Every playroom, and home, needs cozy spaces where children can step away from the hubbub, noise and stimulation of everyday life and unwind, let their mind wander, or just snuggle and relax with a favorite book. Here are a few simple ideas to create an inviting space:
1. Location, location, location! Choose a spot that's out of the way, a corner that is perhaps, still within sight, but on the periphery of most of the comings and goings of the home. Sometimes children like to step away, but still feel a part of things. So, choose your location wisely.
2. Utilize furniture to create a safe space. This can be accomplished in numerous ways, perhaps a low bookshelf with a beanbag behind. The child can still hear what's going on, but can tuck themselves down, out of sight when they need to take a breather. Our play stands offer a beautiful, versatile way to create a cozy corner that can also accommodate imaginative play and become a grocer's store, a puppet theater, a spaceship, a castle... It only takes a few play silks, maybe some pillows and a bit of imagination. The lovely thing about play silks is that they can be draped over a play stand, or a pair of chairs to create a light and airy "roof" that allows soft light to filter through in soothing shades. They help create a separate space without feeling isolating.
3. Choose special toys and books to include in the cozy corner. These can be items that you rotate out frequently, perhaps changing the toys and books with the seasons, or with the child's changing interests. You might also include favorite, comforting stuffed animals and dolls, even perhaps a cozy bed for a favorite doll, so the child and doll friend can rest together. You may consider including a basket of found, natural objects: stones, pine cones, feathers etc.
4. Allow room for your child to discover the space and make it their own. Children naturally gravitate toward peripheral spaces, spaces that feel magical and cozy, and sized just for them. You will be delighted to witness your child making the space their own, retreating there when their spirits need rest and recharging, or simply when they want to drift off into their own imaginary world. Creating this kind of space for your child is a true gift that will pay dividends in increased self-regulation, imagination and ability to shift from high energy to low energy activities with greater ease.