What better way is there to start a fresh new week with some organizing tips! You all know by now an organized space is 100% my happy place. Something about a space that is clutter free and I know that everything has a place it belongs just instantly boosts my mood. This might make me sounds crazy, and Joe can attest to it. But when it came to finally getting to design our dream house together, there were two things I was beyond excited about. The first one was our pantry. A very close second was the kids lockers. Something about giving them their own space to hold allllll the things that come along with kids and school and sports just got me so excited.
Now that they exist and we have been living with them for over a year, I think it is safe to say they have become the kids favorites too. It helps them keep things so much cleaner because it is a simple system to follow. So since I’ve had a lot of requests for more organizing ideas, today I wanted to share kind of a step by step, as well as 3 tips to consider when planing lockers for your own home!
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:: HAVE A LOCKER FOR EACH OF YOUR PEOPLE AND LET THEM BE IN CHARGE
Sometimes as adults, I think we have a hard time letting our kids have free reign over a whole space in our house. It can be hard, because usually giving them that independence comes with giving in to a mess. Am I right?! These lockers have been the perfect solution an happy medium. Each of our little people has their own. While they are organized the way I set them up, what they actually choose to keep is up to them. You can see in the picture above, Hayden added a postcard to add a little of her own personality. They can decorate inside however they want. As long as they are maintained, what they have inside is free range, and it keeps it from having to be all over the house.
sneak peek of the chore charts that hang inside the locker doors too! head here to get a free printable!
Which brings me to another major point, put doors on your lockers. One of the biggest secrets to cleaning is to sometimes be able to hide the mess. What you can’t see can’t bug you right?! Haha. While I don’t encourage them to keep it messy, I know they are kids and won’t always have things as perfect as my organizing heart wants them. So knowing those doors can be closed and cover up whatever is going on inside, has been so so good for me!!
In addition to giving them more a feeling of independence, it is the BIGGEST game changer when it comes to clutter. We do not allow things, whether they be papers, toys, sports accessories,anything to just be sitting out around the kitchen and living space. Those are family spaces and not a dump all for alll the things. Everything has a home in their lockers and they know that. This makes clean up quick and easy. They come home from school and know to go straight to the lockers. When they are done with homework, it has a place to go. I’ll go into more detail on how we organize it below, but giving them a space to keep things, keeps the things from taking over your entire space!
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:: ORGANIZE CATEGORIES INTO SEPARATE BASKETS
What you choose to keep in your lockers will completely dependent on your family dynamic. Someof you may have teens that need to organize extra curricular supplies and homework. Others might be organizing puzzles and art projects. Whatever you are choosing to keep in your lockers, having a system to organize it is the key to keeping it from being a giant sized junk drawer. For our family each locker is separated into these 5 sections.
- SCHOOL – Anyone else feel like they get soooo many papers from school. While I love to see the cute proejects and how they are learning, I am not a saver of all the things. This basket is for them to choose which things they want to keep that has meaning to them.
- SPORTS – As most of you know, our bigger kids participate in a lot of sports. They each have two boxes in their lockers labeled with the sports it belongs too. These are to hold things like shin guards, batting gloves, baseball mitts, anything and everything that comes along with the sport. Since our lockers are right by the garage, it makes it easy to grab and go to practice or a game. You’ll notice since Hayden only does one sport, she has a soccer box, and a slime box (lets all cringe together), because she loves it and it keeps it all in one place.
- PERSONAL – A question I get asked a lot is where we keep alll the kids stuff. I’ve shared a little about our Playroom Closet here. Each of our kids has their own box whatever they want in the Playroom Closet for toys, a box in their own personal closet (which we we will be sharing soon), and then this box in their lockers. This is the basket you can see labeled with their names. What is inside completely depends on personality. Hunter keeps her purse, notes from friends, and other little trinkets. Hayden its more like sunglasses, chap stick, and doodles. Hudson is usually his scriptures. It totally varies but is just up to them. But toys stay downstairs.
- EXTRA – Most of them keep things up here that they want access to all the time and to not have to run downstairs and get. For Hudson it is usually a pair of basketball shorts. Then he can throw them on the second he gets home from school. Like Joe he wants to wear shorts 24/7. For Hayden she forgets her socks a lot lately. She decided to keep a few pairs in there so she didn’t have to run downstairs. It also varies a lot by season. In the winter its for gloves and beanies…summer it is home to swim suits and cover ups.
- SHOES – We have a very strict no shoe policy in our house. To help maintain that rule, at the base of each locker below the bench is a drawer. This is where we keep the shoes they wear on a regular basis. It makes it easy to sit down, put your shoes on, and go straight out to the car. Nobody has to carry their shoes up from their room, or forget to take them off when they come in.
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:: KEEP A “CLEAN OUT SCHEDULE” AND STICK TO IT
Last but not least is to clean them out regularly. Since it is their personal space in a sense, I really try to respect that. I will usually give them a couple day warning that “hey, lockers are looking a little crazy…we are going to have a clean out this weekend.” That gives them the chance to weed out the junk they have thrown in there. They will do their own clean before I come in and get rid of things they wanted more than others.
But it also gives me the chance to keep things sanitary and actually organized. It blows my mind the things you find in a kids backpack. Leftover snacks…dirty clothes…the sky is the limit! Knowing we are going to have this “check in” keeps them responsible for taking care of their space. When your boxes are full, it means it’s time to go through them and see what you don’t really need anymore.
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I hope that helps give you some ideas for your own lockers and how to get the most out of them! They have honestly become a favorite for everyone in our house and such a sanity saver!
photos : aubrey taiese