Gliders: How to choose a glider and ottoman for the nursery
Consumer Reports News: April 13, 2009 05:12 PM
Gliders are more comfortable than an old-fashioned rocking chair and you’ll use one more than you think, especially in your baby’s first year. Still, at $130 to $2,600, a glider can feel like a splurge, especially at the high end.
You may be tempted to do without but if you’re having a baby shower, why not put it on your wish list? It’s an expensive item, but friends and family may chip in as a group to buy it for you. “Our nursery was furnished by five people,” says Danamarie DeRiggi, a new mom from Atlanta. “One set of friends bought the crib. My family bought the rest of the pieces for the nursery, including the glider.”
What to look for: Glider guidelines
A comfy seat. When you’re testing models for your wish list, sit in the chair and glide away. That’s the best way to tell if a chair’s seat fits you comfortably. Have your spouse try it out too if both of you will be using it. Get a glider with a generously wide seat and arms that won’t hem you in. Both these features are especially important if you plan to use a nursing pillow. And with a baby on board, you’ll need the room.
Dark-colored cushions. Stay away from natural beige or pastel fabrics. Furniture fabric can appear soiled from normal wear and tear. And, of course, washable fabrics are a plus.
A locking mechanism. Look for a glider that locks in place or that has a base that’s constructed to hide the gliding mechanism. You don’t want to be gliding when you’re feeding your newborn if you also have a curious toddler underfoot; little fingers can get caught in the gliding mechanism. You’ll also want to lock it to keep your toddler (your baby--soon enough!) safe if he should happen to “play” with the glider when you’ve turned your back.
Springs under the seat. “You want to make sure the fabric underneath the seat cushion has springs attached to it,” says Seth Berger, director of operations of Kids Home Furnishings, a baby-to-teen furniture store in Stamford, Conn. You may find four small springs that secure a bottom piece of fabric to the chair frame. That’s good. The underbelly of the seat shouldn’t be just fabric glued to a frame. You won’t have much support or shock absorption.
A warranty. If you choose a glider, you’ll want to know if the bearings, which run the gliding mechanism, have a warranty. They get a lot of wear over time. With gliders, ten years is a good warranty length, although a lifetime warranty is better.