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Purchasing a high chair was something that we had always put in the “we’ll do it later, we have time” box. With so many big baby purchases, it didn’t really seem like a priority – until it was. CJ started displaying all the signs of solid readiness a little early than expected and we were feeding him perched on our knees, quite the messy and awkward experience. We took the opportunity at the Auckland Baby Show to examine our favorite high chairs close up and ultimately came to the decision best for our family. Primarily we were looking for adjustable high chairs that could then be used as seats for CJ to join us at the family table. Below are the contenders and the ultimate winner for us. We would fully recommend any of the following high chairs, depending on your personal situation.
The Mocka Original highchair adjusts to provide a safe, comfortable, and sturdy first chair as your child grows.Holding up to 60kg in weight, your Mocka Original wooden highchair will be used by your children (and potentially slender adults!) for years to come. Adjustable tray settings, multiple seat and footrest heights and armrests allow the highchair to grow safely and comfortably with your child and a harness is available for purchase for an additional safety measure. The Mocka Original wooden highchair easily transforms into a height-suitable seat at the dining table once the high chair format is no longer required. Made from from sustainable beech-wood that has been PEFC certified, the Mocka Original wooden highchair can’t tear, buckle, or warp. Its solid design meets international safety standards, and can be easily and hygienically wiped clean. The purchase price currently (Sept 2014) includes free nationwide delivery, free seat and back cushions, free safety strap and a 12-month warranty. Mocka also offer a 10-day 100% money back guarantee, no questions asked.
Gold medal winner for best high chair in the OhBaby! Magazine awards, this highchair is becoming increasingly popular in the restaurants that we frequent, quite possibly because it is incredibly easy to clean and sanitize. Made from moulded white plastic, the contemporary, modern and simplistic design fits well in most homes. The Mocka Designer is also easily transportable, as it has removable legs and tray so can be stowed easily. Purchase price includes feeding tray and black lap safety strap as well as free nationwide delivery. Cushions and additional harnessing for small babies are also available for purchase.
The Stokke Tripp Trapp had been on my radar for years, ever since my younger sister was recommended one by her pediatric specialist. Manufactured from cultivated beech but available in a wide range of colours, the Tripp Trapp is strong, solid and durable.The height and depth of the seat (and foot plate) is adjustable and grows with the child, adapting to the child’s body instead of vice versa. This means that the child can be elevated up to the correct height at the table and can be part of the dining experience. No fixed tray means that the child can come closer to the table. A wide range of accessories means that the chair is suitable from birth until 12 years of age – although I definitely know of occasions when adults have managed to commandeer it as a chair for the night! Registration at http://www.stokke.com entitles the owner to a 7-year Extended Warranty, providing a secure investment in a piece of furniture that will be a pivotal part of your home.
Australian-made and a newcomer to the NZ market, the Kaylula Ava Forever High Chair comes with and adjustable tray and adjustable seat and foot rest. The design will morph and grow with your child, with a maximum recommended weight of 45kg. Made from European beech wood, similar to the Tripp Trapp, the purchase price includes both a soft padded seat liner and a plastic protective tray for use with the removable wooden tray. A five point harness ensures your child is safe and secure in the seat.
The Nuna Zaaz is a relative newcomer to the market. We were first introduced to the Nuna brand when we purchased the Nuna Sena portacot and have enjoyed the ease of use in assembly of this item. We were very interested to see the capabilities of the Zaaz. Similar to the Tripp Trapp, you are able to customize the Zaaz to any size and height easily, letting your child join in at the dining table. The five point harness keeps baby safe, switching to three point harness (and then no harness) as your child grows. The chair has air foam cushions that are easy to clean – the no-crevice design outwits crumbs and makes cleaning a dream, ideal for busy households. You can also use the dishwasher for all removable components, saving time on clean up.
The seat has 3 recline positions; fully lie-flat newborn cradle, semi recline & upright seat. These are easily transitioned to using a light touch pull handle. The chair has a removable sculpted booster seat for use with smaller infants (like CJ), engineered to direct spills away from seat unit. The chair also has 360-degree swivel and pneumatic up/down height adjustment allowing for tray heights up to 91cm. This was the key factor for us in choosing this chair as our current place is too small to allow for comfortable use of a dining table. The increased height of this chair over other high chairs means that we can all happily sit up to our breakfast bar to eat meals as a family. We can lower the height in future if we move into a home where there is more space for communal eating around a table. There is the option to use with the super-size tray (ideal for baby-led weaning), smaller “play tray” or with the aluminum safety bar – trays are made from food grade plastic and are dishwasher safe. The seat and seat pads are easy to wipe clean and there are no crevices in which food can get stuck. The removable harness straps and footrest allow conversion to a play seat for kids up to 36kg and if CJ is anything like his parents, that means it will last him until he’s at least a tween. It also had the CJ seal of approval at the Baby Show, immediately stopping our grizzly Gus as he sat high in his throne and surveyed his kingdom.
There’s such a diverse range of high chairs out there and to cover them all in this post would take time that this mum just doesn’t have! I hope that this helps those of you in the market for a high chair to ultimately make a decision that feels right for you. Knowing about some of the nifty newborn accessories – especially for the Tripp Trapp and the Bloom Fresco – makes me wish that I’d known about these earlier; we could have had six months more use out of the chairs!