Flaunting one's wealth was always kind of tacky, but in this straitened times, it has become unseemly even to invest in quality. When one's investment banker neighbor has been laid off, it's impolite, not to mention inconsiderate, to be seen unloading a delivery truckful of cutting edge modernist children's furniture into your playroom. [And your neighbor will see you; he's home all day now, surfing the web while his kids are glued to Noggin.]
Fortunately, Jesper K. Thomsen and his discreet team of fine Danish woodworkers at Normann Copenhagen have your back. Thomsen just launched Play, his un-Googleable collection of superficially cheap-looking play furniture, at the Stockholm Furniture Fair last month.
Inspired by the kind of soapbox cars that were impossible to make even when I was a kid--because there were no soapboxes anymore, hello!--Play is an exercise in pure nostalgic simplicity. The furniture's shape evokes a humble, homemade, scrappy charm, while the color--a bright, upbeat yellow [Quick, don't think of Ikea!]--lift the spirits of you, your kids, and your kids' friends. It's a combination that promises to give your playdate guests the confidence-building reassurance that, no matter how bad they have it, at least they weren't reduced to making their kids' furniture from shipping palettes.
Which is the best part! Play pieces are actually all carefully crafted by hand in Denmark from solid birch! They cost a fortune! But they won't hurt your neighbor's feelings, and that's exactly what this country needs right now. That, and around 4,000 euros. The furniture ranges from EUR240 for a chair to EUR350 for the playtable. The cart is EUR2400, brakes not included.
Play av Jesper K Thomsen, in Swedish [belowtheclouds via mocoloco]
See Jesper K Thompsen's Play at Normann Copenhagen's unlinkable website; their blog's a little better [normann-copenhagen.com]