Whether you’re storing seasonal toys like pool noodles and beach balls, special and delicate toys like childhood stuffed animals and vintage figurines, or potentially valuable collectibles like dolls and action figures, storing toys long-term sometimes takes some extra planning and care. These toy storage tips will ensure that they last for generations.
Storing Pool Inflatables and Toys
Prevent the growth of mold and mildew by cleaning pool toys and gear with a solution of one cup of baking soda to a gallon of water. Use a hose to rinse off the solution and leave the toys and gear outside in the shade to air dry. Do not deflate inflatables until they’re completely dry.
Coat the surface of inflatables with cornstarch to prevent sides from sticking together in storage, then gently fold or roll them. Inflatables should be either stored in their original boxes or in individual boxes or plastic bags.
Storing Stuffed Toys
Stuffed animals and toys must be completely clean and dry before going into storage long-term. Most stuffed toys can be machine washed on a delicate setting, but if you don’t want to take the risk, hand wash them in a sink or bathtub with mild laundry detergent. Instead of machine washing, hang them to dry on a clothesline in the shade to prevent color fading.
You can dry clean especially delicate stuffed toys by using an absorbent powder based on the color of the toy. Put the toy in a large bag, sprinkle with powder, shake, and leave the toy in a bag for an hour before removing and shaking off the powder.
- For dark-colored stuffed toys, use wheat germ.
- For yellow or beige stuffed toys, use corn starch.
- For white or bright-colored stuffed toys, use baking soda.
Stuffed toys can be stored in a plastic container (don’t squish or crowd them if you’re concerned about them retaining their shape) or can be vacuum-sealed in plastic storage bags with a vacuum cleaner hose.
Storing Vintage or Collectible Toys
Vintage and collectible toys should be kept out of sunlight, humidity, or extreme heat or cold. They’ll be safest in a climate-controlled storage unit. Ideally, they should be stored in their original packaging and then plastic-wrapped. Otherwise, they should be stored in closed plastic containers that will keep out any outside dust, dirt, or oils.
Do you have questions about how to store a specific or unusual toy? Just contact us!