Dining Room Chair Shopping Guide

In addition to the basic function of providing a comfy place to sit, dining room chairs also give you a great opportunity to add some style to your space. With so many dining room chair options to choose from, I created this handy shopping guide to help narrow down your selection. 

Happy shopping!

Size of Chair

First and foremost, the most important factor to consider when shopping for dining room chairs is size. You want to make sure the size of your chair fits with the size of your dining room table. The three standard height for dining room tables are as follows:

  • Dining Table Height – 30”
  • Counter Table Height – 36”
  • Bar Table Height – 42”

Once you’ve selected the height of your dining room table, look for chairs that match the size. For example, if you have a dining table height, you’ll want to find chairs with a seat height between 25-30 inches. If you have a counter table, look for chairs with a seat height between 35-40 inches. For bar tables, you’ll want to step up to stools.

How Many Chairs do I Need?

A good general rule of thumb is to allocate 24” for each chair. So, if you have a table that’s 72”, you can fit three chairs on each side and one on each end.

Style of the Chair

Now that you know the size of your dining chair and how many you need, let’s take a look at the style. I know farmhouse is super trendy right now so let’s get right to that. 

Farmhouse

Montana 6 Piece Dining Set with Storage Bench | Bob’s Discount Furniture
The chairs and bench with my Montana 6 Piece Dining Set with Storage bench have a layer of Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam.

The rustic white finish and beige upholstery of my Montana Dining Chair just scream farmhouse. Plus with the name “Montana”, this had to feature a farmhouse look!

Wooden chairs with a distressed finish are perfect for the farmhouse look. If you’re going for the industrial farmhouse look, try for a blend of wood and metal.

Contemporary 

Elevations 6 Piece Counter Set with Storage Bench | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Elevations Counter Chair has a charming charcoal finish.

The cool curved lines and horizontal slats of my Elevations Counter Chair are a great option for a contemporary dining room. The wire brushed charcoal finish, brushed nickel accents and hardware are the cherries on top of this stylish chair.

Industrial

Lennox 9 Piece Dining Set | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Lennox Ladder Back Chair has a medium oak finish and nailheads around the seat.

My Lennox Ladder Back Chair sports a simple, yet balanced design. The clean lines, ladder back design and nailheads around the seat make this a great option for any industrial look.

Traditional 

Sanctuary 7 Piece Dining Set with Slat Chairs | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Sanctuary Slat Back Side Chairs have a weathered charcoal finish.

The traditional style is timeless for a reason–it works! If you’re stuck on a design direction or want a look that’s going to last a while, give traditional a try. 

My Sanctuary Slat Back Side Chair has a weathered charcoal finish and vertical slats that draws your eye up the back of the chair.

Mid-Century Modern 

alinas Pink Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Salinas Pink Chair has rich velvet upholstery and a gold metal frame.

You can’t talk about timeless design without mentioning Mid-Century Modern.  This classic look with a twist of mod and a pop of color is guaranteed to make a statement in your living room. 

My Salinas Chairs are available in pink, green, black and white. These chic chairs have a rich velvet upholstery supported by a gold metal frame. Best of all, shipping is included in the price of the chairs and these chairs ship directly to your home with Bob’s Value Express!

Cottage

Blake White Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
The Blake dining chair features a classic style.

The simple design of my Blake Dining Chair has a cottage style written all over it. This chair is available in a multitude of finishes including gray, white, espresso and cherry and black.

Transitional 

Enormous Counter Stool | Bob’s Discount Furniture

You’ll absolutely love the rustic style and solid mango wood construction of my Enormous Counter Stool.

Just one look at the Enormous Counter Stool and you can figure out where the inspiration for the name came from! This counter stool has a rustic style and solid Mango wood construction.

Choose Your Material

Next, decide what type of material you prefer. Do you like the natural look of wood, the cozy feel of an upholstered chair or the industrial vibe of a metal chair?

Wood

Blake Gray & Chocolate Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
Select a wood chair if you are going for a traditional look.

If you’re going for a more classic look, a wood chair is a good choice.

Upholstered

Riverdale Oak Upholstered Side Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Riverdale Upholstered chair has a layer of comfy Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam.

I like this design because it portrays warmth and comfort. Upholstered chairs work great for those big family holiday dinners when you’re spending a lot of time around the table.

Add a little extra style to your dining room by selecting upholstered chairs with tufting.

 Metal

Shari Green Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Shari High Gloss Metal Dining Chairs are very versatile.

Metal chairs are a great option if you’re looking for versatility. My Shari High Gloss Metal Dining Chairs can adapt to any style whether it’s casual, modern or elegant. And with five color options–green, black, light blue, gray and white–you can add an extra pop of style to any dining room.

Combination of Wood & Upholstery

Plaza Side Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Plaza Side Chair has a plush, upholstered seat with a layer of Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam Seating.

Can’t decide between wood and upholstery? Go with both. My Plaza side chair features a stunning blend of wood and upholstery with a charming peek-a-boo slit in the back.

Select Your Chair Design

After you’ve figured out what type of material you’d like on your chair, the next step is to look at the different chair designs. Remember while looking at the different styles that you want to find a design that stays with your overall theme. And don’t be afraid to try something different especially if you’re into the farmhouse or eclectic look. It’s ok to not have matching chairs. If anyone disagrees with you, tell them Bob said it’s ok ;).

Parsons Chair

Montibello Black Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture

The Montibello Black Dining Chair has a tall back.

The Parsons chair features a tall back and no arms. This is a great option if you need to maximize all the space around your dinner table.

Ladderback Chair

Lennox Ladder Back Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture

My Lennox Ladder Back Chair has a medium oak finish and nailhead trim around the seat.

The ladderback chair sports a compact design with horizontal wood slats in the back. This design is classic and timeless and is easy to incorporate into most styles.

Arm Chair

Majestic Arm Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
The Majestic Arm Chair has gold-tipped carvings and Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam Seating.

If you’re going for a more formal look, than the arm chair is a perfect choice. This regal design features arms on both sides and a wider footprint. You’ll need to make sure you have plenty of room between chairs around the table and from the table to your walls or nearby furniture.

Type of Chairs

Not all chairs are created for the same purpose, so that’s something important to consider when selecting chairs. First, ask yourself the function of the chair? If you need chairs that will get used regularly for meals, then you’ll want to select a dining chair.  However, if you need a chair that you might put off to the side for extra seating and won’t get heavy rotation at the dining room table, then look at accent chairs. Not sure what type of chair you need? Don’t worry, I created an easy breakdown of the four different types of chairs:   

 Dining Chairs

Cosmopolitan Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
You’ll love the contemporary look of my Cosmopolitan Dining Chair. 

Let’s start with the chairs that get the most use–dining room chairs. You have to consider form and function when selecting a dining room chair. Choose a chair that fits with the style of your table and also allows you adequate spacing around the table. For example, if you have a smaller table then you don’t want to select a wide chair with arms.

Host & Hostess Chairs

Scarlett Upholstered Host Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Scarlett Upholstered Host Chair features a cottage style and comfy Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam Seating. 

Also known as “head of the table” chairs, the host and hostess chairs are more elaborate than the side chairs. My Scarlett, Riverdale and Lennox Dining Sets all feature options with upholstered host and hostess chairs.

Accent Chairs

Matinee Red Dining Side Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Matinee Side Chair is available in your choice of red, white, black and gray.

Here’s a great opportunity to add a little style to your room especially if you already have dining room chairs that go with your dining room set. Accent chairs can give you a little pop of color and splash of style in your dining room and provide extra seating when needed.

Side Chairs

Scarlett Splat Back Side Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture

The Scarlett Splat Back Side Chair has carved front legs and a tufted back.

You just sat down for your holiday dinner when you hear a knock on the door. Surprise! An unexpected guest. Good thing you have a side chair that you can pull up to the table. 

Side chairs are great because they are so versatile. You can use them as a dining chair, an extra chair at your desk or that one final seat needed for your weekly game night.

Windsor Chairs

Claire Black Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Claire Dining Chairs sport a contemporary look.

Enjoy the classic look of the Windsor chair. Simple, yet elegant, the Windsor Chair has a timeless style. Select white for a traditional look, or if you’re feeling bold, opt for a color. My Claire Dining Chairs are available in gray, black, green, light blue and white.

Dining Room Benches

Summit Wire Brush Dining Storage Bench | Bob’s Discount Furniture

My Summit Bench has hidden storage!

I know what you’re thinking, this blog is about chairs and you have a section on benches. Yes, I know, but stay with me a minute. 

Benches are a fun alternative to chairs. You can fit up to three people on a bench. If you tried to fit three chairs in the same space your guests would be super squished. Plus–here’s another fun part of benches–some have hidden storage so you don’t need to worry about where you put your favorite holiday tablecloth that you only use a few times a year.

Add Some Color

If you’re looking to make a bold statement, dining room chairs are a great way to bring some color into your dining room. My Matinee Bar Set features four different chair colors: black, red, gray or white.

If you’re feeling really bold, you can opt for the Matinee Multicolored Dining 5 Piece Set. This set features a red, black, white and gray chair.

Matinee Multicolored 5 Piece Bar Set | Bob’s Discount Furniture

Go for a bold look with my Matinee Multicolored 5 Piece Bar Set!

When you’re considering color in your dining room, don’t just limit yourself to the seat. My Giselle Dining Chair features four different colors–pink, ivory, gray and burgundy–that really pop against the bronze-colored legs.

Giselle Blush Dining Chair | Bob’s Discount Furniture
My Giselle Blush Dining Chair has tapered legs and a barrel-style curved back.

Consider a Stool

Bar Stools | Bob’s Discount Furniture

Stools are a fun way to add style to your room.

Don’t overlook the option of a stool. My bar and counter stools are super stylish and I have plenty of options to choose from. Check this chart to determine what type of stool you need:

Stool size chart | Bob's Discount Furniture

Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam Seating

You know what goes perfect with some good comfort food? Comfort seating!

My Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam Seating gives your guests a super comfy dining experience. Just look for the Bob-O-Pedic Memory Foam logo to determine if a chair has that extra layer of comfort in it!

Share Your Dining Room Style

I’d love to see what dining room chairs you’ve selected! Snap a pic, post it on social and tag me @mybobs for a chance to be featured on my feed.

About the author / Bob

I consider myself the luckiest spokespuppet ever because I get to talk about the thing I love the most everyday – furniture! Tufted headboards, rustic finishes, the difference between a sofa and a couch (yes, there is a difference)… I could go on and on. Oh, I just love furniture and I’m SO excited that I have this blog to share my passion with you! It may take me a little longer to create posts – have you ever tried typing with clay hands – but I look forward to talking furniture with you!

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