Many of you empathised with me a while ago when I lamented my inability to find the perfect pram.
Now the Phil & Ted’s Verve is here. I’m keen. I’m excited. I’m desperate for this to be the one.
When the box arrived on my doorstep it was like Christmas in July. Easy to assemble – well, I just passed it onto the husband while I fed the baby, so it was effortless for me. But from what I witnessed, it was straightforward and sensible. The instruction pamphlet (or video on their website) is faultless in its simplicity and each step is communicated visually.
Once assembled, the first thing I notice is the lovely seat padding for the baby. This is certainly an improvement on previous models, which always looked a little rugged for my liking.
The sleek style of the pram will appeal to many; in fact it turned heads as I pushed it around the shopping centre. I knew it was the pram and not me, given I look like I’ve been dragged backwards through a cat flap most mornings. If only I looked like the model in the ad too. Perhaps Phil & Ted’s could throw in a makeover as an optional accessory?
Stylish as it is, the sturdiness of the frame and the functionality are equally appealing. I must confess I was never a fan of the Phil and Ted’s prams. I knew many mums who love, love, loved their P&T’s but I just didn’t warm to the child sitting on the floor deal. That was until I realised the value of an inline design that fits through supermarket aisles.
The conundrum of carrying two children around shops and out for walks in a single vehicle puts mums on an endless search for a pram that will serve multiple purposes and I think finally, the Verve, is close to meeting the demands. It is incredibly easy to turn from a single pram to a double – a simple click action. This is fantastic when you only have one child with you because removing the second seat frees up the underneath basket for the jumbo box of nappies, or the slab of beer, if that’s your thing.
It took a little practise to get the baby in and out of the second seat without looking like an awkward amateur and I wonder if when she gets a little older (currently 9 months) she may bore of staring at the back of the top seat, but for now, she loves it.
They’ve improved the second seat by giving it a hood and three-position recline so both children can snooze while you’re out. (My children never do this but great to know the option’s there!). And although the hood is certainly an added benefit, it’s not hugely effective blocking sun from the side. Particularly compared to the enormous, follow-the-sun-hood with flip out visor that the main seat boasts.
Based on pram forums, there were some tipping concerns noted with previous models. This has been solved by the 4 wheel option creating balance in addition to much smoother suspension. The website claims “The verve is safety certified in all three recline modes for carrying one child in the rear and none in the front.” I think having your child safely in their seat without risk of being catapulted when their sibling does a runner is a priority for me. But I’m a little safety conscious.
The suspension achieved through four wheels - airless front tyres and pneumatic rear tyres - is a huge plus for me because we do a significant amount of forest walking and some of the tracks are not entirely baby friendly, so a pram that can absorb some of the shock is certainly a bonus.
Storage follows a minimalist path. This could be to compliment the chic look of the pram, but I could do with a couple of extra pockets. When the second seat is in, the basket becomes ineffective because the child’s legs takes up most of that room.
I’m willing to trade that off for the effortless manoeuvrability – it handles like a Porsche (well, I can only assume, given I drive a family wagon). I can do screaming baby in one hand, pram in the other, toddler still seated, without feeling like I’m going to push my internal organs through my pelvic floor.
Let’s talk fold. I am in love with the way this pram clicks in half with absolute ease – with or without the second seat. It’s ultra compact standing fold means I can put both rear seats up in my 7 seater car and it stands proudly behind them (in the past, we’ve only had room for the 6 seats, needing to leave space for our old clunky pram).
It’s not the cheapest (RRP $995 plus $159.95 for the doubles kit) or the lightest pram on the market (13kg) but it earns its pricetag by its look, sturdy build and user-friendly design. I think Phil & Ted’s have listened to the consumer and made significant improvements through this model to make it a winner.
It’s a mere pocket or two from perfect.
Some other benefits:
6 position adjustable handle height.
Travel system compatible (with car seat).
Brake in the handle – much easier than the foot flip.
7 in 1 adaptability – sees your baby through to age 6.