Don’t miss these easy tips and tricks for decluttering the kids’ room! Keep your child’s space neat and tidy with these simple ideas.
Of all of the rooms in my house, I probably declutter my kids’ spaces most often. Their interests are always changing. They’re constantly growing out of clothes and toys. And somehow they seem to accumulate more and more stuff faster than I can keep up!
After this most recent round of decluttering the kids’ room, I wanted to share some helpful tips and ideas that have helped me make the process go more quickly and more smoothly. I hope these will be helpful for you as you work on getting rid of clutter in your kids’ spaces as well!
Before We Decluttered the Kids’ Room
I always debate about how to share “before” pictures in decluttering posts. I mean, I could definitely take a picture of a messy room with toys all over the place. That’s a regular occurrence around here. Any one can take a picture of a messy room and then take a picture of it clean and have it look better though.
I really wanted to focus on the problem areas, the spots where clutter was constant even when the room was picked up. So what you’re seeing in these “before” pictures is what the room would look like if the boys and I straightened it, putting everything in its “normal” spot.
The Bed Area
So at first glance the bed area doesn’t look too bad…
…until you look underneath it. These are actually toys I brought up at Christmas time to help make room for our tree, and they never made their way back downstairs again.
Since the boys haven’t played with them or even wondered where they were for the past 3 months, I think it’s safe to say that most of them aren’t their favorites and could probably find better homes somewhere else.
The Toy Shelf
Clearly this corner was a bit more of an obvious problem. Toys stacked everywhere! The boys insisted on keeping the banners from their birthday parties and hanging them up in the room, causing even more clutter, and the ladder shelf became a “catchall” for anything and everything.
I found so many crazy things in this over-stuffed closet that you don’t want to know about them all. The biggest problem was that I had stuffed my wedding dress in there, and it took up the majority of the space and hid all of the hand-me-downs that I had so painstakingly organized and put away.
See that Diaper Genie right there? I haven’t had any kids in diapers in 8 months or so, so it’s doing us a whole lot of good just sitting there taking up space. 😉 I had thought that I had brought out all of Caleb’s 3T clothes. Nope. There were two bins hiding behind the wedding dress, so he pretty much got a whole new wardrobe this week. Mess, mess, mess!
The Art Corner
Their little art corner wasn’t horrible, but the magazine file was over-stuffed with old magazines and coloring books that didn’t even have any clean pages left in them.
The little cups I had been using to hold the boys’ markers and crayons had started to overflow. But instead of just weeding out the broken crayons and dried up markers, I got bigger containers to hold all of the junk that wasn’t even useful to them. How much sense does that make? Zero.
How to Declutter and Organize a Kids’ Room
Now that you’ve seen where we started, let’s get decluttering! Here are the steps we followed to go from cluttered to organized…
1. Start with a blank canvas.
Can you tell I was pretty fed up with how cluttered their room had gotten? There were so many areas that needed help that I started with my favorite tactic… I removed everything!
Since I knew I wanted to paint, it had to be done anyway, but taking all of the “stuff” out of a space is always helpful to me because it allows me to start with a blank canvas.
2. Sort items into categories.
A blank canvas causes me to be more choosy. I don’t put anything back onto it unless it’s absolutely necessary. While the room was being painted, I moved everything into the hallway and my bedroom to sort it out.
I separated everything into like categories, putting all of the trains together, all of the cars together, all art supplies together, etc.
3. Declutter like crazy.
Once everything was sorted by category, it was easy to see where there was excess and what we could get rid of.
I threw away a lot of things that were missing pieces, broken, or stained. I kept garbage bags handy to store items that would be donated.
There were also some nicer toys that the boys weren’t using anymore, so I organized them into groups, and we’ll sell them on Craigslist or Facebook in the near future.
Finally, there were several items in their space that simply needed to be relocated. I moved any plates and cups that had wandered upstairs back into the kitchen. Some of my craft supplies had ended up in their space, so I moved those back to my office, and so on.
4. Put items back in an organized way.
Once I had everything all sorted out and had painted the room, I started putting things back into place. With every piece that I took back into the room I tried to ask myself three questions:
- Is this something the boys need?
- Do they still use it?
- Does it have special value to them?
If I couldn’t answer “yes” to at least one of those questions, the item didn’t go back in the room. I was absolutely shocked at how many things the boys had that they weren’t even using and were taking up valuable space in our not-so-big house!
When putting items back, I kept the categories of like items together, using bins to corral the groupings when necessary.
Since the boys’ room is multi-functional, I also tried to create zones. All of their toys were on the ladder shelf. All art supplies were in the craft corner, etc.
5. Enjoy the newly decluttered space!
Once everything was back in place, I felt like I could breathe a sigh of relief. Their room was no longer cluttered and overflowing with toys. The space contained only the things they loved and used often. And they actually wanted to spend time playing in their room because they could find what they needed quickly and easily!
No more clutter under the bed! Yippee! All of the toys that were under there previously either found a place somewhere else or were thrown away/donated/put in the “sell” pile.
Connor and Caleb helped me go through everything that was once in this corner to decide on what they really needed and what could be discarded. I was proud that they didn’t insist on hanging on to every little thing!
We were able to narrow it down to only the things that would fit in a designated spot on this shelf, clearing the floor area so there was no more clutter.
The closet saw a big improvement too. My wedding dress is out of there, and now I can easily see exactly what’s in each bin that’s left.
I weeded out all of the extra craft stuff so that the magazine rack was no longer overflowing. And since I threw away all of the useless markers and crayons, we were able to put back the smaller cups to hold the ones that remained.
Keeping the Space Neat After Decluttering the Kids’ Room
Whew! Honestly, decluttering this room was a lot more work than I thought it would be– I didn’t realize it had gotten so bad!
I learned several important things along the way, though, that I think will not only help me keep this space organized but will help me keep other areas of our home free from clutter as well:
I need to be more careful of what I let in our house.
There were so many broken and junky toys and other things that never should have made their way into our house in the first place. With toys and with “stuff” in general, I need to focus on choosing quality items that will last.
I need to be more intentional about preserving open space.
It seemed like every free space– whether it was a surface or room on the floor– was overtaken by clutter. Yes, at the time it’s easier to throw things in an open spot rather than put them back where they go, but in the long run, I’m left with a completely cluttered room that took me a week to rectify!
Adding bigger containers to hold more of my junk is not organizing.
Since our house is on the smaller side, I often find myself using the excuse, “If we only had more room, then I could be better organized…” No! If I had less junk that I didn’t need, that’s what would truly help me in my organization mission. Rather than getting larger bins to corral my clutter, I just need to get rid of the clutter in the first place!
Decluttering the Kids’ Room: Final Thoughts
Who knew that just decluttering the kids’ room could teach me so much?! Having a tidy, decluttered space is such a freeing feeling and makes me never want to go back to the cluttered mess it was before!
And “decluttering” doesn’t mean you have to tackle an entire room! We can start small with one drawer or a single cabinet or shelf. If we just declutter something and take those first little baby steps, we can make progress on our space little by little!
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Thank you so much for following along! Have a wonderful week!