Blog

Find out more about Plyhome, as well as helpful parenting solutions, safety, sustainability, and more in our news section.

Creating a good sleeper

You only truly begin to appreciate just how important sleep is once you are badly deprived of it. 

I had no idea at the time, but our first child was actually a total dream when it came to sleeping. We went through all the regular newborn and teething 'fun', but on the whole, she was an amazing sleeper. Number two child? Not so much. He woke every few hours on the dot. We tried every single trick in every single book written on sleeping. I took in way too much advice, I purchased all the things. We tried all the different routines. Nothing worked. Nothing. 

So, I can hand on heart say that I understand what it's like to have terrible sleep. I've lived through it, and we came out the other side with a gold medal sleeper who actually asks to go to bed if he's tired, falls asleep within minutes of his head hitting the pillow and wakes up 11 hours later fully recharged. Oh I know... the irony.

As crazy as it sounds, I'm actually OK with those few years of extreme sleep deprivation (now that I'm not living it!). The singular focus on sleep meant I did a lot of thinking about the small things that might make a difference. Ultimately, it helped influence our product design. For example, it's why the junior and toddler beds feature a guard-rail and why all our beds are low to the ground. We call it parent-driven design and you can read more about that here

Lockdown Survival Guide from Cherished Sleep: 

If you've been thinking that sleep routines have gotten a little out of hand during lockdown and that once the kids are (eventually) back at school/kindy/daycare, you might indeed have a teeny tiny issue getting them out of bed, before - say 8:30am, then Please read this.

The author is my sleep hero. Kim absolutely knows her stuff and I can personally verify that she has a huge impact if sleep has become a problem. The article is a very 'real' read, written from the double-perspective of both sleep expert and Mum. Whilst you're there, she has some great resources on supporting sleepers of all ages. 

So, good luck out there in your bubbles: may you be lucky enough to share them with great sleepers. 

Read more

You only truly begin to appreciate just how important sleep is once you are badly deprived of it. 

I had no idea at the time, but our first child was actually a total dream when it came to sleeping. We went through all the regular newborn and teething 'fun', but on the whole, she was an amazing sleeper. Number two child? Not so much. He woke every few hours on the dot. We tried every single trick in every single book written on sleeping. I took in way too much advice, I purchased all the things. We tried all the different routines. Nothing worked. Nothing. 

So, I can hand on heart say that I understand what it's like to have terrible sleep. I've lived through it, and we came out the other side with a gold medal sleeper who actually asks to go to bed if he's tired, falls asleep within minutes of his head hitting the pillow and wakes up 11 hours later fully recharged. Oh I know... the irony.

As crazy as it sounds, I'm actually OK with those few years of extreme sleep deprivation (now that I'm not living it!). The singular focus on sleep meant I did a lot of thinking about the small things that might make a difference. Ultimately, it helped influence our product design. For example, it's why the junior and toddler beds feature a guard-rail and why all our beds are low to the ground. We call it parent-driven design and you can read more about that here

Lockdown Survival Guide from Cherished Sleep: 

If you've been thinking that sleep routines have gotten a little out of hand during lockdown and that once the kids are (eventually) back at school/kindy/daycare, you might indeed have a teeny tiny issue getting them out of bed, before - say 8:30am, then Please read this.

The author is my sleep hero. Kim absolutely knows her stuff and I can personally verify that she has a huge impact if sleep has become a problem. The article is a very 'real' read, written from the double-perspective of both sleep expert and Mum. Whilst you're there, she has some great resources on supporting sleepers of all ages. 

So, good luck out there in your bubbles: may you be lucky enough to share them with great sleepers. 

Read more


Easter at Plyhome

//
Here at Plyhome we have been enjoying Easter at home in our bubble, like many of you would be too. It's a great chance to get outside with the kids and make the most of this unique 'family time'. It's an opportunity that we haven't often had prior to Covid-19.
We thought we'd share some photos of the Easter photoshoot that took place pre-Covid-19. We had a gorgeous little present lined up for all our Easter customers, but we'll have to shelve that for next year!
//
xx. The Plyhome team

Read more

//
Here at Plyhome we have been enjoying Easter at home in our bubble, like many of you would be too. It's a great chance to get outside with the kids and make the most of this unique 'family time'. It's an opportunity that we haven't often had prior to Covid-19.
We thought we'd share some photos of the Easter photoshoot that took place pre-Covid-19. We had a gorgeous little present lined up for all our Easter customers, but we'll have to shelve that for next year!
//
xx. The Plyhome team

Read more


When a Mum Influences Furniture Design

When we began the process of prototyping our kids beds, one of our co-founders was still very much in pre-schooler land. It was important to her that the design of Plyhome furniture supported actual life with kids: complete with the joys of sleep deprivation, toilet training, messy bedrooms, musical beds and winter lurgies. All this ensured a  unique perspective to the design of our kids beds - so although our junior bed looks beautiful, the bonus is that it comes with a whole host of parenting features built in: six in fact. In this article, Co-Founder Anna Gilhooly explains our design: 

1. Get 5 more minutes rest:

When you're going through sleep ‘challenges’ (fact: actual agony), 5 minutes is everything. My youngest was a 'challenging' sleeper for a decent few years so I know this world well. You can slot a book in between the guard rail and the mattress to surprise your child in the morning - it’ll be one of the first things they see. Face the cover towards your child, or…(librarians look away now)…if it's a favourite book and you know there's a certain page they love, open the book to that page then slot the book in to encourage morning reading and 5 minutes more slumber*. Like I said, book lovers, avert your eyes! But when you’re in the middle of sleep challenges, extra sleep beats a pristine book spine any day. 

2. Supports night-time bathroom training: 

When going through the mental challenge that can be night-time bathroom training with your pre-schooler, access in and out of bed can become a major thing. Picture this: you've got the sheet protector, you've done the upgrade to night nappies and your child is actually ready to lose them altogether. You're in the zone, ready to support your child in navigating bathroom independence**. The last thing you want is an obstacle like their bed being too high for them to get in and out of easily. You're trying to build confidence here! A minute’s delay can be make or break. This is why we designed our Plyhome Junior Bed to be lower to the ground. It suits the little humans who sleep in it.

3. Teaches them how to not fall out of bed:

As adults, we can quickly forget having to learn this lesson. In a cot, babies get 4 walls to push away from if they manage to migrate to the edge of the mattress. It's absolutely no wonder that kids then fall out when transitioned into their big kid’s bed. Unnecessary night wakings aren't awesome. Preventing them for both you and your kids is.  Exactly why we created a built in guardrail on our Junior Bed. Here's why it's so good: 

  • Gentle flex. Like any parent who has been elbowed/pushed/kicked by a bed sharing restless sleeping kid, I know how some kids can sleep like they're mid marathon. The guard rail is strength tested in all the important places. It stops kids falling out of bed, but does so with design sympathy towards how kids actually sleep. Flaying elbows and all.
  • Excellent place to stash their favourite book for the morning read (see above)
  • Excellent peekaboo potential. Cutest way to say good morning, ever.
  • Excellent at keeping 5 teddies and 3 cars in the bed if your kids do that too.

4. Designed for asthma kids:

When we designed the Plyhome junior collection, asthma was a factor in the design of our cot and beds. My kids are some of the 15% of NZ kids that get it, and one of my children also has a severe dust mite allergy to the point where it can induce anaphylaxis (he carries an EpiPen everywhere he goes). Both asthma and dust mites are influences by airflow and humidity. It's why we’ve maximised airflow to the mattress (to reduce dampness). It’s why we’ve designed the legs so it’s easy to vaccum underneath the bed (reduce dust mites). And on the subject of vacuuming, it’s why we made sure that despite being super strong, the furniture could still be moved easily for vacuuming (reduce dust mites). It’s also why there are no upholstered surfaces on the frame (reduce dust mites). It’s why we’ve selected the finishes that we have (reduce allergens). To read more about advice on choosing the best bed option for kids with asthma/allergies - read what Consumer NZ say. 

5. It's strong: really, really strong

Ever actually looked at the weight tolerance of kids beds? It’s generally not very impressive at all. Usually, if you’re over 100kg's, you can’t even think about reading bedtime stories.  Not cool. Rips’ engineering background came in very handy for strength tolerances. Explains why when we tried to break the bed, we ran out of big blokes to test it at 570kg’s.  Strength and durability performance were important to use because our furniture is made for actual kids. Even if they do think they’re batman. It's also made for parents too, because musical beds is a super fun game ;) 

6. Supports the 2-minute bedroom tidy: 

Preschoolers attract stuff. Lots of it. The rest of their room may be a disaster zone but their bed is easy to keep tidy. Either tuck the duvet right in for a streamlined look, or leave it draped over the bed with the top 1/3 folded down, so that the top fold naturally sits where the guardrail starts (this is a great way to show off cool sheets by the way!).  Either way, it's a styled and contained space.

All up, not just a pretty face.

The Plyhome Junior Bed is indeed beautiful, but that beauty goes beyond the surface, with the parent-driven furniture design and engineering principals. It's designed for kids, but with a mum's perspective.  

Disclaimers:

*Obviously, we’re not saying to leave your kids unsupervised! But an 5 extra minutes resting your eyes and listening to your kid(s) happily look at a book is one of the best ways to start the day.

**For actual professional toilet training advice, head to an expert like Laura Morely.  

Read more

When we began the process of prototyping our kids beds, one of our co-founders was still very much in pre-schooler land. It was important to her that the design of Plyhome furniture supported actual life with kids: complete with the joys of sleep deprivation, toilet training, messy bedrooms, musical beds and winter lurgies. All this ensured a  unique perspective to the design of our kids beds - so although our junior bed looks beautiful, the bonus is that it comes with a whole host of parenting features built in: six in fact. In this article, Co-Founder Anna Gilhooly explains our design: 

1. Get 5 more minutes rest:

When you're going through sleep ‘challenges’ (fact: actual agony), 5 minutes is everything. My youngest was a 'challenging' sleeper for a decent few years so I know this world well. You can slot a book in between the guard rail and the mattress to surprise your child in the morning - it’ll be one of the first things they see. Face the cover towards your child, or…(librarians look away now)…if it's a favourite book and you know there's a certain page they love, open the book to that page then slot the book in to encourage morning reading and 5 minutes more slumber*. Like I said, book lovers, avert your eyes! But when you’re in the middle of sleep challenges, extra sleep beats a pristine book spine any day. 

2. Supports night-time bathroom training: 

When going through the mental challenge that can be night-time bathroom training with your pre-schooler, access in and out of bed can become a major thing. Picture this: you've got the sheet protector, you've done the upgrade to night nappies and your child is actually ready to lose them altogether. You're in the zone, ready to support your child in navigating bathroom independence**. The last thing you want is an obstacle like their bed being too high for them to get in and out of easily. You're trying to build confidence here! A minute’s delay can be make or break. This is why we designed our Plyhome Junior Bed to be lower to the ground. It suits the little humans who sleep in it.

3. Teaches them how to not fall out of bed:

As adults, we can quickly forget having to learn this lesson. In a cot, babies get 4 walls to push away from if they manage to migrate to the edge of the mattress. It's absolutely no wonder that kids then fall out when transitioned into their big kid’s bed. Unnecessary night wakings aren't awesome. Preventing them for both you and your kids is.  Exactly why we created a built in guardrail on our Junior Bed. Here's why it's so good: 

  • Gentle flex. Like any parent who has been elbowed/pushed/kicked by a bed sharing restless sleeping kid, I know how some kids can sleep like they're mid marathon. The guard rail is strength tested in all the important places. It stops kids falling out of bed, but does so with design sympathy towards how kids actually sleep. Flaying elbows and all.
  • Excellent place to stash their favourite book for the morning read (see above)
  • Excellent peekaboo potential. Cutest way to say good morning, ever.
  • Excellent at keeping 5 teddies and 3 cars in the bed if your kids do that too.

4. Designed for asthma kids:

When we designed the Plyhome junior collection, asthma was a factor in the design of our cot and beds. My kids are some of the 15% of NZ kids that get it, and one of my children also has a severe dust mite allergy to the point where it can induce anaphylaxis (he carries an EpiPen everywhere he goes). Both asthma and dust mites are influences by airflow and humidity. It's why we’ve maximised airflow to the mattress (to reduce dampness). It’s why we’ve designed the legs so it’s easy to vaccum underneath the bed (reduce dust mites). And on the subject of vacuuming, it’s why we made sure that despite being super strong, the furniture could still be moved easily for vacuuming (reduce dust mites). It’s also why there are no upholstered surfaces on the frame (reduce dust mites). It’s why we’ve selected the finishes that we have (reduce allergens). To read more about advice on choosing the best bed option for kids with asthma/allergies - read what Consumer NZ say. 

5. It's strong: really, really strong

Ever actually looked at the weight tolerance of kids beds? It’s generally not very impressive at all. Usually, if you’re over 100kg's, you can’t even think about reading bedtime stories.  Not cool. Rips’ engineering background came in very handy for strength tolerances. Explains why when we tried to break the bed, we ran out of big blokes to test it at 570kg’s.  Strength and durability performance were important to use because our furniture is made for actual kids. Even if they do think they’re batman. It's also made for parents too, because musical beds is a super fun game ;) 

6. Supports the 2-minute bedroom tidy: 

Preschoolers attract stuff. Lots of it. The rest of their room may be a disaster zone but their bed is easy to keep tidy. Either tuck the duvet right in for a streamlined look, or leave it draped over the bed with the top 1/3 folded down, so that the top fold naturally sits where the guardrail starts (this is a great way to show off cool sheets by the way!).  Either way, it's a styled and contained space.

All up, not just a pretty face.

The Plyhome Junior Bed is indeed beautiful, but that beauty goes beyond the surface, with the parent-driven furniture design and engineering principals. It's designed for kids, but with a mum's perspective.  

Disclaimers:

*Obviously, we’re not saying to leave your kids unsupervised! But an 5 extra minutes resting your eyes and listening to your kid(s) happily look at a book is one of the best ways to start the day.

**For actual professional toilet training advice, head to an expert like Laura Morely.  

Read more


Plyhome Secures New Manufacturing Partner

Written by Anna Gilhooly, Co-Founder anna@plyhome.co.nz

Well, hello there: it’s been ages! So…we‘ve been a touch quiet (actually, resoundingly silent) lately and we wanted to let you know why.

Essentially, we went through the classic business problem of growing too busy, too quickly. People really loved our furniture and we loved sending it all over New Zealand: from Waiheke Island down to rural Queenstown. But it all happened in an absolute flash and two creatively-brained people were suddenly thrust into the business of operations, which wasn’t exactly our happy place. 

So…we did a lot of talking and a lot of listening to some very clever people about what to do.  As a result: we are so thrilled to announce that we have a very happy ending to our story, because we’ve found the perfect people to help take Plyhome to the next level, and even better: we didn’t have to go offshore to find them. Plyhome remains NZ made.

They hugely believe in the potential of our designs. They know manufacturing inside-out: we’ve got massive respect for what they do and how they do it. Their factory is a picture of Kanban efficiency, but it’s also a workplace of craftsmanship, with a level of care and attention to detail that made our heart’s sing. They  welcomed us staying involved in design and marketing. And to top it all off, they’re lovely, lovely people. Below is a pic of me with some of our new Plyhome family members (and yes, ten adults worth of weight on that Plyhome Junior Bed - told you it was strong!)

So…long story short, Plyhome is back. We’re a bigger team now, we’re definitely better and we all cannot wait to give our little furniture brand the future it absolutely deserves. On behalf of our now much bigger furniture family,  thank you for your ongoing support. 

Read more

Written by Anna Gilhooly, Co-Founder anna@plyhome.co.nz

Well, hello there: it’s been ages! So…we‘ve been a touch quiet (actually, resoundingly silent) lately and we wanted to let you know why.

Essentially, we went through the classic business problem of growing too busy, too quickly. People really loved our furniture and we loved sending it all over New Zealand: from Waiheke Island down to rural Queenstown. But it all happened in an absolute flash and two creatively-brained people were suddenly thrust into the business of operations, which wasn’t exactly our happy place. 

So…we did a lot of talking and a lot of listening to some very clever people about what to do.  As a result: we are so thrilled to announce that we have a very happy ending to our story, because we’ve found the perfect people to help take Plyhome to the next level, and even better: we didn’t have to go offshore to find them. Plyhome remains NZ made.

They hugely believe in the potential of our designs. They know manufacturing inside-out: we’ve got massive respect for what they do and how they do it. Their factory is a picture of Kanban efficiency, but it’s also a workplace of craftsmanship, with a level of care and attention to detail that made our heart’s sing. They  welcomed us staying involved in design and marketing. And to top it all off, they’re lovely, lovely people. Below is a pic of me with some of our new Plyhome family members (and yes, ten adults worth of weight on that Plyhome Junior Bed - told you it was strong!)

So…long story short, Plyhome is back. We’re a bigger team now, we’re definitely better and we all cannot wait to give our little furniture brand the future it absolutely deserves. On behalf of our now much bigger furniture family,  thank you for your ongoing support. 

Read more


Single Vs King Single: what's the difference?

Choosing your child's bed size can be a big deal, so we've created a handy little check-list of factors to take into consideration when choosing the bed size. 

1. It all comes down to size.

Basically, a King Single bed is just a little bit longer and a little bit wider than a single bed. At Plyhome, we use standard NZ mattress sizes -  which are:

  • Single: 1900mm Long x 910mm Wide
  • King Single: 2030mm Long x 1060mm Wide

2. So, which one?  

This entirely depends on your child’s genes, their room size, how they sleep and your parenting approach to bedtime stories and tricky nights!

  1. Genes: If you expect your kids are going to be tall, go for the King Single, because you’ll get more years out of it before their feet are dangling off the end. Likewise, if the chances are that your kids will be more on the petite side, you’ll be fine with a single for many years to come.
  2. Rooms: Because a King Single takes up more floor-space, if you’re tight on room, a single may be the answer to leave more room for play.
  3. Sleeping style: Is your child a serene "barely moves all night" sleeper, or one that ends up sideways with limbs all over the show as if they've run a marathon? Their sleeping style can indicate mattress size appropriateness too. It's not rocket science! An 'active' sleeper will do better on a bigger mattress. 
  4. Parenting approach to bedtime stories and tricky nights: A King Single is great for those tricky nights (illness/nightmares etc) when your child may need a bit of support getting through the night...you’ll comfortably be able to sleep in a King Single with them if needed, without needing a physio appointment the next day. It also means less squash factor if you like to cuddle up and read bedtime stories in your child's own bed as part of good sleep hygiene routines. 

3. Now, about that bedding:

NZ has plenty of options for bedding to suit both single and king single mattress sizes, but a great tip is to consider the height of your mattress too. Many mattresses are quite high so it pays to go up a size to ensure that the fitted sheet isn’t too tricky to get on the mattress and that the flat sheet is easily tucked in.

A pro tip is to consider whether you use a top sheet at all. A quality duvet, with an easily washable cover + a fitted sheet is often all you need. Looking for some quality kids bedding? Our favourite NZ quality brands are Foxtrot Home  One Hundred Percent Heart and Burrow & Be

The Plyhome mattress is actually designed with a lower 150mm profile. This enables you to get the maximum benefit of the guardrail but without losing any mattress quality. Our mattresses are double-sided (so can be flipped for Summer vs Winter for much more favourable mattress longevity) plus they have premium short profile springs. They’re more expensive than many on the market but as soon as you see them you'll understand why: they’re very, very good. And in our humble opinion, you don’t want to muck around with growing spines.

Read more

Choosing your child's bed size can be a big deal, so we've created a handy little check-list of factors to take into consideration when choosing the bed size. 

1. It all comes down to size.

Basically, a King Single bed is just a little bit longer and a little bit wider than a single bed. At Plyhome, we use standard NZ mattress sizes -  which are:

  • Single: 1900mm Long x 910mm Wide
  • King Single: 2030mm Long x 1060mm Wide

2. So, which one?  

This entirely depends on your child’s genes, their room size, how they sleep and your parenting approach to bedtime stories and tricky nights!

  1. Genes: If you expect your kids are going to be tall, go for the King Single, because you’ll get more years out of it before their feet are dangling off the end. Likewise, if the chances are that your kids will be more on the petite side, you’ll be fine with a single for many years to come.
  2. Rooms: Because a King Single takes up more floor-space, if you’re tight on room, a single may be the answer to leave more room for play.
  3. Sleeping style: Is your child a serene "barely moves all night" sleeper, or one that ends up sideways with limbs all over the show as if they've run a marathon? Their sleeping style can indicate mattress size appropriateness too. It's not rocket science! An 'active' sleeper will do better on a bigger mattress. 
  4. Parenting approach to bedtime stories and tricky nights: A King Single is great for those tricky nights (illness/nightmares etc) when your child may need a bit of support getting through the night...you’ll comfortably be able to sleep in a King Single with them if needed, without needing a physio appointment the next day. It also means less squash factor if you like to cuddle up and read bedtime stories in your child's own bed as part of good sleep hygiene routines. 

3. Now, about that bedding:

NZ has plenty of options for bedding to suit both single and king single mattress sizes, but a great tip is to consider the height of your mattress too. Many mattresses are quite high so it pays to go up a size to ensure that the fitted sheet isn’t too tricky to get on the mattress and that the flat sheet is easily tucked in.

A pro tip is to consider whether you use a top sheet at all. A quality duvet, with an easily washable cover + a fitted sheet is often all you need. Looking for some quality kids bedding? Our favourite NZ quality brands are Foxtrot Home  One Hundred Percent Heart and Burrow & Be

The Plyhome mattress is actually designed with a lower 150mm profile. This enables you to get the maximum benefit of the guardrail but without losing any mattress quality. Our mattresses are double-sided (so can be flipped for Summer vs Winter for much more favourable mattress longevity) plus they have premium short profile springs. They’re more expensive than many on the market but as soon as you see them you'll understand why: they’re very, very good. And in our humble opinion, you don’t want to muck around with growing spines.

Read more