Category Archives: Design

Basement Ideas for Kids: How to Make the Perfect Playroom

Playroom design

If you have children, you know how much space they need to run around and play with their toys. Utilizing your basement by creating a playroom made especially for kids can be the perfect place for them to learn, grow, and explore. A basement playroom is ideal for homes without a backyard, rainy days, or for parents who want to have a dedicated play area for their kids. To help you get started, we reached out to experts from Charleston, SC to Toronto, ON to hear their best basement ideas for kids. Keep reading to see what they had to say.

Establish unique spaces for activities

When creating our playroom, we knew we wanted to create a spot for reading, creativity, and play. We planned out where the play area would be, and chose calming colors for the walls and decor to keep the space feeling fun, yet relaxing and inviting. We have a rock wall and we knew it was going to be the focal point of the room, so we started there and planned around it. Having a reading corner was also super important to me. We made sure the shelves were at a height the kids could grab books, and included a few cozy pillows to get comfy to snuggle up and read. – Jennifer McNeill

Create a ‘yes space’

Tired of saying ’no’ all day? Create a ‘yes space’ in your basement by filling it with safe ways for your child to explore and participate in motor activities like climbing and jumping. Items such as foam cushions, mini trampolines, and pikler triangles can be a great way to entertain your kids when outside play isn’t an option. – Dr. Brita DeStefano, Progress Through Play

Incorporate vertical play elements and open shelving

Don’t be afraid to go vertical with an interactive play element. Whether you have limited space or shorter ceiling heights, going vertical with play elements is a great use of space in a basement playroom. For example, a climbing wall designed to look like a mountain can be a great open-ended play element that’s also a statement piece that takes up no floor space.

Another tip is to ensure you buy or build some open shelving to store toys so children know what’s available and can make their own decision on what to play with. It also means they won’t be dumping boxes full of toys all over the ground to find what they want. It definitely helps any parents’ sanity when it comes to cleanup time. – Big Living Little Footprint 

Calm chaos white furniture

When it comes to basement ideas for kids and designing a playroom, my number 1 tip is to always lean towards high gloss white lacquer furniture for a playroom. It looks nice and it is kid-friendly. A white palette is good for furniture and storage in a playroom too because toys are so many different colors. Having a clean neutral base with your furniture and storage in a playroom gives the room a sense of cohesiveness and calm. – Home Taylored

Decorate with DIY artwork

It is recommended to use children’s DIY artworks instead of store-bought decorations. On one hand, incorporating these DIY artworks into the playroom can add color to the play space; on the other hand, the play space can become a showroom for the children’s works and record their growth. – Huale Toys

Get creative with paint and storage solutions

Paint and storage are key to a happy playroom basement. Bring in the fun with a paint color that enhances your space – stay light if your basement doesn’t get natural light but go bold if it does. Next, storage – it’s absolutely necessary when you have a playroom, but built-ins may not be something you’re ready to invest in for the long term. Consider other flexible options like baskets that will make clean-up a breeze. – Costner Studio

Let your child take the lead

From what I have learned, “how to assemble the perfect playroom” and “how to really love your child” might as well be the same question. From what color to paint the room (narrow it down to 2-3 colors you like and let your child/children choose) to what toy set-up to include, let your child take the lead. What has been most popular in our household has been setting up play that is multi-functional. For example, a “stand” can be a grocery store, an ice cream shop, or a tea parlor. One toy will get old fast, but setting up multi-functional toys and tools will let your child‘s imagination take shape.- Poppie Lady

Let the space grow with the kids

Make a space that will grow with the kids as their needs and interests change. Invest in a few key pieces that will work for kids when they are little, and also when they are bigger kids and teens. I suggest picking good seating, like comfy bean bag chairs and functional storage pieces to store toys, board games, and video game devices. Lastly, get the kids involved in creating the space as they will be spending the most time in the basement. – Coffee, Pancakes & Dreams

Create a system for toys

Only leave out as many toys as your child can independently clean up. Store the rest away, and switch them out weekly or when needed. This will make the toys feel new and your child will be inspired. Second, give every toy a space – no toy boxes allowed. Every toy can be displayed in a specific spot on a shelf (use a tray or small basket if needed) and return the item to the same place when done. This creates an instant minimalist vibe, helps your child not get overwhelmed by toy clutter, and helps to build concentration. Finally, create think zones – mount a swing from the ceiling for gross motor skills, create an art center, a reading nook, a building area or maker space, anything to divide up the space. – Stella Nova Montessori

Design a safe space for kids to play

The best playroom is one that your kids can spend time in safely. While playmats are a great option to protect your kids from a grimy basement floor, you need to make sure your playmat is nontoxic. Choose a playmat that does not use toxic materials like flame retardants or vinyl foam. Safe options should be clearly labeled “non-toxic.” It is also wise to have an air purifier and dehumidifier in your basement to ensure that the air your kids are breathing is as safe as possible. – Kleynimals

Tailor decor to your child’s interests

When creating a playroom two words come to mind – fun and organized. Although these two words may not sound like they go together, they definitely can. Start with a fun color scheme, maybe you have kids who love the ocean and want to add shades of blue, or you have nature lovers and want a mural, or princess lovers who want a beautiful canopy. There are so many fun options – most importantly you want it to reflect their interests. Another way we love to showcase our kid’s interests is through artwork on the walls, Minted is a favorite of ours with their amazing collection. Lastly, you must have storage. That’s the organizational piece to this puzzle. Storage bins, cupboards, shelves, you name it – just have places to store all of the toys so at the end of the day it can all be put away. – Beijos Events

Complete the space with a mini-trampoline

No basement playroom should be without a mini-trampoline. During long winters or hot summers, jumping on the trampoline will burn off excess energy, provide great exercise, strengthen your child’s neurological system, and elevate your child’s mood. Trampolines offer many benefits for your child while taking up very little space. – Smart Homeschooler

Create a free play area with no restrictions

If the children are toddlers I would hang some large silks or tapestry to lower the ceiling height in the designated area. If they are a bit older, I would make a snuggly reading nook for a comfortable reclining reading area. Books should be color-coded for easy return. The art area should have flooring, tables, counters, that can be washed (always keep in mind, this is a ‘yes’ area so it can get messy). Finally, always have a written or colored format for clean-up time like putting everything back in its station, basket, or container. – Live Love Organized

Incorporate versatile furniture

The more versatile the furniture, the more options you have for renewal of the children’s room without actually buying new furniture. What could be more exciting than to get several different furniture pieces in disguise of one – multi-functional furniture grows with your child. – Adensen Furniture

Utilize toy rotation and accessible shelving

A toy rotation is a great way to start turning the basement into a play area. A toy rotation requires child-accessible shelving and a small number of toys as this encourages more thoughtful play. Don’t be scared to bring in some color through the toys or through art above the shelves. – Color Me Monti

Originally published on Redfin.com

The Ultimate Guide to Design a Fun, Functional Kids Playroom at Home

Playing is more than just a way to have fun; it’s also an essential part of healthy childhood development. As parents, you can adapt any space at home and design a playroom where your kids can explore, get creative, and learn. When designing a playroom, it’s crucial to think about it from a kid’s perspective. Our guide shows you how to create a fun and functional kids playroom that your children will love for many years to come.

Brainstorming with Your Children

While you’ll have most of the say about the design of the playroom (after all, this is your home), it’s important to let your children provide some input before you set up their new playroom. Ask them about their favorite subjects in school and what type of things they’d like to have in the room. From furniture and toys to kids’ entertainment, sit down and write out a list of all the most important things to your child. When you brainstorm together, you’ll ensure that the final result is something you and your kids will both enjoy and appreciate. Make sure you design a space that’s “evergreen” and one that will grow and adapt as your child gets older. This is the best way to make the most of the playroom and keep it functional and useful over the years as they develop and mature.

Pick a Theme

Choosing a theme for your new playroom can make it fun and exciting, but keep in mind that certain themes might not be appealing to your child in a year or two. Try to stick with themes centered around their favorite activities rather than characters from movies or TV shows. Here are some tips to help you develop the perfect theme for your child’s playroom:

Theater / Dance

Add a small stage to the room where your children can practice their acting and dancing skills. Stock the room with various costumes so the kids can play dress-up and do a little bit of theater right at home. If your child likes to dance, install a large mirror on one wall of the room. Bring in a stereo system or a record player so they can enjoy their favorite plays and dance to music.

Music

Fill the playroom with various instruments like a small drum set, a keyboard, and a tambourine. Stock your child’s playroom with sheet music if they’re skilled at playing the piano or other instruments, so they always have something new to learn. Display some music-themed décor in the room like oversized music notes, framed sheet music, or artwork of images like people or animals singing and playing instruments. 

Art

Set up a roomy, sturdy craft table where your child can paint, draw, and work on a variety of arts and crafts projects. Stock the playroom with watercolor and finger paints, an easel, paint brushes, scissors, glue, and construction paper. Find a place where your kids can display their art, such as a large bulletin board or a magnetic board for easy hanging.

Sports

Decorate the room with items that display your child’s favorite sports like a framed picture of a baseball field, a hockey stick hung on the wall, or a picture of their favorite player. If you’re feeling brave, install a ceiling-mounted cargo climbing net so your child can play and let off some steam indoors. Bring in some books about sports so your child can read about their favorite games and expand their mind whenever they’re not on the playing field.

Game Room

From cards to board games, you can easily make your child’s playroom a fun game room by stocking it with a variety of games geared for their age group. Paint a tabletop in a checkerboard design so the kids can play a game of checkers or chess anytime they want. If you have space (and the budget), bring in a large game like a foosball table or ping pong table to serve as the room’s focal point. 

Furniture

Once you’ve chosen a theme, it’s time to pick out some furniture for your kid’s playroom. Here are a few tips to help you get started and ensure that this room is functional and fun to use:

Stick with neutral furniture that’s not too loud or colorful. The more neutral the furniture is, the better the odds are that your child will grow with it instead of out of it. 

Choose furniture that’s durable and easy to clean and aim for multifunctional furniture that includes storage like an ottoman or storage bench.

It’s important to ensure that the entire family feels welcome in this room. While kid’s furniture is excellent for little ones, consider bringing in a full-size couch and table so your older children and the adults will feel comfortable in this space, too.

To add a pop of color, bring in some rugs, curtains, and décor to fill the room with bright and cheerful hues. Leave the wall color neutral so it’s easy to adapt the room as your child grows.

Make sure that this space has flooring that’s easy to clean and maintain. Linoleum and vinyl are both good options, and they don’t require a lot of maintenance to keep them looking new. Protect the floors (and your child’s knees and elbows) with some soft, machine-washable area rugs. 

Storage Space

Your child must have fun in their playroom, but it’s also important that this part of your home stays clean and organized. With the right storage, you can keep everything neat, tidy, and in its place.

Use Mason jars with a lid to store and organize small craft items like buttons, beads, and spools of thread. Cubbies are perfect for larger toys and games, and you can easily put them on a shelf or stash them under furniture. Baskets and storage bins work well as a catch-all to toss stuffed animals and other toys in one place. Add a storage bench or ottoman, so the kids have a place to hide their shoes, board games, and other medium-sized items. Make sure your playroom has at least one bookshelf for reading material, sheet music, or art supplies.

Set up Different Zones

To make the most of your playroom, break it up into different zones. Each zone can be designated for a variety of activities your child enjoys. Put a small desk in one corner of the room for homework, and place shelving with art supplies and a craft table on the opposite side. Keep kid’s toys, games, and accessories in constant rotation so that there’s always something new for them to enjoy. As your child begins to outgrow certain items, donate them to a local nonprofit organization or your school. Make sure there is one part of the playroom designated for home use, such as a spot for a comfy sofa and TV set.

Get Creative

There are many fantastic add-ons you can bring into the playroom to make it more functional and fun to use. Here are some inspirational ideas to help you get started:

Add a swing. Hang a swing from the ceiling of the playroom so your child can swing as they listen to music or watch television. Make sure the swing is anchored securely and that you’re always nearby whenever they use it.

Add a nap station. Naptime is particularly important for younger children, so create a “nap zone” with a comfy mat, cot, or sleeping bag along with a blanket and some pillows so they can take a snooze after playtime.

Create a dress-up corner. Use a rack to hang costumes and accessories in the playroom and add a freestanding mirror in the corner of the room so your kids can have fun playing dress-up.

Add a slide. Bring a sturdy, small slide into the playroom for your younger children. If you really want to go all out, install a tube-style slide that will whisk your child from one floor to the next for a great entrance.

Create a chalkboard wall. Paint one wall with black chalkboard paint so your child can sketch and doodle to their heart’s content. If you’re not keen on painting a wall this way, bring in a large freestanding chalkboard and place it against one wall.

Make a slime station. Playing with slime is lots of fun, but it’s also messy. Make a special “slime station” with all of the supplies so your child can have some slimy fun, and then put everything away when they’re done. 

You don’t have to spend a fortune to design a fun, functional kid’s playroom. There are plenty of ways to DIY and get creative by using items you already have lying around your home. The key is to make sure that you’re having fun while you plan and decorate the playroom. Use these kid’s playroom ideas as inspiration to help you create the perfect space. When it’s finished, everyone will want to come over and play at your house.

This article was originally published at Porch.com