Today’s post has been in the works for a while. It’s a topic that has been talked about many a time in the EHD office, requested by more than a few of our readers and that one piece of furniture that Emily had been on the search for years til she found them here. That’s right. It’s time for a comfortable dining chair roundup! As someone who has truly never owned or had a comfortable dining chair growing up, I feel your pain (especially in the buttocks region) but fret no more since we have 96 chairs with and without arms for you to choose from at all different price points. Plus, some very useful tips to consider when choosing the right chair for your own dining area.
Before we get into all of those pretty and more importantly comfy dining chair options below, let’s first take a moment to go over some of our tried and true ‘rules’ (aka guidelines) you can implement in your own space. Even as a trained interior designer I am constantly referring back to all of our design rules posts because let’s be honest sometimes design can be a tad overwhelming and very subjective so it’s nice to go back to the basics of why a space will visually work better than others. It all comes down to measurements which is something that makes sense to me. Not really the math aspect since that is not my forte…shhhh, I know it’s used a lot in interior design (hello best friend aka my calculator). But proportions and spatial planning is ‘my thing‘, it’s probably the reason why I also love to organize and help others pack to move.
OKAY, enough about my odd hobbies, let’s get into those Dining Chair Rules…
Figuring Out Your Table Size & How Many Chairs to Buy
You can’t really pick out your dining chairs without first knowing the scale of your dining table. I mean you can but it will probably be easier to start with the larger furniture piece and then add in your chairs later. So what size table do you have and how many chairs will you need to purchase?
Here is a seat guideline for rectangle tables depending on size:
- 48″ long table: seats 4
- 60″-72″ long table: seats 6
- 80″-87″ long table: seats 8
- 92″-108″ long table: seats 10
- 120″ long table: seats 12
And for round / square tables depending on size:
- 42″- 48″ diameter table: seats 4
- 60″ diameter table: seats 6-8
Keep in mind that no matter the size of your table you will want to leave approximately 24″-26″ width of eating space per person + an additional 6″ between the chairs to account for elbow room and ease of a person getting up, out of their chair from a fully occupied table. This will spare your guest (once we have those again) from an awkward moment of asking the person next to them to ‘scooch over a bit’ to be able to get out to use the bathroom during a dinner party. The width of most dining chairs will be between 16″-20″ with the ‘more comfortable’ ones in the 20″-25″ range.
To make sure that the number of chairs will work with your table size, measure from the widest point of the chair and from the inner of the legs of your dining table instead of the top of the table.
Two other things to take into consideration – 1. If your dining table is on the smaller side try opting for a chair without arms to save on space. 2. If you buy additional chairs for when the table is extended to the maximum length be sure to figure out a designated spot for them to live since that might happen only a couple of times throughout the year.
Choosing the Right Scale Chair & Finding the Comfy Factor
Now, let’s figure out the right scale of your chairs for your dining table. Most standard dining tables range in height between 28″-30″ but there are some dining tables that are more counter height in the 34-36″ range so make sure to take a second look at the dimensions before you ‘add to cart’. We are going to focus on the standard dimensions today as they are the most common.
The seat height of a dining chair will be between 17-23″ and there should be about 12” of space between the top of the seat and underside of the tabletop or bottom of the apron. If your dining chairs have arms they should be able to slide under your table with ease so be sure to have at least 7” of clearance between the top of the arm height to the underside of the table or bottom of the apron.
Speaking of height let’s talk about your chair’s overall height in consideration to the scale of your table. Meaning that if you have a table that seats 4, approx. 42-48″ in diameter, steer clear of the chair that measures 48″ high overall and leave that to the larger more formal dining table sizes. It will just feel more proportional
6 Factors to Consider that Will Make Your Dining Chair More Comfortable:
- Seat Width: 18”-22″ for more ‘wiggle’ room
- Opt for an upholstered seat or sling seat (see the white director chairs in the photo above)
- Seat Depth: 20-24” for the lounging element
- Which brings us to the lean-ability of the chair, an angled seat back or upholstered back for those long post meal conversations
- If you have the space, dining chairs with arms will be much more ergonomic. If you are one to have long dinners it will allow you to truly relax because you can rest your arms making it easier to lounge.
- Materials Matter: It’s a simple fact that an all upholstered chair will be more comfortable, it’s like a sofa but smaller.
On big box retailers websites take a look around to see if you can search by customer rating, that way you are starting with the furniture pieces that others have verified to be comfortable or to be a quality product.
Now that the school lesson portion of this post is over, let’s talk about the fun stuff and get into our comfortable dining chair roundups. 🙂
The ‘Armless’ Comfortable Dining Chairs
Personally, I am a fan of the ‘armless’ dining chair because typically they are less expensive than those with arms. Who wouldn’t want to save some cash on a surprisingly expensive piece of furniture that you have to buy multiples of them??? Speaking of cost, be sure to take a close look at the prices cause some of these beauties come in a ‘set of 2’.
1. Faux Leather and Metal Dining Chair (Set of 2) | 2. Middleton Side Chair | 3. Elkmont Velvet Metal Side Chair (Set of 2) |4. Trysta Dining Chair | 5. Proper Chair | 6. Modern Curved Upholstered Dining Chair | 7. Leather-Backed Dining Chair|8. Flore Dining Chair | 9. Astrid Mid Century Dining Chair (Set of 2) |10. Sadove Dining Chair | 11. Nadia Cane Chair | 12. Velvet Channel Back Dining Chair (Set of 2) |13. Manteli Upholstered Dining Chair | 14. Blythe Square Back Dining Chair | 15. Camron Upholstered Side Chair (Set of 2)| 16. Mesa Dining Chair | 17. Aspinwall Upholstered Side Chair (Set of 2) 18. Mid-Century Bentwood Dining Chair |19. Ewald Upholstered Dining Chair (Set of 2)20. Corella Cane and Wood Dining Chair | 21. Elia Velvet Dining Chair | 22. Woven Cantilever Dining Chair | 23. Woven Rattan Dining Chair (Set of 2) |24. Danish Tapered Dining Chair (Set of 2)
Out of our first round of picks I have to say that I am very into the style and pop of color of #3 (also comes in a very pretty blue), the clean lines and comfort level of #8, & the very low price point but high rave reviews of #17.
25. Leon Dining Chair | 26. Brix Dining Chair (Set of 2) | 27. Huxley Dining Chair | 28. Cloyd Upholstered Side Chair (Set of 2) | 29. Portside Dining Chair | 30. Barron Side Chairs (Set of 2) | 31. Adrien Dining Chair | 32. Dianne Side Chair | 33. Copely Upholstered Dining Chair (Set of 2) |34. Libby Cane Dining Chair | 35. Ceres Flint Gray and Black Dining Chair | 36. Holland Dining Chair | 37. Sling Chair Leather | 38. Naomi Dempsey Flax Tufted Dining Chair | 39. Rush Indoor/Outdoor Dining Chair | 40. Baltimore Dining Chair (Set of 2) | 41. Riley Solid Wood Dining Chair (Set of 2) |42. Karljan Chair |43. Cylia Dining Chair | 44. Andover Side Chairs (Set of 2) |45. Chord Woven Back Dining Chair | 46. Ceylon Woven Dining Chair | 47. Finley High-Back Upholstered Dining Chair | 48. Burano White Leather Sling Chair | 49. Framework Leather Dining Chair | 50. Ninette Dining Chair |51. Holmdel Mid-Century Dining Chair
Yes, we did have to divide up the graphics cause we rounded up so many options in each category for you all, fingers crossed at least a few might work for your own dining room. The chairs I have my eye on are #26 for a comfy take on a classic style and I would splurge on #38 and save on #40.
The ‘with Arms’ Comfortable Dining Chairs
Up next, we have all of your ‘with arms’ options. Debatably more comfortable than the armless counterpart given that after a long meal with family or close friends you could casually tuck your legs up, slouch down a little and enjoy a long conversation over many cocktails or play one of EHD’s favorite board games – Anomia.
1. Lerri Dining Chair | 2. Leather Upholstered Dining Chair (set of 2) | 3. Dexter Arm Chair | 4. Amaia Chair | 5. Kelmscott Rush | 6. Lee Faux Leather Dining Armchair (set of 2) | 7. Weber Chair | 8. Azalea Brown Chair | 9. Elise Cane Arm Chair | 10. Marla Dining Chair | 11. Callie Upholstered Tub Chair | 12. Cleo Black Cantilever Chair | 13. Balboa Armchair | 14. Sandia Leather Dining Chair | 15. Velvet Open Back Shawn Dining Armchairs (set of 2) | 16. Gaff Metal Frame Chair | 17. Nolani Dining Chair | 18. Islesboro Chair | 19. Matleena Dining Chair | 20. Modern Upholstered Dining | 21. TOSSBERG
22. Mast Leather Director’s Chair | 23. Viceroy Chair | 24. Ellis Upholstered Dining Armchair | 25. Marie Leather Chair | 26. Miller Barrel Dining Chair | 27. James Armchair | 28. Pensil Armchair | 29. Willowbrook Arm Chair | 30. Dexter Leather Arm Chair | 31. Milford Dining Chair | 32. Lyon Dining Chair | 33. Muller Dining Chair | 34. Upholstered Arm Chair | 35. Mazie Chair | 36. Aesop Armchair | 37. Edward Lounge | 38. Soren Chair | 39. Foley Faux Mohai Dining Chair | 40. Evan Chair | 41. Bayley Armchair | 42. Hawkins Dining Chair
The simplistic style and price point of #24 would be a great chair in either a traditional or modern home, of course, I am drawn to #32 because it is a part of the semi-new Leanne Ford’s Crate & Barrel Collection which I am obsessed with everything from the line (Leanne, if you are reading this it’s amazing!). And if you are a part of the EHD Insider Community you might’ve already seen the special sneak peek of the mood board where we are using these nightstands from her line in an upcoming project! Also, I can personally attest to the comfort factor of #40 since we used them in the dining room of Portland project (see photo above) and where I did countless hours of work in that very chair on the end by the french doors.
So there you have it! I hope by now you feel confident to pick out the most comfortable dining chair for your home and again if you need to check out the rest of the dining room rules do so here. And if you don’t really care so much about only the comfort factor but want some more affordable options check out this post here or want to know how to mix and match dining chairs like a boss click over to this post here. Fair warning both of these posts are over a year old so some links may be broken but maybe it’s time for us to update them? Yes, no, or maybe? Let me know your thoughts on that or if you have any other design questions in the comments below, talk to you soon!
Opener Image Credit: Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | From: Mountain House “Reveal”: The Dining Room Built-in Dilemma (+ The 3 Mistakes We Made)