Happy with the sturdy wood frame since my daughter is rough on things. We got the natural wood because I wanted a change from all the dark furniture we have. The espresso probably would be better to hide the marks from inevitably "missing" the board or paper for younger kids. My daughter is 2.5 yrs old so is still pretty messy. It does wipe off well though. I would have given 5 stars but one of the trays wasn't square so it wouldn't assemble correctly. Luckily my husband was able take it apart and fix it with wood glue and a clamp and you can't tell it was ever faulty. And my daughter loves it!