It’s a well-known fact that when kids play, they’re actually learning how to navigate the real world. Performance and play is important to a child’s socialization skills and can determine how quickly they speak, how fast they make intellectual connections and how closely they connect with others.
At a young age, children are sponges — they’re little actors who absorb the behaviors and expressions of the adults around them and learn through mimicking. And, like any good actors, they need the right props to guide them through.
While parents may gush over tiny little shoes, tables, chairs and play tea sets and battery-operated, rideable cars as being oh-so-adorable, these little toys are also a learning opportunity for children.
To make sure your child gets the right amount of use and play, we’ve put together the ultimate guide to cool chairs for children: how to choose ‘em, what to look for and some ideas to get you started.
Tips to Choosing the Right Kid’s Chair
Furniture Should Have Non-Slip Bases
Chairs that are easily moved and pushed are fine but the last thing you want is a little one climbing on it, only to wobble and fall over.
If you’re getting tables or chairs that have thinner legs rather than a wide, block-like base, make sure to grab sticky tabs for the underside. Barring this, you can also grab a non-slip mat and rest the furniture on that.
Make Sure There Are No Sharp Edges
This is especially true of “vintage”, repurposed or “upcycled” furniture that has been DIY-crafted. You can get kiddie-corner covers for tables and make sure that handles of any chairs, as well as the seat, has been sanded down to prevent cuts and splinters.
Paint Should Be Non-Toxic
Even if your kids are past the stage of eating things right off a table (because now they’ve learnt what spoons are for), you want to make sure that the pain is non-toxic. Lead-based paint can create a toxic environment for children.
Lower & Wider Is Easier For Younger Children
Where possible, try and get chairs and tables that are lower to the ground and have a wider base. A good rule of thumb is to have your child sit in the chair without their feet dangling off the ground.
Instead, their feet should be flat and their knees are ideally at a 90 degree angle. Of course, if it’s a plush chair or a soft sofa, they can curl up with their legs folded.
Choose the Right Materials
Children and glass is often a disaster waiting to happen. Children and old wood is a splinter waiting to happen. Choose a chair that is made out of plastic, foam, fabric or polymers and polyurethane. If you’re going for wood, choose one that is brand new and polished, sealed and sanded.
Don’t Worry About “Matching” Their Room, Just Pick Something They’ll Love
Parents often forget that they’re not just “decorating” their child’s room. They’re buying a piece they hope their kids will actually love and get a lot of use from.
So put yourself in your kids shoes. After all, you’re getting this cool chair for them and not you, right? So pick something they love and if it doesn’t “go” with the decor, it really doesn’t matter.
Easy to clean, with stackable stools and made of steel, this set is a great choice for kids. It has flared legs so it won’t tip over.
This is a fun little number that makes a great coloring or eating table for kids to have their friends over.
Tuck them up with a good book or game in this cozy little ball chair.
A blast from the past, the interior is nice and cozy and kids can use their feet to spin the chair around, like their favorite cartoon villain.
5. Bean Bag Chair
These chairs are a kid-friendly classic because they can mold to your child’s back, are easily adjustable, come in fun shapes and colors and they’re easy to clean.
A new twist on an old favorite is this rocking chair that provides plenty of back support and just the right amount of balance so kids can move without falling over.
Great for the outdoors — or even pretend-play indoor camping!
8. Victorian Club Chair in Dinosaur Print
If you find a mini club chair, why not freshly upholster it with your kid’s favorite print?
9. Kids Plush Sofa
Plush toy sofas are almost a staple of children’s play room. Don’t be surprised if they spend the day nestled in it and end up falling asleep.
10. Fabric Hanging Chair
A great play on the novel hammock, hanging chairs provide a great spot for kids to lounge, relax and play games. Make sure it’s low to the ground.