Sunday, February 07, 2010

Organizing the Playroom: Part 1

Our shelves and dirt-cheap organizing bins were delivered on Thursday, and I still feel giddy about paying $35.10 for 30 canvas drawers versus the $209.70 that they would have cost at full price. (Did I tell you that I also got free shipping? Because, yeah. I got free shipping.)

I was afraid that assembling the shelves would be a huge pain, but they were not. At all. In fact, they were so easy, I timed myself putting the last unit together. At 7:05am Saturday morning, the last shelf was still sealed in the box (including a plastic wrapper). At 7:20, it was completely put together. OK, so I didn't add the five white panels to the back of the shelf, but those are superfluous, if you ask me.

The biggest chore of this whole project was labeling the drawers. My first plan was to print iron-on transfers and iron them onto white twill squares which I would then stitch onto the canvas drawers. The squares were adorable--I backed them with interfacing for sturdiness and pinked the edges. However, the transfers just didn't look as spiffy as I had hoped, so I scrapped that idea. Instead, I printed the labels onto card stock, laminated them, and punched two small holes for attaching.

The only bloodshed that occurred during this entire project resulted from my trying to wrestle those safety pins in and out of the canvas on the flat side of the drawers. A half-pint of blood later (good thing the labels were laminated for easy clean-up), I finally wised up and ever-so-slightly bent the end of the safety pin with my jewelry pliers for easy fastening.

It's nothing fancy, but I think the labeling system is perfectly informal and sturdy for a preschooler's playroom. For the print, I selected a font that is close to what Al will encounter at school, and the words with pictures provide daily opportunities for him to practice pre-reading skills and autonomy. That's right--my kid will know the word "aircraft" when he goes to kindergarten.

The labels really are perfectly straight, with 90-degree corners. This one is still curved a bit from its time in the laminator, so although it looks like I was OK with cutting edges all willy-nilly, I was/am not. I needed to tell you that.

As soon as the room was in order, Al pulled a coloring book and crayons from the "Art Supplies" drawer and sat down at his little table to color. He hasn't been able to do that in over a year.

There's more in the works for this room, but this is a very good start. Al has spent more time in his playroom this weekend than I think he has in the past three months. He even (kind of ) enjoys cleaning it up.


Anonymous said...

This is should be a Professional it totally crazy that I just want to sit and look at this picture? So peaceful!

Kathryn said...

I dream of a home that is that organized. Someday.

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