When you are in the process of furnishing your dining room, you may find it difficult to find the perfect dining chairs. Aside from space constraints, many dining tables don’t come with chairs, making matching chairs a struggle to find. However, this process is not as complicated as it may feel. To help you out, here’s how to choose the perfect dining chairs for your space for a functional and stylish dining room.
Scale of Chairs
The scale of your chairs relative to your dining table will be an important part of ensuring your seats are comfortable. Too short, and you’ll have to bring your arms up to an awkward height. Too tall, however, and you’ll have to constantly lean over your meal.
Most dining room tables average from 28–31 inches, but you’ll want to measure the top of your table to the floor to get an accurate measurement. Likewise, the average size of dining chairs—from the seat to the floor—is 17–20 inches, depending on the table they’re meant to go with.
Keeping these averages in mind, the sweet spot of space between the seat of your chairs and the tabletop is typically 10–12 inches. This provides enough space for chair occupants while also allowing the tabletop to be at a comfortable height for anyone sitting in the chair.
Width and Depth
In addition to the height of your dining chairs, the scale also encompasses the width and depth of the chairs to ensure they fit comfortably under the table. Chairs that fit comfortably under the table will also ensure guests don’t feel cramped or uncomfortable once they’ve sat down. Furthermore, if the width and depth aren’t compatible, then the chair could sustain damage.
Whether you have a rectangular or oval dining table, the chairs should be able to slide under without bumping into table legs or the base of a pedestal—depending on the design of your table. This also applies to smaller tables that are square or round and is one of the easiest ways to determine if you’ve chosen the perfect dining chairs for your space.
When placing two or more chairs on one side of a table, make sure they’re able to slide under the table without hitting the table or other chairs next to them. After all, if the chairs are constantly knocking into each other, your guests aren’t going to have a lot of room under the table. Ideally, each seat should be 2 inches apart from the other, no matter what kind of table shape you have.
Arm and Back Heights
You also need to consider the backs and arms of the chairs—if your chairs have them. If your chairs have arms, you don’t want the top of the arms to brush or bump the bottom of the tabletop. Brushing against the top will quickly wear down the arms of your chairs through friction. Even if the space between the seat and the table is sufficient, if the chair’s arms bump the bottom of the table, the chair is too big. Arms that bump into the tabletop also prevent occupants from sitting close enough to the table to eat comfortably.
As for the height of your chair’s back, it is more about appearance than function. Dining rooms always look best when the back of the chairs is taller than the tabletop. You can have your chair backs as high as you like, but as the absolute minimum, your chair backs should be 2 inches taller than the tabletop. Otherwise, your chairs will appear odd and squat in comparison, and they may look more like bar stools than actual dining room chairs.
Style and Aesthetics
Now we can talk about the fun part of choosing dining room chairs—the style and design. Obviously, you want the table and chairs to match, so you must ensure their styles are compatible with each other. To choose chairs that are compatible with your table, make sure the chairs meet at least one of these requirements:
- The chairs and table are of the same period—meaning they have similar design motifs befitting the trends of a single time period.
- The color undertone of the finishes is the same.
- The level of formality is similar.
For example, modern dining chairs are from current style trends, typically feature neutral colors, and offer a sleek, often minimalist design that can be both casual and formal. This makes these chairs fairly versatile in terms of compatibility, but you’ll find that they pair better with newer dining tables than antique ones.
And if you haven’t picked out a table yet, then consider instead what table and chairs will go best with the room. If you live in an older home, something antique will be more appropriate because it matches the antique architecture and design of the era your home was built. Likewise, newer homes will benefit from modern furniture, and cabins or rural homes may prefer something more rustic and created entirely from wood.
To get a sense of what kind of chairs you’ll want to pair with your table, you can depend on online retailers like Inmod to compare and contrast a variety of designs, colors, and sizes. Being able to see the chairs side by side for comparison can be a major benefit in helping you decide which type of chair is preferred for your table.
By keeping the elements and dimensions we’ve talked about in mind, your mission to choose the perfect dining chairs for your space will be much easier. You’ll be able to narrow your search for the perfect dining chairs, and you’ll also have a reference for what kind of chair will look best with your dining table. This will get you a cohesive dining area with furnishings you love that complement the aesthetic of your home.
Inmod specializes in modern and contemporary furniture, and we’re more than happy to help you find chairs that match your table and complement the aesthetics of your home’s design. Shop with us today to find your perfect dining chairs!