I am working on building and buing various pieces of furniture for a
room for my kids. The best way I can describe this room is that it
should be a place where they can play, explore, do projects, play with
computers, etc. Due to the age range there will be everything from
wood blocks to legos to junior science kits a computer and a game
What I envision is an arrangement of project tables along one wall
with a couple of comfortable couches breaking up the middle of the
room. The space is our never-used dining room, so it is large about
20 x 14 feet. The tables would be along the 20 foot dimension.
Couches and chairs we'd buy. The tables I have in mind...well, I
don't think they exists. So I have to build them. I am having
trouble figuring out the style that makes sense and the overall
approach. Hence my post. I have a reasonably well setup woodworking
setup in ther garage so, with enough time, I can build just about
anything. Since I don't know furniture styles I figured that maybe I
can get some pointers here.
I sort of like the Appalachian style. Solid, sturdy, country-like.
Seems like it could survive abuse. However, this is not a
conventional table design. Here's a list of some of the things I'd
like to have:
Plenty of drawers and storage built into the tables. Without this
legos are going to end-up all over the floor and so will pencils and
everything else. I also need the room to be easy to tidy-up for the
occasions when company might visit us and the room needs to feel a
little less like a play room.
One thought was to also have the table tops split into two halfs and
hinge them so that they can be lifted to reveal a shallow (3 to 4 in?)
storage cavity underneath (almost like old style school desks). This
might allow for storage of projects (to keep one kid from destorying a
siblings ongoing project) and quick cleanup.
I am also trying to figure out if there's a way to integrate a "Lego
trough" in the design. The idea is to have a cavity where lots of
legos can be dumpled into so that the kids can be free to create and
experiment. The issue with legos is that you have to have the pieces
right there in front of you to get creative, you can't hide them away
in drawers...it just doesn't work.
Speaking of drawers, I think they need to be lockable. Some of the
neighborhood kids are not very well behaved and when they come over
the drawers would be emptied onto the floor for sure. This might also
be a good way to keep the little ones from eating small parts when not
There's also the idea of two-level tables. An elevated level might
serve to hold small boxes with parts and supplies. I am concerned
about the lack of protection (not lockable) if it is simply a shelf.
I was thinking of ordering the drawers from Rockler. While I would
love to make everything myself, there really isn't enough time in the
day to make so many drawers. Is there a better approach or vendor?
I'll stop here. Hopefully something like this exists or at least a
good starting point. I do want to get this project done so I am
willing to buy as much as I can and make/modify what can't be
purchased off the shelf.
Thanks for your help,