Friday, August 15, 2008

The art of getting dressed

I really love Tim Seldin's book: How to Raise an amazing child: The Montessori Way. He talks about (and shows with some really beautiful images) how important it is to organise your child's bedroom so that everything is within their reach, giving them independence and freedom of choice.

My boys share a bedroom which has built-in shelves. This is how it was when we bought the house & in an old house with very little other storage I'm so thankful! At first, of course I dreamed of an actual built-in closet, but this really works well - because they can both see & get (& in *theory* put away) their own clothes.

Hug's clothes are all on the left & Lovely's are on the right. Long pants are on the bottom shelf, shorts on the next shelf up, then long tops, then t-shirts and, finally, vests & occasional things. They each have a basket which holds their underwear and socks.

The shelves above here hold the soft toys that they don't use everyday. Coats & dress-shirts and that type of thing hang from a simple rack on the back of the door. There is a dresser between their beds that has drawers which hold their pj's.

It's a little hard to see in this photo but I made little labels for each shelf / each boy. Maybe I can photograph these & add them later? Basically, each is a laminated circle made of card with a drawing of the item (e.g. shorts) with the child's initial in the middle. That's H or L in this case.

Now, it doesn't always look quite this tidy but not far off ;)

EDIT: After Lovely's nap I went in and took some pix of the shelf labels. Please excuse the sketches - all very 'organic'  ;)

And here is the hanging rack on the back of the door. I have another of these in the playroom to hold the dress-ups. Please note that the only reason that it's relatively easy to keep these clothes under control is that I only have out the clothes that fit / are in season / that I like (which basically means - no logos or characters). This means there isn't too much stuff to mess up & that I pretty much don't mind what they choose to wear! They mostly choose their own clothes (esp. Hug) & I think they always look pretty sweet:)

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  1. Thanks for the book idea - I put in a request at the library for it. can't wait to see what other ideas; the closet idea is a good one!

    Cathy T

  2. Hi Cathy!
    Thanks for dropping by my blog. That really is a fantastic book. I am really inspired by Tim Seldin & I just love how accessible this book makes Montessori.

    I actually first discovered it at our local library & kept it for the longest time (I renewed it as many times as they would let me & then re-borrowed it ;) & then asked for a copy as a gift at Christmas.

  3. I always found it much easier to dress my boys than my daughter. lol... I love how all the clothes go together! Girls, they have patterns, etc. I have the same clothing criteria as you (no huge logos, and no popular characters) and so that makes it even easier. Your set up is just stunning! I love the little labels. So adorable! My 19 mos old may eventually benifit from me looking at your blog. You have a great idea here. :)



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