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mums of little children - which would you choose: a playoom or a formal dining room?

93 replies

Titter · 02/05/2008 09:43

assuming kitchen is big enough for a table to sit 6

OP posts:
RubySlippers · 02/05/2008 09:44

dining room

RubberDuck · 02/05/2008 09:45

neither - would have it as a study and the kids can have the living room

NatalieJane · 02/05/2008 09:45

Well, normally I would say dining room, but next week we are turning our formal dining room into a play room, so I spose I'd better plump for play room....

lostinfrance · 02/05/2008 09:45

This reply has been deleted

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Titter · 02/05/2008 09:46

i should mention that sitting room just about big enough to split into two with french doors

so would end up with a small playoom and a small-ish sitting oom

instead of lovely big sitting room

OP posts:
WendyWeber · 02/05/2008 09:46

Playroom I think, as long as you have some toy-free grown-up space downstairs.

Titter · 02/05/2008 09:47

there is a study too

but would be loathed to iup out all fitted shelves/desks to use it as a playoom fo a few yeas only

to claify, atm thee is:

a kitchen diner
a big sitting oom
a study
a big dining oom

we have a playoom atm and would miss it i think

OP posts:
mumblechum · 02/05/2008 09:47

When ours were little we had a playroom and ate in the ktichen as I liked to keep the living room as an adult, reasonably tidy room (though they brought some stuff in there and we all watched tv in there together).
Once they got a bit older we changed the playroom into a dining room again. Worked pretty well.

Pesha · 02/05/2008 09:48

A playroom. If kitchen is big enough to seat 6 then how often really are you going to be using a formal dining room compared to how often a playroom will get used?

Also I imagine it will then make the rest of the living space much tidier, more formal and easier to clean etc as all crap toys can be confined to the one room.

I would love a seperate playroom. ATM I cannot get from one side of my lounge to the other without stepping over cars and walkers and ball popping toys and standing on at least 1 block or sharp pointy toy of some description!

MyDingaling · 02/05/2008 09:48

I have toys all around the huse, it wiuld be lovely to have them all in one area.

WendyWeber · 02/05/2008 09:48

Titter, who stole your R?

Titter · 02/05/2008 09:49

i don't know wendy, but i'll ave em

the ottes

OP posts:
geekgirl · 02/05/2008 09:49

how old are the children? I think by the time the youngest is 4 they're really old enough to keep their toys in their room (ok, bring them downstairs to play with, but not have them live downstairs!) and not clutter up the house with them.

Don't like playrooms either.

lackaDAISYcal · 02/05/2008 09:50


you could have your grown up dining room, but with clever storage the kids could use it through the day and then all toys hidden away for when you needed it a formal dining room.

Also, if you can fit the table in the kitchen how much use would the other room actually get as a dining room?

Titter · 02/05/2008 09:51

dsses ae 9mo and nearly 3yo

OP posts:
jingleyjen · 02/05/2008 09:51

A dining room, (if you are talking about selling) at the moment we have
big Kitchen table that we eat around most days but we do have separate dining room for when we have people round/ too many people to fit in kitchen.
Sitting room is big enough to have a toy box behind sofa

geekgirl · 02/05/2008 09:53

ah, I guess you do need toys downstairs then I'd go for nice storage in a big living room.

Poledra · 02/05/2008 09:54

I use my dining room as a playroom and study, as my kitchen is big enough for a 7 foot long table. Set up as a dining room, it just wouldn't get used!

wingandprayer · 02/05/2008 09:56

We ditched our dining room about 18 months ago, bought a 6 seater kitchen table and don't regret it. We only used it for Xmas and maybe twice else if we were lucky during year - kids getting the benefit of the space every day.

Lost in France makes going point about them being trashed. We spent some money on storage boxes and shelves, have them tidy up every evening, and encourage DD to put things away before opening the next box to stop it turning into shit tip. We have no outdoor space though - only a small concrete yard at the mo - so did want to give them some proper play space and indoors was the only place to do it. In future years when we get our garden and kids are bigger, may swap it back as they play outdoors/upstairs more.

MrsPuddleduck · 02/05/2008 09:56



  1. It will be a nightmare to keep tidy if they stay in there.

  1. The chances are they will take the toys out of the playroom and gravitate with them to wherever you are.

That said, I love ours. It's great to sit in the lounge in the evening without a toy in sight.....
Nemoandthefishes · 02/05/2008 09:58

I would keep the big sitting room

ChasingSquirrels · 02/05/2008 10:01

dc's are 5.5y & 27mo. We have;

  • big lounge (12x24)
  • formal dining (10x12) - which gets used about 3 times a year (but which I LOVE just having); and
  • kitchen (12x12) with conservatory (approx 9x9) open to it in which we have a kitchen table that sits 6 and which is used every day.

I keep considering changing the dining to a playroom, but it would mean selling lovely dining furniture and I don't want to.
So the toys have stayed in the lounge.

Personally I would rather have their toys in the main living space and have them playing downstairs where we are all interacting than have them playing upstairs.

I am have been considering a small extension on the front of the lounge (which wouldn't look odd given the rest of the house) which would make the lounge into a 12x30 room -which I would then split into a 12x12 playroom and a 12x18 lounge - with double doors bewteen the 2 and both having doors into the hall.

In taking space from the lounge I can make it into a totally adult room, but still have it open to the kids space when they are about.

Speak to friends and family and see if they can see ideas that you can't.
TsarChasm · 02/05/2008 10:04


You can't fight it. When they are little dc do need somewhere to keep their toys and play or their things just end up everywhere. Our conservatory is the playroom.

When they are a bit older, my hope is that we can scale down the playroom and they can keep their things (which will hopefully be smaller by then) in their rooms.

TheMadHouse · 02/05/2008 10:07

I think a playroom is a must really, what use is a formal dinning room just to look good if you are only going to use it a couple of times a year.

Do you have a special car that you only bring out for best.

We have a living room, dinning room (used for all meals) and a conservatory which is currently the playroom.

I have a small table in the kitchen, but as both of mine are still in high chairs the dinning room is just easier.

I smend all of my time in the playroom with them really too, we have a nice sofa in there and it opens on to the garden.

There is planty of time to put toys in their bedroom, infact people are amazed at just how tidy they keep it, but we have great storage and they have a touch of OCD like me

ChasingSquirrels · 02/05/2008 10:08

I am also thinking that when they are older the playroom can morph into a den, and then probably a study if I am still living here.

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