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I"m not a nice mom I guess, they don't have free access to coloring things b/c I can just envision what would happen...not to mention they always leave the caps off markers so they'd all be dried up.
Most of their crayons are in an old wipes container that I just pull out when they want to color. Markers are still in the original package & I usually just stick them in a plastic cup when they want to use them & put it on the table. I have a drawer in the kitchen that has crayons, markers, coloring books, some color wonder stuff, a few sticker books. They can actually get into that drawer but they will usually open it, look around & then ask me to get specific things out for them.
For general craft items, I have a box from ikea that is like a plastic box & then has a 2 section inset and a lid. In the big box/bottom is the construction paper, larger things, sticker books, tubes of paint etc and in the top section is glue sticks, colored pencils, cotton balls, pipe cleaners, random stuff. This is on a shelf in a closet, out of their reach, I pull it out when they want to do arts & crafts.
plastic rubbermaid containers with lids. One for crayons, one for markers. The containers live in his closet, unless we are using them.
I'm not really sure what other options there are. Even at school, i use plastic containers and my students use plastic pencil boxes