Judging by the comments and my email, I have not been the only one with alphabet floor mats on the brain. They seem to embody the love it/hate it march of primary colored kidstuff across new parents' once-sophisticated lives.
There are two ways to approach this. One is to fight the red-yellow-blue hegemony, just like you fight the pastel and pink/blue onslaughts before it. Creative Playthings may have used a touch of color in their designs once in a while, but they mostly let the natural wood color speak for itself. And on the first page of the Kid Size exhibition catalogue from Vitra, a designer explains that he kepy his playtower uncolored because kids found the "adult" design more exciting that way. Kids may not want to live in primary colored world; that may just be what we give them.
The other approach, of course, is to just run with it. Find bright colored design you can live with, and go for it; it's not just for kids, you know. Out with the maple doll house, and in with the plastic doll shagpad. Although it's been out for a while--I linked to it a couple of months ago in passing--the Jellio Rubik's Cube coffee table is making the rounds of blogland these days. And then on Hoopty Rides, I saw these: the VW Golf Harlequin, a super-limited edition car made in 1996, and a Toyota Scion with an awesome-looking Rubik's Cube vinyl wrap job. Hi-larious.
[Of course, I may put the kibbosh on my own point here by pointing out that that the two times I've seen him in person, that freaky infomercial dude who's always yammering about scoring money from the government was 1) riding Amtrak while wearing his half-lime green question marks suit, and 2) driving a brightly wrapped Scion. You have been warned.]
Harlequin Rubiks! [hootyrides]