This is a bonus room upstairs...It's BIG. So instead of letting my furniture collect on the walls and have a canyon of carpet in the middle of the room, I made little areas that connected but had their own identity. It gave the room purposes. And with purpose, anything can shine!
These shelves are from Ikea. The both of them were $8. They are on the wall to the left of my desk. The white cups (from Target) house scissors, erasers, and pencils. The 2 baskets (Ikea) have some crayons, puzzels, special "ask permission" selections :-).
This is a Lack Shelf from Ikea that was previously in my son's nursery. Everything on it comes from different areas of my house. Yes, that's a cinder block with moss on it that I found outside in the backyard of our previous home. You just need a little inspiration and careful boundaries and most things can become decor.
This lamp was one of a matching set that I got at a garage sale this past summer. I got the both of them for $12. They were dirty and brassy gold...oh what a can of spray paint can do. I used one whole can on both lamps together of just a glossy white. The lamp shade was $10 at Ikea. SO, for $16 and some time, I have a big, white, statement lamp that is the size normally going for around $40-$70 at retail stores.
This is a chalkboard I made with an old frame, a piece of sheet metal (so it's a magnetic chalkboard), and a jar of chalkboard paint. We've had this for a while. It's perfect for practicing letters and magnents but also for those priceless art pieces. Side Note: When one colors, I mean practices writing her name, in Sharpie on the chalkboard...it will be there until you repaint.
Decorate Play Rooms with learning items or toys themselves. It is good to have a balance and do it with style, but books, for instance, are perfect decor for a room where children will spend their time. I got this whole set of Time Life "First Library of Learning" books for $9 at a farmer's market. They'll be perfect for spontaneous learning as my kids get older.
Last but certainly not least, STORAGE! I know in the decorating world, this is the most common solution you hear most often. But, that's because it works. Just because a room has toys in it does not mean you have to see all of them. all. the. time. I believe in having toys put away. I believe in kids learning how to do it themselves. Baskets/totes are perfect for age-appropriate responsibility. Even my little man, who is 16 months old, knows how to put his toys away in these canvas boxes. Each kind of toy has it's own box. We got this particular unit at Costco. It comes with the linen colored canvas boxes. 8 of them. And they are very deep. Side note: We clean out our toys a lot. We don't keep toys if the kids are past the stage, if the toy is missing parts, or if it is never played with. We have an annual garage sale and we clean up! It allows for a refreshed feel and to have room when the next stage of playing is approaching.
I hope you enjoyed this room. Let me know if you have any more specific bonus room/toy room questions! The paint that we used is "Moon Mist" from True Value.