STORAGE BASKETS + CONTAINERS FOR KIDS SPACES

boys room with star decals and cozy sheepskin rug

Anyone else in the organizing mood? If you’re like me, getting my kids’ rooms and play area organized is top of my priority list this month (that’s January for you!). It’s a case of new toys and old ones, clothes that are too small and books that seem to seep into every area of our home. That, and Marie Kondo, who’s motto of ‘tidy your space, transform your life’ seems to resonate loud and clear! Please tell me I’m not the only one!

children’s storage bench with toys

So, while we’re all thinking about getting things sorted, I thought it would be helpful to share some of my go-to places to shop for baskets and bins, and even the tiniest of containers which keep my client’s rooms and my own rooms neat and tidy.

I like to think about storage starting from large to small, with the obvious largest items being stored in closets and under bed drawers, which I’ve talked about how to conquer in a previous post. Once those areas are exhausted or the rooms don’t have those options, I use baskets, bins and all the way down to little containers for treasures that kids seem to love to have in sweet little bowls on their dressers and side tables. My kids collect rocks and a plethora of other weird and wonderful items, which I’m sure yours do too. Books are another story and I’ll address those in a later post, although board books are a great item for mid size baskets on the floor!

LARGE STORAGE BASKETS WITH LIDS

blue and rattan baskets with lids

Without a doubt, these baskets pull double duty on holding all the things, from blankets to diapers to large plastic toys while looking pretty on the outside. You can use them ANYWHERE and that is their beauty; they are covered and so a living room, playroom, nursery, even dining room corner is a perfectly acceptable (and great!) place to keep these. If you want to be the host that has everything cleaned up when guests come over (trust me, this is NOT me!), I’m sure these work well for papers, cords and laptops too ;)

MID-SIZED BASKETS

Girls room dresser with storage basket

These are typically open baskets but still a large enough size for items such as blankets, diapers (next to change table for easy access), stuffed animals, and generally items you want to be able to reach easily. They are super versatile and easier to move around than the really large ones. Some clients prefer all open baskets and these ones are a few of my faves.

EVERYDAY BASKETS

storage shelf with toys in kids room
kids playroom storage

The most popular size for a reason!!! From belly baskets to the 12” ones to fit all cube storage, everyday baskets house things your kids play with the most regularly. The baskets on the top shelf in the left photo are holding musical instruments that my client didn’t want her son to have access to at bedtime, but wanted a basket she could easily pull down for the times she was ready for her son to play music ;) In the photo on the right (our newest basement playroom), those baskets hold blocks, Magnatiles, large Legos, stacking cups, etc. The kids can choose whichever they like and also put them back (fingers crossed!).

LITTLE CONTAINERS / BOWLS

wooden zebra toy
finger puppets in wood bowl

Like it or not, SO many kids seem to collect little treasures of the strangest sort. If you can dream it, I’ve seen it! As all parents know, kids will keep things wherever they want (no matter how hard we try!) but I find it helpful to provide at least a few options for their special things. This is where the little bowls and boxes come into play. If you have a spare drawer in a dresser, nightstand or even under the bed, it’s an ideal spot for these. If your little ones are anything like mine though, they take pride in their treasures being in the open on their shelves or on top of their dresser, and I know one day, I will miss seeing those little messy trinkets. :)

In case you like to PIN things for later, here are some of my favourite baskets and little bins for storage in children’s rooms.

storage baskets, bins and bowls for kids spaces

BLACK FRIDAY SALES YOU CAN SHOP IF YOU WANT TO!

Anyone feel overwhelmed by the number of sales this year? Me too! I keep a list of favourite shops to check in on for this sale and thought I would share the list with you. It’s a curated list of places I look to all year round, but this weekend is a nice chance to tick off items you know you can buy ahead (i.e. christmas gifts, bigger sizes for the kids) or a big ticket item you’ve had your eye on (playhouse anyone?).

living room gift wrapping

CANADIAN FAVES
(#shopsmallsaturday & everyday!)


THE CROSS
20% off

URBAN WALLS
25% off with code TREATYOSELF

PETITS VILAINS
20% off with code GIVEBACK

CORAL + CLOUD
20% off with code JOYOUS

SAJE WELLNESS
20% off everything (one day only)

PEHR DESIGNS
30% off with code YESPLEASE

MAUDE KIDS
15% off with code MKBLACKFRIDAY15

ETSY
So many amazing makers on sale here, see my holiday gift guide from last year for a few ideas


HOLIDAY FAVES


MINTED - for holiday cards
20% off (one day only)

ANTHROPOLOGIE - for ornaments + holiday earrings
30% off everything

MCGEE + CO - for home decor; too many cute things including this adorable doormat
20% off with code THANK YOU


WINTER GEAR


SIMPLY MERINO
(our favourite base layer ski wear)
up to 25% off

ALTITUDE SPORTS
(kids winter boots)
up to 50% off

WHEAT CLOTHING
(our favourite outerwear but this year it’s not on sale!)
40% off many items


KIDS FURNITURE + DECOR + TOYS


POTTERY BARN KIDS
25% off everything with code GIFT25, code UNWRAP for 20% in Canada

CRATE + KIDS
20-40% off

SERENA & LILY
20% off with code GATHER

WAYFAIR
Up to 80% off some items!

NOBLE CARRIAGE
10% off with code CHEERS10

ETSY
So many amazing makers here on sale here

LITTLE PASSPORTS
Use code BESTDEAL for $20off a 6 month subsciption



Stay tuned next week for a fun giveaway coming up in support of #givingtuesday (Tuesday November 27th).





BEAUTIFUL KIDS TOYS YOU’LL ACTUALLY WANT TO DISPLAY

Oeuf bookshelf for kids 

I think we can all agree that kids toys tend to get a bad rap. This post is about to change all that! Known for their impossibly bright colours and often less-than-subtle design, kids toys can become an eyesore in your living space as they find their way outside the playroom (if you are lucky enough to have one).

But friends, it doesn’t have to be that way. Constantly hiding toys doesn’t have to be the norm. Believe it or not, you’ll find quite a few beautiful pieces for your kids if you look in just the right places. I’m talking toys you’ll actually want to leave out when guests stop over. And toys that blend with your design aesthetic in the most seamless fashion.

Where do you find these unicorn toys, you ask? They’re right here in my roundup sorted by colour to suit every taste and style.

Browse for your favourites, PIN THEM and kiss those toy battles goodbye.

NATURAL WOOD

natural wood toys in kids room

Note to all design-savvy parents: you can never go wrong with natural wood. Whether it’s baby teethers, toddler blocks, or big kid puzzles, wood tones complement any color palette and provide a timeless sense of style. I also love that you can pass these down for generations to come.

natural wooden toys for babies and kids

01. // Riga Roo Rocker; 02. // Tegu Magbot; 03. // Hippo Ride On; 04. // Stacking Wheels Toy; 05. // Percussion Set; 06. // KEVA; 07. // Puzzle; 08. // Mozartkugel Music Box; 09. // Castle Box; 10. // Goose Toy Figure; 11. // Doll House; 12. // Cubebot; 13. //  Story Car 14. // Baby Teethers.

MUTED TONES

muted pink girls room

I love colour, especially in tones that blend with our own home decor. Strike just the right balance with muted tones like soft pinks, blues, yellows and greens for a look that feels tasteful yet fun.

Pastel hued toys for kids

01. // Silicone Rattle; 02. // Pastel Blocks; 03. // Mouse Soft Toy; 04. // Superhero Mouse; 05. // Porcelain Tea Set; 06. // Giraffe; 07. // Jamm Scoot; 08. // Gallop Horse; 09. // City Blocks; 10. // Rabbit Hand Puppet; 11. // School Bus; 12. // Tool Bench; 13. // Rainbow Tunnel; 14. // Tea Trolley; 15. // Baking Playset.

BLACK TOYS

A favourite for a reason, black is the toy tone that brings a modern touch to any room. Not only will the clean lines of black and white toys add visual interest, but the high contrast combo is particularly great for developing babies.  

dream big and nesting dolls in vancouver kids room

black coloured toys for kids

01. // Nesting Dolls; 02. // Stacking Game; 03. // Wood Teether; 04. // Rocking Donkey; 05. // Tool Playset; 06. // Tambourine; 07. // Polar Bear; 08. // Stacking Tunnel; 09. // Building Blocks; 10. // Rocking Horse; 11. // Contrast Art Cards; 12. // Ricepapa Plush; 13. // Activity Mat; 14. // Teether Toy; 15. // Teepee.

WHITE

canvas teepee in children's playroom

Nothing adds to a room’s light and airy appearance like white-toned accessories—toys included. Don’t be afraid to hunt around for your little ones’ favorite playtime pieces in their colorless counterpart. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to find white toys add some much-needed calm to chaotic kid spaces.

White toys for kids

01. // Rocking Horse; 02. // Wooden Camera; 03. // Celia Doll; 04. // Wood Easel; 05. // Mini Guitar; 06. // Canvas Teepee; 07. // Stuffed Bunny; 08. // Teether Rattle; 09. // Play Kitchen; 10. // Modern Slide; 11. // Micro Scooter.

 



WEEKEND SHOPPING: FUN FINDS FOR THE KIDDOS

It's Saturday, the sun is shining and the sales are ON!!! After celebrating a lazy long weekend here in Canada last weekend, this weekend is about getting set up for the summer. We still have another month of school but I love to be prepared so that the most time possible is spent lazing with the kids once the holidays hit.

Some of our favourite shops have great sales this weekend so it's the perfect time to think ahead, whether it's adding some Spring finds to the kids rooms, fresh pillows to your patio or a lighter quilt for those hot summer nights. 

I'm featuring some favourite finds for breezy summer days with the kids from Serena & Lily (use code SUMMERDAYS for 20% off!) in this board to give you a pulled together look for a covered outdoor area and have added more sites below with codes to shop the sale!

Serena and Lily outdoor finds for kids

01. // Cozy quilt; 02. // Hanging chair; 03. // Wood stools; 04. // Storage bins; 05. // Large pillow; 06. // Textured pillow; 07. // Beach chair.

more-sales.jpg
 

Pehr:
For simple modern rugs and my favourite storage bins! Use code HOORAY for 20% off.

Coyuchi:
If you don't know this site, it's my go-to for clients looking for organic linens. The quality is high, the toxins are low and there is a new section just for kids. Love this organic cotton (inside and out) comforter for summer nights. 20% off certain items.

McGee & Co:
SO many amazing finds from rugs to pillows to faux greenery (perfect for kids bedrooms & bathrooms!). Use code SUMMERSALE for 20% off.

Lulu & Georgia:
Their new kids section has some great finds, including this gold mesh lamp that is both safe AND functional for kids rooms! From 15%-25% off depending on what you spend, this is a good one!

Noble Carriage:
With a big focus on organic products, this small shop carries the adorable Holdie doll house that I can't find anywhere in Canada. Use code MEMORIAL for 20% off.

Crate & Kids:
Looking to make a furniture purchase for your kids? This is the place. Code SAVE15 will get you 15% off all full priced items.

Etsy:
Etsy is my favourite place for unique finds from handmade shops. Lots of small makers have sales this weekend. To find sales on shops near you, enter 'sale' into the search bar and then set a custom location. It's a great way to find sales this weekend and throughout the whole year!

Hope you have a memory-making weekend whether it is a long one or not.

Melissa Signature.png
 

 

 

8 OF THE BEST PLAY KITCHENS FOR TODDLERS

Milton and Goose wooden toddler play kitchen

Purchasing a play kitchen almost feels like a parenting rite of passage. It’s the one toy set you’re guaranteed to find in nearly every home with a toddler, but it’s not without good reason. Play kitchens deliver a perfect outlet for imaginative play, and of course, there’s nothing more adorable than kiddos “cooking” up dinner alongside Mom and Dad.

But before you secretly cringe at the idea of adding another toy set into your thoughtfully designed home, rest assured that play kitchens don’t have to be a total eyesore. In fact, I’ve searched the web and rounded up nine pint-sized kitchens you’ll actually want to show off in any part of your home.

One. | Leave it to Milton & Goose to bridge the gap between style and function with the cutest kitchen featuring all the bells and whistles. Not only is it made from eco-friendly woods, but this kitchen includes a miniature farmhouse sink and a magnetic chalkboard for your little’s weekly menus. 

Milton and Goose white play kitchen

Two. | Any style-conscious parents will be envious of their little one’s kitchen with this Kid Craft beauty. With its' simple white design, you’ll have the perfect backdrop to add in pops of color through fun accessories like this added shelf pictured below.

Three. | Fit for a little gourmand, this toddler kitchen boasts warm grey cabinetry and gold hardware. The gas switch is rotatable and I love that there is a little clock for kids to learn how to tell time!

Warm grey with gold kids play kitchen

Four. | With a solid maple build, the Hape play kitchen is bound to become your toddler's most loved toy. Well made and with a roll out cart, this is a buy that will be past on down the years.

Hape wooden play kitchen

Five. | Tiny chefs rejoice! This retro play kitchen includes a refrigerator, microwave, oven, and sink so kiddos will stay busy with endless hours of pretend. Take your pick from six different colors to match your home’s aesthetic and let the fun begin. 

Retro white play kitchen for kids

Six. | Perfect neutral and with a farmhouse sink to match, this Teamson play kitchen has you covered. The fridge provides good storage  and the phone is an addition your little one is sure to love.

toddler fridge and stove kitchen set

Seven. | Keep things sweet and simple with this handcrafted kitchen featuring a detachable sink and faucets and ample toy storage below. You’ll be able to tuck away any play food, pots, or pans for easy cleanup post-play.

Woodchuk natural wood play kitchen for kids

Eight. | The ultimate in mid-mod style, this mini kitchen from Scandiborn packs awesome play features into a compact size. Kids will love cooking and baking through active play, while parents will love the eye-catching (and total space-saving!) design.

Scandiborn kids play kitchen in rose

PIN the image below to save this post about play kitchens for later...

8 of the best play kitchens for toddlers