This entire month my focus was on getting the basement and living room organized.

Our basement is just a big, open room for the kids to run around.  So storing toys in that space makes sense.  I just have a lot of bins to contain their play things.

But our living room is right in our entry!  And I really wanted this one room to not be jam-packed with toys.  So I needed to come up with creative ways to store the toys that didn’t make the room appear to be a play space.

organize toys living room

Start By Sorting

This is the first step to any organizing project.  It is also one of the most time-consuming parts.  Going through every single toy.

I have a method I use with my organizing clients that helps get things started.  I have always found that to be the hardest part!

The biggest piece with sorting every single toy is to group them together by category.  This will help when it comes time to store.  Then, give every category a “home” or place where you keep them.  By keeping the categories together, your children will be able to find what they are looking for and can clean up easily.

Toys In Bins Storage

Buy Multi-Functional Pieces

An easy way to hide kids toys in living spaces, is to buy multi-functional pieces.  Ottomans that have storage, or bookshelves with doors are perfect multi-functional pieces.  They can contain the toys when you are entertaining, but are very accessible to the kids.

Books Under End Table Living Room

Create Storage That Fits Your Decor

When thinking about storage, I have seen a lot of people just buy cheap bins with lids.  They stick them in a corner of the living room, but get annoyed by them.

My recommendation is to replace those ugly bins with baskets that match your decor.  The baskets will fit with your style but still contain toys for the kids!

Baskets Under Couch

Store Under Things

Another sneaky place to hide toys is under your couch.  I am not kidding!  There are low baskets that can fit under taller couches.  The toys are accessible for the kids, but can easily be cleaned up!

Living Room Toys Under Couch

Teach Kids How To Use

After you have created a beautifully organized and decorated living room, there is one major thing you must do!  You have to teach your kids how to use the space.

What I mean by that is if you put all the cars and trucks in a basket under the couch, you have to teach you kids how to pull out that basket, and how to clean it up.

By teaching the kids how to clean up the toys, they will be able to put things away without much nagging because they know where everything goes.

Babies In Basket Corner Living Room

Keep Toys Near You

Finally, make sure you have a place for toys in every room.  Not many, but a few.  That way, if you are working in one room of the house, your children won’t be dragging toys around to be near you.  They will already have toys in that room, and a place for them to go once they are done playing!

For more toy organization tips, I shared how I get our entire home cleaned up (minus kitchen) in less than 10 minutes on my YouTube Channel!!  Go check it out!

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About The Organized Mama

My name is Jessica and I am the founder and creative director of The Organized Mama, a professional organizing firm and blog. I was born and raised in Minnesota and currently live in Illinois. I graduated Indiana University with a degree in elementary education. My passion is teaching others how to live an organized life. I am a certified professional organizer with the National Association of Productivity and Organizational Professionals (NAPO).

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