How to Organize Toys: Toy Storage Ideas

Even if you don’t buy an excess amount of toys for your child yourself, most parents will agree that keeping the piles of toys and games gifted to your little one organized can be somewhat of a challenge. 

That being said, with the right system you’ll soon find that what used to feel overwhelming is actually quite manageable, even for your toddler. 

After owning a wooden toy shop I can tell you I’ve tried every type of storage solution out there and am here to provide you with the tools to make it much more simple for you.

Is Toy Organization Worth It?

Yes, toy organization is absolutely worth it as it will not only help to keep your child’s room tidy but allow your toddler to find their own toys on their own. 

Teaching your little one this kind of independence will help them in many different facets of life as they grow, plus, making the storage system easy for toddlers means the cleanup doesn’t fall solely on you.

Where Do You Place Toy Storage?

There are a few tips to make storage organization worth it. First and foremost, you MUST implement a toy rotation system. Otherwise, you’ll be constantly buying new ones and they won’t be played with for very long, because your kids will get overwhelmed by piles of toys.

If you’re following the toy rotation system, you should place a small selection of toys in your child’s main play area and pack away the rest in clear containers. Whether this be your little one’s bedroom or a different playroom, making it accessible for your toddler is the key to a successful system.

Montessori style vs Traditional Storage vs Mixed Storage

Traditional toy storage generally involves boxes, cupboards, and other out-of-the-way storage options which are designed to hide kids’ toys from view to avoid cluttering a space. 

While this may be necessary in extremely small apartments, this often leads to toys being lost or forgotten. 

Montessori-style toy storage focuses on open, uncluttered shelves that are easy to access to a select few toys at a time. This promotes independence in children as it allows them to view and choose a toy unassisted.  

Rotating the toys every few days means that your kids will always have something ”new” to play with and nothing gets forgotten in the back of a cupboard. 
While I believe that the Montessori storage idea is the best way to go about organizing your child’s toys, some people may find that using a mix of both traditional and Montessori storage options is a great balance between space-saving and toy rotation.


Toy Storage Ideas: Basic Supplies

Montessori Shelves – Specially made for kids

As I’ve already mentioned, Montessori shelves are all about making it as easy as possible for your child to be independent. In this case, that means creating an organized storage solution that is simple and easy for your toddler to use alone, finding and returning their toys to the shelf on their own. 

To make it easy for them to be independent, your Montessori shelves have low heights, shallow depth, and ideally, have a backing to prevent toys from being stuck between the shelves and the wall. 

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Another thing to keep in mind is that not all Montessori shelves have rounded corners, so either keep this in mind when choosing a child-friendly shelf (like the one from Lovevery for example) or baby-proof the corners yourself.

IKEA Trofast – Cheaper alternative for Montessori shelves

While I do think the Lovevery toy shelf I talked about above is worth the price for the craftsmanship and though put into the design, if the hefty price tag is a little out of your range, this IKEA Trofast shelf is a great alternative. 

At 20.5” high, it’s not too tall for toddlers, and the big buckets slide in and out, providing plenty of storage for larger collections of toys.

Plus the light weight of the buckets means it’s manageable for kids to carry them around the room.

Vinyl stickers for IKEA Trofast – Great addition to your toy storage

If you choose to use boxes or buckets for storage within your shelves, I highly recommend you label them with easy-to-recognize categories and pictures. 

Having too many blank boxes can be overwhelming for a toddler to find their toys making it more likely they are going to come to you for assistance. 

These toy storage labels allow you to decorate the boxes with pictures to help your kids categorize and find their toys more easily.

toy storage ideas

Extras: Additional Toy Storage Ideas

Hardware drawers for Lego

Using hardware draws to organize your Lego is a great solution to an otherwise rather chaotic problem. 

Hardware draws come in all shapes and sizes, with small, clear draws to keep everything visible, making it the perfect way to store your Lego. 

Plus, most hardware draws are stackable making it easy to add to when your Logo collection inevitably grows.

Magnetic shelves for Tonies

If you’ve already become an avid collector of Tonies, you probably already know how it can be a little difficult to keep them separated from your child’s regular toys.

These floating shelves are designed with magnetic strips to keep all your Tonie characters together and a specific charging shelf made for your Tonie box. Plus, the cute backing adds a fun pop of color to your child’s room while you’re at it. 

Not only is this neat storage option convenient, but the magnetic strips make it super easy for your kids to choose their own Tonie and use the player without having to ask you for help.

Puzzle Rack

For any puzzle enthusiast in the family, this wire rack is the perfect way to store them. This puzzle rack allows your child to easily see all the options without having to throw boards all over the floor in the process. 

It’s big enough to store chunky wooden puzzles alongside simple cardboard ones of varying sizes and doesn’t take up too much space on the shelf.

Plus, the large gaps between each level make it super easy for kids to get the puzzles in and out themselves.

How to Organize Stuffed Animals

There are so many ways to organize stuffed toys but no matter which one you choose, you want to make sure they’re somewhat contained. 

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Whether it be a simple toy bin or basket, or the more elaborate Bean Bag toy storage, giving stuffed animals a home means they won’t end up engulfing the entire floor or claiming a corner of the bedroom as their own. 

If you prefer to continue on the Montessori style of thinking, open over-the-door hangers or toy hammocks are a great choice as they help your kids to see all their toys at once and pick their own unassisted. What’s more, the hammock can become another toy to play with.

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