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What is a developmental furniture and why choose it

21 / 12 / 2023

Paola di Ettomio

All the advantages of transformable furniture for your children

We have all found ourselves, sooner or later, choosing the furnishings for our home. Measurements in hand, we knew more or less what we wanted for the kitchen, bedroom or hall. However, when it comes to furnishing the children's bedroom, things get a little more complex. There are so many alternatives that we often feel overwhelmed by the fear of making mistakes: What is the right thing to buy for the bedroom? What does the baby (and the family) need in the first months? Are they furnishing items that will last? For how many years?

Too many questions. 🙂

At 'ettomio we are parents and we had the same doubts.

Precisely for this reason we want to share our experience. To inspire some other new parents, trying to spread a practice that we particularly believe in: avoiding waste. 🌱And at the same time creating a bedroom for our children with quality furniture, which will accompany them for many years, between playing, learning and exploring the world around them.

But how to make a choice that is lasting and conscious? and that it adapts to the different needs of our children over time?

For the children's bedroom it is possible to choose evolutionary furniture, which is specifically made to transform according to the needs of the children. This makes them a responsible, functional and long-lasting choice, which offers numerous benefits both for children... and for our planet. 🌍

What is a developmental furniture?

A developmental furniture is a furniture that can be adapted to the different stages of a child's growth. They are therefore beds, tables, bookcases and other elements made to be extended, rearranged or combined to invent new and creative solutions. 


How? Montessori beds can be transformed into 'grown-up' beds in just a few moves: simply remove the protective barriers and add an extension. Early activity tables become desks for homework, while front bookshelves can be used as practical shelves. They are, therefore, furniture designed to change over time, while maintaining solidity, aesthetics and functionality.

The importance of transformable beds

People who already have parenting experience know that, especially in the first years, children go through very different phases, in which we must accompany them as naturally as possible, respecting their times and inclinations. What to do when it is time to leave the cradle? The direct transition to a 'big boy/girl' bed is too drastic and forced for little ones. On the other hand, replacing furniture every 2-3 years is an unsustainable solution, both for the environment and for the family's economy. 


Those who, like us, are inspired by Maria Montessori's principles when it comes to educating their children, know that low, and accessible furniture helps enormously to stimulate children: it makes them more self-confident and aware of their potential. 


There is no doubt that the bed is one of the key pieces of furniture for children's independence. The low height (preferably low to the ground) allows children to climb in and out independently already as soon as they are crawling (around 6-10 months), exploring boundaries and experimenting without any danger. 


But how can a low bed last a long time?


Around the age of 4-6 years, children, who are now grown and fully able, no longer really need a Montessori bed. That's why the choice of a developmental bed, which over time can be raised and transformed into a larger bed (even a double bed), becomes the perfect solution. 🙌

What are the advantages of developmental beds?

Here is our opinion:


  • Flexibility: it is difficult to know what our baby will be like, what his or her personality is going to be, the need for contact or the degree of autonomy in sleeping. That is why a developmental bed, since it can be transformed, allows us to "not throw it away" when the time comes to change it.
  • Cost savings: one may object "But it is too expensive!", Yes, we know that apparently the cost for the developmental bed is higher; but we must consider that then we do not need to buy any other beds. For example, our development beds are made to last for years, possibly until our little ones are young adults. 
  • Safety and reliability: giving our babies the right bed at the right time makes everyone feel safe! The children because they don't risk climbing over and falling off, and the parents because we can sleep more peacefully without worrying that they might get hurt.
  • Sustainability: this is a really important issue for us, and we know that if you are here reading this, it is for you as well. We must all commit to waste less. Choosing developmental furniture, which lasts a long time both because it can be transformed and because it is specially made to be strong and durable, is a step in the right direction.
  • Empowerment: yes, it may sound like a big word. How can a bed empower a child? Because it will be "his/her" bed, "his/her" companion, an object to which he/she will become fond of and to which he/she will give a value that goes beyond the mere object. Allowing our children to have a bed that accompanies them for many years, encourages them to take care of it and educates them to respect things and to a circular culture, which opposes the throwaway mentality, encouraging instead the care and reuse of objects, avoiding waste. ♻️

Other developmental furniture

In addition to beds, other bedroom furniture can also be developmental. These include tables, chairs and bookcases. 


  • Tables and chairs can be adjusted in height to accommodate the child's growth and ensure maximum comfort. Desks can be equipped with shelves for storing toys, books or other objects.
  • The developmental bookcases are modular. Thanks to the countless combinations of shelves, they make room for books, notebooks, games, treasure boxes. 😊 Our children can thus choose, put away, browse, discover and arrange books as they please, stimulating independence and imagination.

Why choose developmental furniture?

Developmental furniture offers several benefits for both parents and children.


For parents, it can be a concrete way to make conscious decisions and to pass on to their children the value of sustainability. Purchasing furniture made from eco-friendly and durable materials helps reduce pollution and preserve natural resources. Opting for furniture made of natural, high-quality materials, that are free of harmful substances, also ensures maximum safety and well-being for your children. Not least, this kind of furniture is a long-term investment, as it saves space and money. 

For children, they are tools to foster growth, culture and autonomy. They represent an opportunity to learn how to take care of things and respect the environment, especially if they are involved in the purchase of furniture and its maintenance. This can help them develop a sense of responsibility and appreciate the importance of buying quality products that last.

When decorating a child's bedroom, the choice of developmental furniture is really something to consider because, whether for play, study or rest, they will be our children trusted and loyal companions at all stages of their growth. They are objects that become a positive example for children, teaching them to become attached and to take care of their things in a kind way.