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15 Best Montessori Shelves for Beautiful Toy Displays

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Montessori shelves are perfect for displaying toys and books for your infant or toddler. They typically have cubbies that hold different-sized toys, and the shelves are easily accessible for those tiny human hands.

Plus, Montessori-aligned toys are usually very aesthetically-pleasing. A Montessori shelf can really make a playroom or child’s nursery look stunning!

I have three kids and several Montessori toy shelves, so I figured it’s about time to share the 15 best Montessori shelves on the market.

What to Look for In a Montessori Toy Shelf

When shopping for a Montessori toy shelf, you want to check a few boxes:

  • Made of natural wood: Solid wood shelves are durable and sturdy, albeit more expensive. I included mostly solid wood shelves in this article with a few affordable options that are made of either particle board or MDF (proceed with caution!).
  • Sturdy and secure: at some point, your baby is going to pull on, stand on, and climb on your toy shelf. Make sure it’s study and bolted to the wall if needed so that when baby pulls or climbs, it doesn’t topple over on them.
  • Easily accessible/low to the ground: your baby or toddler needs to be able to access the toys and books on this shelf. Having a shelf that’s in your child’s line of sight will allow them to explore the toys and develop independence.

1. Lovevery Montessori Playshelf

The Lovevery Montessori Playshelf is definitely a stand-out as it’s made of solid wood and is the only Montessori toy shelf on the market that includes hidden storage in the back.

lovevery montessori shelf in our sons room
The Lovevery toy shelf in our son’s room

My husband put this together and said it was the easiest piece of furniture he’s ever assembled. The instructions are next level with photos to guide you along the way.

lovevery montessori shelf

I love that the cubbies have different widths to accommodate different-sized toys. The storage in the back is also very helpful for facilitating toy rotation.

And the white buckets are a very practical addition for keeping toys with pieces organized.

lovevery shelf storage

If you want the highest-quality Montessori-style shelf on the market, I’d easily give that award to Lovevery.

This is my top pick, but the biggest con is the price point. It’s pricey, but you get what you pay for on this one.

Related Article: 50 Best Montessori Books for Babies and Toddlers (Ages 0-4)

2. ECR4Kids 5-Compartment Storage Cabinet

This popular 5-compartment storage cabinet, available on Amazon, mimics the cubby sizes of the Lovevery version.

I love having smaller cubbies and lengthier ones to hold long puzzles and toys. It doesn’t have the hidden storage feature, though.

ecr4 kids

It’s built to withstand the wear and tear of a classroom environment, and it’s made of birch. This is definitely a solid choice at a reasonably affordable price.

3. WoodenBalance Bookshelf + Toyshelf

Etsy seller WoodenBalance has a beautiful bookshelf and toyshelf combination.

etsy

Each item is handmade from high-quality plywood. Reviewers say the assembly is super simple, and the wood is smooth and sturdy.

If you want a solution for displaying your books and toys, this is a surprisingly affordable option that supports a small business.

4. ECR4Kids Book Display

This book display, available on Amazon, is amazing for displaying books in a beautiful and practical way. It kind of feels like a store display!

ecr4 kids book display

If you have a lot of books, they definitely won’t all fit, but I kind of like that feature.

We rotate out books just like we do our toys, which keeps it fresh and exciting. If you’re really dedicated, you can rotate books based on themes and holidays.

My only qualm with this book display is shorter board books aren’t as visible, because the shelf fronts are a bit high. Taller books look nicer with this one.

5. KidKraft Reading Nook

The KidKraft bookcase with reading nook, available in three color choices from Amazon, doubles as storage and seating for your toddler.

The cubes are perfect for displaying books, but you could also incorporate toys as long as they fit within the cubby.

kidkraft

The seating area can hold 110 pounds.

My only concern with this particular option is it’s constructed out of MDF. While this gives us a much more affordable price point, it’s not exactly a piece of furniture you’ll have in 10 years.

If your kids are particularly rough, and you can picture them jumping on it, there’s a chance it’ll split or break.

Solid wood options are more expensive, but you won’t have to replace them nearly as often (if ever).

6. Corner Cube Bookshelf from Room Essentials

If you have a room corner that’s wasted space, this corner cube bookshelf, available at Target, can be a good way to reclaim it.

We have one of these, and it has been great for displaying smaller toys and books.

target corner shelf

It’s made of particle board, so it’s not exactly high-quality or durable, but it gets the job done for a very affordable price.

7. ECR4Kids Dress Up Center

I’m in love with this dress-up center from ECR4Kids (sold on Amazon). There’s a garment rod and four storage compartments. This gives your child the agency to dress themselves and develop independence.

ecr4 kids dress up center

While it’s not necessarily designed for toy displays, I had to include it on this list!

It’s made from 100% birch and is Greenguard Gold Certified, so you can rest assured no toxic chemicals will be leeching into your space.

8. Closetmaid Cube Storage Organizer

We got a variation of this Closetmade cube storage organizer (from Amazon), and the price is right. It’s been great for displaying different toys and books.

closetmaid cube

However, you do sacrifice a lot of quality for an affordable price. The white has chipped off in some places, and it’s not nearly as sturdy as the solid wood options from other higher-quality brands.

One other factor to consider is the width of the cubes. Some of our Lovevery toys, like the longer puzzles, don’t fit well in this size, so having a toy shelf with different-sized cubbies can be helpful.

9. IKEA Kallax Shelf Unit

Arguably, the best Montessori toy shelf from IKEA is the Kallax shelf unit put on its side without the middle dividers. A lot of Montessori families use this particular setup in their playrooms.

You can keep them if you want the cubes, but having a blank slate is often better for displaying different-sized toys.

ikea kallax

It’s definitely one of the more affordable options, but it’s made of particle board, so it’s not going to be a durable piece of furniture.

That’s not really a surprise when it comes to IKEA furniture, but if budget is more important than durability, this is a super popular choice.

10. IKEA Trofast Shelf

The other IKEA shelf style that many Montessori families use is the Trofast. It comes with storage bins to help organize toys, which can be handy for things that have a lot of pieces or components.

It’s also low to the ground, which is great for baby and toddler accessibility.

IKEA Trofast

This IKEA shelf, like the other, is made of particle board, so it’s not solid wood. It’s at a very cheap price point, which is great, but you’ll likely have to replace it after a few years of wear and tear.

It’s not ideal, but if you’re on a very tight budget, it’ll work in a pinch!

11. Costway Kids 2-Shelf Bookcase 5-Cube Wood Toy Storage Cabinet Organizer

This 5-cube shelf from Target has an almost identical layout to the Lovevery shelf. It has different-sized cubes to fit a variety of toys, and there are 4 color options to choose from.

costway shelf target

It’s a bummer that this unit is made of MDF, but the price point reflects it.

It may not stand the test of time, but it’ll get you through the toddler years at a fraction of the price.

12. TOOKYLAND 5-Compartment Wooden Storage Cabinet

An up-and-coming toy brand, TOOKYLAND, recently came out with a Montessori-style toy shelf in the same layout as the Lovevery unit.

tookyland shelf

It doesn’t have storage in the back, and it’s not as sturdy. This piece of furniture weighs 38 pounds, whereas the Lovevery version weighs around 100 pounds.

The design is useful, though, and it’s conveniently available on Amazon.

13. Montessori Toy Storage from Etsy

This toy shelf, available from a seller on Etsy, is really nice because it’s open.

Sometimes, cubes can get in the way, so having a blank slate allows you to put any toy of any size without restrictions.

etsy shelf

It’s handmade and uses high-quality birch plywood, a huge step up from budget options on the market. This is a really great choice!

14. WOOD&ROOM Montessori-Inspired Toy and Book Organizer

Another low-to-the-ground option, available on Amazon, comes from WOOD&ROOM.

wood and room shelf

I love the airy design, and the simplicity is pretty refreshing.

It’s also very solid and sturdy, so while it’s more lightweight because of the minimal design, it’s going to stand the test of time.

15. PlayWilder Montessori Toy Shelf from Etsy

Last but certainly not least is the PlayWilder toy shelf, made in America!

The ordering dropdown is initially confusing, but I think the best toy shelf option is “45T Only.” That’s what’s pictured here:

toyshelf etsy

The price is fantastic, and it’s made of baltic birch, poplar, and steel. The minimal design reduces the amount of wood used, which helps keep the price down.

I love supporting American businesses, so if you do, too, this may be the shelf you’re looking for.

Montessori Toy Shelf FAQs

How tall should a Montessori toy shelf be?

A Montessori toy shelf doesn’t have to be a particular height, but it should make toys accessible to your baby or toddler. For babies, a toy shelf that’s very low to the ground is ideal so your baby can reach and grab items during tummy time.

How do you store toys in Montessori?

Toy rotation is standard in Montessori-style teaching, so storing toys away while not in use is ideal. When you notice your child stops playing with a toy, rotate in a new one to reduce clutter and get them excited again. Minimizing how many toys are displayed increases focus and prevents your child from getting overstimulated.

What are the benefits of a Montessori toy shelf?

A Montessori toy shelf facilitates toy rotation by giving you a great space to display a select amount of toys. It increases focus and attention and minimizes overstimulation.

How do you present toys in Montessori?

In Montessori, 6-8 toys should be displayed in an accessible space. Every so often, rotate in a new toy and remove one that you notice your child is no longer using. Rotating toys encourage deeper, more focused play. 

Conclusion

A Montessori toy shelf is the perfect place to display easily-accessible toys and books for your baby or toddler.

It’s definitely a must-have in your nursery or playroom, and it’ll help you remember to do toy rotation.

Happy shopping!

Related: Are the Lovevery Play Kits Worth It?

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