15 Of The Most Creative Stuffed Animal Storage Ideas
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Stuffed animals seem to have the ability to multiply like rabbits; no pun intended. Before you know it, 3 turns into 6, 6 turns into 20, then suddenly you’re tripping over all sorts of cuddly creatures.
You’re probably tempted to try and toss out as many of them as you can, but your children likely feel differently about the situation. It can be challenging for kids to let go of stuffed animals because each fluffy item often holds special memories. Plus, you might even find it difficult to give away certain animals because of how attached your kids get to them.
Instead of surrendering yourself to the destiny of living in a mountain of plush, all you need is a better way to store and organize your stuffed animals.
The Best Stuffed Animal Storage Ideas
1. Animal Chain Gang
Going vertical is always a major space saver. This idea combines a chain and some hooks to create some unique hanging storage for stuffed animals. You can find these types of organizers ready-made or DIY some like Rain on a Tin Roof, using 8-foot plastic chains, ceiling hooks, and clip hooks.
If you opt for this storage idea, keep in mind it makes the animals visible, which works in a kid’s room. However, it also places some of the animals reasonably high up, so this option works well for older kids. They won’t try to climb the chains to reach the topmost items and can use a simple stool instead.
2. Create a Stuffed Animal Swing
How cute is this storage swing from It’s Always Autumn? The stuffed animals literally look like they’re swinging together, incorporating a playful and whimsical vibe to the space. This is another solution that takes advantage of vertical space, making it an excellent choice for multiple stuffed animals, especially in a smaller room.
It keeps the animals visible, but once again, make sure your kids can reach them. Save this one for older kids that can access the top using a stool. Or, you can suspend the swings a bit lower and ensure your child’s favorites hang out on the bottom swing.
3. DIY Pillowcase Plush Storage
If you’re all about working with what you have, check out this DIY solution from Houseologie. It takes a basic pillowcase and turns it into a hanging storage bag for cute plush. The one in this example is pretty high, but it’s a good idea to hang it where your kids can reach it easily.
It also works better for kids who want to take the whole bag down to play with their animals; they can easily toss everything back into the pillowcase and hang it back up on the wall. Using the wall space is excellent since the floor stays clear for playtime.
4. Repurpose a Plant Hanger
Some of the best storage solutions take one thing and reimagine it into something else. That’s precisely what DIY Inspired did with a plant hanger, bedazzling it up and making it the perfect holder for small stuffed animals.
You can paint and embellish it to fit into your child’s room theme, plus plant hangers come in several sizes. You can use a few to create a collection; just make sure not to overload them since it would become challenging to get the animals in and out. This idea keeps both floor and wall space open since they suspend from the ceiling.
5. Go to the Zoo
This classic stuffed animal cage idea is both functional and cute, but even better; you can do it in so many ways. You can opt for a decorated tower like The Keeper of the Cheerios did, or you can go for a single-story cage that’s easier for smaller children to access. You can also install bungee cords across the front of an old bookcase to create a zoo cage shelf.
Personalizing the setup with your child’s name adds a special touch. It can be a zoo, a farm, a safari truck; there are tons of possibilities that you can choose from to work this idea into the theme of your child’s room.
6. Go for Hidden Storage
Speaking of working storage into your room’s theme, check out this idea from C’mon, Get Crafty. A cubby-style bookcase becomes storage in disguise as a skyscraper in a superhero-themed bedroom. Painted fabric and some velcro can make all the difference between seeing a bunch of plush and having your storage blend in seamlessly with your room’s decor.
If yoru kid’s not a superhero fan, no problem. This idea is still super versatile. It can become a dollhouse, a barn, or any other idea you can think of to work with the design. Plus, you can apply the same concept to any size storage unit.
7. Lounging in a Hammock
This simple yet functional hammock from Amazon is a great way to store stuffed animals and keep them off the floor. You can use multiple hammocks hung at various levels on the wall to double or triple your storage (they work great in a corner). Or, you can even hang it from the side of a piece of furniture or the footboard of the bed.
It’s easy for kids to get the animals in and out and is a perfect solution for small to medium-sized plush. You can also try some DIY versions using mesh fabric and hooks or create fabric slings with netting.
8. A Tower of Stuffed Animals
This towering display of stuffed animals results from repurposing a shoe tree, as Revelations of a Reluctant Stay-at-Home Mom shows. You simply assemble and place the shoe tree, then attach a series of bungee cords to create accessible stuffed animal storage.
This is another great way to utilize vertical space, but you don’t have to put anything on the wall. This makes it a great alternative for off-the-floor storage in apartments and similar places where you might not be allowed to put holes in the wall. As with other vertical storage options, store your kid’s favorites on the bottom.
9. Hanging Garden Baskets
Anything that can get the clutter off of the floor is a win, but it’s doubly good when it looks great too. The Organize It Challenge makes these pretty garden baskets become perfect hanging storage for small stuffed animals. You can hang several together to create a collection on one wall or spread them out throughout the room.
Hanging them under a window could even create a cute play on an interior flower window box. It also ensures they stay within reach of little hands. You can also paint or embellish them to add a more personal touch. Bonus points if you have your kids help with the decorating.
10. Not Just for Shoes
Small stuffed animals fit nicely in the compartments of a basic over-the-door shoe organizer. These organizers are so versatile; you can use them to solve a multitude of storage dilemmas. Dabblingmomma simply hung this organizer over the door, as you would if using it for shoes, but decided to stow away plush toys instead.
The back of a door is a great place to find extra storage, not requiring any floor or wall space. This is always a great idea, especially in small areas where storage might be in short supply.
11. Stuff a Bean Bag Chair
What kid doesn’t like curling up (or jumping) on a comfy bean bag chair? This fun idea from Sitting Rex takes care of two things with one clever solution. It allows you to store your stuffed animals inside of a case, then becomes the ultimate plush-loaded bean bag chair.
You can find these soft storage solutions online or in stores, but you can also make them yourself. Use a machine-washable fabric, and simply toss the casing in the wash when it gets a little dingy. Then, your kids will have a ball re-stuffing it with their favorite fur friends.
12. Budget-Friendly Plush Storage with Milk Crates
It’s important to stay budget-conscious, but even more so when you’re a parent. If you’re watching your wallet closely but need to tackle your storage problems sooner than later, you’re in luck. Various storage solutions look good and won’t break the bank, like this milk crate arrangement from Home Talk.
Years ago, basic milk crates became a go-to storage option for many people, especially college-bound teens moving into dorms. These versatile boxes have since been fantastic ways to store everything from toys to books and much more. They come in various colors, and you can stack them, hang them, and utilize a variety of configurations.
13. A Classic Toy Chest
There’s nothing wrong with going with a classic, and you can’t get much more classic than a toy chest for storing stuffed animals. It’s a great solution if you have many larger stuffed animals that might be too big for certain hanging storage ideas.
Plus, you can make a toy chest multi-functional, as Chaotically Creative did with this rolling storage ottoman. Now, you have movable storage and seating, and it looks nice, too.
14. Use Decorative Baskets
If you have the floor space to spare, simple but pretty decorative baskets like these from Restoration Hardware provide a great way to store stuffed animals in an attractive way. You can find baskets in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles, so you’re sure to find a design that fits your personal preference and your room’s decor.
Baskets make it super easy for kids to access their belongings, and even more importantly, it’s a breeze for children to pick up their things.
15. Hang a Curtain Rod and Curtain
If you have some basic DIY and sewing skills, this idea snagged from Pinterest creates a unique storage option. You simply install a curtain rod onto the wall, fold up a curtain panel and stitch at the sides, and you get an instant fabric sling for small stuffed animals. Plus, you have options when it comes to style since you can choose from countless curtain rod designs and panels or pick up some of your favorite fabric from the craft store.
6 Helpful Tips For Organizing Stuffed Animals
When you set off on your stuffed animal storage journey, it can be pretty overwhelming. The odds are good that you have a surplus of plush, and it’s difficult to let go of much of it. Plus, stuffed animals are some of those things that always seem to keep coming into the house; you get them as gifts, win them at fairs, or luck out at the occasional claw machine.
Here are a few tips to consider when it comes to organizing stuffed animals, so the process goes smoothly.
Let Your Kids Be Part Of The Clean-up
As tempting as it is to cram as many stuffed animals as you can into a garbage bag and sneak it out of the house, don’t do it. Your kids will grow up much more likely to develop good organizing habits (and a willingness to let go of items) if you let them into the process.
Have a conversation with your children about why you need to streamline the plush a bit and encourage your kids to help you go through their collection. Take some time to gather up all of the stuffed toys from around the house and bring them into one central location.
Let your kids start going through the stack; you might be surprised to find that there are a few items your kids are willing to toss pretty easily. Therefore, start with the quick ones. Ask your children to look through the pile and simply create a stack of animals that they don’t mind passing along to someone else.
Create A Donate Pile
If your children know their prized plush will be heading off to a new home and not the dump, they’ll likely be more willing to say goodbye to more. Therefore, help your children build a donation pile and decide together who you will give the stuffed animals to. Let your kids be an active part of the decision process and help you bring the animals to their new home. This process has the added bonus of helping your kids learn essential skills like gratitude, sharing, empathy, and generosity.
Organize By Size
Once you’ve narrowed down the stuffed animals to the keepers, it’s time to develop your organization plan. Have your kids start sorting their plush into piles by size. Then, you can determine some of the best storage solutions for your specific collection and space. For example, if most animals are large, then decorative baskets on the floor, a zoo cage, classic toy chest, or fun animal swing could be good options.
However, if your kids have a ton of small animals, then converting a shoe organizer or using a toy hammock or hanging baskets might work better. Obviously, if there is a mix of sizes, you’ll need a combination of different storage solutions. To keep the room from becoming overrun with animals, opt for a mix of hidden and open storage.
Make It Accessible
If you want an organization system to work effectively and be easy to maintain, then it needs to be accessible. In other words, if you’re stashing things where they become extremely hard to reach, it results in you leaving items out instead of putting them away. Ultimately, this means you end up right back in the clutter.
Since you’re organizing stuffed animals, most of the time, it’s probably kids who need to access them. Therefore, take your children’s ages into account and ensure you store animals in a way that makes it easy for your kids to find them, play with them, and put them away easily.
Review Your Stuffed Animal Collection Regularly
Like pretty much everything else in a home, stuffed animals keep coming, and you get more and more. If you don’t regularly go through your items, they’ll take over, no question. Make a point to go through the stuffed animals twice a year and review your storage solutions with your kids.
It’s also essential to regularly assess the condition of the stuffed animals and clean them as needed. Especially ones that your kids might sleep with every night or carry around everywhere. Germs, dirt, and other “ickies” build up pretty quickly and embed in fibers, etc. If the animals are machine washable, toss them in the washing machine. Otherwise, hand wash any that are getting overly dingy or at least spot clean and spray down with a disinfectant.
At some point, even the best-loved animals may need to say goodbye. If it is something that holds a lot of emotional value, consider taking a picture of it and framing it to hang in your child’s room. Or you could cut a piece of the plush and use it as a patch on a blanket or pillow. Keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to getting the stuffed animals under control, which is sure to make both you and your kids very happy.