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Kirstie Waterston is a journalist with over 10 years’ experience in Scottish news as a reporter, sub-editor and head of production at the Aberdeen Evening Express. Kirstie and her husband Jack have 2 boys, a baby aged 9 months and a 38-month-old toddler. The highchair was tested at home in their kitchen/dining area for meals, snacks and toddler activities.
What were your first impressions of the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
The box the Bugaboo Giraffe comes delivered in is compact and easy to lift. When you open it up you’ll spot a QR code which takes you straight to a handy Bugaboo how-to video showing you how to build the highchair. I was truly delighted to see that all the packaging was 100% recyclable, with Bugaboo emphasising how much greener this highchair is. Despite not being filled to the brim with foam or airbags, the product is very well packaged, nothing had moved in transit. Straight away, the first impressions of the product meet the expectation of a top brand like Bugaboo. The beechwood legs are very sturdy, smooth and sculptural. Similarly the seat is solid, yet curvaceous – it is clearly a high-calibre product.
How easy is the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair to build?
With only 3 elements, the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair can be built in under 10 minutes. It is very self-explanatory, but in addition to the excellent video tutorial, there is a paper instruction booklet and I referred to both during construction. One thing to note is that the Allen key and screws are attached to a single, small piece of cardboard. In my excitement to get the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair out of the box, I had discarded the crucial components needed to put it together, so had to rifle through a pile of cardboard in a slight panic to locate them.
With the crisis averted, it is easy to assemble. You simply slot the legs together into the seat (easiest if you lie the chair down) and then put a screw in each leg which you tighten with the Allen key. Be aware this isn’t a seat that clicks together – you do need to properly screw it together like you would with a bit of furniture. It is worth testing the chair at this point by lifting it slightly to ensure you have properly attached the legs. When I did this, I found I hadn’t tightened one of the screws enough as a gap appeared between the leg and seat. The baby seat is very easy to attach, it simply snaps on to the seat.
How easy is the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair to use with your baby and toddler?
The Bugaboo Giraffe was a dream to use with both my baby and toddler. My 9 month old felt very safe, secure and comfortable in the seat. It’s easy to lower my baby into the seat and strap him in, and when removing him, his legs don’t get caught. For toddler mode, you simply remove the baby seat then adjust the seat lower than you do for baby mode to create a bigger surface area for the older child to sit on. In the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair, he is at an ideal height for using the table instead of a tray, and if you push the highchair in towards the table it also means he can’t escape mid-meal. However, a customer reviewer on Amazon did note that while the seat appears ergonomic and gives good lower back support, when using this chair with an older child the smoothness of the wood made it easy for them to slide off.
What are the straps and harness like on the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
The Bugaboo Giraffe highchair straps are identical to the straps you would see on a Bugaboo buggy. They have a super secure 5-point fastening and, like the pushchair harness, are easy to adjust. The straps are comfortable with plenty of padding around the shoulders, although I did find they slipped down on my 9 month old, despite me trying to adjust them to prevent this happening. He is quite slight compared to other babies of the same age, so I dare say as he gets bigger and broader this won’t be an issue. The downside to the straps slipping down is that they are more likely to get covered in food. They clean easily if you wipe them quickly, but dried food is more likely to get stuck in the ridges of the fabric. However, you can take the straps off completely for a more thorough wash.
How comfortable does your baby/toddler look when inside the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
Despite not being overly keen on highchairs, my baby is genuinely happy to be in the Bugaboo Giraffe as he is more cocooned. He absolutely loves the footrest and enjoys drumming his feet on it and banging his hands on the tray joyfully. He has a great vantage point at the table, and because the tray isn’t massive, he feels closer to the table at mealtimes.
Meanwhile, I’d go as far to say the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair has revolutionised mealtimes with my toddler. In fact, the baby barely gets a look-in and has been relegated back to his IKEA highchair, because the Bugaboo Giraffe has been claimed as the toddler’s throne. At 38 months old he’s getting a bit on the large side for some highchairs, but he’s still not big enough to sit unaided at the table. We’d started having a bit of a battle with the toddler leaving the table before finishing or capering. But he is so enamoured with the Bugaboo Giraffe which he calls his “special seat”, and we are pretty enamoured with it too. I also found the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair was great for helping him to focus on an activity like colouring too. Usually if we do colouring he’d be sitting on the floor with a book and crayons, but sitting up at the table knowing he wasn’t able to draw on the walls, he was allowed to use felt pens, which he absolutely loved.
How adjustable is the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
The Bugaboo Giraffe highchair’s main selling point is that it suits all ages and stages, with it having a range of height options to best suit your child. Both the seat height and footrest height adjust independently, meaning it can easily be tailored to a growing child. You simply hold down the buttons on each side of the seat or footrest and slide it into the desired position. However, one Amazon review suggested that Bugaboo’s claim of 1-second adjustment was a little optimistic as it took around 5 seconds, adding that as your child grows, it’s easy enough for them to work out themselves.
How easy is the Bugaboo Giraffe to clean and keep clean?
The manufacturer advises to wipe the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair with a cloth, and the curved tray is an absolute breeze to wipe clean because there are no corners for food to get trapped in. The tray is constructed from a high-quality sustainable plastic and didn’t scratch or scuff, so handled a thorough clean well. If it’s really grubby it can also go in a dishwasher, which is handy if you’re a busy parent navigating the mess of weaning. Meanwhile, the legs can be cleaned in seconds with a damp cloth. However, my toddler is a very messy eater and when he dropped food on the ledge that attaches the seat to the legs – which is quite easily done – it was more difficult to clean, because some of the food went underneath the seat.
Anyone familiar with Bugaboo buggies will notice that the Giraffe straps have the same look and feel as their prams. While they do look good, they can get dirty quickly at mealtimes and need to be wiped thoroughly to get food out of the ridges in the fabric. The covers for the seat pad and back are machine washable, which is an absolute must, because toddlers and raspberries do not mix! Not only did my toddler christen the pale grey seat pad with mashed berries during its debut in our kitchen, he also scribbled on it with a blue felt pen. I put the cover in the washing machine at 30°c and was delighted, if not a little surprised, that the stains had completely gone. The seat pad itself is also wiped clean easily with a cloth.
How much space does the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair take up?
The footprint of the Bugaboo Giraffe makes it no bigger than your average highchair, with its dimensions of H76.4cmxW53.7cmxD59cm not taking up any more room compared to our IKEA one. We have quite an awkward dining space in our kitchen as you have to walk through it to get from the hall on one side to the back door on the other. Despite this, the chair didn’t feel too obstructive, although my husband tripped over the splayed legs a couple of times.
Does the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair fold?
With the Giraffe, Bugaboo is hoping to change the mindset when it comes to highchairs, describing the Giraffe as “a piece of furniture that will fit in any interior”. The Bugaboo Giraffe therefore does not fold; if you are compromised for space or don’t have anywhere out of the kitchen to store it, do bear this in mind before purchasing.
Is the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair easy to store?
When the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair was in baby mode and not being used, I stood it in the corner of the room. Also, if you remove the baby seat part, the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair does push under a table like any other chair, so it takes up less room in that respect if you need it to.
Can you easily move the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair around the house?
While the Bugaboo Giraffe frame is pretty lightweight at 5kg, it feels quite cumbersome when lifting. However, you’d expect it to be sturdy seeing as its upper weight limit is a whopping 100kg which can accommodate a large adult. Nevertheless, it would be awkward to move around the house often because it does not have wheels, but this heftiness does reflect the quality of the materials used in its manufacture.
What do you think of the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair’s style and design?
Bugaboo boasts that the Giraffe highchair combines luxury, practicality and durability, while its design is stylish enabling it to coordinate perfectly with any décor. Basically, the Giraffe isn’t like other highchairs which you’d normally want to fold and hide away. As well as being ergonomically-designed, it is also very aesthetically pleasing, like the iconic Stokke Tripp Trapp, for example. It is definitely a highchair you’d be happy to have sitting in your kitchen, and dare I say, show off. It’s very minimalistic with clean lines – there are no frills – but its beauty is in its simplicity.
There are no ugly hinges, just discreet buttons underneath, and there’s no cheap, hollow plastic; instead there are sleek, solid wood legs made from FSC® certified European beechwood. And forget garish, PVC seat cushions – the Bugaboo Giraffe has a choice of 3 chic shades for its bio-friendly material pillows: Ice Blue, Arctic White and Stormy Grey. If plain white is just a bit too minimalist for you, the frame also comes in a choice of colours too: neutral and wood, warm wood and grey, black, and an online exclusive blue. The only downside to the frame being made from wood rather than plastic means it is more susceptible to damage in the long run.
How do you rate the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair features?
I love how fuss-free the Giraffe highchair is when it comes to adjusting it for your growing baby. The sides of the chair click and slide in only 1 second to adjust the footrest to 9 positions and seat rest to 5 positions, without the need for tools. This is ideal for any parent wanting to find the optimal combination to make your child’s mealtime as comfortable and easy as possible. The tray is also very robust, it doesn’t twist or move when a baby bangs away on it. It’s smooth and curved, and can be put in a dishwasher to clean. However, one slight downside is that the tray is smaller than the IKEA one we’re used to, and we found our silicone, rectangular baby plates were too big to fit on it.
Does it have additional functionality?
The unique selling point of the Bugaboo Giraffe is that it is far more than just a highchair and will last your little one from birth, weaning, through childhood and beyond, because it transforms into a chair with a maximum weight capacity of 100kg. The innovative design and careful construction gives it longevity to still be relevant beyond toddlerhood, which is majorly attractive to those wanting a chair that is built to last.
What is the age suitability for the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
With the addition of the newborn set for babies aged 0-6 months, the age range for the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair is from birth to upwards of 36 months. The newborn set raises your baby up to the same height as a highchair to join in at mealtimes. Personally, I’m not sure this is a function I’d have used. Although it looks cosy and comfortable – Bugaboo describes it as a cocoon – I’m just not sure how useful it is for the extra expense, especially if you find your baby doesn’t like it. I had a reflux baby, so being restrained in a flat position would never have been an option for us. It is worth adding you can buy an additional rocker frame (£89.95) for the newborn set, which turns it into a portable rocker which can be used around the house. Beyond 36 months, there is no age limit, only a weight limit (100kg/220lbs), which I think is the real attraction in buying a Bugaboo Giraffe highchair. There is something to be said for a highchair that is functional and practical well into childhood when many other must-have baby items are quickly outgrown. Bugaboo are keen to stress that the Giraffe highchair has been designed specially to last for years to come and with the environment in mind. The fact it is made from more ‘grown up’ materials means a 14 year old would be as happy perched on this seat as a 4 year old.
How does the Bugaboo Giraffe compare to other highchairs you have used?
We have only ever used the cheap and cheerful IKEA ANTILOP highchair, which is very much at the opposite end of the price scale at £15. The Bugaboo Giraffe is undeniably a budget-busting option coming in at £205 for the frame alone – you need to buy the seat and tray separately. The best-selling IKEA highchair can be deconstructed for storage and is a practical option when space is at a premium. Also subscribing to the minimalist aesthetic, it has a blow-up back cushion that you can buy to make mealtimes more comfortable, and a basic 3-point harness. There’s no denying that the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair is much more comfortable, particularly as it has a footrest, which is said to promote better and safer eating habits. But if I’m honest, it’s like comparing a Bentley to a Ford Fiesta, which does both highchairs a disservice. One is aspirational and beautiful, the other is a reliable workhorse for the mass market. The IKEA high chair suits cost-conscious families, whereas the price of Bugaboo Giraffe means it is aimed at the luxury market.
How does the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair measure up when it comes to similar products?
|Product name||Weight||Age range||Dimensions (Hcm x Wcm x Dcm)||Folds?||RRP (£)|
|Bugaboo Giraffe Highchair||5kg||From birth to adulthood (users up to 100kg)||H:76.4cm x W:53.7cm x D:59cm||No||From £205|
|Tutti Bambini Nova Highchair||11.3kg||From 6-months to 12-years in highchair mode||H:98cm x W:48cm x D:69cm||Yes||From £179|
|Maxi-Costa Nesta Highchair||6.3kg||From birth to adulthood (users up to 110kg)||H:100cm x W:46cm x D:65cm||No||From £174.99|
|Stokke Tripp Trapp® Chair||15.4kg||From birth to adulthood (users up to 136kg)||H:79cm x W46cm x D:49cm||No||From £219|
What’s in the box?
- Front legs
- Back legs
- 4 x screws and an Allen key
- Instruction manual
What are the additional accessories that you can buy?
For this to actually function as a highchair, you need to buy the baby seat and tray separately, which would be an essential purchase. Similarly, to make it truly comfortable for your baby and toddler you would want to buy the cushion set.
- Bugaboo Giraffe baby seat set £67.95
- Bugaboo Giraffe tray £44.95
- Bugaboo Giraffe newborn set £84.95
- Bugaboo Giraffe rocker frame £89.95
- Bugaboo Giraffe baby pillow set £31.95
Now you’ve tested the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair, what would you have wanted to know before purchasing the product?
Anybody considering the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair should be aware before purchasing that you do need to buy lots of added extras that you would normally expect to come with a highchair, such as the tray and seat. By the time you have bought the Bugaboo Giraffe seat, tray and cushions etc you will have spent a few pennies shy of £350. Bugaboo do offer bundles, where you can purchase the items at once, with the complete All-In from birth upwards package consisting of all the must-have accessories, priced around £500. As well as the extra costs, not being able to fold away the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair could also pose a problem for families in flats or who have smaller dining/kitchen areas like we do.
Who would the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair be most useful for?
The Bugaboo Giraffe highchair is an aspirational product aimed at families in a financial position where they can afford to spend more on a very stylish product. This is not a luxury afforded to every family, particularly as many will be feeling the pinch during the cost of living crisis. It is very much a ‘wish list’ item and a product for parents already invested in the Bugaboo brand, who are lucky enough to be able to spend the extra money on deluxe, top-of-the-range baby goods. It would also be ideal for those who want to spend money on a high-quality chair that will see their child through the younger years, to the toddler years and beyond with its 100kg weight limit.
Is the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair worth the money?
The Bugaboo Giraffe is a very expensive highchair, especially when you factor in buying the essential extras. A family with the disposable income to buy the Bugaboo Giraffe will get a beautiful and comfortable highchair in return for their spend, and would definitely feel they are getting what they paid for. And because the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair is designed to suit all ages and stages, it’s worth factoring that when purchasing this product as this would make it very cost effective if it was used daily from newborn through to teenage years. However, customers on Amazon felt the Bugaboo Giraffe’s price tag was “extortionate” thanks to the fact that you have to buy most of the essential accessories for it to operate as a highchair separately.
Where can I buy the Bugaboo Giraffe highchair?
I absolutely loved the Bugaboo Giraffe; it’s a very clever highchair and its ability to grow with my boys means I can see it being part of our mealtimes for years to come. Overall I do recommend this highchair, but I feel slightly conflicted in doing so, because I do think it’s an awful lot of money to spend on a highchair when basics such as the seat and tray aren’t included in the initial outlay. If money is no object, you get what you pay for – an exquisite, aesthetically pleasing, high-quality highchair – which has the potential to become a permanent fixture at the dinner table for years to come.
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Dimensions & Weight
|Dimensions||H:76.4cm W:53.7cm D:59cm|
|Child age (approx)||From Birth (with insert)|
|Child weight||Up to 100kg|
|Seat height positions||5|