Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair review
Investing in a good high chair is essential for parents entering into the world of weaning and toddler meals. Does the renowned Stokke Tripp Trapp chair live up to its reputation? We put it to the test.
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Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair
Pros: Genuine longevity – lasts into adulthood, sits the child at the family table, stylish design, solid construction, tucks neatly under the table, encourages good posture
Cons: Expensive accessories, toddlers can push table away if not placed correctly, fiddly harness, difficult to transport or store
Overall score: 3.8/5
Buy from Stokke (starts at £178 for basic chair)
The Stokke Tripp Trapp first came to the market in 1972, after Norwegian designer Peter Opsvik struggled to find a chair that would allow his two-year-old son to sit at the family table after outgrowing his highchair.
Marketed as ‘the chair that grows with the child’, the Tripp Trapp is designed to last well beyond the lifespan of a traditional highchair, and can continue to be adjusted into adulthood. It pushes right up to the table, helping the child to feel included in family meals.
There are now several imitators on the market, but, with its iconic design and high production standards, the Tripp Trapp is still considered the leader in its category. In 2015, the company introduced the Stokke Steps, which is similarly intended to evolve with the child (to adolescence), and they’ve also expanded into a wide range of other nursery products.
What are your first impressions of the Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair?
We currently use an older version of the Tripp Trapp which was passed on to us by a friend, so I was curious to see how the latest model compared. Gone are the wooden front bar and back rest and leather crotch strap, to be replaced with a single clip-on plastic baby seat – less rustically attractive, perhaps, but easier to remove for cleaning, as are the new seat cushions – and there are additional safety features, too.
The chair is now available in 14 colours in the standard beech, along with oak and ash versions, with an array of coordinating cushions and other accessories and the option to have the chair engraved – the basic Tripp Trapp design may be Scandi-simple, but Stokke have caught on to parents’ desire to personalise what has become a highly covetable object. We tested the 'storm grey' version, which coordinated well with our dining furniture.
Stokke Tripp Trapp assembly – how easy is it?
The chair is assembled and adjusted using an Allen key. Some nuts need to be left very loose until the end, to allow you to slide the seat and footplates in. The basic instructions were pretty clear, with guides on how to set the chair up for children of different ages. However, there were separate instructions for fitting the harness, baby set and cushions (as these are sold separately), and I found myself taking everything apart again to fit these at the correct stage of the main chair’s construction. It's best to read all sets of instructions together before you start.
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What age is the Stokke Tripp Trapp suitable for?
The basic Tripp Trapp chair is intended to last a toddler into adulthood, but in order to use it as a high chair from around six months to three years, you’ll need the Baby Set (£47). The Newborn Set (£79) makes the chair suitable from birth.
How secure is the Stokke Tripp Trapp?
Being made from solid wood, the chair is heavy and sturdy – it’s designed to hold the weight of an adult. Having the chair flush with the table does mean the child can push themselves away from it, but the extended glider attachment for the feet is designed to stop the chair from tipping backwards when this happens.
What is the safety harness like?
The five-point safety harness (£29) is an optional extra. A younger baby who's not too wriggly might not need it, but it’s quite useful as the child becomes stronger and can use the footrest to stand up and lean across the table. The harness feels like a bit of an afterthought and doesn’t seem particularly well integrated into the design.
It clips on to the sides of the chair and then sits behind the child in the seat, which doesn’t look especially comfortable. It's adjusted at the back of the child, which is slightly awkward, and the buttons to release the clips are small and fiddly. The harness tends to get in the way while cleaning the chair, and being a pale colour means it could begin to show marks, though it is washable.
How big is the tray and is it a good height for the child?
The Tripp Trapp is designed to be used directly at the table, so that the child joins in with family meals (and steals from the plates of other family members, in my daughter's case). However, a tray (£39) is available as an optional (and pricey) extra, and might be useful if, for example, you had lots of friends round and didn’t have space to have the highchair at the table.
The tray clips onto the front of the Baby Set easily (especially when you’re not using the cushions), though it’s released by unclipping it underneath the middle of the tray, which is slightly fiddly. It’s a reasonable size (23cm x 43cm), dishwasher-proof and sits at a good height, but can’t be adjusted.
Can you adjust the high chair in any other way?
While the chair is being used with the Baby Set, the seat has to remain in one position but the footrest can be adjusted. When the child is older, both the seat plate and footrest can be moved into a number of different positions, using the Allen key.
What is its footprint?
The footprint is a modest 47cm x 48cm, some of which tucks under the table, though the feet do stick out a bit, especially when using the gliders.
What is the overall quality of the Tripp Trapp?
The chair is made from solid beech (or more expensive oak or ash) and is very well made and finished. The paintwork doesn’t look as if it would scratch or chip easily, and the whole thing feels designed to last. The accessories are also made from high quality materials – I liked the cotton cushion fabric, which is wipe-clean but has an attractive matte finish.
Is it comfortable for the child?
It may not look as comfortable as some of the more armchair-like highchairs, but the ergonomic design and smooth lines of the Tripp Trapp help the child to sit comfortably. Giving the child a seat at the family table does seem to make them feel included and perhaps helps to make mealtimes a bit more communal and relaxed.
Is the seat padded?
The cushions – which come in baby, child and adult versions – are sold separately and come in a variety of colours and patterns starting at £33. Though very pretty, they aren’t really necessary, especially once the child is a bit bigger, as the seat is fairly snug anyway. Despite being wipeable, they do make the chair more difficult to clean. My daughter also quickly worked out how to undo the velcro on them.
Can you get the child in and out easily?
It’s pretty easy to get the child in and out, although it becomes more of a squeeze as the child gets bigger, as the Baby Set isn’t adjustable so the leg holes become snugger. However, you could just unclip the Baby Set to get the child out if it became a problem.
Is there adequate support for the child?
The Baby Set includes a curved back rest and the footplates are adjustable, meaning the child is well supported.
Is it easy to clean?
The basic wooden chair is easy to clean, although food does collect on the large foot plate, plus the surface and edges of the dining table, so there are a number of areas to wipe down. It’s worth bearing in mind that the table not only gets messy but is likely to get repeatedly stabbed with a fork, so if you’re attached to your table it might be worth putting a mat down.
The Baby Set wipes clean and can also go in the dishwasher. The cushions are wipeable and washable, but crumbs do collect in the crevices, and the harness is also slightly annoying to clean around.
Is it easy to store?
The chair doesn’t fold away and is fairly cumbersome to move, so you’ll probably want to keep it in one place. It tucks neatly under the dining table, and blends in well with other furniture – you could adapt it to be used as an adult chair if it wasn’t needed for a child.
Are there any accessories available for purchase?
There’s a dizzying range of potential add-ons – going full Tripp Trapp would be an expensive choice. The Baby Set (£47) is essential to use the chair as a high chair. The harness is £29 – this seems like something that should really be included with the Baby Set; the tray is £39 and the various cushion sets around £40.
The Newborn Set (£79, with the toy hanger another £11) might be a nice addition if you’re a family with older children and eager to sit together at mealtimes, but you can’t detach it and use it on the floor (unlike the bouncer that comes with the Stokke Steps).
Are there any special features?
The chair’s USP is the ability to keep adjusting the chair into adulthood.
Overall star ratings for Stokke Tripp Trapp
Ease of assembly 4/5
Comfort for child 4/5
Ease of cleaning 4/5
Safety and security 4/5
Ease of storage 3/5
Value for money 4/5
Overall star rating: 3.8/5
Buy from Stokke (starts at £178 for basic chair)
Suitable from birth to adulthood
Up to 110kg
Seat recline options:
Seat height options:
Newborn Set, plus hanging toy
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This review was last updated in May 2019. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at email@example.com.
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