Inspiration for PLAY within the home

Faced with a new addition to the family, most of us would lunge for our phones and get busy on Pinterest for some new nursery inspiration. But some people go BIG! We take a look here at some ultra fun alternatives to the notional nod of a play area, proving we’re all just big kids at heart.

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Let's play cat and mouse

We start off with this mad family holiday home designed by Architects Onion. Their clients wanted their seaside house to “behave unlike a typical house” and so the architects based their designs on what they imagined the home and play area of cartoon characters Tom and Jerry would look like.

It’s a labyrinth of passageways, ramps and circulation throughout the three storey home, with holes and nets galore! It radiates joy from every nook and cranny and needless to say, we hope we get an invite soon!

Designed by: Onion | Location: Cha-am, Thailand | Photographs: Wilson Tungthunya

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Tale of two beds

For those of us who are faced with the rather pressing pragmatics of a growing family in urban life, check out Bulgarian design duo Another Studio’s creative bunk bed solution for two little ones. A birch plywood structure with multiple cut-outs and windows to house beds for two kids, it even doubles up as a play area and storage - DONE!

Designed by: Another Studio | Location: Sofia, Bulgaria | Photographs: Another Studio

Wheeeeeeeeeeee.....

If someone asked you to imagine the design of a central stairwell in a New York home, a shiny metal spiral slide probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind! But we love how integral David Hotson has made this unique design feature fit every space; from the very start of the slide at attic level all the way down to the entrance level. It turns what could be a bit of a design one-liner into something with a seriously quirky aesthetic.

Designed by: David Hotson | Location: New York, USA | Photographs: Eric Laignel

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We’re oh so quiet.. shhhhhh

In this project by HAO Design, you’d be forgiven for thinking the simplicity and calmness that permeates every space is not particularly family friendly. But actually, you just need to look a little bit closer.

Soft green Tatami floor mats are used to line the family room that is closed off by glass partitions; great for when you need some acoustic separation yet it remains visually part of the rest of the house.

There is a deep green wall that connects the mezzanine area with the dining space below which seemingly looks purely aesthetic. However, it actually doubles up as a chalk board for their young family. Even the doorways have a playful roof motif that could be easily missed as they’re so subtle!

What is special about this project is that the whole home has been designed to encourage all members of the family to engage with one another; it creates the perfect backdrop to make some memories.

Designed by: Hao Design | Location: Kaohsiung City, Taiwan | Photographs: Hey!Cheese

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The early bird catches the worm

And now it’s the weekend; we’ve all been there. After a busy week it’s time to negotiate whose turn is it to occupy the kids while the other gets 10 more minutes in bed! 

Thankfully, Russian architecture studio Ruetemple came up with a cunning solution - a suspended mezzanine play area above the master bedroom. Everyone’s a winner!

Other inspiration >>

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