March 30, 2007

Now That's A Baby Box: Cardboard Rolling Crib By Album di Famiglia


One of the absolutely most unabashedly beautiful, minimalist-but-not-too baby clothes designers around is Album di Famiglia. We found their newborn stuff just as the kid was growing out of the tiny available selection at Estelle, a store on 6th Ave in NYC, and we couldn't find anything about them at all, seemingly. They were in this mythical dream closet I'd imagined for my kid.

Well, they still rock, they're far better known now, and they have much wider distribution, and as far as I can see, they still hew to the idealized version of what an awesome city baby should wear.

Which makes me scratch my head all the more to see that this corrugated cardboard crib/cot comes from Album di Famiglia. Don't get me wrong, it looks awesome, and I can totally get with the less-is-more, essentialist nature of a cardboard crib on casters, home-decorated or not.

But still, EUR220 [plus int'l shipping!] is a hard pill to swallow, even if it's competitive with less conceptually rigorous babybed options. Also, a commenter on Apartment Therapy saw what I saw, too: to comply with US safety standards, the mattress in a crib is supposed to be very snug-fitting, with no enterable gaps. Maybe it's just how it's photographed, but you could find yourself buying another foam mattress when this rig finally arrives. Capito?

Still, it IS pretty sweet-looking.

Album Di Famiglia customisable cardboard cot bed : 220,00€ [ via at's nursery]
image: thierry bouet


I can see quite a few CPSC standards that doesn't meet.

[gotta love this scientifical, precise description: "complies with all the safety and comfort standards you would expect for a baby’s bed." -ed.]

Why would they comply with US safety standards? They are not sold on the US market.

They do comply with European safety standards, however, and they look amazing (in my humble opinion). And they are biodegradable.

[preaching to the choir, stef. Unlike strollers or car seats, beds and mattresses are not bought across borders very frequently. It seemed worth pointing out an obvious point where the US standard differs. That said, the ad copy is kind of ridiculously vague. I'm an AdF fan AND a fan of this crib, but I'd like a little more specificity on standards compliance when I'm buying a crib... -ed.]

"Why would they comply with US safety standards?"

Not saying they would or should, just that there is more than the mattress fit that would prevent that from being sold here.

That Celery crib from a few days ago was amazing, this is a TV box on wheels. Usually things like this are more like a design concept in-joke than an actual product. They even call it "customizable" because you can write on it, lawl. At this price maybe they give you a stack of the things- you're going to need some spares after it biodegrades from baby drool.

There are a lot more chemicals that go into making paper than there are involved in treating and finishing wood... just because it's brown doesn't mean paper is environmentally friendly or good for your health either. For toy furniture or something like that, fine, but I don't know if I'd want my kid sleeping surrounded by cardboard. (Especially in a crib with solid sides and no ventilation)

It does LOOK cool though... and it just gave me an idea for some doll furniture for the kid. :)

To each their own, Scott: to me, the Celery crib looks like a giant piece of dollhouse furniture.

I also think that using cardboard for children's products is everything but a joke. Kids' toys and furniture have a relatively short life cycle (do you think the Celery crib will be passed down through generations?) and crafting them out of recyclable materials does minimize their impact.

Is that kid wearing saftey goggles?

That price doesn't look too out of line with their other prices -- $70 for an infant shirt, $65-$95 for pants, etc. And it's not even organic cotton.

Would it really be that hard to construct your own?! 220 Eur seems crazy to me, especially since it will last about a week when teething kicks in. Is it really going to look so sweet with chunks bitten out of it? Does it then become a choking hazard? Baby chokes on crib??

those aren't safety goggles--- that's not even a baby. it's some kind of European designer dork mini me.

"Do you think the Celery crib will be passed down through generations?"

Why wouldn't it be? People don't generally throw a crib (or any furniture) away if it's well-constructed and still sound. Keeping in mind that a "generation" for kids furniture is only about 4 years, there's no reason a quality crib shouldn't last 5 generations, if not more. And that particular crib has no hardware to wear out. As long as you don't lose the tenons, it will last more or less forever, provided you refinish as needed.

Hi there. Has anyone actually purchased this crib? So far all of the comments are speculative. I think it looks fantastic but would love some user reviews.

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