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Child-Friendly Furniture

If chairs and couches are well padded with rugged upholstery and if tables have smooth, rounded edges and corners, your child and your furnishings can coexist happily with minimal risk.

Choose easy-care upholstery fabrics in patterns and colors least likely to advertise stains and wear-and-tear. Look into stain- repellent fabric finishes, whether applied by the manufacturer or sprayed on by you.

Childproofing Tables & Chairs

Tables with sharp, hard edges (especially marble or glass) injure many stumbling toddlers. Attach edge protectors and add corner guards. Better yet is a table with smooth, rounded edges or one made of soft wicker (without protruding reed ends) or plastic.

childproofing corners

Corner protectors soften hard corners on tables and counters.

Sturdy Furniture for Kids

Make sure that all tabletops are anchored securely to their bases. Also, a draping tablecloth is an invitation to an accident: A small child can grab the cloth for support (or simply out of curiosity) and pull down everything that rests on the tabletop.

Tuck dining chairs under the table so your child won’t be tempted to use them to climb up onto the tabletop.

Childproofing Bookshelves

Check freestanding bookshelves for stability. If at all unsteady, they can be anchored with screws to wall studs. If that’s not possible, use spreading anchors. Bookshelves with cabinet doors at the bottom are harder for kids to climb. And such cabinets provide a good place to keep small paraphernalia out of sight.

Wedging books tightly on shelves helps to foil the toddler’s game of pulling them off the shelves. Breakables should go out of reach or behind locked doors. Be sure that china cabinets are stable, unclimbable, and have locks or safety latches on their doors.

Keeping Kids Safe Near Electronic Equipment

For the safety of both your child and your expensive equipment, place your television, stereo, and other gear out of reach in cabinets, or at least against a wall (but with allowances for air circulation on all sides and on top to prevent overheating.) If you keep the television behind closed doors now, it will also be easier to monitor your child’s viewing later on. See more about childproofing electronics.

Lamps & Kids

All freestanding lamps, especially floor lamps, are easily pulled over. For ideal lamp safety, temporarily eliminate table and floor lamps in favor of ceiling-mounted lighting. If that’s not possible, make sure that your lamps are sturdy and are placed where their cords drop out of sight and reach. If necessary, use 2-inch-wide clear packing tape to secure cords along the floor or baseboards. Reduce the wattage of lamps that have hot, bare bulbs exposed beneath shades. Never leave a lighting fixture without a bulb in its socket.

TIP: Don’t forget to add corner guards to any kitchen or bath countertops that do not have rounded edges.


Baby-proofing a Baby or Toddler Room
Buying Safe Baby & Toddler Toys
Childproofing a Bathroom
Childproofing Decks & Porches
Childproofing Home Office or Activity Areas
Childproofing Room-by-Room
Childproofing Stairs
Childproofing Swimming Pools
Child-Safe Fences & Gates
Child Safety in Garage & Shop
General Childproofing Techniques
How to Buy a Safe Baby Crib
How to Buy Safe Baby Strollers, Carriers & Walkers

Get a Pre-Screened Local Home Childproofing Pro

About Don Vandervort
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Don Vandervort has developed his expertise for more than 30 years, as Building Editor for Sunset Books, Senior Editor at Home Magazine, author of more than 30 home improvement books, and writer of countless magazine articles. He appeared for 3 seasons on HGTV’s “The Fix,” and served as MSN’s home expert for several years. Don founded HomeTips in 1996.

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