How to create a playroom that will go the distance

Gallery Wall
Gallery Wall  Photo: Houzz: Ninainvorm

I have just taken on a client who is looking to transform her drab basement into a playroom for her soon-to-be one-year-old. As her daughter grows and begins to walk, my client will need a space that not only is fun for her to be in, but also serves other purposes. When the little one begins toddling around, she'll inevitably begin making messes, so we're taking the steps to work with this. Here are some tricks and tips you can use to keep your kids' spaces functional for years to come.

1. Consider all types of play
Make sure there are appropriate surfaces for all imaginations. A table for activities like building blocks and colouring books is great, but ample floor space can also do the trick. When it comes to floors, carpets can provide a comfortable surface to lie on, but they can also be a magnet for stains. Consider area rugs rather than carpets since they are easier to replace.

2. Create a gallery wall
This is a great place to incorporate your children's art as they grow up. Rather than placing their masterpieces on the fridge, place them in simple frames and see your child's face light up as you create a personal gallery wall.

How to create a gallery wall

3. Dedicate zones to specific tasks 
In this room, there's a cosy, plush reading nook, as well as a pair of desks for homework. Because the space is sectioned off, it can accommodate siblings of all ages.

4. Create dedicated storage
Store art supplies neatly. Little containers go a long way. Making an effort to organise will keep kids mindful of their duty to put art supplies away. Create a container for coloured pencils, crayons and markers. This will ensure that you won't constantly be buying new sets when the purple crayon goes missing.

Bring on the cubbies too. Lockers are a great organisational tool for a playspace. Brightly-coloured door fronts spice up this industrial look. Kids are encouraged to put their projects and pieces away, and keep messes out of sight.

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5. Add a chalkboard wall
Children love writing on the chalkboard or whiteboard at school. Bring this idea home. Here, kiddos can practise the alphabet as well as any imaginative drawings. They can wipe it clean and start fresh every day.

6. Make some music
Do you have a young aspiring musician at home? A basement playroom can be an ideal spot for your kids to bang on those drums, especially if you soundproof it. It lets you keep all the loud noises in one area.

7. Encourage reading
Build a special reading nook to stimulate learning. Fill it with stuffed animals of your child's favourite storybook characters. Bring reading to life by including real-life elements of fiction books.

Book storage ideas

8. Take advantage of small spaces
Maybe you aren't blessed with a bonus room to dedicate to toys and crafts. Is there an area under your stairs being under-utilised? How about a closet that can be removed? You might already have a playroom right under your nose.

Another trick if you don't have the space for a playroom is to dedicate a corner of a room to play time. Special hiding spaces always add an exciting touch. No child can resist a treehouse or tepee. By creating fun little hideaways, you encourage children to explore all aspects of their imagination. Is it a canvas tepee or an igloo in the frozen tundra?

9. Design a double-duty area
A television is certainly a prized feature in many kid zones. While scampering on the floor, your little one can look up to friendly favourite cartoons. Create a built-in around your TV and use the cabinets to store toys and crafts. This playroom easily transitions to a media room at night, where the whole family can gather.

TELL US
Have your kids got a playroom they love? Share ideas and pics in the Comments.

By Michelle Gage

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