Ready to give your baby solids? Cue aeroplane spoons! Weaning is one of the best bits of the baby adventure and we’ve got the perfect highchairs for the job.
Babies love being at eye level with grown ups and joining the dinner table makes for great family bonding time. Occasionally pea puree may fly but that’s all part of the fun! OK so let’s look at the three questions to ask before deciding on the highchair that’s right for you.
1. What are my options?
Most highchairs are suitable for use from six months, around the time babies are ready to start solids, but some are suitable from birth. These are the main categories:
Wooden highchairs. Perfect for making a style statement, wooden highchairs look good alongside existing furniture and last a lot longer than their plastic counterparts, in fact Tripp Trapp chairs last to adulthood. Easy to keep clean with warm water – no toxic cleaners needed – their smooth lines mean less places for food to hide. Some convert into a chair and table, others like the Funpod convert to a safety stool so little one can help with food prep at the kitchen counter.
Fun & funky highchairs. The new wave of contemporary highchairs really pack a designer punch. Styleseekers love the futuristic vibe of Brother Max Scoop’s sleek lines while Cosatto’s 3 Sixti has a multiple height gas lift and some deliciously eye-popping prints.
Folding highchairs. Great if you’re short on space or on a budget, the classic folding highchair formula is a lightweight coated metal frame, padded PVC-covered seat and easy wipe plastic tray. Our bestselling Snack highchair is a firm favourite and folds like an ironing board to stow away under the stairs or sofa. Lots of folding highchairs have wheels so they’re easy to move from kitchen to playroom or dining room.
Portable highchairs. Just the ticket if you’re out for lunch, visiting granny or off on your hols, portable highchairs can have pincers that clamp on to the table like Phil&Teds Lobster, others like the Totseat are made of fabric that simply slips over the chair – great for keeping in your changing bag. There are also plenty of different booster seat options.
2. Any additional features to look out for?
Absolutely! These are our favourite features:
Recline settings: highchairs with one or more recline settings are handy as you don’t have to wait until baby can sit up to use it. We don’t recommend you let baby sleep in a highchair however.
Adjustable harness: not all harnesses are adjustable. Highchairs with two or more harness heights are ideal for growing with your child.
Removable and adjustable tray: an adjustable tray adjusts outwards as baby grows. Some highchairs have fixed trays, others are removable for easy cleaning.
Double tray: once the first course is dispensed with the top tray simply unclips to reveal a nice clean undertray for the fruit course.
Cup holder: handy moulded insert for the beaker of juice to sit happily in.
Adjustable height: most chairs have between three and six heights. The beauty of multi-height chairs is that your little one can always be at your level, whether you’re on a sofa or on a stool.
Adjustable footrest: some are pivoted, some are notched. Either way it’s nice for little feet to have somewhere to perch.
Accessory basket: handy storage beneath the chair for wipes, spare bibs and spare cutlery so you don’t have to leave your child until the meal is finished.
Comfy cushions, liners and inserts: if you’re buying a wooden chair you’ll probably want a padded liner to keep little one comfy. There are plenty of highchair accessories to choose from – branded or universal, depending on your model. Optional extras include splash mats to protect your floor from enthusiastic eaters as well as highchair suction toys to keep little ones happy while you’re preparing lunch.
3. How can I make sure my child is safe?
Most highchairs come with a 5 point harness (with the exception of Tripp Trapp & BabyBjorn) and some models have extra crotch support as well. Kiddicare and Graco highchairs have lockable wheels so baby can’t go zooming away from your pureed veg.
Don’t leave baby unattended in a highchair and whenever a highchair is folded it should always be safely kept out of baby’s reach. Always do a scan from baby’s eye level to see what’s within grabbing or swiping distance. It goes without saying but if baby’s in the kitchen with you please keep sharp utensils, glassware and heirloom crockery well out of harm’s way.
And finally, all our highchairs are compliant with BS EN14988 2006.