How to Choose a Nursery Glider or Recliner

Choose a Nursery Glider or Recliner
Choose a Nursery Glider or Recliner

Parents-to-be are faced with so many choices when it comes to nurseries. We dwell on the tiniest differences in paint hues (Ocean Serenity Blue? Or the Morning Rain Blue? Or the Angel’s Kisses Blue?). We debate over changing tables and diaper genies. We strive to create nurturing, cozy environments for our little ones to come home to and we fill them with all things soft and fuzzy.

Nursery décor is as varied as our parenting styles. Some of us prefer gentle hues and traditional settings while others go for bold designs with bright colors and sleek, modern furnishings. Whatever style you choose, don’t forget to include in your planning an absolute must-have for weary moms and dads: the nursery chair. Whether it’s a stationary one or (better yet) a glider or recliner, a nursery chair is a necessity.

We know the word “recliner” elicits some groans and eye rolls. Some of you cannot picture a recliner without thinking of the eyesore your Uncle Fred sat in for what seemed like 17 hours a day, a faded pea-green monstrosity that smelled just as ugly as it looked.

Rest assured nursery gliders and recliners are not going to be a blemish on your otherwise perfect décor. In fact, they might turn out to be the stunning centerpiece! With so many eye-catching styles to choose from, you are sure to find one that looks right at home in your little one’s nest. But choosing a recliner or glider isn’t just about décor. We’ll walk you through the three most important things you need to know before you buy!


If you are expecting your first little one, trust us when we tell you that you’ve never experienced fatigue like the kind you will feel when it’s time to feed a baby at 3 a.m. Comfort is incredibly important in a nursery chair and your tired and aching bones will need it. Breastfeeding can be a stressful experience for many new mothers and one of the best things you can do to relax is to create a comfortable and soothing environment for you and your baby.

While it might be tempting to order a nursery chair in a cyber Monday special, we urge you to sit in it first! You can always try one out in a store and order it later online at a discount.  Or, if you are ordering online without trying the chair first, be sure to check the company’s return policy.

Look for a chair with good lower back support as well as wide padded arms where you can rest your arms comfortably while feeding. And be sure you are as comfortable sitting in the chair as you are getting out of it. Lifting your tired body will already feel like a chore so make sure you can get up easily!


Nursery gliders and recliners should be covered in durable, stain-resistant fabric. They will see their share of wear and tear (and spit up!) so you want a fabric that can be easily cleaned. Avoid any rough fabrics that will feel harsh against baby’s delicate skin.

Bear in mind the chair can and should outlive the nursery years so even if that pink elephant fabric is tempting, you may be better served by a solid hue that can easily transition into a child’s and even teen’s bedroom. Or one that can be repurposed in another room in your home!


A well-designed nursery glider or recliner will be held to the highest safety standards and you should accept nothing less. Make sure the chair you choose comes with safety features that prevent tiny hands from being pinched. There should be no sharp edges. If you’re buying a glider, you should only purchase chairs that have a stop-lock design. Before you know it, that tiny newborn will be a crawling toddler, anxious to explore his surroundings. Therefore, you want a chair that he cannot easily recline or set to gliding mode on its own.  Safety is an important feature when it comes to chair coverings as well. Look for non-toxic and flame retardant fabrics and avoid any embellishments that could be a choking hazard for a curious little one.

Our Favorite Nursery Chairs

The Delta Children Skylar Nursery Glider Swivel Rocker Tub Chair is big on style without taking up too much space which is perfect for smaller nurseries. It comes in four neutral colors so it can easily transition to spaced beyond the nursery, too! The chairs flared padded arms provide a comfortable setting for new mothers to nurse and it has great lower back support as well.

If your little one has a more spacious room, the Carter’s by Davinci Adrian Swivel Glider with Storage Ottoman provides an especially comfortable seat with a place to kick up your feet. And the ottoman is not only great for relaxation, it has storage space to boot! This is perfect for extra diapers, blankets, or lots of other little items you’ll want to tuck away. A lumbar pillow is included with the chair to offer additional lower back support and the water repellant and stain resistant fabric gives you assurance the chair will stand the test of time in your home, whether in the nursery or family room. For handy parents-to-be willing to assemble their own nursery chair,

the Lenox Contemporary Style Glider Chair and Ottoman Combo is a budget-friendly choice that offers padded-arm comfort for late-night nursing sessions. It comes in three neutral colors and the high-back seat offers great head support as well as lower back support. Throw in your own lumbar accent pillow to add a little pizzazz. This would be a great spot for that pink elephant fabric you loved.