Nursery Advice Needed: Rock Me Gently in a Rocking Chair? Or Not?

This lovely Ryder Rocker from West Elm is, sadly, not yet available in Canada! Blast!

Being the kind of person I am (a planner by nature), I’ve been dreaming about what a nursery in our house would look like for years. I have a pretty good idea of the colour scheme and the general feeling I’m going for (more on that later), and a decent running list of the spots I’d love to pick up any new furniture we need. But here’s where I’m stumped: do I actually need a rocking chair?

I’ve seen everything from those massive lounger-type gliders (way not my style), to those tiny molded Eames rockers (gorgeous, but seemingly impractical), and my tastes fall somewhere in the middle of those two—I want something comfortable but contemporary, and not too big (I love the look of the new Ryder Rocking Chair from West Elm, which is sadly not available yet in Canada. And anyway, the proportions don’t look quite right—arms too high and back too low for comfy nursing).

But I’ve read extensive debates online about the necessity of a rocking chair in a nursery at all. Some say they’re just an expensive piece of furniture that you’ll never use because you’ll want to nurse on the couch or elsewhere in the house. Others say that a rocker is an absolute must, especially in the dead of night when you need a comfy, quiet place to curl up with baby. Some say that the thing doesn’t need to rock, but you do need to have somewhere to sit. Still others say that the rocking motion is the only reason to have a chair in the nursery in the first place. So, tell me what you did. Rock on? Or rock off?

—Megan, pregnant lady and’s Executive Editor and Senior Web Producer 

UPDATE (December 21, 2011): The Ryder rocker is now available at West Elm in Canada. It’s currently listed at $643.89.

4 responses to “Nursery Advice Needed: Rock Me Gently in a Rocking Chair? Or Not?”

  1. Mom of 2 says:

    You don’t need anything fancy, but I definitely think some sort of comfortable chair in the baby’s room is a great thing. You may use it for nursing, or the sometimes endless task of settling a baby with a gas bubble, or sick or teething. Those occasions don’t happen that often, but when they do you will appreciate a comfortable, and private place to sit.

  2. Jen Wilson says:

    I only had one with my first kid and I rarely used it. I didn’t have one with my second or third kids and didn’t miss having one. I found that all three of my kids wanted to be rocked to sleep while I was standing and would flip out if I tried to sit down. As for nursing, I’ve always found a big comfy couch much more inviting than a rocking chair. So, I guess I’m in the “rock off” camp.

  3. Rachel Kinsley says:

    I do have a chair or a comfy area in both my kids rooms to cuddle up and read books or play but I purposefully opted out of a rocking chair not wanting to have my children dependent on a rocking motion to fall asleep or me to easily fall into the habit of rocking them to sleep,which is just a personal choice I made. I do have a rocking chair in my living room which I loved using for feeding and cuddles throughout the day. this also worked for me cause it freed up valuable space in the nursery and I was able to teach my children independent sleeping habits. But in saying all this I think it is a personal choice and also depends on the temperament and needs of your own individual child and your own personal parenting views.

  4. PJ says:

    When we were designing the nursery for my first baby we were on a budget. The nursery room was a fairly large room, so we opted to use a couch that we got from a friend. We bought a new cover for it and it fit well with the decor. I found it very useful as it provided somewhere comfortable to sit while breastfeeding and now that my daughter is almost 2 we sit together with enough room to read books at bedtime. She did not enjoy rocking and preferred to be ‘walked’ to sleep when she was younger. All babies are different and some might not calm down to rocking. So in the end you might be spending a lot of money on a rocking chair for it just to look pretty in the nursery.