Organize a craft/kid room

semb70June 1, 2006

We have just remodled some and now I have a formal dining room that I want to convert into a homework,game,study room/hangout room for the kids. Does anyone have any pictures of similar rooms that I can draw inspiration from? I have 4 boys ages 2 to 11 and I want a cubby in the room for each of their backbacks. If anyone is really good at this, I can take a pic of the room and post it.

Thanks for any help!!!

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We don't have this type of a multi-purpose room, but Pottery Barn for Kids has lots of examples of the cubby concept geared for kid's stuff. If you don't have one of their catalogs, I would just go to their website and request one. The Company Store also has lots of good ideas.


Here is a link that might be useful: Company Store for kids

    Bookmark   June 1, 2006 at 1:34PM
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Thanks. I acutally had looked at Pottery Barn but boy are they expensive. I went to that Company Store for kids and that store seems more reasonable. Thanks for that link. I may even try to go to their store.
I think what I need more help with is trying to figure out where to put the storage and where to put seats, tables etc. If you think of a square, I have one wall with a big window in the middle. The wall across from that is the wall that is the walkway between the door opening on both side walls. This is my dilema! Any ideas?

    Bookmark   June 1, 2006 at 8:41PM
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OK, sounds like a traffic pattern room. Make a list of all the things you want the kids to do in there. Will they really keep their backpacks there or is it too far from their coats and shoe storage?

I like the idea of the cubbies you see in PB and Company Store, but I think you can just use inexpensive shelving and baskets you can buy locally. Paint the shelves bright colors. Make fun labels for the baskets with the computer.

What about a table for the center of the room if you want it to be a homework space? My kids like to do puzzles and models and we have tables in their bedrooms so they can leave a project up. A fun rug underneath with the roads all over is a favorite here. In our other house, I knew the carpet would be the pits after awhile in our playroom, so I got lots of colors of PERMANENT markers and we drew the neighborhood right on the rug. I used the local stores for the signs. I personally thought it was really cute.

I'm a fan of laundry baskets for toy storage. I built a long shelf which was the depth of the baskets and we just slid the under the shelf. Then we had the top of the shelf for item which didn't fit well in the baskets.

I'd tuck a comfortable chair or rocker into the corners, with baskets for magazines or quick toy storage. You might consider putting a swing up in one of the doorways. We had a beam and I put in they type of hooks used for porch swings and then hung a regular swingset swing there. It got a real workout.

Don't forget to ask on the home decorating forum. They always have lots of ideas for use of space in rooms and working with doorways in inconvenient doorways. Just don't feel like you have to spend a ton of money. They kids won't care and the catalogs will just give you ideas.


    Bookmark   June 1, 2006 at 9:27PM
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Don't forget that many aspects of this room are temporary and the room may need to change to follow your children's interests. Since this room is in a highly visible place, I would make it look as good as possible.

For example, I would buy a game table, you know, one of those round tables with four chairs on wheels. This is an excellent table to do homework and work on projects. Why can't backpacks just go on the floor? Skip the cubbies, which are cute but pricey and rather small and get a large shelving unit or bookcase that really makes the most out of space available. I bought a great one at Lowes. It's chrome, about 6' tall, forty something inches wide, and about 16" deep. That unit was about $80. It is unbelievable how much it will hold. Finally, I would get a sturdy sofa or love seat. My children love studying on places like beds and sofas. Lastly, unless your children are little, I would keep the toys elsewhere unless this room is very large or you have no where else to store toys. A large shelving unit (like mine) can store those 66 quart boxes by Sterlite. My shelving unit holds eight or ten of those, that's where we keep most of our toys. Put the heaviest toys on the bottom shelves, light plastic toys at the top. Do you own a gaming system, such as the Game Cube, that you want to include in your kids' room?

Think of how this room will be used in five or ten years and plan as many purchases around the notion that needs change. Now that I have children in just about every grade, I've learned that after 4th grade, their enormous backpacks won't fit in most of the cutesy cubbies out there. Now built-in "lockers," with substantial width and depth, are another story.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 7:32AM
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One of the Home Makeover episodes installed built-ins for multiple kids desks/computer areas. I thought it was such a good idea. Might check their website to see if you could find the pictures.

My brother did built-ins as well in an open hallway space he had upstairs. He had three walls to work with and put in a laminated table top with nice looking shelves from Idea underneath. Affordable, looked good and was very functional. Since the computers were out of the kids' bedrooms, he was able to monitor their activity.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 8:32AM
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Ooops, can't spell this a.m. Ikea instead of Idea

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 8:33AM
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Thanks... All great ideas!!! I'll have to check the home makeover website and see if I can find it. I have 4 boys so any organization would be great!!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 8:40PM
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