- 3-shelf bookshelf in espresso finish from target ($80, $64 on sale). this is very sturdy with all wood components (not particle board or mdf), and the trim is actually quite well done.
- traditional bolga basket from overstock ($47 for 3, these are now sold out... but this site has a good selection of fair trade baskets at reasonable prices). we use this for a small supply of diapers, wipes and cream.
- woven square baskets (12"x12"x10") from tj maxx ($20 each... these are obviously a one-off find, but i did find these baskets at target, which have approximately the same dimensions). these are for small toys and are sturdy enough to withstand repeated yanking off of shelves and throwing in of toys. our daughter was constantly getting into whatever we tried to put on the bottom shelf of the bookcase, and it finally struck me - why not put baskets there to hold her toys?
- a storage ottoman also from target ($80, $60 on sale). this is for large, heavy and/or bulky toys. the lid is very light, and the hinges keep the lid right where you put it, which means no little fingers get pinched. it also adds a bit more seating when we have people over.
the ottoman and the square baskets hold a surprisingly large amount of stuff. even more important, they give us (and, eventually, our kids) a clear limit on the quantity of toys in circulation, or at least in our family room. they also make clean-up a breeze because everything has a home, but not necessarily a specific place that it has to be.
so, the grand total to get all our daughter's toys and a few basic supplies tucked away, leaving our family room presentable (and not obviously overrun by children) was about $180. maybe not the cheapest option, but something that fits our decor and that we can be happy with until our kids grow out of this stage.