How To Create Temporary Toy Storage

During some of the major renovation of our house, we had to live with my in-laws for a few weeks months.  After we moved in, we knew that there was a need for some toy storage, because the kiddos’ really love having a play area in the house.

My in-laws finished their basement, making this space the perfect area for a play space!  They even had some plastic shelves that would make the perfect storage for all the kiddos’ toys.

We had a mix of our toys from our house and toys that the grandparents had.  It was a nice mix of old and new toys that they kids really enjoyed.


Setting Up

As soon as we moved in, we needed to create a plan for how we wanted the space to function.  The basement has a table and chairs for playing games, and it has a couch, love seat, chair, and television.  We decided to turn one corner of the basement into a play area using the plastic shelves.  It was near the carpet, making it nice and cozy.

We put all the toys on those shelves, but there wasn’t any order to the toys, so the always ended up on the floor.  We needed to create a system for all the toys.  So we started by removing everything from the shelves and sorting all the toys.



All the toys were sorted into piles.  The kids were responsible for putting together all the puzzles.  I find it incredibly helpful to get the kids involved in the entire process so they can learn how to clean up and make decisions about what toys they want to keep and play with.

Some of the toys that were in the basement were “baby toys”.  Which means we got to pile them up in a clear bin to give to the neighbors as they are going to be grandparents soon!

When we had all of our remaining toys that the kids wanted to keep in the basement, we categorized them.  We had an old popcorn bin to hold all the Legos.  I turned a UPS box into storage for play food.  I wanted to make sure that everything had a “home” so it was easy for the kids to clean up.



Since the basement was the only play area in the house, we wanted to make sure the kids could easily grab their toys and start playing right away.  By keeping the plastic shelves at a lower level, the kids were able to reach every toy.

We also created an art area for the kids using a scrap piece of carpet.  I put all the paper and coloring items under the table so the kids could grab them and use them without my help.

I wanted to make sure that if they were inspired to create, they had everything they needed at their fingertips!



I also wanted to make sure that cleaning up would be easy for the kids, so the only bin that had a lid was the popcorn container that was holding the Legos.  I felt that was fitting to have an actual lid.  So the rest of the bins are open.

Since the kids helped me organize the toys, they already knew where the toys would go.  They decided where the toys should go, so they knew how to clean up!  That always make putting toys away so much easier!


By creating a plan, organizing the toys, making sure the toys are accessible to the kids, and having the kids help with clean-up, I was able to create temporary toy storage for the kids’ toys at my in-laws!


And, if you are looking for more organizational ideas, tips, and tools, check out the Ultimate DIY Home Organization Workbook!

It has everything you need to completely organize your home, using the exact same system I use with my organizing clients!  Worksheets, step-by-step tutorials, and organizing inspiration are all jam-packed into the workbook so you can get your home organized once and for all!


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I'm Jessica

I am a mom to two kiddos + a fur baby. I am wife to Ben. I enjoy coffee, gluten-free desserts, and sleeping in. And I am The Organized Mama. 

I help families make the every day more enjoyable with practical organizing, decorating, + diy tutorials to maintain order in your home!

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