Montessori toddler wardrobe

Now that the rest of Frida’s room is working well for her, I thought it was high time that I finally organised her closet space into something more Montessori-inspired.

Because we don’t have the space in our home for a dedicated playroom, Frida’s room doubles as her main play-space (well, actually it is only a play-space at the moment as she is still sleeping with us! We will move her soon… Maybe). 

For this reason, I didn’t want to take up precious wall space with her clothes when she already has a big built in wardrobe. However, as it was previously organised, the space was doing nothing to aid her independence, and I noticed it often fell into disorder. It needed a change! 

After thinking about it, I decided to add a Trofast unit (my favourite IKEA item – we already have two) to the bottom of the wardrobe. I created labels for each item of clothing with pictures as well as words, so that Frida can independently see what is in each drawer. Because it’s low down, Frida can see everything clearly.  

On the left of the unit there are a few dresses hanging which I thought would be in danger of creasing, and her coats, shoes, hats and leg warmers are in the hallway, but apart from that everything fits in one unit very neatly.

(The clothing hanging on the top rail out of Frida’s reach is all in the next size up – I tend to buy Frida’s clothes in the sales and then stash them for the appropriate season, in order to buy better quality and more ethical clothing for her.)

For her pyjamas, I added a “night time” symbol to remind her that these are clothes we need at night. 

I hope that this new system will support Frida’s growing independence in choosing her clothes and dressing herself. We are currently going through a stage of Frida not particularly wanting to get dressed, so my instinct is to try and give her as much control over the dressing process as possible. 

I folded everything “Kon-Mari” style so that Frida can see at a glance what is in each drawer, hopefully minimising frustration and dumping out clothes.

The space isn’t quite finished – I want to add a few photos of Frida wearing different outfits and a basket with a hairbrush, and I also want to hang a mirror on the inside of the wardrobe door (there is already a full-length mirror hanging in her room but it is on the other side). I also want to add some handles lower down so Frida can open the doors by herself. 

How are your toddler’s clothes organised? Do you have any tips to aid independent dressing? 

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11 thoughts on “Montessori toddler wardrobe

  1. Great post! We have a build in wardrobe too and it’s a bit of mess at the moment. The wardrobe are new and replace our chest of drawer that were easy for the kids to take out their clothes. I must take care of that!
    Would you like to link up on the #montessorihousechallenge? Have a look at my blog http://www.montessori-family.co.uk

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    • Bonjour Carine! I loved your bathroom video, I actually watched it a few days ago before you got in touch. I would love to link up, though our bathroom will soon be renovated I can talk about our plans for it and then join in more fully in other months! I’ll let you know when I’ve done my video xx

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  2. We are ‘Trofasters’ too :0) (tho we have graffiti stickers instead of helpful labels, and I spend most of the time politely encouraging Eva to put stuff back in the draw, so I’m not sure how helpful it actually is to her understanding/development!!). We need to reduce our amount of clothes, really, as even I cant find my way through them a lot of the time. Had a trim down over christmas but another wouldn’t hurt! (as an aside, find Facebook Groups a really ace source of second hand clothes!)

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    • I’m trying to slowly declutter and reduce our possessions in general – it seems like a lot comes into our home and not much comes out! Though I find it easier to ditch my own clothes as Frida can get through hers so fast and I do a lot of laundry… X

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  3. As far as independent dressing goes, I found that a small stool for the child to sit on while getting legs into pants and trousers, before standing up to pull them up, was really useful to my son. Also, do you know the ‘coat trick’? So you (eventually the child) put the coat on the floor, with the hood by the childs feet. Then they lean down and put their hands in the arm holes, then stand up and straighten their arms, swinging the coat over their head. It sounds complicated but is actually easy! It meant both my children could independently put their coats on by the age of two.

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    • Hello! Stool is a great idea, she has a small chair in her room so I’ll encourage her to use that. I do know the coat trick, it’s brilliant! However so far my attempts to teach Frida have not been successful, she is not very pro-coat at the moment and every time I try to show her she protests, so I don’t push it. I’ll keep following her lead and offering! Xx

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  4. This is really helpful. My daughter Juniper (same age as Frida) is going through the same stage–not wanting to wear clothing–and I have thought for a while that rearranging the way her clothes are laid out so she can access them better might be quite helpful. We have a bit of a space issue since we live in a retrofit university dormitory. Love the IKEA drawers though. Thanks for posting. I always check your blog for updates!

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  5. Pingback: 40 practical life activities for toddlers | Frida Be Mighty

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