the top and make it look like it’s a basket of blankets – not toys (like I did below!). The exception being things like a diaper caddy basket (as we have above) given it’s use multiple times a day, that one stays open and is tucked neatly under our coffee table.
I wanted to add a note on toy rotation for you. While I wish toy rotation worked in our house, Sloane found all of my hiding spots. So I dump everything downstairs and bring a few key items upstairs. If I did not have the playroom in the basement or had limited storage on the main floor, I would heavily focus on toy rotation and hide toys then switch them out. I’ve seen this work wonders and would still be doing it if I didn’t have a mini genius on my hands who just finds the toys I took away to rotate in at a later date. Regardless, this is a great way to minimize what’s actually out and have your children play with what they have instead of being overwhelmed.
I hope this helps you hide some of your toys around your house. I also found this post on decorating with toddlers; although my style has changed drastically since them, some of the principles still remain!