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Kid Safety or Design Aesthetics?

Would you sacrifice a floating walnut staircase for your children's safey? Or turn a formal dining space into a romper room?

An article in today's New York Times discussed one of the the biggest trades of late in life parenting — high design for lil darlings. And while some parents eventually buckle to inevitable change, others stand resistant.

For couples deeply rooted in design like Kipp Cheng and Mark Jarecke, the unraveling of their aesthetic was all too much. It said:

“We spent years collecting meaningful, quality pieces,” he said. “Getting those kinds of pieces — the handmade silk pendant lamp, the teak Danish sideboard — it’s a huge project. Basically each room was finally done, and then it all got blown apart.”

To see what happened,


Reluctant to get rid of their glass-top Noguchi coffee table or razored edge Barcelona chairs, Chen and Jarecke eventually gave in since their son's well being was in jeopardy.
The piece said:

As for the coffee table, they avoided doing anything until Beckett gave them no choice: while learning to walk last summer, he used it as his main training prop. “He’d cruise and trip and hit his face on the table’s edge,” Mr. Cheng recalled.

What's your opinion on this issue?


Join The Conversation
Lolafox Lolafox 9 years
I feel everything in moderation. We have a square coffee table and have not banded the corners. I think you should child proof as much as possible, but too much can be a risk as well. If the kid is so used to bouncing off all the padded edges at your house, what makes them not try to do the same out of the house where things are less child proof? Obviously the real dangerous stuff should be guarded, but a little bump here or there teaches them that not everything is safe.
lms lms 9 years
I think it comes down to a space issue as well. If you are short on space then you should make it kid friendly. However, if that is not a problem then there should be areas that are aesthetically beautiful that the kids don't have full access to.
mother2 mother2 9 years
Did they really think a baby wouldn't change the decor of their home? I find it hard to believe they were so clueless and didn't prepare ahead of time if those material things meant so much to them. I also find it shocking that they'd wait until their child was injured to make any changes.
NyckieRocks NyckieRocks 9 years
sounds to me that they cared more about their living room decor than their son. I'd give up every piece of furniture in my house if it meant my son had a safe and fun place to play and grow.
Dbtabm Dbtabm 9 years
Oh cry me a river, they can have their pristine living room back when the kids grow up (and then they'll be wishing they were back).
Novaraen Novaraen 9 years
Well after having my livingroom overrun with my boys toys and gadgets, diapers and such(i had to put away all my decorative and breakable pieces)....we finally moved two doors down to a bigger house and gave the boys their own playroom. It's great to now have a livingroom that doesnt look like a daycare!! ;) Still...we got rid of our coffee table because even now with my boys almost 3 years old, they would play/wrestle and hit their heads on it. Our livingroom is actually better now without it! :D
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