Toys taking over? Check out these 6 easy steps to declutter kids toys and keep them organized from a professional organizer! #toyorganization #kidsdecor #declutter
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How To Declutter Kids’ Toys In 6 Easy Steps

Toys taking over? Follow these 6 steps a professional organizer uses with her clients to help them declutter kids toys and keep the play room organized.

Updated: August 22, 2022

Decluttering toys is overwhelming. There’s no sugar coating it! What do you keep? What do you donate? Is it really worth trying to sell?

Lucky for you I have some experience with this daunting task. Check out my six easy steps below for the best ways to rid your home of excess toy clutter!

How To Declutter Kids’ Toys In 6 Easy Steps

1. Collect Every Toy

I say this with every organizing project! Collect all the toys. For the majority of the playrooms I have organized, I collect and sort all of the toys in the basement.

The basement is (in theory) the largest space in your home, and for many people, it’s where the majority of the toys are located. This makes it easy to find pieces/parts/sets/etc. If you don’t have a basement, collect toys in the room where most live.

Pro Tip:

When you collect all of the toys in one place, you and your kids can see the massive amount of toys you have! Most kids don’t play with the majority of their toys because they forget they have them!


Toys taking over? Check out these 6 easy steps to declutter kids toys and keep them organized from a professional organizer! #toyorganization #kidsdecor #declutter

2. Group Toys Into Logical Categories

Start grouping similar toys together. I like to use the following categories:

  • Cars/Trucks/Trains
  • Characters
  • Building Blocks
    • Legos
    • Duplos
    • Mega Blocks
    • MagnaTiles
  • Games
    • Puzzles
    • Board Games
    • Magnetic Games
  • Art Supplies
  • Dress-Up
    • Tools
    • Doctor
    • Dresses
    • Make-Up
  • Play Kitchen
  • Music
  • Sports Equipment
  • Dolls
    • Barbies
    • Baby Dolls
    • Calico Critters
    • American Girl Dolls
    • Shopkins
    • Doll Accessories
  • Missing Parts

Toys taking over? Check out these 6 easy steps to declutter kids toys and keep them organized from a professional organizer! #toyorganization #kidsdecor #declutter

3. Remove Uncategorizable Toys

Once all the toys are grouped into logical categories, gather all the toys that don’t fit into those categories.

Spoiler alert: these are the toys that are leaving your home. I know it sounds harsh, but the reason these toys are taking over is that they don’t go with anything else. Decluttering toys is more than just organizing them. It’s removing them, too!

Pro Tip:

If you struggle with this step, put the uncategorized toys in a box and put the box in the garage. Cover it up and set an alarm on your phone for one week. If you needed to go into that box for something, you know it’s a used toy and you can add it back into your toy mix. If not, it’s safe to say those toys can and probably should be donated, trashed, or sold.

Kids Toy Storgae

4. Throw Away Broken Toys

Look through each category and check for broken or missing parts. Only keep fully functioning toys. This will help you to declutter kids’ toys for good!

A good task for the kiddos is to check every single marker to make sure it works. My kids love this because they get to sort and color at the same time!

Check all the Play-Doh to make sure it is not dried up.

To help you decide which toys can be decluttered, check out these posts:

Too Many Toys? How You Can Declutter Easily

How Much Is Too Much When It Comes To Toys?

Organizing Toys So They Can Go Back Where They Belong


Art Supply Organization Play Doh

5. Store Like Toys Together

Look at the piles of toys. If you already have bins, fill each bin with just ONE category. It’s okay if the bin is not totally full. It will make it easy to find the toys for the kids. Plus clean-up will be so much easier!

If you don’t have functional bins, purchase some that are the size of the items you have. This helps maintain the excess toy clutter as well!

And don’t forget to LABEL! It is the easiest way to stay organized. I like to use both picture and word labels, depending on the kids’ ages. But I also love these labels:

Picture Labels For Toy Bins

Printable Toy Bin Labels- Text Only

Color-Coded Labels For Lego Storage

Toys taking over? Check out these 6 easy steps to declutter kids toys and keep them organized from a professional organizer! #toyorganization #kidsdecor #declutter

6. Keeping It Tidy

Once you declutter kids’ toys, your hard work will pay off only if you work to maintain the system!

Clean the toys up every night. Make it part of your nighttime routine. Put on some calming music and give each kiddo one category to clean up. The longer you leave the toys out of their designated places, the more your new systems will fall apart.

Pro Tip:

Decluttering toys isn’t a one-time thing, so I’m going to let you in on a secret…

Don’t bring anything into your home that doesn’t fit into your categories.

Yes, you heard me right. This is HUGE when it comes to buying toys! This is just like my closet trick to color-code so you know what you don’t need when you need a refresh. When you know your toy categories, only buy what will fit into one of those toy categories.

Organized and categorized shelves in playroom to represent decluttering too many toys #toyorganization

More Ways To Organize Toys

Organizing Your Lego Parts

American Girl Doll Storage Ideas

Easy Ways of Organizing Stuffed Animals

Easiest Way For Organizing Art Supplies

Ultimate Guide To Tackling Toy Clutter

And, guess what… I created a FREE printable: 6 Steps To Declutter Kids Toys to get started!


My Favorite Toy Storage Containers


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19 thoughts on “How To Declutter Kids’ Toys In 6 Easy Steps”

    1. Hi Harriet! Great question! Yes it is possible, but there is maintenance that has to be done…frequently. The kind of maintenance that I am talking about is when you play with the toys in a bin, you need to weed through each time and remove broken toys and toss that one missing Lego back into it’s original bin. If you keep up with that, then it will totally stay organized for the long haul!

  1. Hi! I’m wondering if you can tell me where to find the translucent colored bins you used to store toys in the Kallax shelves?

  2. Pingback: Organizing Toys So They Can Go Back Where They Belong - The Organized Mama

  3. good tips but DONT gather all the toys in one place if u have anxiety!! I tried this last night with my 8 yr old and had a horrible anxiety attack! Guess I have to find something else

    1. The Organized Mama

      That is so true! I do recommend all the toys if you find yourself struggling with over shopping for kids. This overwhelm actually stops the buying rather quickly because you see all the things.

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  5. Once the toys are organized in the bins, what’s the best way to store the bins. Do you have a example picture of a finished product?

    1. The Organized Mama

      Hi Beth! It depends on the space you have. I use IKEA kallax to do most of the bin holding as they are versatile and relatively cheap. I have also used stacking bins in closets that have worked well too!

  6. Any tips on what to do with toys that are gifts? I feel bad getting rid of them, but also am not sure how to tell people not to buy toys…

    1. The Organized Mama

      I totally understand that! I would find a local organization you can donate the unopened toys to. Then you don’t have to feel guilty. You are giving them to someone who truly needs them. Women’s shelters, churches, or babies in need programs are great places to start!

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