Come see how one mom was able to simply and inexpensively organize kids craft supplies in her home. Follow these tips for organizing success.
I have 4.5-year-old twins who LOVE to do “projects”. In fact, the opportunity to do a “project” is often used as a bribery tool in my home. Hurry up and get dressed, and then we can do a project. Eat all of your veggies, and then we can do a project. If no one yells or fights for the next 30 minutes, we can do a project. You get the picture.
Today I’m giving you a peek behind the curtain. I’m literally opening my cupboards and letting you take a peek inside. Come see how I keep my kids’ arts and craft supplies organized – in a real home, without fancy or expensive organizer systems.
How to Organize Kids Craft Supplies
Organizing should not be complicated or expensive. Here are 4 simple tips to help you design a successful organizational system of your own.
1 – Minimize!
The answer is not more organization. The answer is less stuff.
While we may do lots of crafting in our house, we do not have lots of craft supplies. We keep it simple and let our imaginations do the work!
2 – Think About Where they Craft
Think about where your kids do most of their crafting. At a desk in their bedroom? In a playroom? The family room? Your kitchen table? You want their craft supplies to be handy, so where they craft is going to be the biggest influence on how you store their craft supplies.
We do 99% of our crafting in the kitchen – either at the kitchen table or at the little play table right next to the kitchen table. Both have the same concrete table top finish that is easy to clean, making them perfect for our crafting activities.
Since all of our crafting takes place in the kitchen (which is maxed out on storage to begin with), I had to create extra storage in our dining area for craft supply storage. This came in the form of (1) a sideboard with cabinets to hide our supplies and (2) a little craft caddy for stylish storage at our fingertips.
3 – Make it Accessible to Them
The day that I gave the twins total access to their craft supplies was a day that drastically changed my life. Ok – everything except paint. I’ll never trust them alone with paint.
Adopt the mantra: A place for everything, everything in its place. Then teach it to your children. When you give your children access to craft supplies at their level, two things happen. 1. They can be creative whenever they want (Yay!) and 2. They can be responsible for putting away their art supplies when their craft time is over (double Yay!).
This is about more than just giving your children access. This is about instilling in them the understanding that their belongings have a designated place. If they want to be able to find and use that craft supply again next time, they need to put it away. This obviously takes practice, but after having to search high and low for a favorite roll of tape, even a four-year-old will start to get the picture. A place for everything, and everything in its place.
This is also much easier to accomplish when you follow Tip #1. If you have fewer craft supplies, and keep the system simple, even the youngest kiddos can help keep things organized.
Aside from the craft caddy above, we have two sideboard cupboards with supplies that the twins can play with whenever they want. On the right side, we have a basket with coloring books, pads of craft paper, and stickers.
Then on the left side, we have two dollar store baskets. One has play dough supplies, and the other has lacing beads, flash cards, and other miscellaneous supplies.
4 – Make a Craft Supply Stash
Ok, moms. Hear me out. You NEED to make a craft supply stash. Trust me here.
Now, here’s the key to success. Your kids must never find out about this stash. Never, never, ever! Ok? This is one shelf in our hall closet. It’s the same closet with our first aid supplies, and some other miscellaneous mom stuff. It has a child-proof cover on the handle, and the kids are not allowed in here.
This one shelf in our hall closet is filled with craft kits that I snag at Target or buy on clearance at the end of the season at the craft store. I wish I were a “Pinterest Mom,” who plans craft activities and homemade meals. I’m not. I’m a “buy a pre-made craft kit from the store Mom,” and I’m OK with that.
So here’s my budget mom pro tip: buy craft kits at the end of the season when they are marked down on super clearance, and then put them in your Craft Stash. Your kids can deal with playing with last year’s craft kids. They will survive.
Now, whenever you hear “I’m bored,” or “Mom, I want to do a craft project,” you can sneak into your stash and save the day.
So there you have it! 4 simple tips for organization success. It’s not complicated. It’s definitely not expensive. But it works for us, and that’s what matters. I hope these tips help you create a more organized system in your home. Happy organizing!
So what do you do with all their crafts when they’re done? What happens when it’s just pieces of paper they’ve drawn on and you would just throw it in the recycling bin, but they want to keep? Do you have a place for that?
Hi Christa! I photograph, organize in folders on my computer, and throw away 99% of their artwork. It’s brutal, but if I didn’t do it we would be drowning in paper 🙂