We now have an inspiring, imaginative, functional, efficient play space!!! I struggled to create a space my kids could help maintain and that met their changing developmental stages and interests. …Mandy, scavenged through our basement and current mess of a playroom, shopped at Ikea, yard sales, and Good Will and created an AMAZING play space for us. It was so well organized that the ton of toys and art materials we brought with us to the beach, fit right into place when we returned. She even organized our basement storage shelves in the process, which was an unbelievable bonus!
Mandy Sheffer is one of the most creative, creatively-organized, and loving people I know. I had the privilege of working with her when I was teaching preschool and was able to see the magic she brought to everyone and everything that she touched. I watched as she and her talented husband have created childhood magic for their two lovely boys. She has generously shared her creativity and knowledge with me ever since my girls were born. And now, she has formed the best play space for us!
If you would be interested in her help for an entire play room or just some play nooks or organization throughout your home, please reach out to her. She will honor your budget and mostly deals with used or low cost new items.
(Isabel + Molly, 4)
Mandy reorganized our basement play area a year or so ago, and the difference has been incredible. We have had more deliberative, focused play, rather than the kids digging through a junk pile and wandering off minutes later. Everything has a place it belongs, so cleanup is a snap, and if they have clearly moved on to another themed bin of toys, we often have them clean up the previous one before dumping out something else. Also, a lot of art gets done in the art area, which is great!
(Claire, 5 and Sebastian, 2)
I’ve been working with Mandy over the last month and had to write to sing her praises. Our toy situation wasn’t bad but I knew it could be better. We have a basement playroom that wasn’t getting used and I wanted to be sure Alexander was being challenged/supported appropriately since he has some developmental delays.
After meeting with us, Mandy spent several weeks thrifting awesome toys and toy storage (cool wooden bowls, baskets, tins) and preparing a detailed five-page document of resources and ideas. She even had some custom art made for the playroom! She brought over boxes of stuff this afternoon and arranged it all beautifully (our living room and playroom look like they should be on Pinterest)!
Alexander dove right in and had a blast with all his new stuff. Even the cat was intrigued. :-) I will stop here but wanted to highly recommend Mandy to the rest of you.
(Alexander, 21 months)
Kate loved everything, it was a hit! Thank you so much. It all feels new to her and she’s so busy playing!
I sent Mandy a really vague email asking for some advice on set-up and on the best materials and toys to get to encourage creative play and she immediately set up a meeting with me and somehow divined exactly what I wanted. Within a matter of weeks she got back to me to let me know she was ready to go and on Saturday we came home to a masterpiece of a playroom that was well below the budget I set. The play space is perfect. She made use of what we had and bought some odds and ends at a thrift store and MADE us a play table and somehow created exactly what I would have if I could have. We were blown away but that was nothing compared to Lia’s reaction. When she saw her new space, she literally did a little dance.
Lia (2.5) used to wander in and out of the playroom with various toys and would forget that she had other toys and she’d get bored really easily. On Saturday afternoon she spent 2 1/2 hours playing and being creative and stacking and organizing and when we asked if she if she wanted to get frozen yogurt she actually hesitated because she didn’t want to leave her new space. Bonus- somehow it’s all easier to clean up than ever before so even when Lia is at her most stubborn, it’s not going to be a pain to clean up after her.
Mandy also put together a great list of art supplies and toys and other recommendations for us and now we can use those resources when we make decisions on what to buy and give these ideas to the grandparents. I cannot recommend Mandy enough. I am pretty sure she could make a small fortune if she advertised her talents to the rest of the DC region and I’m so grateful that she posted here first.