Sometimes, in this silly twisty old farmhouse that we love, the only way to move things from one room to another requires that we move it out and then back in another way. Most especially a ninety inch long sofa. Yes, the sofa, my infamous and much loved sofa. It's been sitting in the barn since we moved here, waiting for my someday-it-will-come (and it will) studio above the barn, which is where it was always intended to be, even before we found it. Missing her as I was, it's only natural that she found her way back in with the most recent little corner transformation.
(A glimpse of how it was before - this little corner shortly after we moved in.)
It isn't so much that what was here wasn't working anymore, but more that I wanted to bring some change in. As we approach the winter season of inside play, there's nothing I find more encouraging of play and creativity than mixing things up a little bit - just seeing the same things in a different light, a different place, that can draw us in closer than we would have looking at it the same way any longer. In recent months I've watched and encouraged as each little piece formerly in this spot found their way somewhere else where even more play happened - the farmhouse, the dollhouse. And as I watch the dress up play explode right now in its goodness, it was clear that it could certainly take up all the space I could give it in this little nook. A place to pause, a nook to escape little fingers when playing chess, and a comfortable spot where the next costume can be fully laid out and planned.
I've tried so many ways of organizing dress up gear over the years, and have found that the best way for us is an open trunk for the bigger things with baskets or bags for smaller pieces like hats, gloves, scarves and shoes. With some found branches as a hooks, we added this new rail to the wall for organizing all of those small bits while making it easy still to clean up for little ones.
So far, it's a hit. I'm finding two older boys hiding out up here a lot, each on an end of the sofa with a book, or a chess game in between them. I'm finding big and little ones alike digging in for just the right hat for the Mouse King. And I'm finding myself there in the morning sun in the quiet of the house, stitching for just a quick moment before anyone wakes, before the work of the day begins - a little bit of a pause. Ah, fresh corners feel so good.