Best Rocking Chair – Reviews & Buying Guide
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Best Rocking Chair – Reviews & Buying Guide (July 2019)

Updated: October 27, 2018

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

After 44 hours spent researching the best rocking chairs, we think Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair is the best for most people.

This choice is based on several criteria: padded, fabric, smooth motion, assembly required, color, easy to clean, durable, load capacity, outdoor use, suitable for, clear instructions, safe for children, footrest, wide seat, and mechanism cover, among other things.

 ProductPriceOverall RatingQualityComfortSturdinessFeaturesValue for Moneypaddedfabricsmooth motionassembly requiredcoloreasy to cleandurableload capacityoutdoor usesuitable forclear instructionssafe for childrenfootrestwide seatmechanism cover
Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairCheck Price4.14.04.54.04.04.0NoNoYesYesWhiteYesYes275lbsYesEnjoying sunshineYesYesNoYesNo
Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetCheck Price4.95.05.04.55.05.0YesYesYesYesBeigeYesYesNot statedYesCalming babiesYesYesYesYesYes
Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking ChairCoaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking ChairCheck Price3.73.53.54.03.54.0NoNoYesYesWalnutYesYesNot statedYesLiving rooms and bedroomsYesYesNoYesNo
Coaster Southern Country Porch Rocking ChairCoaster Southern Country Porch Rocking ChairCheck Price4.24.04.04.54.54.0NoNoYesYesOak wood finishYesYesNot statedYesCalming babiesYesYesYesYesNo
Elite Folding Rocking ChairElite Folding Rocking ChairCheck Price4.04.54.04.03.54.0YesYesYesNoBlue or tanYesYes250lbsYesThe gardenYesYesNoYesYes
Best Rocking Chair

As your family begins to grow, so does your home size. And with bigger properties comes the need for furniture that’s suitable for you and the kids.

A rocking chair is a timeless and welcoming addition to any bedroom, and here’s why.

Rocking chairs have been common pieces of furniture for many, many years. When you think about it, there’s something incredibly romantic about them – especially considering the beautiful woods which are often used in their construction.

These days, owing to modern demands, some manufacturers have deviated from the classical look too, devising rocking chairs which are upholstered and come with fabrics in an array of colors.

These days, owing to modern demands, some manufacturers have deviated from the classical look too, devising rocking chairs which are upholstered and come with fabrics in an array of colors.

This means it won’t look too out of place in living rooms, and you’ll also benefit from greater levels of comfort – especially during the winter, when it can occasionally be quite unpleasant to sit on a wooden chair.

If you thought that rocking chairs are also exclusively for use indoors, you can also think again. These days, some rockers and gliders have been specifically designed for gardens – and in many ways, they offer a wonderful alternative to swinging porches, especially if space is a little on the small side in your patio.

In this buying guide, we’re going to explore the five key buying specifications that every shopper should know before they begin to compare products and figure out which rocking chair is right for them. It’s definitely a buyer’s market out there, and thanks to the explosion in online shopping, great deals can be had.

Selection Of The Best Rocking Chairs

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair
(rated 4.1 / 5)
Quality
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The perfect piece of furniture for your garden or porch, this solid hardwood rocking chair is undoubtedly a crowd pleaser.

In this review, we’re going to find out why shoppers have been going crazy for this rocker from Mainstays.

Information

This Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair has been specially designed to be resilient and toughened against whatever the weather outside may be.

This Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair has been specially designed to be resilient and toughened against whatever the weather outside may be.

Unlike other rockers, which try to satisfy everyone by being designed for both indoor and outdoor use, Mainstays has decided to specialize with this product.

In a way, this is far more beneficial than a product which caters to both markets poorly.

Now, the first thing that you’ll notice about this Solid Hardwood Outdoor Porch Rocking Chair is that it’s white. Although this can be a beautiful color to have in the garden, as it throws up a beautiful contrast against wooden decking and the green, green grass in your garden, there is a major downside: stains can begin to form really easily over time.

When such marks appear, you also face the challenge of getting rid of them without causing permanent damage, and may have to contend with the color fading. As such, you may find that for outdoor rocking chairs, you might want to go with a more natural, treated wood color that isn’t going to lose its sheen as time rolls on.

paddedNo
fabricNo
smooth motionYes
assembly requiredYes
colorWhite
easy to cleanYes
durableYes
load capacity275lbs
outdoor useYes
suitable forEnjoying sunshine
clear instructionsYes
safe for childrenYes
footrestNo
wide seatYes
mechanism coverNo

The one design feature that we like most with this Solid Hardwood Outdoor Porch Rocking Chair is the slats which can be found at the back of the furniture.

Although you may be wondering exactly what this design feature is for, you’ll soon begin to appreciate its importance on those warm summer days, when you can almost constantly feel sticky and sweaty because of the seat.

With these slats, you don’t run the risk of your back becoming drenched in sweat when you’re sat down for prolonged periods of time.

In fact, the actual experience is quite the opposite. You will get plenty of fresh air and ventilation throughout the chair, which when combined with the rocking motion, means that you’re prepared for wonderful comfort whatever the weather.

Pros

With beautiful, low armrests and a nice, wide place to sit, you’ll feel like the king or queen of the garden when you’re enjoying the sunshine.

Now that we’ve established that this Solid Hardwood White Porch Rocking Chair already has a distinctive selling point in how it’s designed specifically for outdoor use, let’s take a gander at some of the other advantages on offer:

  • The construction is durable, guaranteeing years of use: The materials used to build this rocking chair have been specifically designed to resist mold and mildew, meaning that it won’t begin to splinter and disintegrate as it remains outside. Plus, with a gentle clean every now and then, it’ll keep its color.
  • You’ll benefit from a generously wide seat: With beautiful, low armrests and a nice, wide place to sit, you’ll feel like the king or queen of the garden when you’re enjoying the sunshine and reading the newspaper in the morning. Boasting great dimensions, other manufacturers have a thing or two to learn from this product.
  • It also boasts a load capacity of 275lbs: This is about 10% more than the average we’ve seen from other rocking chairs on the market. So, if you’ve got a kid or two to entertain with a story before bed, this is the furniture for you!
  • Nice and easy to assemble in a matter of minutes: There’s absolutely no need to get frustrated and flustered with complicated instructions using unnecessary verbose language. The manual included with this Solid Hardwood White Porch Rocking Chair is direct and succinct, explaining everything you need to know.
  • The rocking chair is well packaged during shipping: Long gone are the days when you’ll have to return certain parts of the product because it wasn’t packed very well, and certain components have become damaged during transport. Even if it has a bumpy ride on the way, you shouldn’t have any issues.
  • With or without a pillow, it’s incredibly comfortable: Many people often flinch at the thought of sitting on a solid hardwood chair for prolonged periods of time. But if you think that this rocker is going to leave you with a sore neck and back, do think again.

Cons

Now that we’ve gone through the advantages of the Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair, it’s important to get a bit of balance and explore some of the most common complaints which are associated with this product overall, including:

  • It needs to be left under a cover: This rocking chair is specifically for your porch, and requires shelter to guarantee that it doesn’t become damaged and tattered in the wind and rain. As such, you will need to move it out into the garden when you want a bit of sunshine.
  • The rocking chair does not fold away: I think we’re not alone in saying that this would have been a fantastic feature for the Solid Hardwood White Porch Rocking Chair. That way, during the cold, winter months, it wouldn’t become a challenge to stow it away in the garage without taking up too much space.
  • Mainstays is quite an unknown brand you may not trust: Especially when we’re buying items online, it’s important that we know and like the company we’re spending our hard-earned cash with. As such, if you’re quite brand loyal, you might need to look elsewhere.

Comparison

 

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking ChairCoaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
paddedNoYesNo
fabricNoYesNo
smooth motionYesYesYes
assembly requiredYesYesYes
colorWhiteBeigeWalnut
easy to cleanYesYesYes
durableYesYesYes
load capacity275lbsNot statedNot stated
outdoor useYesYesYes
suitable forEnjoying sunshineCalming babiesLiving rooms and bedrooms
clear instructionsYesYesYes
safe for childrenYesYesYes
footrestNoYesNo
wide seatYesYesYes
mechanism coverNoYesNo

Summary

Built to last, and with an effortless assembly that won’t cause you to break a sweat, this chair has a nice, simplistic design that’ll complement all other types of garden furniture.

The durability and sturdiness of this rocking chair far excels other rival products – and this is principally because of how it has been manufactured exclusively for use in the great outdoors. It would have been brilliant, however, if the chair was also able to multitask, and come inside when the weather gets a little biting.

Built to last, and with an effortless assembly that won’t cause you to break a sweat, the Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair has a nice, simplistic design that’ll complement all other types of garden furniture.

Although there’s nothing to stop you from painting or varnishing this rocking chair, do bear in mind that this could affect its longevity overall.


Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set
(rated 4.9 / 5)
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Looking for the perfect chair and ottoman set for a nursery, living room or conservatory? This Stork Craft Hoop Glider offers a smooth rocking experience, comfortable cushions and even storage on the arms.

With a smooth glide system and simple construction instructions, you’ll struggle to find something else more suitable.

Information

The deep cushions are perfect for relaxation or sleeping, and the comfortable ottoman is at the perfect height to rest your legs.

This chair and ottoman set is designed with everyone in mind, whether you struggle with aching bones and need a chair that’s easy to get in and out of, or you’re pregnant and looking for something extra comfy.

The rocking sensation is created by the glide and locking mechanism, and the whole chair is designed to meet and exceed standards of furniture in the U.S. and Canada.

The deep cushions are perfect for relaxation or sleeping, and the comfortable ottoman is at the perfect height to rest your legs.

The Stork Craft Hoop Glider is ideal for anyone looking for something comfortable, but was specifically designed with mother and child in mind. This is a traditional piece of furniture that has polished wood making up the main frame, and a classic style that will suit any room.

The gliding mechanism means that children can be rocked to sleep with ease, and the comfortable cushions mean that you might just fall asleep yourself!

paddedYes
fabricYes
smooth motionYes
assembly requiredYes
colorBeige
easy to cleanYes
durableYes
load capacityNot stated
outdoor useYes
suitable forCalming babies
clear instructionsYes
safe for childrenYes
footrestYes
wide seatYes
mechanism coverYes

The padded arms and arm cushions mean it’s more comfortable than ever to rock a child to sleep, or relax and read a book. The chair is also designed to fit in with the rest of the Stork Craft range, which includes cribs, changing tables and dressers.

Stork Craft prides itself on its 60-year history of keeping babies safe and comfortable, and providing the very best furniture for those who are nursing or expecting. The Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman is one of the company’s crowning achievements.

The ottoman is no regular foot stool, either. In fact, this Stork ottoman is designed to have the same mechanical gliding feature as the chair, so you whole body feels like its rocking when you move backwards and forwards. It’s super smooth and really does make babies fall asleep in an instant.

The chair must be assembled at home, but Stork Craft has designed it so that it’s really quite simple to do. It’s also light weight, making it easy to carry around the home and position it in the perfect place.

Pros

Stork Craft is so confident in the quality of their furniture that free spare parts are available in the event that you have any trouble with your chair sometime in the future.

The Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman set is popular for a whole host of reasons. It’s comfortable, affordable and high quality, making it an ideal addition to any home, nursery or similar environment.

  • Put it together in as little as half an hour: Stork Craft has designed this chair so that it’s easy to construct using screws. Even those who are inexperienced in construction or woodwork will find it an absolute breeze to put together! This is not just a result of quality craftsmanship, but simple and easy-to-follow instructions.
  • Free replacement parts on offer from the manufacturer: Stork Craft is so confident in the quality of their furniture that free spare parts are available in the event that you have any trouble with your chair sometime in the future. These replacement parts are provided by the manufacturer if the unit breaks as a result of a manufacturing problem.
  • The locking mechanism guarantees a smooth glide: Replicating the experience of a rocking chair, the locking mechanism with ball bearings ensures that the chair and ottoman moves backwards and forwards smoothly, helping you gently rock your baby to sleep. The special system is designed to not get stuck and work for many years to come.
  • Two homely, warm colors to choose from: Love a chair with a homely and welcoming color? Stork Craft offers this Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set in two colors – beige and cherry. The beige chair suits all environments while the cherry will look great in a themed room using reds and summer colors.
  • All cushions are removable and spot cleanable: Raising a child is usually no tidy affair. That’s why Stork Craft has designed the chair and ottoman’s cushion covers to be removable and spot cleanable. Simple remove the covers, give them a clean and apply then with ease back over the cushions.
  • Wooden parts are professionally polished and finished: All wooden frames are polished and finished to a high standard so that they do not cause splinters, and remain looking new for many years to come. They can be cared for easily using regular furniture polish and require no special wood treatment.

Cons

For all its advantages, the Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set isn’t perfect – much like most products on the market. It has a few setbacks that make it less appealing to some people, but not ultimately totally undesirable.

  • Joints and sliding mechanism can become squeaky over time: As well as being held together by screws, the Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman set is also held together using glue. Over time, the wood dries out, shrinks and expands, making the joints squeak and the glue become a little loose. Houses in humid areas will cause squeaking much quicker.
  • Glue connections can mean generally weaker joints: Given that this is designed to be comfortable for pregnant women, this chair needs strong joints. While the glue seems to do its job pretty well, combined with some screws, the chair could be much more rugged. If you’re expecting the chair to last a generation, you should probably look elsewhere.
  • If you’re looking for a modern style, you’re out of luck: Traditional nursery furniture looks great, but it’s not for everyone. If you’re looking for something modern, then you’re going to have to look elsewhere. The beige chair suits most decors nicely but it’s far from contemporary.

Comparison

 

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking ChairCoaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
paddedYesNoNo
fabricYesNoNo
smooth motionYesYesYes
assembly requiredYesYesYes
colorBeigeWhiteWalnut
easy to cleanYesYesYes
durableYesYesYes
load capacityNot stated275lbsNot stated
outdoor useYesYesYes
suitable forCalming babiesEnjoying sunshineLiving rooms and bedrooms
clear instructionsYesYesYes
safe for childrenYesYesYes
footrestYesNoNo
wide seatYesYesYes
mechanism coverYesNoNo

Summary

The sliding mechanism with metal ball bearings offers a smooth glide which helps drift babies off to sleep, and the cushions are easily removed should you ever need to wash them.

Overall, the Stork Craft Hoop Glider and Ottoman Set is a great bit of furniture. It suits a lot of home styles, comes in two colors and is really very comfortable!

The sliding mechanism with metal ball bearings offers a smooth glide which helps drift babies off to sleep, and the cushions are easily removed should you ever need to wash them. It’s also easy to construct at home and will last for a good few years.

The manufacturer also offers a free spare part service should you ever have any problems, and the light weight construction means that it’s easy to carry and move around the home when you have a new baby arrival or you just want to relax and sleep somewhere else in this luxury chair!


Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair

Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair
(rated 3.7 / 5)
Quality
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Coaster Fine Furniture is a company that certainly knows a thing or two about rocking chairs – and all of their products are intricately designed.

In this review, we’re going to look at their walnut finish offering, and you won’t be disappointed.

Information

When you look closely at this product, you’ll notice that it comes with a stunning walnut finish, and the wood has adopted a beautiful, dark brown color.

The first thing you’ll notice about this rocking chair is how it’s timeless design means that it won’t look out of place anywhere in your home.

You might want to give it pride of place in the living room, adding a touch of novelty to your furnishings, or place it in a nursery or office.

It’s a beautiful piece of furniture, irrespective of your age.

When you look closely at this product, you’ll notice that it comes with a stunning walnut finish, and the wood has adopted a beautiful, dark brown color. You’ll find this rocking chair will look stylish in rooms where you have light wallpaper – perhaps white, gray, or beige.

It’ll also look stunning on wooden floors, and thankfully, especially if you have laminate flooring, there’s very little chance of the floor becoming scuffed and scratched as you enjoy the gentle rocking motion this Coaster furniture provides.

paddedNo
fabricNo
smooth motionYes
assembly requiredYes
colorWalnut
easy to cleanYes
durableYes
load capacityNot stated
outdoor useYes
suitable forLiving rooms and bedrooms
clear instructionsYes
safe for childrenYes
footrestNo
wide seatYes
mechanism coverNo

Now according to the manufacturer, some assembly is required. However, you shouldn’t be too disheartened, as full instructions are provided upon delivery of the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair. And, if you have any further problems in constructing it safely and securely, it’s easy to give their customer care department a call for some further guidance.

One thing which makes this rocking chair stand out from the crowd is its carved design, which can be found at the top of the seat.

This will give your visitors the impression that it’s a family heirloom which has been passed down from generation to generation – and unlike rival products on the market, it doesn’t look cheap and shoddily put together.

According to Coaster, their furniture designers have gone to great lengths to ensure that style and comfort come together in one neat package. By purchasing a small pillow separately to provide extra support for your back, you’ll feel right at home as you doze off in front of the television at night.

Pros

Coaster offers all of the bits and bobs required to secure parts together completely free of charge.

So, once the box arrives in your home, what will you have to look forward to with the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair? Here are just some of the advantages that we’ve found with this product so far:

  • The tight fitting joints mean plenty of stability: It’s very disappointing when you don’t have confidence in your rocking chair, as you’re fearful of it collapsing under your weight. Thankfully, this isn’t an issue you’ll have to contend with thanks to the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair.
  • Assembly is going to take you around 60 minutes: Overall, you should expect that this rocking chair will need an hour of your time before it’s ready to be placed in a living room or bedroom. You’ll receive two pages of instructions to pore through, and it’s nicely written in plain English.
  • Tools needed for assembly are in the box: Don’t worry about riffling through your toolbox to find the Allen Key you need to bolt everything together. This is because Coaster offers all of the bits and bobs required to secure parts together completely free of charge.
  • It should last for many years to come: It’s often a sentimental experience when you’re replacing an old rocking chair, but this Coaster model will become a new family favorite. Given its sturdy, durable build, you should find that this rocking chair will last for many years to come.
  • A beautiful chair for mother and baby: Do you ever have problems in helping your little one drift off to sleep? If so, the Coaster rocking chair is perfect, with generous, wide arms that’ll provide plenty of room for you both to relax and gently drift away.
  • Great quality at a very affordable price: You’ll be impressed by the workmanship that has gone into this rocking chair, manufactured in Vietnam. Plus, it won’t break the bank – and as the company takes pride in its products, there’s a warranty just in case anything shouldn’t go to plan.

Cons

Some shoppers have had a couple of qualms with the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair – but nothing so significant that they’ve been left with buyer’s remorse. The things you should watch out for include:

  • The color in the picture is not accurate: Given the manufacturer’s photographs of their product, you would think that the rocking chair comes in dark brown. However, some buyers were dismayed when it actually was far lighter – causing a clash in the decorations, so bear this in mind.
  • It may not be suitable if you’re quite tall: Because of how this rocking chair is quite low off the ground, you may find it slightly uncomfortable if you have long legs. However, it’s worth noting that Coaster does have other products available to buy in their range.
  • There have been complaints about the parts provided: Lastly, some shoppers have claimed that the accessories they were given to bolt the rocking chair together were incorrectly sized – making it difficult to get a tight fitting. However, we’ve seen no issues in constructing the chair quickly and safely.

Comparison

 

Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking ChairCoaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
paddedNoNoYes
fabricNoNoYes
smooth motionYesYesYes
assembly requiredYesYesYes
colorWalnutWhiteBeige
easy to cleanYesYesYes
durableYesYesYes
load capacityNot stated275lbsNot stated
outdoor useYesYesYes
suitable forLiving rooms and bedroomsEnjoying sunshineCalming babies
clear instructionsYesYesYes
safe for childrenYesYesYes
footrestNoNoYes
wide seatYesYesYes
mechanism coverNoNoYes

Summary

If you want furniture that’s going to go the distance, look no further than the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair.

We think that the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair is one of the strongest contenders that’s out on the market today. It’s beautifully designed, has a personalized finish towards the top of the chair, and it provides that gentle rocking motion that we all remember fondly from our childhood.

In terms of areas to improve on, we really wish that the manufacturer had been clearer about what color the rocking chair is – as the pictures aren’t representative.

But when all is said and done, if you want furniture that’s going to go the distance, without leaving an irreparable hole in your bank account, look no further than the Coaster Carved Detail Walnut Finish Rocking Chair.


Coaster Southern Country Porch Rocking Chair

Coaster Southern Country Porch Rocking Chair
(rated 4.2 / 5)
Quality
Comfort
Sturdiness
Features
Value for Money
Check Price

Always wanted that traditional porch rocker you’ve seen in the movies so you can chill outside in the evening sun, piece of grass hanging out of your lips?

The Coaster Southern Country Plantation Porch Rocker is that chair!

Information

The back is tall enough to ensure people of all sizes can sit comfortable, and it’s surprisingly comfortable even with its lack of cushions.

The Coaster Southern Country Plantation Coach Rocker is a real traditional charmer, offering no complex mechanisms for its rocking motion, no over the top cushions and requiring no special care. It has an oak wood finish and looks fantastic.

The back is tall enough to ensure people of all sizes can sit comfortable, and it’s surprisingly comfortable even with its lack of cushions.

Don’t be fooled by the lack of cushions either – this thing is comfortable!

So what exactly is Coaster offering here? Well, it’s a 21.5 x 35 x 38 inches chair that rocks, is suitable for indoor and outdoor use, and can be used by people of all sizes and ages.

The charm of this chair comes in its simplicity. The rocking motion comes from the curved wooden feet that are finished professionally and designed to last.

paddedNo
fabricNo
smooth motionYes
assembly requiredYes
colorOak wood finish
easy to cleanYes
durableYes
load capacityNot stated
outdoor useYes
suitable forCalming babies
clear instructionsYes
safe for childrenYes
footrestYes
wide seatYes
mechanism coverNo

The wooden finish also means that this Coaster rocking chair can be used both indoors and outdoors. It’s a classic style that’s praised by users online, too.

Traditionally seen as the rocking chair of choice for older folk who like to enjoy the afternoons in the sun, this chair can actually be used for a wide range of scenarios, rooms and settings. If you’re nursing a child, the chair helps rock the baby to sleep – or if you have toddlers who just can’t seem to settle, the rocking motion will keep them amused for a while.

The chair doesn’t come complete, but that doesn’t mean it’s difficult to put together. Customers regularly comment online that they have it set up and rocking in no time at all, so you shouldn’t have to worry about putting it together once it’s delivered or you’ve driven it home.

You also don’t need to worry about splinters, given that the wood has been treated so that it remains intact and strong even in humid weather. The wood also won’t stain a carpet should you decide to use it indoors, again thanks to the professional oak finish.

Pros

The shape of the chair is designed not only to be comfortable when used by itself, but to accommodate a wide variety of cushions.

There’s very little that can go wrong with a traditional wooden rocking chair, and the Coaster Southern Country Plantation Porch Rocker has gotten everything right. With a comfortable seat panel and a quality oak finish, it’ll look great in any home.

  • Molded and curved seat for your comfort: The seat panels are not straight like a regular wooden school chair. Instead, each panel is meticulously crafted and curved so that it follows the curves of the human body, making it more comfortable to sit and rest on.
  • You can easily use a variety of cushions: The shape of the chair is designed not only to be comfortable when used by itself, but to accommodate a wide variety of cushions, should you decide to use them. The curves on the chair means that cushions are easily held in place.
  • Small enough to move, large enough to accommodate all: The chair is 38 inches high, making it suitable for short and tall users alike. It’s also 21 inches in diameter, making it the perfect size for any room and easy to move around the home. No matter where you use the chair, it never looks out of place.
  • Light weight, yet surprisingly durable: At just 30.3 pounds, this Coaster Southern Country Plantation Porch Rocking Chair is surprisingly light but amazingly durable. Made from quality wood with a professional oak finish, the chair will last for many years to come.
  • Maintains a traditional look for real Southern homes: If you’re trying to achieve a real Southern look in your home, then this chair will help you do exactly that. The traditional Southern charm comes from elegance and simplicity in wood work, and this chair manages to embrace both without looking boring or cheap.
  • Affordable and accessible alternative to luxury items: You don’t have to pay over the odds for quality wood chairs and furniture, and Coaster shows what amazing quality furniture you can get on a budget. This rocking chair is affordable and high quality, and available online and in retail stores.

Cons

Very few products are perfect, and the Coaster Southern Country Plantation Rocking Chair has a few downsides. If you’re looking for something that’s ready to use immediately or for long periods of relaxation, you’re out of luck.

  • This is not a fully-constructed rocking chair: If you want to take the chair out of the box and immediately start rocking, you’re not looking at the right product for you. The Coaster Southern Country Plantation Porch Rocker does require some construction, which isn’t ideal for those who aren’t too handy.
  • You can’t slouch and be comfortable in this rocker: Slouching is a ‘no no’ with this chair. The 90 degree angle between the molded seat and the straight, flat back means that your back will feel really quite uncomfortable if you slouch. The chair will help your posture but it’s not good for lying back and relaxing.
  • The wood is pretty thin and easy to break all over: While the quality is actually pretty high, that doesn’t mean that all the wood is thick. In fact, the wood is really quite thin all over and if you use it too vigorously you could easily snap parts of the frame, so you’ll have to be careful with it.

Comparison

 

Coaster Southern Country Porch Rocking ChairCoaster Southern Country Porch Rocking Chair

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
paddedNoNoYes
fabricNoNoYes
smooth motionYesYesYes
assembly requiredYesYesYes
colorOak wood finishWhiteBeige
easy to cleanYesYesYes
durableYesYesYes
load capacityNot stated275lbsNot stated
outdoor useYesYesYes
suitable forCalming babiesEnjoying sunshineCalming babies
clear instructionsYesYesYes
safe for childrenYesYesYes
footrestYesNoYes
wide seatYesYesYes
mechanism coverNoNoYes

Summary

The traditional rocker style is a nice touch and the oak finish looks good with pretty much any décor, so you’re definitely onto a winner!

Overall, this is a really nice product. If you’re not looking to spend a fortune but you do want that traditional Southern look on the outside (or inside) of your home, then Coaster’s rocking chair is ideal for you. There are better options out there but few that give you better bang for your buck.

While it’s definitely suitable for outdoor use, owing to the thin wood, you probably don’t want to leave it out in the elements if you do choose to have it on your porch. The wood will become damaged more easily over time, even with its quality oak finish.

The traditional rocker style is a nice touch and the oak finish looks good with pretty much any décor, so you’re definitely onto a winner!


Elite Folding Rocking Chair

Elite Folding Rocking Chair
(rated 4.0 / 5)
Quality
Comfort
Sturdiness
Features
Value for Money
Check Price

Do you want the functionality and sensation of a rocking chair, but don’t have the space to keep it in your living room?

If so, you might want to give the Elite Folding Rocking Chair a try. Here’s our review.

Information

One upside is how the fabric is really easy to clean, and is completely resistant against unsightly stains.

In a nutshell, the Elite Folding Rocking Chair gives you the best of both worlds.

Not only does it provide a stable and comfortable way to rock gently to sleep, especially with a baby in your arms, but it is compact and can be stowed away.

This rocking chair also requires a lot less maintenance than wooden chairs do.

Although this product definitely does what it says on the tin, some might say it’s rather lacking in the aesthetics department.

Gone is the beautiful wood that you’d normally associate with a rocking chair – as instead, this Elite model has a steel frame. The colors of the fabric you can choose from are also a little garish, as tan or blue are available. As such, you might end up rather grateful that it can be folded away when it’s not in use.

The armrests also feel rather cheap, as they’re made out of plastic.

paddedYes
fabricYes
smooth motionYes
assembly requiredNo
colorBlue or tan
easy to cleanYes
durableYes
load capacity250lbs
outdoor useYes
suitable forThe garden
clear instructionsYes
safe for childrenYes
footrestNo
wide seatYes
mechanism coverYes

Really, this product should only be considered if you are going to be using the folding feature regularly. However, for shoppers who want a rocking chair which can stay in position at all times, it’s worth paying that little bit extra for a wooden model that’s going to last for years – and actually look like an inviting piece of furniture.

One upside is how the fabric is really easy to clean, and is completely resistant against unsightly stains. It also won’t begin to fray and look patchy as time wears on. Instead, it’ll remain looking as good as new – so in many ways, there is still good value for money from this Elite Folding Rocking Chair.

Now that we’ve taken a frank examination of this product, let’s delve into further detail by looking at the advantages to this rocking chair, along with the downsides that are worth knowing about before you make a purchase.

Pros

Some shoppers have actually left their Elite Folding Rocking Chair out in the rain on several occasions, and claim it still looks great.

Prime Products is a rather unusual company – and they seem to offer an array of bits and bobs without any particular specialty. Case and point: they also sell extension cords, cam locks, voltage meters and motor home toys. Unusual, huh?

  • It offers a load capacity of approximately 250lbs: This is quite generous, and means you can comfortably accommodate mother and baby without having to hop on some scales to check you’re the right weight first. Plus, the seat is also nice and wide, meaning you’ll have room to breathe.
  • Unlike other rocking chairs, this one is water resistant: Some shoppers (whether by choice or by accident) have actually left their Elite Folding Rocking Chair out in the rain on several occasions, and claim it still looks great. However, do be wary that the steel frame could be susceptible to rusting.
  • The rocking chair is nicely gentle and safe: With other products available to buy online, you can feel like you’re about to fall backwards off the chair at any moment. However, you won’t get this sensation with Elite – meaning you can brush aside any paranoia or worry.
  • A safety latch has been included in the box: The fitting guarantees that the rocking chair won’t accidentally fold inwards while you are sitting in it – an added precaution that’ll certainly be a relief if you’re a mother intending to use this chair with small children.
  • The fabric won’t begin to fall apart: Have you ever been frustrated with the quality of the material that’s been used for your chairs and upholstery in the past? Elite’s Folding Rocking Chair deals with the all-too-common complaint that furniture becomes tatty and worn by ensuring the seating boasts resilient fibers.
  • A steel frame offers exceptional sturdiness and dependability: The tubular steel frame included in the box has been described as durable and long-lasting – and we must say, we’re in agreement. It won’t begin to bend or lose its shape over time, provided that it’s used by people in line with its load capacity.
  • Smart design means there’s no cross bar at the front: This has been reported as one flaw that many shoppers were unhappy with – and Elite has responded by ensuring that it was removed during the design process, without the overall functionality of the product being affected.

Cons

As we’ve said, there’s been a lot of criticism for the Elite Folding Rocking Chair because of its design – described as rather garish and far too loud. Some of the other gripes outlined by shoppers on the Internet are:

  • The armrests can crack during the shipping process: You may discover that your product gets slightly damaged as it’s delivered to your door. Not only is this incredibly frustrating, but it can be a nightmare to go and contact the customer care department for replacements.
  • You’ll need to make a choice: indoors or outdoors? Unfortunately, using the Elite Folding Rocking Chair both inside and outside isn’t going to be possible. After all, you don’t want furniture that’s been in the garden for prolonged periods of time causing a mess or unpleasant smells on your carpet, do you?
  • The customer care department isn’t very good, apparently: As we alluded to earlier, there have been several complaints about the way that Elite Products deal with the issues reported by the shoppers who have purchased their items in the past, so do proceed with caution.

Comparison

 

Elite Folding Rocking ChairElite Folding Rocking Chair

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking ChairSolid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair

Stork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman SetStork Craft Hoop Glider Rocking Chair & Ottoman Set

PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
paddedYesNoYes
fabricYesNoYes
smooth motionYesYesYes
assembly requiredNoYesYes
colorBlue or tanWhiteBeige
easy to cleanYesYesYes
durableYesYesYes
load capacity250lbs275lbsNot stated
outdoor useYesYesYes
suitable forThe gardenEnjoying sunshineCalming babies
clear instructionsYesYesYes
safe for childrenYesYesYes
footrestNoNoYes
wide seatYesYesYes
mechanism coverYesNoYes

Summary

Safety and design have clearly been taken into account with the Elite Folding Rocking Chair, too, as the elimination of a crossbar and an anti-folding latch show.

We like this rocking chair because of how it can be used either indoors or outdoors – whichever takes your fancy. Plus, you don’t need to worry about this furniture taking up loads of room either, as it can fold away efficiently when not in use.

Safety and design have clearly been taken into account with the Elite Folding Rocking Chair, too, as the elimination of a crossbar and an anti-folding latch show. This will give you peace of mind if you have young children in the house who may take a liking to sitting on the rocking chair.

Overall, as we concluded earlier, it’ll be a fantastic product – but only if you’re going to be making full use of the folding feature on a regular basis.

How To Choose The Best Rocking Chair

2-rocking-chair-buying-guide-choiceProbably the most important factor when you’re whittling down your selection of rocking chairs is to consider your own talents with DIY.

It’s very rare that you’re going to find a manufacturer of new rockers which are fully assembled, and come straight out of the box ready to use. Instead, it’s highly likely that they’ve been given the flat pack treatment – and this means you’ll have to bolt together the rocker’s constituent parts, while also ensuring it’s sturdy and secure.

For example, some products come along with a detailed instruction manual, which explains the function and purpose of each part thoroughly.

As you will see from the thousands of reviews that have been posted online by shoppers who have taken the plunge before you to buy rocking chairs, some companies make the experience of assembling the furniture a lot easier than others.

For example, some products come along with a detailed instruction manual, which explains the function and purpose of each part thoroughly. This is often coupled with pictures, helping you to identify every tool and perform an inventory on the off chance that a certain piece of equipment is missing.

When it comes to assembly, it’s also worthwhile seeing whether or not the tools that you’ll require to bring all of the rocking chair’s joints together are included in the box. Otherwise, you may find that you need to pay a visit to the hardware store, and this is really frustrating if you were hoping to get it up and running more or less immediately.

Don’t forget that you should always keep the instruction manual handy, as it will often include detailed guidance on your warranty, and top tips for maintaining the rocking chair and giving it longevity. In some cases, there will also be contact details for the customer care department.

Generally, a good, simple rocking chair is going to take anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes to construct once it arrives.

What color is the rocking chair?

3-rocking-chair-buying-guide-colorJust like with any type of furniture you’re interested in buying, paying close attention to the color of the rocking chair is important.

When purchasing a chair to coincide with the redecoration of your living room – or after you’ve given a fresh lick of paint to the nursery room in anticipation of a new arrival – it’s nice to know that the design of your chosen chair will complement the existing color scheme in the room.

If you end up going for a wooden rocking chair, you’ll normally find that there are many different shades of brown on offer.

If you end up going for a wooden rocking chair, you’ll normally find that there are many different shades of brown on offer. For example, whereas an oak chair will often boast a beautiful, dark brown color, a walnut chair is likely to look a few shades lighter.

Always err on the side of caution when you’re purchasing rocking chairs based on the images that have been provided by manufacturers in their product descriptions. On several occasions, we have seen complaints from shoppers who did exactly this – and found that the actual appearance of the chair was drastically different to what they were expecting.

Although this may not always be an issue, it can become problematic if you already have hardwood furniture that’s of a certain color, and you want everything to appear nice and coordinated.

Wooden rocking chairs are always nicest in rooms where the wallpaper is beige, white, or even a light shade of gray. They’ll also look enchanting on cream carpets, and on light wooden floors.

Soon enough, you’ll find that the rocking chair is a lot more than an effective method for helping your young children drift off to sleep, but a fashion statement that you’ll love to have in the living room!

Is it safe for my children?

4-rocking-chair-buying-guide-safetyThis is another crucial consideration, especially if you’ve already embarked on the cumbersome task of baby-proofing your house – covering the edges of kitchen tables, and installing gates near your stairs.

Many rocking chair manufacturers fully understand that their gliders are being bought by parents who are eager to find new ways to soothe and relax their children.

In order to have full confidence in a rocking chair’s suitability for children, you should look for products which boast a tight-fitting construction – meaning there isn’t any room for prying fingers to become trapped.

In recent years, there have been some high-profile product recalls because some companies failed to offer adequate covers for the various moving mechanisms that have the potential to trap children’s fingers and even crush them. This, in part, is owing to how some chairs have small gaps in between joints, which can begin to close and open again during the gentle rocking motion.

In order to have full confidence in a rocking chair’s suitability for children, you should look for products which boast a tight-fitting construction – meaning there isn’t any room for prying fingers to become trapped.

Meanwhile, if you’re buying a folding rocking chair, it’s also worthwhile checking to see if the manufacturer offers a safety latch to insure you against the chair folding inwards accidentally.

Although it’s highly unlikely that the rocking chair you’re going to buy would still be in circulation if it’s been the subject of a recall, you should always verify that it’s a newer model which has been built to exceptional safety standards. The recent recalls also adds to the importance of purchasing a brand-new chair instead of a second-hand model, as this could have been bought beforehand.

Rocking chair makers usually do provide guidance on which ages of children their products are designed for. You should pay close attention to this at all times.

What’s the rocking chair suitable for?

5-rocking-chair-buying-guide-usageIf you’re completely new to the world of rocking chairs, you may be wondering when you’d get the perfect opportunity to use such furniture in the home. And, in short, the answer is all the time.

For example, if you seem to be constantly awake owing to your baby’s erratic sleeping schedule, a good rocking chair can be the perfect sanctuary for you and your child.

Whether it’s time for that all-important 5am feed, or a nice little nap in the middle of the afternoon, this chair can be the perfect companion.

It’s important to understand the distinctions between rockers and gliders – not least because they offer a slightly different form of motion.

Plus, as your child grows, the rocking chair can play a starring role at bedtime, when you’ll want to introduce them to the wonderful world of books. Reading them a story just before it’s time to go to sleep in a glider can help them to relax and unwind, and soon enough, it’ll become the highlight of your day as well as theirs.

It’s important to understand the distinctions between rockers and gliders – not least because they offer a slightly different form of motion. Indeed, some products are also able to swivel from side to side, and there are products that come with pillows that will support your lower back against the hardwood.

And, if you love the idea of a bit of “me” time every now and again, don’t forget that some rockers do come with an Ottoman – or a footrest in layman’s terms – which allows you to fully relax during a lazy afternoon and let the world pass you buy.

Don’t worry if your rocking chair doesn’t come with an Ottoman. Many manufacturers do sell these separately, and they can be fairly inexpensive. This is the best bet to make sure everything matches.

What is the rocking chair’s load capacity?

6-rocking-chair-buying-guide-capacityIn an ideal world, your rocking chair will have a generous load capacity of at least 250lbs or so.

The reason why you need to do some considerable research into the weight that your chair can accommodate is because you likely won’t just be sitting on this piece of furniture by yourself, but with a child, too. And, as your child gets older, it’s comforting to know that the rocking chair you’ve bought as an investment for the future won’t outgrow the family.

One of the best ways to get maximal load capacity is by opting for a rocking chair that boasts a frame that’s been fashioned out of aluminum or steel.

This is going to be especially important if you’ve made the decision to buy an antique rocking chair – as in some cases, older woods can begin to become more fragile, splintering and beginning to dent. If it doesn’t have the necessary beams to keep everything in place, it could affect the overall structural integrity of the chair, and this is best avoided.

One of the best ways to get maximal load capacity is by opting for a rocking chair that boasts a frame that’s been fashioned out of aluminum or steel.

Although it probably isn’t going to provide the traditional look that so many of us pine for with rocking chairs, at least you can rest assured that it won’t bend, break, or gradually succumb to mold and mildew as time wears on.

As we mentioned earlier, another advantage to metal frames is how they can normally be folded out in a matter of seconds, and stowed away after use.

If you can’t seem to find any information about the load capacity that’s offered by a rocking chair model in the product description issued by manufacturers, don’t be afraid to give them a call and ask them for the information direct.

Does it provide a wide seat?

7-rocking-chair-buying-guide-wide-seatWhen it comes to the dimensions of your rocking chair, there are going to be two factors in particular that you’ll want to keep an eager eye on.

The first is how far back the seat goes. Believe us when we say that the enjoyment of reclining and rocking back and forth is greatly diminished when you can’t fully sit back without hanging over the edge. Coupled with a low height from the ground, this can usually mean that it’s impossible to get into a comfortable position.

Wide seats also mean you have a greater choice when it comes to decorating the rocking chair – not least because there will be very few pillows which won’t fit beautifully on the seat itself.

In addition, the other measurement you should consider is how wide the seat is going to be. This matters because of how you’ll want plenty of room to sit your child on your lap without both of you feeling claustrophobic because of armrests. It also gives you the freedom of movement necessary to feed your baby, or read them a book.

Wide seats also mean you have a greater choice when it comes to decorating the rocking chair – not least because there will be very few pillows which won’t fit beautifully on the seat itself.

So, to wrap up this buying guide, let’s remind ourselves of the five key buying specifications that you should bear in mind during your hunt for rocking chairs.

First up, have a good think about the color you would like your rocking chair to be. Second, it’s important that the rocker has plenty of safety features that make it suitable for children. It should also be a versatile piece of furniture that won’t look out of place in a living room, a bedroom or a nursery.

Load capacity also matters, as it guarantees you’ll get years of use with kids big and small.

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair
Our pick for the best rocking chair is: Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair. This choice was made after spending 39 hours researching rocking chairs.

Best Rocking Chair Characteristics

best rocking chair

Even if you have never owned a rocking chair before, there’s something quite nostalgic about them.

Perhaps it’s because the slow rocking reminds us of another era when things weren’t as hectic and people had time to sit and reflect.

If you like the idea of adding a rocking chair to your home furnishings, there’s a chance that you are going to surprised at the choices that are out there.

The way these chairs move can be different too; obviously there is the simple rocking motion, but others also have a gliding movement that involves a mechanism.

Choose from genuine antique rockers in a variety of woods, to modern versions that base their design on these originals. Or, you could get a rocking chair that bears very little resemblance to a traditional chair and looks more like an upholstered lounge chair.

The way these chairs move can be different too; obviously there is the simple rocking motion, but others also have a gliding movement that involves a mechanism. These are increasingly popular, especially in nurseries.

The load capacity for rocking chairs differs from chair to chair, and often depends upon the style and structure of the chair. Manufacturers always make this clear in the list of attributes they produce with the chairs so you will have no problem finding out this information.

If you have children, then it makes sense to do some research to make sure that the rocking chair you are interested in will be safe for them. Children adore rockers so you can guarantee they will want their turn.

Some of the wooden rocking chairs have gaps in them between the seat and the back, so make sure that this isn’t big enough for your child to slip through and hurt themselves.

The other thing that children love to do on a rocking chair is to treat it like a swing and see how hard they can rock it. If the chair is durable enough (and your nerves can stand it) this shouldn’t be a problem – unless the chair tips because the rockers are not big enough to provide the stability this treatment needs.

Padded

2-best-rocking-chair-paddedNot all rocking chairs have any padding on them; instead, they are ‘naked’ revealing the frames, structure and composition of the chairs. For many people this is exactly how they want their rocking chair to look – and surprisingly, they are very comfortable without padding.

Of course, if this is the kind of rocking chair that you choose and there are occasions when you want some extra padding, some scatter cushions are a perfect addition that will add comfort and style.

There are many variants of this type of rocking chair, so it is worth spending some time looking for one that suits your needs as well as to suit the rest of your décor.

Other people choose a throw to complement their rocking chair. Not only does it add a contemporary look to the chair, but it also provides some padding – and is useful if the weather turns a little chilly.

It is possible, however, to buy rocking chairs that have been upholstered and so come ready-padded. There are many variants of this type of rocking chair, so it is worth spending some time looking for one that suits your needs as well as to suit the rest of your décor.

For many people, an upholstered rocking chair is a ‘statement chair’ and as well as being functional, offers a talking piece to the room that family and guests will love – and you can be certain that they will all want to take a turn.

The rocking chairs that are more of a glider than a rocker are often upholstered with much more padding than on other rocking chairs. This type of chair has a more formal appearance than some other, more casual looking rocking chairs.

If you are looking for a padded rocking chair, it is likely that you will come across a variety of styles. Some just have padding on the seat, while others have the seat and back padded. It is also possible to get rocking chairs that have padding on the arms, too.

The padding on rocking chairs doesn’t have to be fabric. If you want a sleeker look, why not try one that has leather padding. This certainly adds a modern twist on a vintage chair.

Assembly required

3-best-rocking-chair-assemblyIt is likely when you buy a rocking chair there will be some assembly required. This might be a daunting prospect if you have never done anything like this before – or if the prospect of anything flat-packed has you running, screaming for the hills.

Before you have too much of a panic attack, or decide against having a rocking chair simply for this reason, have a look at what is out there. Some chairs need more assembly than others – and they always have instructions.

One of the key things to look at when you are looking for a rocking chair that won’t need a PhD in engineering to put together is how many parts it has that need to be assembled.

We know, some instructions are not the easiest to follow, so before you make your final choice, have a look at some reviews and see just how easy (or difficult) the rocking chair you are thinking about is to put together.

You can be certain that this is a big issue for many people so if a particular rocking chair is a nightmare to construct there will be lots of people saying so! And the reverse is true, also – there are many reviews of rocking chairs with people praising them for how easy they are to put together.

One of the key things to look at when you are looking for a rocking chair that won’t need a PhD in engineering to put together is how many parts it has that need to be assembled. Obviously, the more it has the longer it will take you.

Another thing to have a look at are the instructions. You can usually find these on manufacturers’ websites so you will know before you buy just how much of a daunting task putting the chair will be.

Look too, where the chair has been manufactured; we’re not saying that one country’s workmanship is any better or worse than another’s, but if the country of origin doesn’t have the same first language as yours, then there may be issues in the translation when it comes to the instructions – which will make your job more difficult.

Your other option, of course, is to purchase a rocking chair that comes ready assembled but it is likely that this will be more expensive.

Easy to clean

4-best-rocking-chair-easy-cleanObviously, a rocking chair that doesn’t have any padding will be easier to keep clean than one that does, but that doesn’t mean that it is impossible to keep an upholstered chair clean.

If you are thinking about buying an upholstered rocking chair, think about its purpose because this will have a direct impact upon how easy it is to keep clean. For example, a rocking chair is a popular choice to use as a nursing chair – and as we all know, babies seem to have more than their fair share of bodily fluids!

Another option for you if you like the idea of a rocking chair that has padding, is to look for one with removable covers that you can stick in the washing machine.

Of course, there are products on the market that will offer resistance to stains and marking – or you can have the upholstery professionally treated.

Another option for you if you like the idea of a rocking chair that has padding, is to look for one with removable covers that you can stick in the washing machine. This means that you can enjoy the comfort and luxury of your rocking chair without having to worry too much about soiling.

Many people like the thought of having a rocking chair on the porch or outside in the back yard. This is a great way to relax and enjoy some ‘me’ time, but not all rocking chairs are up to the job and will become soiled or even damaged if you leave them outside. If you are considering this type of rocking chair, either treat it or don’t leave it out when you go in.

If it has been treated, then you will be able to leave your chair outside and it will simply need to be wiped over when it gets dirty.

Many people enjoy the patina of wood after it has aged and been exposed to everyday living. If you are among these, then a simple dusting and polish will make sure that your rocking chair looks great for years to come.

Alternatively, it is possible to buy rocking chairs that have metal frames. These are usually the more portable models because they can fold. Some people love that they are easy to clean, while others complain that they show every finger print – research is probably necessary here!

Outdoor use

5-best-rocking-chair-outdoor-useAs we have already said, there is no reason why you can’t take any rocking chair outside but if it hasn’t been designed explicitly for this use you may be risking soiling and/or damaging it – and we certainly don’t recommend leaving them outdoors.

There are, however, many rocking chairs on the market that have been treated in order to protect and preserve them against the elements, making them the perfect choice for garden furniture.

Some outdoor rocking chairs are not wood at all – they are constructed from polyester and have metal frames, making them more like a rocking sun lounger than a traditional rocking chair.

These are available with a number of different finishes, from simply varnished to painted in a variety of colors, so you will be able to find chairs that will complement other items of your outdoor living space.

It is also possible to buy outdoor rocking chairs that have been specifically designed to hold two people. These are ideal for those romantic evenings under the stars, or your child can curl up next to you for some story telling and the making of memories.

Some outdoor rocking chairs are not wood at all – they are constructed from polyester and have metal frames, making them more like a rocking sun lounger than a traditional rocking chair. These combine the comfort of a lounger with the added bonus of being able to rock – and they tend to be very hardwearing.

Other chairs are constructed from woods that are renowned for their durability and attractiveness, such as teak. These tend to be expensive, however but you be sure that it will look good for years to come.

Some manufacturers give the title of rocking chair to products that may also be described as swinging chairs. These tend to be big enough for more than one person and come in many shapes from the more ornate cast iron to the more functional.

Some of these have canopies to protect you from the sun but over time they can become faded. They can also become weathered by more extreme weather so we advise that you store them over the winter months to prevent mildewing.

Mechanism cover

6-best-rocking-chair-mechanism-coverNot all rocking chairs have a mechanism; it’s simply a case of sitting in it and rocking – the curved rockers do it all for you. But some rocking chairs are much more elaborate than this and their rocking glides – which means a mechanism.

There are a couple of reasons why you would want it to be covered, and the first is safety. Small children delight in exploring and sticking their fingers in everything they shouldn’t – and a rocking chair mechanism could be dangerous to them, and to pets.

Over time, however, it is possible that any moving parts such as these will need to be lubricated otherwise they could set up an annoying squeak, so it is useful if the mechanism is accessible – and the cover can be removed.

The second reason for wanting to cover the mechanism on a rocking chair is aesthetics. The majority of people like to know something works without having to see it in action – and because the mechanism on a glider rocking chair consists of ball-bearings, they are not that pretty.

Over time, however, it is possible that any moving parts such as these will need to be lubricated otherwise they could set up an annoying squeak, so it is useful if the mechanism is accessible – and the cover can be removed.

Some rocking chairs look like an ordinary armchair but they have the ability to rock. These can be quite heavy and the mechanism sits underneath the chair, which means that it doesn’t need to be covered because the chair itself is doing the job.

The mechanisms on rocking chairs are not all alike and, as such, can do different things. The more simplistic just allow the chair to glide in a rocking movement, but there are others that also have a braking system so that the chair can be locked into position.

Naturally, the more complex the mechanism, the more moving parts it is going to have – and the more reason that it should be covered.

If you are interested in this type of rocking chair and are concerned about the safety of the mechanism and how it is covered, then we advise that you look at reviews to see what consumers of these chairs think – and don’t be afraid to contact the manufacturer directly – the majority have customer care lines.

Fabric seating

2-rocking-chair-reviews-fabric-seatingFabric seating can help to make an already comfortable rocking chair become the seat that your whole household will want to claim as their own. Fabric seating comes in a number of different styles and is a great way of helping the chair suit the style of your home, or to create a statement piece of furniture,

Regardless of whether you wish to place your rocking chair inside or outside of the house, it is possible to have fabric seating – although if you are going to place it outside you will have to take extra care of it so that it doesn’t become weather damaged.

It is often easy to find a chair with removable fabric seating covers for popping in the washing machine, or even those that have added protection against stains.

Fabric seating often brings to mind a fitted cushion tied to the chair but, while this look can be eye catching and effective, it can be so much more. Some rocking chairs – such as those intended for nursing mothers – have padded fabric at all points where pressure will be applied during sitting, making for an even more comfortable experience.

However, looks and comfort are not the only features you should consider when looking at a padded rocking chair; its ability to stay clean and in pristine condition is often a factor that can put people off fabric seating.

Some rocking chair manufacturers have – thankfully – recognized that this can be a problem, especially in an active family environment. Because of this, it is often easy to find a chair with removable fabric seating covers for popping in the washing machine, or even those that have added protection against stains.

Some rocking chairs are hard to tell apart from a regular lounge chair, while with others there is absolutely no doubting what they are. The former is completely upholstered but more traditional rocking chairs may not be.

For some, having a fabric seat is enough but other people like the back of the chair to have the same padding and comfort to it. If the rocking chair has arms it is also possible to have these upholstered using the same fabric as the seat.

Another option to fabric seating is leather. Many people enjoy the contemporary twist this put onto their rocking chairs – and of course, leather is easy to clean and is available in many different colors.

Easy instructions

3-rocking-chair-reviews-easy-instructionsIs there anything worse than bringing home your brand new piece of furniture only to find that, when you open the box and start to try to construct it, you can’t understand the instructions?

Unfortunately, just because a company has put a lot of thought into the design of your new rocking chair does not mean that it is easily assembled; sometimes the creators aren’t quite as good at relaying their thought processes onto paper as they are at creating an ingenious product.

Finding out whether the writer of the included instructions can speak English reliably well – or rather, the person who translated them did it well – could also help to ensure you don’t encounter any assembly issues.

Finding out whether a chair can be constructed easily before purchase can save you a lot of stress later on – in fact, it should probably be one of the first things you look at when deciding if a particular model is right for you.

So, what makes for easy assembly instructions? Well, for most people, large and clearly labelled diagrams are a must. Knowing which piece ‘Part A’ actually is is always a good start, and yet some flat packed furniture companies don’t seem to see a need to make sure that this piece of information is relayed properly.

Finding out whether the writer of the included instructions can speak English reliably well – or rather, the person who translated them did it well – could also help to ensure you don’t encounter any assembly issues. While it may not initially seem like a potential problem, language barriers are often something that cause plenty of frustration when encountered in assembly instructions.

There are many different ways of discovering if the instructions that come with a particular rocking chair are easy to understand, with the first – and most obvious – being to see what past owners have to say.

By looking at their reviews on the internet, you should be able to see how easy the chair is to assemble, and whether you think it may be for you.

If reviews aren’t helping you get the answers that you need, then consider searching for the assembly instructions of the chair you are thinking about online; manufacturers often post them on their website for people who may have lost them, and this will help give you a first-hand insight into how easy they are to understand.

Smooth motion

4-rocking-chair-reviews-smooth-motionHave you ever sat in a rocking chair that doesn’t have a smooth rocking motion? It can range from a familiar quirk that is quite endearing to being extremely annoying and takes all the pleasure out of the chair.

Sometimes the uneven rock can be caused by the floor that you are using it on. If this isn’t smooth then it is going to impact upon the chair – and the solution is straightforward and easy – move the chair to another location in your home.

Other times, the fault will be with the chair itself and can be caused by damage to the rockers brought about by using it on a rough or uneven surface.

Other times, the fault will be with the chair itself and can be caused by damage to the rockers brought about by using it on a rough or uneven surface that has taken a chunk out of one or both of the rockers.

This means that care needs to be taken on where the chair is situated so that this type of damage doesn’t occur and impact upon its rocking ability.

The size of the rockers will also make a difference to how a chair will move. The shorter they are the smaller the rock will be, which can prove to have quite a staccato effect that is not to everyone’s taste. Larger rockers give a more smooth and sweeping movement that can be quite relaxing.

The rocking chairs that rely on mechanisms for a gliding movement can also vary in how smooth they are. Unfortunately, there is only one of checking this out for yourself and that is go in-store and try out a few designs to see whether you like the movement.

If you are not able to do this, then you can get second-hand opinions from online reviews from people who already own the chair you are interested in. Some sites allow you to ask questions to which other users can respond, which is always useful.

Although it doesn’t impact upon the smoothness of the way a chair rocks, if it squeaks while it is doing so it could drive you crazy. If it is a wooden rocker, check the joints are tight enough; if it is a glider, then maybe some lubricant on the mechanism will help.

Durable

5-rocking-chair-reviews-durableFrom the number of antique rocking chairs that are available to buy on the second hand market and from antique fairs, it is safe to assume that a rocking chair can last for years even if it occasionally needs to be re-upholstered or be given new cushions.

Naturally, the durability of anything, including rocking chairs, is dependant upon the original workmanship and the quality of the materials that have been used in its construction.

For rocking chairs that have many parts, have a look for one whose manufacturer offers to replace any parts that become worn.

Unfortunately, there is usually only one way to see if a rocking chair is going to stand the test of time and that is to buy it and see how long it lasts. Online reviews, however, are a useful way of getting a better idea of how long something will last.

For rocking chairs that have many parts, have a look for one whose manufacturer offers to replace any parts that become worn. This is a surefire way of giving your chair a longer lifespan so that you can enjoy it for many years more than you might have done.

Taking proper care of your rocking chair will make sure that it lasts. If you decide to put it on your porch and it hasn’t been designed for outdoors then you are risking weather damage, particularly if it has any padding or if the wood hasn’t been treated with paint or a preservative.

We’ve already spoken about how the floor you rock on can impact the chair’s performance, but this is crucial to its durability.

If you are looking to buy a traditional wooden rocker then the wood that is used is an important factor when it comes to durability. Hardwoods are more likely to stand the test of time – as well as looking gorgeous. Oak and walnut are particular favorites.

In addition to the wood, check out how each part connects to the rest. There should be gaps around spindles or dowels because these will become loose very easily, and the rockers should be securely fixed into place.

Footrest

6-rocking-chair-reviews-footrestFootrests on rocking chairs vary depending upon the style of the chair. They can be built into the overall design and are just somewhere to perch one or more of your feet, or they can be a separate item altogether. Other rocking chairs don’t feature a footrest at all, so ultimately what you choose comes down to personal preference.

Remember though, that the movement of the chair is instigated by you pushing you the ground with your foot so there seems little point getting a rocking chair if the footrest makes it difficult to use.

Many rocking chairs designed to be nursery chairs often have a separate footrest.

Many rocking chairs designed to be nursery chairs often have a separate footrest. These can be useful in order to achieve a comfortable position to nurse. You can use the footrest to push against, and they often rock independently as well.

These use the same gliding mechanisms as the rocking chairs so you will need to give them the same attention to detail before you make a final decision.

Another thing to consider if you are going to buy a rocking chair with a separate footrest is whether or not it has a padded surface. This is something that you are going to be putting your feet on so you will need to make a conscious decision to remove your shoes before you use it, or choose one that will clean easily.

If you are unsure whether you want a footrest with your rocking chair, you will find some manufacturers that sell the rocking chair and footrest separately so you can buy the chair first and see how you feel after you have used it.

If you decide to go down this road, however, it’s probably a good idea to not wait too long in case there you end up with some color variations that spoil the look.

The height of your footrest is an important factor. Too high and you may feel like your knees are under your chin; too low and you may as well not bother having one so see if you can try some out before you buy.

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair
Our pick for the best rocking chair is: Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair. This choice was made after spending 39 hours researching rocking chairs.

Summary

rocking chair reviews

When it comes to choosing the perfect seat to relax on, the rocking chair is a style that no other design can compare to.

A traditional piece, rocking chairs provide comfort while also being pleasing aesthetically, fitting into most decors.

There are many rocking chairs on the market so if you have an idea of the type that you are looking for, you are more than half way there. First of all, do you want it to be a functional piece of furniture in your home or do you want one for outdoor use?

Some rocking chairs have extra wide seats, which mean that you either have much more room to yourself or you can share it with someone else.

Secondly, consider whether you want a rocking chair that is a fully upholstered piece of furniture for your lounge, baby’s bedroom or whether you are looking for a traditional wooden piece that will look great wherever you put it.

If you are looking for a rocking chair for somewhere to sit and relax in your back yard, you will need to make sure that it is able to withstand different weather conditions otherwise you may find yourself having to bring it in every time it clouds over.

Some rocking chairs have extra wide seats, which mean that you either have much more room to yourself or you can share it with someone else. If the person you are planning on sharing it with is a child, make sure that it is safe for them – some have wide gaps that a small child might slip through.

Even though traditional rocking chairs are wooden, this doesn’t mean that you have to keep it in its natural state. You can either buy them in different colors or you could give an old rocking chair a new lease of life by doing it yourself.

Garden rocking chairs offer even more choice than those for inside the home. In addition to usual designs, you can choose rocking loungers and hammock-like rocking chairs with canopies overhead for a sunshade.

These outdoor chairs are weather resilient and some will offer particular properties such as resistance to sun fading or being water proof.

Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair
Our pick for the best rocking chair is: Solid Hardwood Outdoor White Porch Rocking Chair. This choice was made after spending 39 hours researching rocking chairs.

Sources

  1. Rocking Motion: Physiologic Effect on the Surgical Stress Response, ClinicalTrials.gov, July 18, 2017
  2. Rocking-Chair Therapy Eases Burden Of Dementia, University of Rochester, April 25, 1998
  3. The Best Gliders And Rocking Chairs You Can Buy, Business Insider, July 19, 2017
  4. Top 10 Best Nursery Gliders & Rocking Chairs 2017, Heavy.com, August 24, 2017
  5. The 10 Best Rocking Chairs, Ezvid Wiki, December 15, 2016
  6. The Ergonomic Rocking Chair, The Atlantic, April 1, 2001
  7. You Can’t Live Without a Nursery Chair!, My Baby Care, February 24, 2015
  8. Why the Weeks Rocking Chair is so Comfortable, Gary Weeks & Company
  9. Here's Why So Many Airports Have Rocking Chairs, The Verge, December 22, 2014
  10. The 5 Best Glider Chairs For Your Nursery, Mom Tricks, July 22, 2017

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