Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV


May 16, 2013

Take a seat, tot: choices in potty seats abound


Grandparents are often the buyers of these thrones, she said, and the chairs match the company's bedroom furniture sets with royal themes. They come with matching wood seat covers that turn them into regular chairs when training is complete.

Sick of unsightly plastic, but not looking for ornate? The Potty Bench by Boon Inc. is sleek and curvy in minimalist color schemes of bright green or aqua against white.

"We wanted it to look cool. Take a look at the children's industry in the early 2000s and it was just all pastely and it had not had a facelift, ever. We wanted to bring cool style and design to parents," said Ryan Fernandez, co-founder of the company and father of four girls 12 and under.

Potty seats just keep on coming, said Narmin Parpia, whose RNK Innovations makes the ones akin to ride-on toys.

"Isn't it crazy? The idea is to keep the child amused while they're on there, just to keep them entertained while they sit and wait for things to happen. I think moms today are expecting it to be easy and it isn't always as easy as they think it is," she said.

Sales of her company's Riding Potty Chair increased last year by 5 to 10 percent over the year before, she said.

"But I think some of the seats would drive me crazy as a parent. Mostly the ones that play music when a sensor gets wet and you have to dry it off completely to make it stop," said Parpia, whose kids are now 18 and 21. "I think at some point, when it does too much, it becomes a toy and the child wants to play with it rather than use it."

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