Thomas J. Story
Why Give Kids Their Own Table and Chairs?
Mini tables and chairs are more than just cute—they also offer developmental benefits. Consider this: With a table at his or her own height, a child could build independence sooner by learning to set the table, sitting themselves down for a snack, and even “hosting” friends. Younger children are in the middle of the action instead of cordoned off in a booster or high chair, and the petite size promotes better posture since kids can reach the floor with their feet and don’t need to lean into the table to reach it.
Get the Look: Children’s Panton Chair
Pass on your good mid-century modern taste with a classic Panton chair shrunk down to kid-like dimensions. The swoop of the seat is supportive, comfortable, and aesthetically at home with more grown-up furnishings. Bonus: The plastic chair comes in several colors and is suitable indoors or out.
Ready to Play
This table will last your child from tot to teen. Three sets of legs help it grow from tiny play surface to full-size desk. The paper roll makes art projects a no-brainer, but you can also sub it out for a book bin or storage cubby (sold separately). Worried about toxins and off-gassing? Rest easy: This table is made from sustainable rubberwood and low-emission engineered wood.
Small Table, Big Style
If the primary colors and mottled plastic of most children’s furniture (and toys) drive you up the wall, you’ll appreciate this rattan table from Serena & Lily. It’s lightweight, easy to wipe clean, has coordinating chairs, and yes, there’s a larger (adult) version you can park next to your sofa if you get jealous.
- Montessori Cube Chair Set (1 large, 1 small), $118
Montessori educators swear by child-size furniture to help kids learn self-reliance. These solid poplar cubes are multi-taskers: When your child is a toddler, flip the large cube on its head to use as a table. Later, turn it back over for a chair sized perfectly for a young kid. Even better: The set is finished with a nontoxic, organic coconut oil and beeswax polish.
Party with Color
If color makes your child sing, look no further than this wire-base stool designed by Los Angeles furniture maker Eric Trine. It comes in four so-happy-your-cheeks-will-hurt colors. Ideal for a small space, these chairs tuck neatly under the table when not in use. (P.S. Want a Mom and me look? Check out Eric Trine’s adult stools at EricTrine.com.)
All in One Place
- Toddler Play Table, from $159
A tall lip keeps toys within the boundaries of this play table. Try it as a train table, for Legos, or for any other type of play or project that involves pieces you’d like to keep off the floor. It’s made of solid Baltic birch in Denver, Colorado. (A rolling storage bin that fits underneath is sold separately.)
Hard at Play
Modeled after the tough-as-nails Art Deco chairs of the 1930s, these iron chairs easily stand up to whatever a child might dish out. And even if one of them did succumb to a scratch, the distressed finish would neatly hide it. Pair this with almost any style table, but a vintage pedestal one would be especially charming.
Minimal and Charming
- Wooden Kids Bunny Chair, $62.11
If you can’t be whimsical as a child, then when can you be? For that reason we love this “Bunny Chair” where two perky rabbit “ears” form the back rest of a perfectly-sized chair for kids ages 1 to 5. Made of unfinished solid beech wood, this minimal seat will easily blend into the background of your home. Table available but sold separately.
Take a Seat…Anywhere
- White Shag Pouf, $79
For a seat just as mobile as your kid, try poufs. These boho standbys pull up to play tables, bookshelves, or the TV for versatile seating in any room. We’re in love with the playful fuzziness of this shag pouf. Kids can sit, lean, or drape themselves over it (and you know they will!).
Recycled and Rad
- Modern Kid Table and Chairs (set of two, stool sold separately), from $129.95
Recycled fibers form the guts of these pressed wood pieces, allowing you to share a nice lesson on smart consuming with your kids. And while you share it, you can join them at the table because these chairs are sturdy enough for adults. The set comes together in just a few minutes without tools, so you can disassemble them and store them flat when you don’t need them.