Category: Blog

A child friendly coffee table

I adore my hand made oak coffee table. Which is why I’ve hidden it away since my wonderful daughter started moving around, drawing on anything that doesn’t move and bashing things in order to make as much noise as possible. My beautiful coffee table now lives behind the sofa, covered in a layer of protection from the sticky, clumsy, chubby little hands of a toddler.

I don’t mind that it’s hidden away really. I would much rather have my child than the coffee table, but now I have nothing to sit my cup of tea on. This is a problem for me, because I, and anyone else who is in my house, invariably has to grab something from a child, or grab a child itself in order to stop said child from falling or whacking another child over the head with a toy. And you really need to be able put your cuppa down in order to do that effectively.

In my searches, I came across this idea that I absolutely love: a chalkboard coffee table!



Now I know, it may not be the most sophisticated of coffee tables, but when you decide to have a kid, you do need to leave some of your elegant, beautiful, expensive furniture in your pre-kid life. Particularly the elegant, beautiful, expensive furniture that’s well within reach of tiny, unbridled and spontaneous person.

But this truly is a fantastic idea.


You can buy them for anything up to about £400, but it’s just as easy to make your own. All you need is a can of chalkboard paint, and half an hour, tops!

You can use a laminate table that’s got nice legs, or go to your local reclamation yard, charity shop or second hand furniture shop and find something a bit older that you love the look of.

You might even (like me) have an old table, not in perfect condition, you bought a few years ago and have been planning on refinishing…


A simple coat of chalkboard paint turns a modern table to a one-of-a-kind centrepiece in a child-friendly room.

It’s definitely a piece for a family home, but it doesn’t have to be covered in toddler scribbles 24/7. A little wipe, a tidy up and your one of a kind table will be ready for your visitors.

Of an evening, it could even be turned into your scorecard…


The perils of furniture shopping with a toddler

We took a trip to Ikea yesterday with our 1 year old. I can’t even remember the reasoning behind going on a day she wasn’t in nursery; something about there’ll be two of us there to help wrangle her and we can have a bite to eat so I won’t need to cook…

It was fine initially. For approximately the first five minutes. However it seems that Ikea is THE place to take your kids and let them run riot because there were honestly children climbing on everything. And with the realisation that she was one of the few children sitting (‘imprisoned’) in a trolley things quickly went downhill. Somewhere around the bed section, she adopted her standard ‘high-pitched-grunting-with-arms-raised-towards-an-adult-who-might-lift-me-out’ stance, which quickly led into ‘whining-really-loudly-until-somebody-does-something-about-this-unacceptable-situation’ and by the time we got to dining tables it had inevitably turned into plain old ‘crying-as-loud-as-possible’.

taking-a-toddler-to-ikeaWe gave in at the kitchens and let her out to run around amongst all the other children. After one quick rest amongst the soft furnishings, a few peek-a-boo’s and a lot of redirections, we got to the kids area. There were rocking horses to rock on, tiny tables and chairs to sit at, a lot of soft toys to hold very tightly onto, some tents and tunnels to crawl amongst, and two twirly chairs to get dizzy in. There were tiny dictators everywhere, screaming their displeasure when their parents attempted to remove them from a chair or peel them away from inside a tunnel.

I was pleasantly surprised that we had no such meltdown when leaving the kids section. But it all went downhill when, before we even got downstairs to the ‘market’, I tried to prize the labrador soft toy from under her right arm. I should’ve have just waited until the end. But hey, you live and learn. Next time we’ll go when she’s in nursery.

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