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DIY Playroom Organization

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This playroom organization was such a fun project!  For us, the basement of our little rowhouse acted as a kids playroom, a guest room, and a second living room.  Therefore, keeping the playroom organized was a must!

playroom organization

While our boys were young we managed toys in a storage ottoman.  However, as they grew, the truck count in the house grew and we needed more toy storage!  But in addition to needing storage there was also a bland wall space that needed a face lift!  When thinking of playroom organization ideas, I knew I wanted to create something fun but also something that would be aesthetically pleasing that would fit around our mounted TV.

Step 1: Measure & Design your layout

I started by finding center on our TV and then measured out to determine how far out I wanted the long shelves to go.  Then I measured from the outer point to the TV.  I wanted the outer edges of each of the shelves to line up; I felt this gave it a more built-in look.  

playroom organization

For my design I knew I wanted to use wooden crates.  I wanted solid storage that would hold up with toys being tossed in and dumped out regularly!  I had always walked by the tall pile of crates at Michael’s and wanted to use them for a project. 

For my final toy organization design, I settled on 4 shelves; 2 long shelves and 4 short shelves set to either side of the mounted TV.  With a total of 8 crates, 4 on each long shelf.  

I needed the shelves to be about 12 1/2 inch wide since the crates were 12″ wide.

playroom organization

Step 2: Go Shopping & Get your Materials

While shopping at Home Depot for supplies things got a bit creative! 

Based on my design layout, I have initially intended on my shelves being longer but while standing in Home Depot I immediately made a change to that.  The standard size for a sheet of plywood is 96 inches long.  I had my long shelves at 105 inches long but was willing to lose the 9 inches to make the shelf a single solid board.  

Now, the standard width of a sheet of plywood is 48 inches.  If I ripped this board into quarters this would make each board only 12 inches wide which just wasn’t going to wide enough to safely set the crates on.  I really didn’t want to get two sheets of plywood to end up with so much extra cutoff from each!  So as I wandered the aisles a bit, I ended up walking down the trim and moulding aisle.  I knew this would not only make a very nice finished edge but also could add enough edge for the crates to sit comfortably!  I was using a 3/4 inch plywood sheet so I grabbed a moulding that I liked that would fit the 3/4″ edge of the shelves.  

In all, I grabbed one sheet of 3/4 inch sanded plywood, and 5 – 96 inch long 3/4 inch moulding/trim pieces.  I ended up spending less than $100 on lumbar supplies! 

Then I headed to Michael’s and grabbed 8 crates and paint in red, green, blue, and yellow. I spent more in Michael’s than I did at Home Depot! 

Lastly, for the shelf brackets –  I ordered these from Amazon, so I had them waiting at home for me.   

Step 3: Build Your Shelves

To build my shelves, I started by cutting down the sheet of plywood on a table saw.  I set my measurement at 12 inches and ran the board through three times until I had 4 pieces that measured 12 inches X 96 inches.  I set two of the boards aside and then cut the other two down to make 4 – 24 inch pieces.  

Then cut the trim pieces at a 45 degree angle for each of the edges and attach using a brad nailer

Fill the nail holes with a stainable filler.  

playroom organization

Step 4: Stain your Shelves & Paint your Crates

This is by far my favorite step.  I was able to recruit my Mom to help with this step and we had so much fun with it.  

Like most of my other projects I choose to use the General’s Finishes stain and top coat for the shelves.  I used my favorite color; Brown Mahogany.  I did one coat of stain and two coats of top coat.  Allowing the shelves to dry for about 6 hours between each coat. 

playroom organization

For the crates, I used craftsmart acrylic paint in 4 colors; bright blue, grass green, red, and yellow.  I painted two crates inside and out in each color.  I used disposable paint brushed to get in between the slats and a small craft rollers to help smooth and cover the rest of the crate.  We did two coats on each crate to cover fully. 

Step 5: Hang your Shelves

To hang my shelves I made sure to find the studs with my stud finder.  For the shorter shelves I was only able to get one side into a stud and the other side I used the wall anchors that came with the brackets.  For the long shelves I offset the brackets slightly to ensure all brackets were in studs.  I knew this would be important to support the weight of the toy filled crates.

I first hung the bracket onto the wall and then laid the shelf on top of the brackets and attached the shelf from below to the bracket. 

Step 6: Place & Fill your Crate Storage Bins

I maintain that the painting and staining step was my favorite but gosh is it a good feeling organizing all the toys! I love when everything is in it’s  proper spot so having an organized playroom is a dream come true for me.  After I finished, the space was ready for the boys to play!

Want more Kid DIYs? Check out more kid friendly DIYs & design tips!

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playroom organization

DIY Playroom Organization

Prep Time 4 hrs
Build Time 8 hrs
Dry Time 1 d
Units 1

Equipment

  • Brad Nailer
  • Table Saw
  • Stud Finder

materials
  

  • Gel Stain
  • Gel Topcoat
  • Wooden Crate
  • Plywood
  • Trim/Molding
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Shelf Bracket
  • Disposable Brush
  • Craft Roller

Instructions
 

  • Measure & Design your layout
  • Go Shopping & Get your Materials
  • Build Your Shelves
  • Stain your Shelves & Paint your Crates
  • Hang your Shelves
  • Place & Fill your Crate Storage Bins
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