Little people need big stuff.  And a lot of it.  When the playroom “need” list and the playroom square footage aren’t exactly lining up (or, said playroom doesn’t actually exist), here are our picks for space-saving staples that still bring the fun:

Pop-oh-ver Kitchen Playsets, $39.95The only kitchen that will be taking up square footage in your place will the one with a working oven, thanks to this clever set that covers your dining room chairs with a cute, functional play kitchen.  Clean it up and pack it away at the end up the day.  Editor’s tip: Splurge for the entire line.  The play food, pots and pans, and chef suit are some of the best we’ve tried. 

Skip Hop Collapsable Bouncer, $130: Got a living room that doubles as a playroom and moonlights as a dining room? Bouncers are notorious space-hoggers, which makes this collapsible option from Skip Hop a must-have for small spaces.  Fold it down and put it under the couch until the next bouncing sesh.

Manhattan Toy Mio Playing Eating Sleeping Working, $75: Part dollhouse, part building set, this piece combines the best of open-ended play…and it all packs neatly into itself when it’s time to clean up.  Plus, there are plenty of pieces to build upon, if space (and interest!) allow. 

Hoohobbers Gopher Table, $74. 50: A tot-sized table is far more of a necessity than a luxury.  This table is durable, practical, and folds flat when not in use.

Petit Collage Nest Blocks, $24: Build them up, knock them down, repeat. And repeat.  After that final knockdown, these blocks nest neatly together. 

Melissa & Doug Take-Along Town Play Mat, $24.99:  We’re just going to say it: assembling and disassembling tracks is a real pain. REAL pain.  This set gives enough cars-and-tracks to satisfy that toddler urge to vroom and zips up for a nice, easy clean-up.

Kid Made Modern Arts & Crafts Library, 39.99: A craft stash can grow like wildfire (and totally take over a closet) if not properly tended to.  This box keeps a diverse selection of goodies neat and organized, so you can put that pack of 500 popsicle sticks down.

 CreamHaus Transformable Play Mat, $399.99: When it comes time to transform your living room/workspace/dining room/ playroom into a space suitable for a cocktail party, there is nothing hideable about a teepee.  This unique piece from CreamHause folds flat for easy storage, and doubles as a play mat perfect for babies and toddlers alike.  Yay for multitasking…and folding flat.