Organizing a Shared Space
Shared bedrooms can be a challenge. You want to utilize space well, while giving each child a little spot to call their own. If you’re the neat freak, sharing a room with a messy person is challenging. But what happens when you’re both messy? I’m dealing with two girls who are currently sharing a room, and they both just happen to be the messiest people in our house.
I expect all my kids to keep their rooms clean and make their beds before they start the day, but am I setting them up for failure? Depending on their age, I want to make sure I’m providing the tools and instructions they need to succeed. If I have allowed clutter and an excessive amount of toys to pile up, the mess will become overwhelming and my kids will fail. Each child might learn this concept at a different age, but at some point, they will figure out how to throw things away. Until then, I know I have to do it with them on a regular basis!
“These girls are hoarders of toilet paper tubes and cardboard boxes. They love art projects made entirely out of glitter and secretly rescuing random objects off the ground in parking lots.
Here are a couple pictures of what the girl’s room used to look like. Despite my constant nagging to make their beds or clean their room, this was the best they could do. The bunk beds were always a pain to make and almost always looked sloppy. These girls are hoarders of toilet paper tubes and cardboard boxes. They love art projects made entirely out of glitter and secretly rescuing random objects off the ground in parking lots.
The second picture you see here is of my daughter “cleaning” her room (insert face/palm emoji).
Here’s what we did to improve the situation!
What We Did
Here are a few of the practical things we did to make it easier for the girls to keep things clean:
- Bye, bye bunk beds! They take up less space, but they are so hard to keep nice looking. Now that we have the zip-up bedding, we might have been able to pull it off, but we opted for separate beds to create a separate space for each of the girls.
- Hello, Beddy’s Zip-Up Bedding! I’m not even going to hold myself back or downplay how amazing Beddy’s truly have been. They have totally exceeded every wild expectation my heart could dream up. Their beds are made every day without me having to ask, and they look way neater and cleaner than they could have ever accomplished on their own. Enough said.
- Purge! This is a monthly activity that has to be done or you won’t believe the amount of stuff that will piles up (or maybe you can). We had fallen behind in this area and when we started on this room project, we threw away at least 12 garbage bags of trash and came out with around 6 bags of toys to donate (I’m pretty sure we had an entire bag full of empty toilet paper tubes).
- Under the bed, storage bins. We have always utilized the space under the bed for storage, but the rule is; it has to fit in a bin or it gets tossed. They know that these bins need to contain all the clutter and if I find random stuff shoved under the bed outside of a bin, I confiscate it.
“I find that if you give a kid a flat surface, they will cover it in junk. This drives me crazy! Instead, limit the number of flat surfaces or make a rule that NOTHING is allowed to sit on it. Yep, nothing.
- Storage bins from IKEA. I don’t expect toys and junk to be displayed nicely and lined up perfectly all the time, I just don’t want to see it. I like these storage cubes from IKEA because it looks clean, even if they are full of craziness.
- Limit flat surface space. I find that if you give a kid a flat surface, they will cover it in junk. This drives me crazy! Instead, limit the number of flat surfaces or make a rule that NOTHING is allowed to sit on it. Yep, nothing. We purposely stood this IKEA storage shelf upright to create less surface space. The girls each have a dresser, but only approved items are allowed to sit on top (a lamp, a jewelry container, etc.)
- Stuffed animal storage. Donate or toss what you can, and for the ones you can’t emotionally part with, get a Boon! We love the Boon Stuffed Animal Storage Bag! It’s like a bean bag chair full of stuffed animals. This thing is made really well and has lasted for a few years now, being cram packed with a good 30 to 40 stuffed animals. You’ll be shocked at how many it can fit!
- Designated spots to hang random crap. I felt a little guilty the first 100 times I turned down the request to hang an art project from the wall or a free poster from a garage sale over the bed. Then I caved a couple times and had instant regret. That stuff immediately looks junkie or leaves marks all over the wall and I. Just. Can’t. Instead, I provide cute bulletin boards where they can hang junk to their hearts content. If it’s contained in that one area, I can deal with it.
“I don’t expect toys and junk to be displayed nicely and lined up perfectly all the time, I just don’t want to see it.
Beddy’s Zip-Up Bedding
Here’s a fun little video we made that shows why we love Beddy’s so much!
Find the girl’s “Goldie Dots” polka dot bedding HERE
Get the Look
Here’s where you can find items in this room
- Beddy’s bedding in Goldie Dot
- Twin beds – purchased used on Facebook marketplace
- Rug – Target
- Wall art – Hobby Lobby
- Storage shelves and polka dot bins – IKEA
- Curtains – Target
- Bed canopy – IKEA
- Fiddle Leaf tree – Amazon
- Dressers – IKEA
- Storage bins – Home Depot
- Vases – Target
- Flowers – IKEA