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How to Choose Dining Room Chairs

Last Updated Jun 17, 2011 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald

Your dining room chairs are a huge part of your dining and living areas, so you want chairs that are comfortable and that fit your decor.  That’s why we’ve put together this guide, so that you can see what is available and pick up some hints and tips to help you make the right choice. Read on for more.

Check Out the Size and Weight of the Chairs

When you are picking out new dining room chairs, the first thing that you will need to look at is the actual size and weight of the chairs.  You want chairs that are comfortable to sit in, yes, but you also want them to fit well in your dining room and that also suit the size of the table.  You don’t want dining chairs that look like they’re too small for the table, or ones that are so large that you can’t pull them out all the way, or they dwarf the table.  You also need to think about the weight of the chairs. This is a purely practical consideration, as you want all members of your family to be able to easily pull the chairs in and out.  You want chairs that feel solid but that aren’t too heavy to use.

Choose What Type of Dining Chairs You Want

When it comes to dining chairs, you have a few options. You can choose chairs with or without arms and they can be upholstered or non-upholstered.  Chairs with arms can be more comfortable but be aware that they may be hard to fit underneath the tabletop.  They can look more formal however, which is ideal if you are furnishing a formal dining room.  Chairs without arms can be more flexible design wise and they suit all types of dining settings, from formal to casual.  Upholstered versus non-upholstered chairs really is a personal choice as both come with a lot of benefits.  In this situation, you are best to look at how the chairs will be used.  If you have kids that are likely to spill, you’ll want the ease of cleaning that non-upholstered dining chairs provide.  However, if you like comfort or want to match your dining chairs with your couch, upholstered chairs may be desired.

Dining chairs are also made out of a variety of different materials, the most common being timber, timber look veneer, acrylic, plastic, and steel.  You can find dining chairs made out of all one material or a combination of materials.  You will need to choose chairs that you find attractive but that also match with the table and your decor as a whole.

Think About Design

The good thing about dining chairs is that they are available in so many different designs.  You can opt for an antique, carved look chair, or go to the complete opposite end of the spectrum and choose sleek, ultra-modern chairs.  Chairs can come in just about any colour that you can think of, and the choice of upholstery is nearly unlimited.  If you are opting for non-upholstered dining chairs, you can use seat cushions to jazz things up, and they can be changed every time you want to update your decor.

You will find that you generally have the choice of a dining setting – where the chairs are specifically designed to match the table – or the choice of buying a separate dining table and chairs.  If you like the matching look, a dining setting may be the better option for you, but if you want the freedom to choose exactly what you want, you can choose the table and chairs separately. This way to can be pick chairs that contrast with the table, contrast with each other...anything you like!
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