A Guide to Selecting the Right Dining Chairs for Your Table

While you may change up your decor every season and swap out the bright, spring-themed cushions for more festive ones for Christmas, the same can’t be said for your dining chairs. Not only is it a waste of space to be storing a different set of chairs for each season at the house (and frankly, a little silly), it can also be very expensive. This is why choosing dining chairs that will go with your home decor at any time of the year, are timeless and designed to last are the best bet.

But with so many options for dining chairs available today, how do you go about selecting the right ones? Here is a quick guide to make your selection easier:

Comfort levels
No two dining chairs styles are the same. In recent years, armchairs as dining chairs have become all the rage, but this may not always be the most practical choice. For instance, in smaller spaces, armchairs, while very comfortable, might cramp up the place. You need a chair that is designed to spend long hours in but also fits the space you are working with. Most of us have now experienced the backpains that come with sitting for too long on a chair that doesn’t offer enough support, what with working from our dining tables for so long!

Measure your table height
If you’ve already bought a table and are looking to buy chairs to complement it, measure the height of your table and ensure the chairs you choose don’t get dwarfed by your table or slide under it. While most tables have a standard height of 28 to 30 inches, some may be designed to be used with higher chairs and need appropriate chairs to match. You should also have enough space between the top of your chair seat and the bottom of your table for your legs to fit comfortably. Don’t be afraid to take a tape measure with you to the store!

Measure around the table
To ensure everyone on the table has enough room to move around and eat comfortably even when the table is full, leave at least a metre of space around the table for the chairs when they are pushed back. Additionally, allow for enough space between two chairs for people to be able to sit and eat comfortably without constantly bumping elbows.

How many chairs?
A smaller space may work great with a round table, but the size of the table and the available space will determine how many chairs you can fit around it. Consider how many chairs you are likely to need on a regular basis, and whether you may need to squeeze a chair (or two) when entertaining over the holidays. Not all tables are built for a six-seater setting, and this is something you’ll have to consider when buying either your table or your chairs.

Weight allowance
Many chairs will also come with a maximum weight capacity that they are capable of holding. If you are buying a chair that is on the flimsier side or has legs that may bow, you may want to reconsider your decision if the table is likely to have to bear a significant amount of weight. There’s nothing worse than a chair cracking and collapsing from underneath someone, especially if it happens while you’re entertaining! Not only can it be very embarrassing for both the host and guests, it can also lead to serious injury.

The shape of the legs
This is an important factor that will play a major part in how functional your chairs end up being. If you’re thinking of placing a rug under your table, getting dining chairs with thin, tapered legs that may get caught in the rug would make it hard to move around the table comfortably. Similarly, chair legs that taper out may become a tripping hazard in a space with limited movement space.

Fabric and functionality
Upholstered dining chairs in materials like velvet and suede are all the rage today, but they may not be suitable for homes with little children or pets. You’ll find yourself spending more time than recommended trying to keep them clean from sticky fingers and markers and may even consider covering them up with protective seat covers. This is why it is always recommended to choose dining chairs in materials that best align with your lifestyle and your unique circumstances. It can be costly having to replace or reupholster your dining chairs every few years! Leather is a great option for such households because it is easy to clean, as are chairs with removable slip covers.

And there you have it! With this information at your disposal, you’re now well on your way to choosing dining chairs that best suit your needs and lifestyle.