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HOW TO CHOOSE A DINING CHAIR: THE GUIDE WITH EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

Dining rooms are generally pretty straightforward to decorate. The challenging part is all in the seating. Getting the proportions, size and scale right are key to bringing the whole look together and creating a stylish space where family and friends will linger over beautiful food and conversation. We have all been to dinner parties where our legs have been squished up against the table legs and our elbows have continually bumped those of our neighbours. Luckily, all this can be avoided with a good old-fashioned measure and a little know-how before you browse the overwhelming number of dining chairs on offer. Read on for more. We have all the tips you need to make sure your table to chair ratio is spot on and in style.

 

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1. What needs to be measured?

It may not be the most thrilling part of interior decorating, but when it comes to shopping for new dining chairs, it is the most important. If you are also in the market for a new table, consider who and how many people will be dining at your table to determine the size table you will need.

 

 

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Quick guide to seating arrangements

 

 Rectangle/Oval Table Size
Comfortably Seats 

72 inches

6 people

96 inches

8 people

120 inches

10 people

Round/Square Table Size (by diameter)
Comfortably Seats

36-48 inches

4 people

60 inches

6 people

72 inches

8 people

 

 

2. What is the optimum height of a dining chair?

In most cases, dining room tables are 30 inches high and the standard seat height of a dining room chair is 18 inches. This space ensures there is plenty of room for legs to slide under the table and sit comfortably. If you have a dining table with an apron feature, consider hunting down some slightly lower dining chairs. To nail the overall look of your dining space, keep proportions in check by ensuring your chairs sit pretty with the back of your dining space higher than the table surface. How high your chairs are is completely up to you.

 

 

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3. What is the optimum width of a dining chair?

Before you are overwhelmed by the vast array of gorgeousness in the dining chair department, you will need to break out the measuring tape again. Finding the right size chair will not only ensure your diners have plenty of room, it will also narrow down your options and make decisions more manageable. First things first; you will need to calculate the actual space a dining chair will occupy. So find the widest point of your dream dining chair and measure it. You will also need to estimate the space between chairs. The average dining chair is 16-20 inches wide and you will need to allow for at least 6 inches on either side. If you are coveting dining chairs with arms be aware they generally take up an additional 6 inches per side. If space is short, consider having them at the head of the table only. Overall, the golden rule is to provide each person at the table 24-30 inches of space.

 

 

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4. How are dining chairs made?

This is a big question and there are no easy answers. Dining chairs come in such a huge range of styles and finishes it would be impossible to list them all here. Dining chairs range from metal, to leather, to linen, to acrylic (great for small or modern spaces), to rattan and wicker (hello, texture and coastal style), to wood and, of course, to upholstered in any fabric your heart desires. Upholstered chairs bring instant softness and texture to a room, but tread carefully if you have young children. Patterned or darker fabric will be your friend here, as it will disguise the inevitable spills.

 

 

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