House Tour: The Playroom – We’ve never had a dedicated space for kids to play before, and it’s been a REALLY fun thing. Come see what we’ve done so far (and what we still have to do!).
When we were house hunting a little over a year ago, I tried to keep my “needs” list really realistic–at least 3 bedrooms, good light, a good neighborhood, and a good school. The “want” list was a little more specific–an open floorplan with an open kitchen/living area, and maybe an extra room we could use as a guest room or playroom, a decent backyard. The “dream” list went even further–lots of light in the kitchen, a spare bedroom, white walls, wood tile.
In our apartments and the townhouse we rented for the grad school years, we never had a separate play space for the kids. We’ve pretty much always had toys in the living room. I’d try to move the toys into the kids’ rooms but everyone just always wanted to be where I was, so it all ended up in the living room anyway.
With this house, we have a little den that will be a great little office space or work space in the future, but is just the right place for a play area while our kids are still small. Because we wanted the room to grow with us we didn’t want to rush into anything too permanent, so we kept everything flexible, movable, and removable. Here’s what we did…
I fell in love with the striped ceilings in this nursery when I was pregnant with Milo but I have zero paint skills, so I ended up using these little peel-and-stick stripes I saw on Merrick’s Art and though they were a MAJOR pain to hang (she made it sound like they were a total breeze–they weren’t!), I couldn’t be happier with the fun element they bring to the room without being immediately overwhelming. Plus, if we change our minds or we’re ready to update the room or need to sell the house, we can literally just pull them right off without damaging anything.
To corral the toys, we used a simple white IKEA bookshelf and used mostly white baskets to hold things. Next, for big impact, I added a large peel-and-stick wall map I found that’s been a nice pop of color (and Sophie has magically learned a few states while she’s played).
On the other side of the room, we put a little table and chairs so they’d have somewhere to color, do puzzles, and build (Milo loves driving cars on any possible surface). I LOVE that it’s so durable and wipeable–even with rough play and crayon streaks.
Since so much of the room was in pretty neutral colors, I wanted to add some fun. For the fun pieces, I turned to The Baby Cubby. They’re such a good resource for all kinds of baby supplies, yes, but they also have some really cute decor that works well into the preschool and elementary school years. Everything comes carefully vetted by moms who have tested, tried, and would recommend them, so you’re not sacrificing function or durability for something cute. (There are few things more frustrating to me than getting the cute thing and finding out it’s completely impractical or doesn’t hold up over time).
I love that they can make cute (FUNCTIONAL!) storage options, like the spruce tree bookcase and pom pom fabric basket we chose, but they also have loads of other functional things like WASHABLE rugs (because hello children!), well-sourced toys, and tried and tested bath products that work well for sensitive skin. Their Instagram always features fun finds, mom inspiration, and information on sales and specials.
This wall with the tree bookshelf is my favorite in the room. I love that the bookshelf is the perfect size to create an adorable display and is just the right height for little hands to reach. Most of the time it’s held books and stuffed animals, but it’s also been used as a parking garage for tiny cars and trucks and a tree house for superheroes and princesses. We’ve been SO happy with it! (I’ve got a tutorial coming for the “Eat, Play, Love” letters–they were SUPER easy!)
Still to Do:
This room still has plenty of room to grow (I’m sure we’ll add more to the walls, and the toys and layout will change over time), but I sure love it right now! A few things left to do…
- I’d love to get a colorful rug to help balance things out.
- I’m saving up for a piano, and I plan to put that in this room (which is why that table and chairs side is still so empty–that’ll be moving over a bit when a piano comes).
- I’d love a display area for projects, whether that’s a string or wire with pins, or a pin or magnet board.
- Removable Ceiling Stripes – (We used 5″ stripes in Pebble)
- Wall Map – (I ordered the large)
- White Shelving Unit
- White Baskets
- White Kids’ Table
- White Chairs
- Pom Pom Fabric Basket, c/o Baby Cubby
- White Tree Bookshelf, c/o Baby Cubby
- Ceiling Fan
See more of our house tour here, including our laundry room, kitchen, a book nook, jack-and-jill bathroom, Milo’s bedroom, and more!