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Guide to Best Dining Chairs

August 10, 2016
Guide to Best Dining Chairs

Stylish Dining, Casual Dining, Durable Dining, Comfortable Dining, Romantic Dining, Family Dining, Dinner Party Dining…

The way that we live and eat varies and as a result there are a gargantuan amount of dining chair options to choose from. So where does one begin to narrow down these options from an endless list of possibilities?

It’s important to consider your needs first and foremost - from a practical standpoint over aesthetics. What you want from your dining chair? Comfort, style, durability, longevity, all of the above? Once you have established this you can then consider which style of chair will work best with the rest of your interior.

Dining chairs help to set the tone of a dining room, the best way to determine the type of chair that’s best for your household is to know the options. We have compiled a comprehensive list of the most popular types and style of chairs available, to help you decide what will work best for your needs and for your style. Below are some of our favourites.


Guide to Dining Chairs Arm Chairs

Arm Chairs

Dining chairs with arms can provide a more formal look and offer the maximum level comfort, but work best with larger format dining tables in a larger dining area. To sit comfortably seats require about 60cm between them to avoid hitting elbows, so check you have the space to achieve this before option for a dining chair with arms.

If you love the look of an arm chair but don't have the space to accommodate them, an arm chair can be place at each end of the dining table and side chairs placed along the full length of the table.

Guide to Dining Chairs Side Chairs

Side Chairs

Side Chairs work better in smaller spaces as they take up less room. If you have a smaller dining area, assess how many chairs you will require and what size table you can fit within your dining space. If space is tight an armless dining chair is the best option.

For smaller rooms, the proportions of a low-back chair will offer a sense of space, while a high-back chair will provide a stunning formal look for larger dining areas.

Guide to Dining Chairs Fully Upholstered

Fully Upholstered vs. Non Upholstered

A dining chair with an upholstered seat and back is certainly going to provide a much higher level of comfort than an non-upholstered chair. However, a fully upholstered chair can sometimes appear visually heavier than a chair which has an open back. If you have a smaller space you wish to lift and brighten it, a good compromise is to opt. for a dining chair with just an upholstered seat.

Another important consideration is durability, if you have a growing family with grubby little fingers (or big fingers), then an upholstered option can still work if you choose a leather or vinyl upholstered chair, but unfortunately a fabric chair just won’t cut it.

Guide to Dining Chairs Scandinavian

Bench Seating

Bench seating can look lovely teamed with dining chairs one side and a bench the other. A bench helps to create a more streamlined look, adds visual interest and and is a great space saving solution as the bench can be tucked away under the table when not in use. In addition, a bench is usually more economical than buying separate chairs. If desired, seat pad cushions can be added for colour and softness.

Shop more Bench Seating.


Guide to Dining Chairs Mid Century Modern

Mid-Century Modern / Retro

A blast from the past but an ever popular one! We love this style for its funky, fun and not-too-serious aesthetic. Mid-century modern and retro styles are appreciated for their ''form follows function'' ethos.

This style combines traditional materials, such as wood, with non-traditional materials such as metal, glass, vinyl, plywood or Plexiglass in a vast range of color, ranging from a neutral palette to bold, and a graphic use of black and white.

Look for designers such as Charles Eames and his wife Ray Eames, George Nelson, Eero Saarinen, Harry Bertoia, Arne Jacobsen, Eileen Gray, Isamu Noguchi, Verner Panton or Alexander Girard.

Guide to Dining Chairs Scandi Style


A style that is renowned for its functional yet stylish simplicity and beautiful craftsmanship, Nordic design has had a major influence in Australia and it is here to stay!

This style tends to 'borrow' from the Mid-century Modern look, however, in the form of white or blonde timbers only. Upholstery is kept light and natural. Often a sheepskin seat pad is added to all wooden chairs for comfort, softness and texture.

Alternatively chairs with an upholstered seat in neutral fabrics is very popular. Look for designers such as Hans J Wegner, Arne Jacobsen and Charles Eames.

Guide to Dining Chairs Industrial


The Industrial style brings a raw, unfinished aesthetic to even the most carefully designed modern home and is an extremely popular look for converted lofts and warehouses.

This highly functional and hard-wearing style has a very utilitarian feel. It showcases vintage, recycled looking objects in neutral tones with timber and metal surfaces.

Guide to Dining Chairs French Provincial

French Provincial

This style's history stem's from the 1700's from regions in countryside provinces of France. Picture lovely quaint farmhouses and fragrant lavender fields. Ahh just dreamy...

The characteristics of this style of furniture is somewhat rustic that is practical but is blended with a refined elegance such as Baroque elements. Think light coloured or painted white timber and a soft muted colour palette with natural fabrics such as linen.

Guide to Dining Chairs Hamptons Style

Hampton's Style

The Hampton's Style has risen from the popular coastal area of Long Island, New York. A playground for the rich and famous, this style is timeless; encompassing a 'classy', 'beachy' vibe with a relaxed neutral palette that includes accents of cool blues and calm greens with oak washed flooring.

Whilst the Hampton's style shows similarities to the French Provincial, Hampton's style is less ornate and delicate. It balances an 'old with new' to create an eclectic mix of furniture that can also include heavy solid oaks and wicker or cane furniture that reflects a more coastal vibe.

Guide to Dining Classic Romantic

Classic Romantic

A style that will remain forever timeless. We distinguish the classic romantic style with a prettier, elegant aesthetic that would suit a room with candelabras and chandeliers, yet can still introduced to a reasonably modern interior.

Think velvet upholstery with deep buttoning or stud details, or styles like the classic Philippe Stark 'Ghost' chair.

Feeling ready to explore further? Shop more Dining Chairs and Benches.

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