I have this problem time and again. Maybe you have it too. I want to provide a fun, child-friendly atmosphere for my kids, but I loathe, loathe, loaaathe most children's furniture, design motifs and color schemes. For the most part, they're just so bizarrely saccharine that they seem intentionally designed to assault adult sensibilities. And, in my experience, despite lending that coveted daycare-exploded-in-my-living-room effect, they're under-appreciated by their target audience anyway.
While I love all things Offi, ducduc and notNeutral, I do not love their price point, particularly when I don't know if my kiddo will even use said $400-$900+ item. As such, I've been turning to non-baby/kid furniture items, like Huck's IKEA Trondheim Dresser ($279) and now Target's paperboard twist-together coffee table ($19.99), as economical alternatives.
With its dark finish and clean lines, I'm calling the newest addition to my living room decor the "Toddler Parsons Desk." Huck calls the space it's in "your office" (we're still working on personal pronouns). There, he colors important documents, stacks things, and, occasionally (like his dad), eats lunch at his desk. I added a Container Store children's chair ($9.99) and two chocolate brown microfiber storage ottomans ($19.99 each, also from a Target store – not found online) that do triple duty as the boy wonder's office guest chairs, stylish and inconspicuous toy storage and extra seating for when grown-ups come to play.
I couldn't be happier. For about $70, I have a fun, functional work space for my little man that also seats adult guests and doesn't make me cringe every time I walk by it.