The Best Toy Storage That Thinks Beyond the Basic Bin

“This is an iconic Kartell design, but I love the fresh take on the color. I also like that the shelving is hidden, and that the round shape offers a lovely contrast to the sharp edges of our nursery’s crib, dresser, and bookshelves. We will absolutely use it for years to come—if my daughter gets sick of it, I would happily move it into my bedroom or office!” —Briana Feigon, contributor

  • Materials: ABS plastic
  • Dimensions: 12.5″W x 23″H

Article Maribo Ivory Bouclé 19” Storage Ottoman

With or without a chair, a hollow lidded ottoman can be an invaluable source of secondary storage. We like Article’s Maribo series for its range of sizes, its neutral bouclé upholstery, and its ability to serve as both chair and hidden toy chest. Added perks: rounded edges to minimize bumps, and a padded, soft-close lid. (Note that the lid may be on the heavier side for a small child—assistance advised!)

“Even without a chair that matches, it’s a very cute piece that works well in a variety of settings. For a family with a baby, it could hold blankets; for a toddler or young child, it can stand in as stuffed animal storage; and for an older kid or teen, it’s a structured, extra-functional version of a pouf or bean bag chair.” —Shoko Wanger, contributor

  • Materials: Bouclé
  • Dimensions: 19″L x 19″W x 18.5″H 

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For sweeping things under the bed

Room & Board Storage Drawer

Though many popular under-the-bed storage options are made of cloth or plastic, Room & Board’s handsome rolling drawer is built of solid steel, making it far more attractive and durable (not to mention considerably more structured than a flimsy fabric bin). Its wheels allow for easy back-and-forth movement, and, with an interior spacious enough to hold everything from large toys to books and beyond, it’s a multipurpose piece that’ll work for kids of any age. With 16 color options, including sage green and juicy tangerine, its industrial edge gets softened—but be aware that at 38 pounds, it is heavier than its more conventional counterparts.

“This drawer is definitely the ultimate in under-the-bed storage. It’s large and on the heavier side, yes, but that’s part of what makes it great—it’s super-functional, generously sized, nice to look at, and solid as a rock. It’s a splurge, to be sure, but a worthwhile one.” —Shoko Wanger, contributor

  • Materials: Powder-coated steel
  • Dimensions: 30″L x 36″W x 10″ H

For a living room-worthy display

With its midcentury silhouette, pine wood construction, and enticing mix of closed and open shelving, Nestig’s handmade Explorer Shelf is inviting enough to appeal to children but also chic enough to add an element of grown-up elegance to any kids’ room or playroom. This makes it an especially good choice for families seeking toy storage ideas for play spaces that happen to be in common areas of the home—with its sophisticated look and lack of ornamentation, it reads playful without a trace of precious.

“I chose this storage unit because I trust the brand and because I believed it would have multiple uses after the nursery. It has ample storage that also provides space for storage bins for a more organized and clean aesthetic. I will definitely have this product for a very long time because of the functionality and modern design aesthetic.” —Pujah Shah, global director, audience development, analytics & social

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