stork craft hoop glider and ottoman set

Best Baby Glider: How to Pick The Right Chair for Your Nursery

by Michelle Hand |

My top baby glider pick: Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set

A glider is a nursery must-have, but how do you choose the right one?

Like all baby gear, there seems to be a plethora of choices for baby gliders. As if parents and soon-to-be parents didn’t have enough to worry about, they have to sort through thousands of different chairs to find the right glider to rock their baby to sleep. If you need a good starting guide, look no further! I have done the stressful research and trial and error for you. I found some of the best options for baby gliders depending on your style, needs and budget.

Best Basic Glider

The Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set is the classic standard nursery glider. It’s what people picture when someone says “glider.” And it’s the glider that I used to rock my son to sleep when he was just a little guy. This is a nice place to start if you aren’t sure you’ll need or use a glider yet. Some babies love gliders, some just don’t! Since it’s made by Stork Craft, it’s a really popular choice with both first time parents and seasoned parents. They know that they’re going to get a good product from a good company. Plus, it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg like some of the other options.

Pros

So what makes this glider so popular? It’s the basic staple of nursery gliders. This chair has been around for some time. The chair itself is made from wood and is cushioned all around with padding and a microfiber sort of fabric. It’s got all the basic features a parent needs, like decent padding, a storage pocket on each side of the seat, and a matching ottoman. It’s not fancy, but it does the job. Plus, the price tag just can’t be beat.

Image of the Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set, Espresso/Beige

Cons

However, be weary that with the Stork Craft Glider, you get what you pay for. There’s no locking mechanism for the gliding so that you can turn it into a standard chair when needed. Also, it only comes in a limited variety of stains and pad colors, so you might not be able to match your nursery furniture exactly. Finally, it’s not the highest of quality. It will almost guaranteed wear out after a few years like mine did. It’s good for about 8 or 9 months, then the bearings start to squeak and give out.

Once my son was a toddler and climbed and played on it, some of the wooden rails began to crack. We eventually ended up getting rid of it for a more updated glider when my daughter came around. Also be aware that you will need plenty of space for this thing to move. It’s range of motion is surprisingly large. We quickly learned that it can’t be too close to a wall, even if it’s placed across a corner of the room.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FryK45GBdk

Best Glider for Comfort

The Dutailier Sleigh Glider-Multiposition, Recline and Ottoman Combo is the top-of-the-line when it comes to baby gliders. It has all the features for both use and comfort that you could ever want in a glider. It look similar to all of the other standard baby gliders in that it’s made with a wood frame and fabric padding. But a deeper look shows the real quality of this glider, which has a 5 year manufacturer warranty.

Image of the Dutailier Sleigh Glider-Multi-Position Recline and Nursing Ottoman Combo, Espresso/Dark Grey

Pros

The padding is thicker and covers more of the seating area with this multi-position glider. Even the foam and stitching are wonderful! It’s handcrafted by Dutailier from sturdy Canadian plywood for construction that won’t fail even after years of use. They’ve got their own patented GLIDE-R-MOTION technology that uses geometry to achieve a smoother and longer glide.

It has a multi-position feature that allows you to lock the chair into one of 6 different positions. This means that you can glide as much as you want or not at all. It also has a reclinable backrest, which is wonderful for those nights that you end up camped out in the glider until 6am.

 

Image of the Dutailier Sleigh Glider-Multi-Position Recline and Nursing Ottoman Combo, Espresso/Dark GreyImage of the Dutailier Sleigh Glider-Multi-Position Recline and Nursing Ottoman Combo, Espresso/Dark Grey

Cons

This is seriously the nicest glider I’ve ever seen. However, it is not cheap. Not even a little bit. It costs about 2 or 3 times more than what most people want to (and can afford to!) spend on a glider. But rest assured that it costs so much because you are truly paying for a quality piece of furniture for your home, not just a cheap chair for baby’s room.

One other thing that I could mention is that my husband didn’t find it as comfortable as I did. I think it’s because he’s nearly 6 inches taller than me at 6’1, but he said that there wasn’t enough room in the seat for him and he had to use a pillow under his arm to help support the baby because the armrests were too low. Good to note if daddy is gonna be using the rocker more than mom.

Best Modern Glider

While the classic gliders are great and do their job, most modern mammas want a more updated look for their nursery while still getting the benefits of a glider. Enter the DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman. This gives you the gliding motion you need with the style you want. It’s fully upholstered instead of having a visible wooden frame. The lines are more straight and square to give it a fully modern look. A one year warranty doesn’t hurt either!

Image of the DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman, Grey

Pros

This chair is cute! It’s upholstered in heathered polyester that is really easy to keep clean. The back is made to be a bit higher so that your head and neck can be fully supported, and the included matching lumbar pillow helps your back stay comfy, too. As for the gliding motion, I love that this chair has options.

It’s got a 360 degree swivel design that can also glide forward and backward. This makes it so nice when you need to turn the chair a little to grab something off of the nightstand or mix up the motion from a traditional glide by swiveling back and forth for a minute. The other thing I love about it? It can easily grow up with your child and become big kid or even teenage furniture for them without looking old-fashioned or baby-like.

Image of the DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman, GreyImage of the DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman, Grey

Cons

This DaVinci Olive Glider comes with a matching ottoman that’s equally as cute and modern as the chair. The problem is, the ottoman doesn’t glide. It’s just a stationary ottoman. This sounds like a good idea in theory, because it gives you a base to push off from when you glide, but since it doesn’t move with the glider, your feet fall off. You’ll end up gliding with bent knees, which isn’t very comfortable.

The only other thing that is kind of annoying is the incline level of the back. It’s pretty deep, which is nice for when you want to doze off, but it’s not as comfortable when you want to glide with baby and read or watch TV. The price tag is considerable, but it won’t completely break the bank.

Image of the DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman, Grey

Best Recliner/Glider Hybrid

Maybe you want a glider, but you also want a recliner, and you kind of also want just a cute chair. You can get all three in one! The Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner is the best of all worlds. It has the style of a lovely upholstered chair, the relaxing, kick-your-feet-up comfort of a recliner, and the smooth forward and backward motion of a glider. It really can’t be beat!

Pros

This chair doesn’t look like a piece of nursery furniture, but it sure can function like one. It’s upholstered in either microfiber or linen-looking, easy clean fabric with accent piping and button tufting on the back for a gorgeous look. The track arms are at a great height for resting elbows that are supporting a sleeping baby. The seat has spring forms and foam for lots of comfort.

You can use the recline feature to prop up your legs, recline back a little, or fully recline to an almost-lying position. The base of the Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner has a swivel design, so you can swivel all the way around when you need to turn the chair. The swivel base also allows for gliding forward and backward.

Image of the Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner, Gray Microfiber

Cons

The biggest con for me with this chair is that it isn’t the highest quality. It’s certainly not the nicest chair I’ve ever bought for my house. I feel like it wouldn’t last beyond about 3 or 4 years of use. The fabric and frame just don’t seem up to the challenge. Another problem: you can’t recline and glide at the same time. I understand that this is probably for safety, but it would be awesome for gliding both mom and baby to sleep at the same time! The price tag is pretty big, and for the quality, I feel like it’s just a bit too high.

Michelle Hand
Michelle Hand is the mom of a very busy one-year-old and a super fun kindergartener. She splits her time between writing and hanging out with her family. She loves researching and writing to help moms find the best products. When she has some free time, she likes hiking, singing and playing the piano, reading, and taking her dog for walks.

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