I'm Bryony, a mum to a very-nearly-two year old little girl who loves the moon, frogs and ‘feeling wow'! We live on the South coast, where my husband and I run our own businesses from home (mine in the creative industry) which makes wrangling a toddler even more interesting! We have just moved house and completed a big renovation project (mostly with our little girl riding/snoozing on my back!) The toddler stage is challenging but my favourite age so far, and we love to spend our days walking, reading, visiting the beach, and searching for great puddles to splash in.
Our hotly anticipated Egg stroller arrived today, in one rather heavy box (and a padded envelope!) The Egg was neatly and safely packaged, with lots of folds of cardboard to protect the chassis and metal parts.
The instructions could have been a little clearer, with some fairly darkly reproduced greyscale photos that were a bit hard to see. However, the assembly was pretty straightforward and I only spent about 25 minutes putting it together (most of which was fiddling with the seat liner and harness strap lengths – buckle adjustments aren't my forte!) plus testing the insect net and rain cover. First impressions of the Egg itself are great – I was surprised how soft and luxe the fabric felt as I took the seat unit out of its packaging. The Egg comes in several neutral yet unusual (for prams) colours; we chose the gorgeous Storm Grey with Gunmetal chassis. It's hard to capture the shade in photos, but it's a lovely purple-toned soft mid grey.
The pram swoops easily around the house and we've been impressed by the features already.
Really looking forward to our next few months with the Egg!
Portability and folded size are important in a potential new stroller, especially if you are limited on storage space in your home or car. Unlike other prams we've used which fold into quite a long package and fill the whole car boot, the Egg collapses down on itself in half which makes for easy storage (when folded, the chassis only measures around 60x70cm). However, it can't fold with the seat attached, which might be trickier if you often travel by public transport. The seat unit/carrycot can easily sit either on the back seat or in the boot, with room still left for shopping bags! Here's an idea of how easily it fits in the boot of a ‘supermini' car (please excuse the junk!) and also in a hatchback with a larger boot.
March the 25th 2016
The all-important fold! A bad or clumsy folding mechanism can really make or break a pram … it sounds like a minor issue, but really you could be folding and unfolding several times a day as well as lifting in and out of cars, so an easy folder can really make your life a little bit less stressful! The Egg folds down really simply – twist the middle section of the handlebar towards you and lower it to the ground. At this point grab the handy webbed carry/shoulder strap in the middle of the basket and lift upwards so that the chassis closes on itself. Secure with the locking clip, and you're away. (Or at least hobbling away after you swing the pram nonchalantly onto your shoulder, and get whipped around the back of the knees with the handlebar. Luckily not caught on film, but heed my warning and don't try any fancy manoeuvres!)
My first little gripe: the harness. Maybe I have been spoiled by my first pram, but the harness isn't really doing it for me. It's perfectly functional (plus the little egg-shaped lock/button is lovely and works perfectly), but the little locking teeth that you hold together and click into the button to secure it aren't fixed in position on the straps, and being plastic instead of metal like the ones on my carseat they aren't weighty enough to hold the strap down close to the buckle. This means that they invariably slide with gravity back along the straps down to the back of the pram and is also exacerbated by having a seat liner fitted, as occasionally the clips slip down behind the edge of the liner, equalling more fumbling. It also isn't helped by the excess slack in the straps (when they are set at a small size adjustment) dangling down over your hands so that you can't see what you're doing when you secure the clip. This wouldn't be a big deal at all with a smaller baby, but with a toddler it is; she protests, she wiggles, she hops. And if I've not been pepped up by coffee then while I'm spending those few extra moments chasing the plastic back up along the straps to secure her in she bounces up and down until she gently slides down and out of the pram and scampers off into the distance*. Obviously it's not a major issue, but it's an irritation that with a little tweak during the design process could have been extra user-friendly and made our days a little more stress-free.
*This week's review may be biased due to my obvious incompetence as a parent …!
April the 8th 2016
On a more positive note this week: I've heard the Egg described online as a ‘marmite' pram in terms of design, but I'm not really sure what's not to like, because looks-wise it seems like a winner all round to me!
The structured hood shape makes it look a bit striking and unusual without being too ‘weird', and the simple neutral colour options are just different enough from other brands to be eye-catching without being too polarising (or a beacon for every insect in the vicinity). It has a good shopping basket – big enough for a few bags without impacting negatively on the footprint of the pram or getting in the way of the fold. The gunmetal chassis is sleek and the little white accents and leather handlebar with stitch detailing are a nicely thought out addition that make it feel a little bit more special. What do you think!?
April the 15th 2016
Good manoeuvrability in a pram is important for me, as well as the ability to cope fairly well with different types of terrain. The majority of the time we're just pootling around the shops and riding on pavement, however we also live near the seaside and countryside so a certain amount of all-terrain capability is necessary! The Egg, whilst clearly not a serious all-terrain sport pushchair, seems to be a fairly good all-rounder if you're not into hiking with your pram. It has a pretty good turning circle, and moves through shop aisles easily to minimise awkward dance-offs with other pushchairs, trolleys or displays. The Egg stroller boasts ‘Tru-Ride Technology' tyres, which are PU non-puncture solid tyres, with a light grip, and the front wheels are easily lockable with a little button (which helps a bit with stability when you're off-roading). They're not as cushy as an inflatable tyre but seem to provide a bit of a smoother ride than EVA tyre pushchairs I've tried in the past, and on our first outing I was surprised by the smoothness of the ride on pavement, how bumps were cushioned for baby, and how easy it was to mount kerbs. We've taken it out on a couple of walks this week to the beach and the countryside. On grassy terrain it coped well and went over the grass fairly smoothly until we reached areas with little trenches and rougher areas where the terrain was lumpy and of a very changeable height. The beach was a bit of a different story and, while perfect for prom strolling, the Egg just couldn't cope with stones; it ground to a halt as soon as it tried to mount pebbley ground. I could just about move it to the safety of tarmac by dragging it backwards so that it's larger wheels were doing the work, but if you want to stroll on the beach or very bumpy terrain frequently then a 3-wheeler with large tyres would probably work better, even with the annoyance of punctures.
April the 22nd 2016
I've found that my little girl seems to enjoy riding in the Egg, and the comfort level is good. The seat pod actually feels slightly small when compared to others I have tried, and at 2 years old the Egg's hood is very close to her head.
I don't think this actually affects her comfort, but it does make her look a little big for it, so if you have an older toddler or a child who is very tall then you may struggle a bit on days when you need to have the hood extended and the seat at its most upright position as it slightly reduces visibility (which she isn't too keen on!) The footrest is very adjustable, which is great, and the seat liner is cushy; well thought out with lots of padded areas that look like they support her well while seated.
April the 29th 2016
Related to last week's post – and a little confirmation that the seat must indeed be comfy – here's my daughter having a sneaky nap in the Egg! The apron is good as it keeps baby tucked in, feeling secure and protected from the elements, without the heat of a thick footmuff. It attaches by hooking over the footrest and then the top folds back over and poppers over the handlebar (which is a bit of a squeeze to attach, but nice and secure once you've done so, which means that baby can't detach it or kick/throw it off like a blanket.) Very snug!
My favourite little feature of the Egg stroller so far has to be the insect net. This is really well thought out - instead of just being an addition that takes up valuable shopping basket/changing bag space (which usually means that you never have it with you when you most need it!), it is actually attached to the pram. The insect net is tucked in a little self-contained area behind the footrest and secured with a popper. It's easily removable if you want to, but the great thing about the popper attachment is that it creates an anchor point at the bottom of the seat unit that allows you to just grab it out quickly, unfurl it and tuck it over the top and sides of the pram. It's not been humid enough to need to use the net outside yet, but I can see it coming in very useful in the summer during countryside walks. I've also filmed a peek at the storage pocket at the front of the footrest so you can see the strong magnetic closure – but more on that next week!
May the 13th 2016
So where was I? The Egg has a great little storage pocket for the rain cover which is accessed by a flap in the footrest. This has a really strong magnetic closure which snaps it shut and ensures that nothing is lost from it as you're trundling around.
Unfortunately though the rain cover storage doesn't work quite as well in practice as the insect net one does. It really is a great idea, again saving valuable space and ensuring that you have it with you at all times (which is necessary with our unpredictable weather!) However, the space is a really tight squeeze and you really have to work to contort the raincover into a small enough and perfectly formed package to make it fit inside. It could be because the raincover is new and hasn't been folded many times so is more stiff, but it would be useful if the pocket was just a little bit bigger or less rigid to allow you to stuff the raincover in more easily when in a rush.
I'll report back as to whether the raincover becomes more pliable and easy to stash by the end of the test! However, the rain cover itself is good – a nice snug fit that covers all the parts it needs to, and if you don't mind carrying it around in the basket or your changing bag then the storage pocket is also perfect for a phone, keys or small baby bits like dummies.
May the 20th 2016
My husband has enjoyed pushing the Egg around as much as I have, largely due to the easily adjustable handlebar height. It's a great push for people of different heights as the adjustment mechanism is really simple and there are five different adjustment points to suit everyone. If you're out on a family walk you can easily adjust the height as you swap the pushchair from person to person; you simply twist the central rotating barrel portion of the handlebar and then pull it up or push down to adjust, and then let go to lock in place. The handlebar also feels great to the touch in comparison to some other pushchairs I've tried – the Egg has a leatherette handlebar which is comfortable to use (and not strangely uncomfortable to touch in the way that foam can be … especially when wet – ack!), and not at all hard as you might expect. The handlebar material has also shown no wear so far during the last couple of months of use, which is great.
May the 27th 2016
As you can probably tell from the pictures so far, a standout feature of the Egg stroller is its shopping basket, which is pretty ample! It easily fits my handbag, a couple of shopping bags and perhaps a coat or some other little bits and pieces in. The far side of the basket is lowered, I believe for easy/quick access from both sides, which is a nice idea in theory but I do find it a little bit alarming as I worry that something might fall out where it gets quite shallow. However this hasn't actually happened yet, and I'm sure you'd notice swiftly if anything did fall out of the front as you attempt to wheel over it!
I usually just get around the issue by placing the taller or more substantial items at the front, and tuck smaller objects into the side with the higher edge. The carry handle strap for use during the fold is also useful, as you can use it as a strap/brace to hold in unwieldly shopping!
A little demo of what the Egg can hold for an every-day shopping trip or picnic is to follow!
A little niggle this week – I feel that the catch to secure the fold on the Egg could be a bit better. I've done a lot of ins and outs of the Egg from the car boot in the last couple of weeks – lots of nice walks and some little café visits (when the sun has rarely peeked out from the clouds!) and have been finding that the catch is just a bit too loose. While this is good for speed/ease of securing it while you're doing the fold down, it doesn't actually secure it very well and seems to slip off with a bit of movement on some occasions.
As the pram essentially collapses down in half this doesn't really mean anything for the security of the fold as it just stays where it is. However, it does mean that when you lift the pram up by the strap in order to erect it you occasionally get a trapped finger/hand or, worse, one side of the folded pram unexpectedly swings out towards you. Essentially it's not a huge deal, but a few bruised shins could have been avoided with a slightly better locking mechanism, and obviously with little people around any weighty swinging/untethered objects aren't ideal!
June the 10th 2016
Something I really enjoy about the Egg is the ease of turning it from forward to rear facing. There aren't multiple steps or fiddly catches to mess around with, you just push down with your thumbs on the two white buttons either side of the seat unit, and use your fingers to lift the seat unit up by little ledges next to the buttons, clicking it back into place in the opposite direction. Although the stroller as a whole is quite weighty, the seat unit is really lightweight and compact so it's easy to flip around and not too cumbersome to hold. The ability to face both ways is so useful for a fussy toddler on long walks, as the change in viewpoint can keep them interested for longer! I have tried to flip it around with her in it (probably not advisable health and safety-wise!) and did find it much harder to lift the seat without help due to the added weight and the necessity to push the buttons with your thumbs at the same time as lifting, but I imagine it would be easy with a smaller baby due to how light the seat is.
I can't believe it's time for the final round-up already! We really enjoyed using the Egg stroller for the last few months. It deals with kerbs, shopping and general strolling really well with a good turning circle; if you don't need to go too off-road then it's a great bet. We use it really frequently as it fits in the car so easily, leaving half a boot to fill with shopping etc (even without removing the wheels), and because it's so quick to set up and fold down.
Of course, I have to mention where we felt the Egg fell down a little bit for us and the little niggles you discover when actually using something day to day: the raincover is still a pain to fold up back into the little storage pocket under the footrest, but I still prefer to carry it in there so that it's always with us; The catch to secure the fold could be more, well, secure; The seat is a bit small and low to the ground for my liking, but this of course does make the whole thing more compact. It's worn well over the last few months, but the position of the ‘Egg' embroidery on the footrest means it has rubbed slightly with some of the threads coming loose, and the handlebar does tend to scuff slightly as it goes to the ground when folding.
Last but not least, all the especially good bits: it has an ingenious insect net/pocket tucked away behind the footrest; The Egg boasts lovely striking design and great colours; The ride is smooth and comfy for baby with the Tru-Ride tyres; There's a good range of adaptability, both for baby with recline and footrest adjustment, and for parent with adjustable handlebar. The fold is really quick and easy, as is fitting the seat unit, and the carry strap is useful.
A special mention also has to go to something that I haven't talked about during the review because I only have one child and so wasn't sent a second seat, but the Egg is actually easily convertible into a tandem; it can hold two carrycots, seat units, or car seats (or one of each) with a £29 adapter set. This adaptability is great if you are planning on expanding your family in the near future, or for twins. Although the Egg is quite a heavy stroller, I imagine that two seat units would not increase the weight greatly (two carrycots or car seats might be a different matter, but expecting a really light tandem pram might be too much!) especially as the weight of the Egg can't really be felt when pushing it, as it can with some other prams.
Overall a really great stroller, and with just a few little edits to increase practicality and maybe some additions found on other strollers like a longer sun visor (for when baby is reclined) and machine washable fabrics, it could really meet the more ‘premium' price tag and push it to being really brilliant.