The hilarious, loft-dwelling Metrodad writes with a question: "We're searching the net for a cool-looking baby gate. We need a wide one (at least 8' feet) to divide our loft and keep the kiddie safely self-contained. Unfortunately, Messrs. Eames, Van der Rohe, Nelson, Rashid and Starck have yet to design one. All the ones we see are those cheap plastic ones that are just plain ugly. Any ideas?"
My first thought was, "Good luck with that, everything I've seen is fugly." And since we use a combination of doors and constant chasing around, I haven't felt the pressure to find a cool-looking gate.
Then I thought, "Well, Mies and Nelson are dead, but Eames did make a half-height (34") molded plywood screen for a couple of years in the 50's... If you could find them, two of the 5-ft screens'd probably run about $10-15K."
Then I remembered seeing the Kid Safe Driveway Guard, a mesh fence that seems designed to make a kid wander 15' sideways onto the grass before they wander into traffic. I have no idea if this'd work stretched, tennis-net-style, across a room or a really wide doorway.
And my last idea comes from the Danish company BabyDan. They make a wide variety of normal-sized gates and hearth guards, but the excellently named Park-a-Kid (above, also known in the UK as the Baby Den) can take various shapes, from a hexagonal playpen to a room divider. It comes in silver, white, or black metal.
Any other ideas? Because if we don't come up with something, Metrodad may be forced to put his kid on a leash.