Last year, just before Everleigh was born I wasn’t longing for too many things. I wrote about the Nuna Leaf Curv as the item that topped my wish list, and we were fortunate enough to receive gifts/hand-me-downs to meet the needs of our surprise baby girl. Without needing to buy much, we were able to splurge and purchase my big wish. After more than 8 months of use, here are my thoughts…
First and foremost, it didn’t disappoint. I’m happy with the purchase. My primary reason for selecting this baby seat was the weight limit of 130 pounds, and we’ve appreciated it on more than a few occasions. With two rowdy little boys, it’s no easy feat keeping them off of something so tempting as a comfy looking seat. Thankfully, this isn’t an issue with the Nuna Leaf.
As with many of my baby gear purchases, aesthetics are a factor. The Nuna Leaf sits quite unobtrusively in our home. No gawdy prints, patterns, or colors screaming out “Look, a kid lives in this house!” – although the toys I-can-hardly-be-bothered-to-pick-up do a good enough job of that these days. ha!
It’s sturdy as expected, and sways gently as promised. Unfortunately, it doesn’t sway for very long, which I admit was a bit of a disappointment. I was never able to get anywhere near the full 2 minutes of sway from it, BUT it looks like Nuna will be introducing an accessory for the Leaf called the Wind . The Wind will provide the missing motion for the Leaf which ups the ante quite a bit. I haven’t yet seen any indication of price point for this accessory, but several sources indicate it should be available by this coming summer.
Beyond the lack of continued motion of the chair, it has proven mostly sturdy to the shenanigans of my boys with the exception that they occasionally tip it backwards when they attempt to climb into the chair from behind; clearly not a recommended way to mount the seat. As long as they aren’t trying to jump in from behind, they can both clamber on, wrestle with each other in the chair all they want, and the Leaf is no worse for the wear.
Oh, but it’s a baby seat! Yes, that’s right. As a baby seat there are some good features, and some okay features. Let’s start with the shape and position of the seat. The wide seat provides for plenty of room for baby to nestle in comfortably, but the width prevented my Tiny Love toy bar from staying fastened well. Yes, I could’ve purchased the Nuna Leaf accessory toy bar, but was looking to use what I already have and save a few dollars. The toy bar I had is also a bit more engaging. 😉
The 3-point harness has a sturdy velcro fastener, nearly too sturdy. It’s on the noisy side to release it and it takes a bit of effort to adjust. Before Everleigh was able to sit up on her own, I’d often just lay her on top of the harness. I’m just lazy, I guess. She was able to lay on it just fine. Once she was able to sit up on her own, I always tucked her legs into the harness and it did it’s job to keep her secure – even when Holden thought it was fun(ny) to give her a bit of a ride by pushing the Leaf with gusto!
Here, I’ll also add that I wish there was a way to remove the harness. With such a high weight limit, the majority of the possible use will not be from an infant so the permanent infant harness is a little weird to me. It does lay fairly flat underneath the quilted cover though and doesn’t seem bother my boys any. The cover does slip around and shift quite a bit when not held in place with the harness. I’ll likely end up safety pinning it on, I suspect, but it would be nice if it would button, clip, or velcro on – if only so it wouldn’t look sloppy so often. If the cover was a little thicker and had a way to permanently fasten-on on top of the harness, the desire to remove the harness would be eliminated.
It’s definitely a small piece of furniture in our home, but it’s sturdy, eye-pleasing, and all three of my kids can enjoy it. The boys will frequently curl up in the seat and sway a bit just to chill out.
In my original post, I mentioned we also have the Baby Bjorn Babysitter Balance. I generally left the Balance upstairs in our master bedroom and used it as a seat to keep Everleigh busy while I folded laundry or took a shower, mostly while the boys were at school. I learned quickly that I needed to be diligent about folding it flat and putting it away when not in use as Holden couldn’t control his desire to try and sit in it. Seeing him drawn to the Balance so often confirmed that we made the right call with the Nuna Leaf investment.
Would I buy it again?? Probably. If I had made the purchase for my first child, absolutely. Unlike most of the other baby item from the early months, it is still getting use. Ironically, not from Everleigh but from the boys. Camden (currently 5 1/2 years old) probably sits in it the most. We’ve joked that we need to get another because the older kids enjoy it so much. The height is perfect for them and they curl up and rest comfortably. Camden will even try and lay back in the chair with Everleigh in his arms so she can sway with him. It’s pretty adorable.
If you’re thinking long term, or thinking multiple kiddos, the Nuna Leaf is a really good way to go. It’s a bigger investment on the front end, but I think well worth it over time.
**After writing the above, I watched the use of the chair through different eyes for a few days. While they aren’t typical “review” thoughts, I thought some of you might appreciate the additional perspective I’m adding below.***
When you’re first shopping for a baby chair/bouncer/swing or any similar item, you’re not in the mind frame to think about what kind of chair would be nice to have for your 4/5 or 7/8 year old. If you are, kudos to you, because I wasn’t. When I shop for gear of any kind, I always think about the full life of the item and the quality. I do this for several reasons. In my life, I’ve learned that a quality purchase will nearly always be a better buy for anything that will get a lot of use. It will also stand the test of time better for use over multiple children. I’ve also found that quality baby gear has great resale value which can often make the cost of use much less than a cheaper comparable item (initial cost – resale amount = cost of use). All those things make sense for any purchase. But when I was planning for a baby, I really didn’t have any feel for what a toddler or a young kid would need/want/enjoy.
Stay with me here — At some point after your child is sitting independently you’ll either walk by a Pottery Barn Kids store or flip through one of their captivating catalogs. At that point, you’ll see the “Anywhere Chair” and find it so very adorable. It’s almost like some weird baby furniture must-have because more kids I know have them, than don’t. It *is* adorable, and they totally get used. We have two – one for each boy. They are not an inexpensive purchase averaging $99 – $179 plus shipping (FYI – we did try and cheap out on the second and buy the foam inserts from ebay and just the cover from PBK – not a recommended route). Beyond these kid chairs, there are numerous others that you can find – rockers, recliners, beanbags, etc. You, or possibly a grandparent, will inevitably be drawn to something like this. If I knew then what I know now I’d probably own two Nuna Leafs and not two Anywhere Chairs (had they been available) because the cost of nearly any baby seat plus an Anywhere Chair is nearly the cost of the Nuna Leaf. If you can think long term, the case for the purchase makes even more sense. This is where it’s hard to think like the parent of a kid versus the parent of a baby when you’re first starting out and contemplating all the baby purchases you’d like.
And worth noting, I suspect I’ll be selling our two Anywhere Chairs from Pottery Barn to get a second Leaf at some point in the future. 😉