Create Extra Play Space & Storage In Kids Bedrooms!

Finding space for all the amazing things my kids love to do is always a challenge at our house. We live in a century home with limited space. We were inspired to make some changes that have worked extremely well for us, and I thought I would share them with you!

Both Xander and Ava have basically the same size rooms, and now that they are a bit older they are wanting more floor space in their rooms to play. Ava's big love is her kitchen cafe and Xander's is Lego. This is what we did to accomplish some extra play space for both of them!




We have been looking for loft beds for the kids for a while, but there were a few things we were keeping in mind when looking. We wanted them to to be very sturdy and a specific height (also adjustable for later) for each child, and to have an aesthetic that fit in well with their rooms while being budget conscious - a big wish list!

Ava's bed is a single and Xander's a double and we wanted to keep them at this size. Ava is tiny so we wanted the initial height to be lower, but to have clearance for her kitchen and market etc.

Xander's is just below his height and was made to clear his new Lego storage unit. As I said both beds can be raised should the need arise.

There are a TON of diy loft beds on Pinterest to draw inspiration from, so this is what we came up with!
Follow Cherine Making Montessori Ours's board Children's Bedroom on Pinterest.


This is very basic idea of how we made them. This is not meant to be a set of plans.






I spent a good deal of time painting the underside of the beds. We used a plywood base set into the frame so that you could not see the bottom of the mattress. I upholstered the plywood before we dropped it into the frame to make it really pretty and soft (basic plywood isn't terribly pretty unless you buy a grade that is finish ready and that is much more expensive). You could paint the plywood if you wanted, but we bought a rougher grade because I wanted to use fabric. 
I have a post here about Ava's kitchen and all her favorite play kitchen cafe items. Her book towers on either side of her bed are Billy bookcases from Ikea, and her dresser is Ikea Hemnes.

We also bought LED touch lights and mounted them on the supports under the bed for some extra lighting. We used white for Ava's and black for Xander's



This is what we did to create and store Xander's Lego World😃


Xander's bookcases are all black/brown Billy from Ikea (you can see them on the side) there are two full size cases with a dvd/cd case mounted on the end. This provides him a full wall of storage beside the bed for books, Lego, and also storage for his vintage Star wars ship collection he inherited from daddy.
His Dresser and shelf towers on either side are Ikea Hemnes. I have done a few posts about his Lego storage here and here but this is the newest evolution. He now has a LARGE amount of Lego so his previous solutions were no longer adequate. On the back wall under the bed you can see a large storage unit/system. 

This is a tool/parts free standing rack with removable bins. Xander's bins are all blue. This unit is amazing for this purpose! The rack/frame is power coated steel and really nicely finished (no sharp edges). We are now sorting Lego by part size, and nothing else. We do use this Lego Sorter and it does a good job to do a rough filter by size. 


Xander does a lot of free builds of his own design so he is very part specific in terms of function as opposed to colour. He does though have two of these parts cases for Lego figures and figure accessories. We also use these for Playmobil Figures and accessories.


He also has two steel roller bin units on either side of the rack unit. I bought these at a discount retailer otherwise I would not have bought them because they are expensive. If I had to purchase something similar I would get these. We use our carts for larger parts and building plates etc.


A large tool case for his Lego Robotics kit. 
More on his Robotics kit here!

Lego Mind Storms Robotics NXT 2.0 and New Storage!!



We placed his book rail (we build) down on the side wall to hold his Lego and design books. 



The other collection that he has is Lego Hero Factory. This collection is stored under his dresser on a parts tray and in two bins on the bottom shelves of his book towers on either side of his dresser. 


He has a huge collection of instructions from all of his kits (we used to keep them in an album) they are now stored in a large blue bin, like the one in the shelf above.

We also did a major closet reorganization for both kids. Xander really did not require his closet for clothing storage so we converted it to a cube system with bins that I found at the dollar store. He required Lego and toy storage.

Ava's closet was more difficult to deal with. As I mentioned our house is one hundred plus years, but does have closets. The closets are a good size but the interesting thing is that they were built with very tiny doors. In a couple of rooms we have widened the door openings, so we decided to do this for Ava to give her more functional accessible storage. This took a great deal of care, drop sheets, plastic and cleaning due to the original plaster work. We basically removed the closet framing, cut the wall opening and re framed.
We had kept the closet door from another small closet that matches her existing door with the original hardware. We still need to hang it, but you can see one on the left side.

Here are the before and afters. 

So making this change doubled the opening of her closet. The closet interior is 5' wide and 9' tall but was accessed by a 78 x 24" door :(  The hardest part was dealing with the plaster and recreating the 5" plus wide mouldings. We reused the rosettes (upper corner moulding blocks) and the plinth blocks (lower moulding blocks) at the corners of the mill work.

The shelving is stacked shoe shelving similar to this ClosetMaid 896300 31-Inch Horizontal Laminate Closet Organizer, White. I purchased ours from a local retailer for about half that price so I would shop around! She has lots of small collections so the shelving is wonderful to have. It keeps collections from being piled up on one another. I still need to add small bins to contain such items.
We also made sure her closet rod was at a great height for her to hang her own clothing.

If you are interested in how we organize some of our home you can check out this post.

Unit Planning for Kids - Work Space Organization & Our Montessori Manuals



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8 comments:

  1. The rooms are beautiful! You both did a great job!

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    1. Thank you so much Amy!! The kids are just loving the extra play space :)

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  2. Such a fantastic space saving idea. The rooms are absolutely beautiful!!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! We are a ways out now from the changes and I must say that the rooms are working out so well :)

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  3. Great job. How much did the bed cost?

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    Replies
    1. An estimate when all was said and done about 250-300 ea. I am sure they could be build for less especially depending on what you have on hand, and how you finish the beds. The trim added up quickly, but of course you could change that up in any way you choose. Thank you!!

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  4. The rooms and storage ideas are terrific!

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