My feed

to access all these features


When did playrooms become a thing?

141 replies

00100001 · 19/05/2023 21:03

I'm early 40s and not a single person I knew growing up had a playroom. Now it seems it's quite common? Or definitely not unusual?

Why did they become a thing? What happened to kids just playing with their toys in the living room and their bedrooms?

OP posts:
Purplefoalfoot · 19/05/2023 21:04

My mum grew up having a playroom and she’s 67 so they’ve been around a while

NancyJoan · 19/05/2023 21:05

I think fewer people have dining rooms now, and have eat in kitchens, so there is often a ‘spare’ room downstairs that can be used for toys/computer games/big TV.

Luredbyapomegranate · 19/05/2023 21:05

Playrooms we’re definitely widely in existence in the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.

More so if anything, as bigger houses were more affordable.

Have you shifted up the social ladder as an adult, or moved somewhere we’re housing is cheaper?

00100001 · 19/05/2023 21:06

Purplefoalfoot · 19/05/2023 21:04

My mum grew up having a playroom and she’s 67 so they’ve been around a while

Was it quite common for houses to have this, or was it unusual?

Maybe it's a location thing?

OP posts:
Lovingitallnow · 19/05/2023 21:07

My friend had one growing up in the 90's. It was amazing. Everyone in our estate was converting garages to get one.

Tinybrother · 19/05/2023 21:07

Not a new thing. People had them when I was growing up and one of my parents did too as a child

Kissedbyfire1 · 19/05/2023 21:08

I’m 60 and we had a playroom when I was growing up. My kids had a playroom, my DGC have a playroom. It’s never not been a thing.

mastertomsmum · 19/05/2023 21:08

All very well if you have room and/or don’t find a dining room useful. Seriously, my DS - now 17 - always managed with his own bedroom and some dejected toys and books in our sitting room. He did have a Monopoly collection which I cunningly housed in pop up ottomans along one side of the sitting room. Extra seating and storage, what’s not to love 💕

Wellhellother · 19/05/2023 21:08

I'm 30 and had a playroom. It was never thought of as unusual

itsmylife7 · 19/05/2023 21:08

Playrooms have been around for many years.
Mostly by people who live in larger houses and normally have Nannies.

piedbeauty · 19/05/2023 21:08

I had a playroom growing up, and I'm in my 40s - they're not new.

mastertomsmum · 19/05/2023 21:08

Dejected should say selected

murasaki · 19/05/2023 21:09

We had one in the 80s, it allowed my parents to have a nice tidy living room that we hardly ever went in.

CadburyDream · 19/05/2023 21:10

My mum doesn't think kids should be allowed toys in the living room 😂

Elphame · 19/05/2023 21:10

I had a playroom back in the 1960s. Definitely not a new thing.

Mumof1andacat · 19/05/2023 21:10

I'm nearly 40, and we had a playroom. It was really a half half room. somewhere to have our computer and to store toys. It was nice to have somewhere else to play that wasn't the sitting room.

Suprima · 19/05/2023 21:10

My next house will have a playroom and it will babyproofed with in an inch of its life.

We have a big living room but she’s constantly trying to fish the remote control off the tv unit, pull down the fireguard or climb the bookshelf.

I am very jealous of people who have a safe room where they don’t have to keep saying ‘no!’

Miscellaneousme · 19/05/2023 21:10

Not a thing I was aware of growing up in the 90s but I lived on a council estate and we were poor. It’s just relative to wealth I think - having a spare room just for playing is a bit of a luxury whatever way you look at it.

Danikm151 · 19/05/2023 21:10

I think it all depends on the size of your house.
my friend had a playroom because the front room wasn’t needed but they moved from a 2 bed flat to a 4 bed house.

I never had a playroom- my toys were in my bedroom.

my son’s playroom is the living room because we’re in a 2 up 2 down terrace.

woodhill · 19/05/2023 21:11

We had a playroom/study at my dps house in the 70s

Hazelnuttella · 19/05/2023 21:12

We had a playroom in the 90s. Grew up in a 1930s semi - it had kitchen, dining room, front room and playroom (which was the back room).

Simplelobsterhat · 19/05/2023 21:12

I'm in my 40s and knew a few better off friends with playrooms growing up. Thinking about it I can't think any of my kids friends have them now though, so if anything I'd say the other way round! More of the people with bigger houses seem to knock through and have open plan so less separate rooms. I guess it just depends on typical house size / layout /money / trends in the immediate area.

Mouthfulofquiz · 19/05/2023 21:12

I didn’t grow up with one - small terraced house. We mainly played outside anyway!
now I do have room for one (and small kids) we don’t have one as I prefer the kids to play in the living room or garden. Saying that, we have one of the spare rooms set up with a big tv and a playstation (plus sofa beds)

inwhichdorisgetsheroats · 19/05/2023 21:13

I used to babysit for a kid in the 90s who had a playroom.

We have a playroom of sorts, but it's also a music room and my home office as well - so multifunctional really. It would've been the dining room at one time, but the kitchen was extended at some point so we have a kitchen- diner. It's partly a playroom because DC2 has the box room so no room to play or for toy storage.

Inkypot · 19/05/2023 21:13

I'm a similar age to you OP.
The only child I knew who had one in the 80s/90s was my friend who was an only child and lived in a 3 bedroom house so basically the spare room was called her playroom. I remember being so jealous cos our spare room was basically a junk room for a few years until me and my sister got separate bedrooms.
I always wanted a playroom as a kid though and would go round to hers all the time to play!
I now have a 3 bed house of my own and my kids have their own rooms so no spare room and therefore no playroom. They tend to be quite popular in the massive new builds round here though because people have more rooms than they need and can use one for that.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.