Parenting in style: 21st-century fathers turn to stylish buggies
By Emma Charlton, AFPPARIS -- Suspension: check. Steering: check. A man picking a new car? Almost. Baby buggies, reinvented as sleek, high-tech designer objects, have become boy's toys for a young generation of hands-on dads.
July 23, 2012, 12:14 am TWN
When it comes to choosing a set of wheels for their progeny, pushchair makers and salesman say more and more young fathers are in the driving seat, explaining the shift by a simple equation, buggy = wheels = car = male.
The Dutch fashion duo Viktor and Rolf last month launched a buggy dubbed “My First Car” with the pushchair brand Bugaboo, in unisex taupe and grey, complete with silver hubcaps, faux-leather handlebar and sunshade and mock number plate.
With celebrity dads including David Beckham, Matt Damon or Coldplay's Chris Martin all snapped in recent years pushing this or that high-end stroller, today's brands are very much creating with men in mind.
“Guys who don't go stroller shopping are missing out on a golden opportunity to throw around phrases like 'turning radius,' 'spring-action collapsibility,' and 'off-road performance,'” reads a buyer's guide on one U.S. parenting website.
“There's a design and a brand positioning that can appeal to men,” confirmed Vital Ledru, account manager in France for Bugaboo. “It's all about suspensions, tyre-types, braking systems — stuff dads can relate to.”
“You've got your three-wheeler, your city buggy, your all-terrain or limo: it's an area men feel competent about,” summed up Dann Haccoun, who runs Paris' largest buggy store and does most of his business on Saturdays, “when working dads are free to come shopping.”
A man poses with a baby buggie on Tuesday, July 17 in a park in Paris. Baby buggies, reinvented as sleek, high-tech designer objects, have become boy's toys for a young generation ...