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Beyond the plastic gate: Baby-proofing in style

  • This photo provided by Regal Lager shows the Qdos Crystal Baby Gate. A new generation of baby-proofing products aim to combine safety with chic. (Patrick Heagney/Regal Lager via AP) Patrick Heagney

  • This photo provided by Fusion Gates shows one of company's styled baby gates. A new generation of baby-proofing products aim to combine safety with chic. (Carmen Troesser/Fusion Gates via AP) Carmen Troesser

  • In this May 2018 photo, 3-year-old Imran Sethna examines a child safety latch on the refrigerator door in Broomfield, Colo. Baby proofing products have become more diversified in recent years, and parents can find a wide range of different items in different styles and price points. (Mary Sethna via AP) Mary Sethna

  • In this May 2018 photo, two-year-old Bradan Brook sits atop the open staircase in Arvada, Colo. The Brook household doesn't use many baby proofing products, including gates to block stairs, said mother Maya Brook. (Maya Brook via AP) Maya Brook



Associated Press
Tuesday, June 05, 2018

It’s a headache known to many new parents: Suddenly, your stylish abode morphs into a menagerie of outlet covers and cabinet locks.

While the phrases “baby-proofing” and “kid-friendly” rarely conjure up images of elegance or sophistication, recent years have seen a range of more modern and stylish products available to those who want them.

Baby-proofing has gone glam, so to speak.

Parents can now cover the corners of their furniture with a variety of soft materials, or cordon off stove burners with a slick-looking adhesive guard. There are products for window-blind cords, door pinch protectors, locks for doors and toilet seats, covers for stove knobs, and more.

No need any longer to block your stairway with a white plastic fence. A Georgia-based company, Qdos, sells a “crystal hardware mount gate,” a clear acrylic panel that looks like a window. Qdos also sells outlet covers that can be slid open when you want to plug something in, and an adhesive stove guard that attaches around the front and sides of the four burners.

An Illinois company, Fusion Gates, makes baby barriers that resemble stained-glass windows. They come with a satin nickel, white pearl or black finish.

For table corners, online retailer Ellas Homes makes clear orb-shaped covers. The products look like gel but are made of plastic.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for locally, there’s always the internet, said mother Danielle Cormier-Smith. “I live in an older home and we have narrow stairwells that need smaller gates,” she said.