The Expert's Guide to Picking Out New Dining Chairs


The right dining chair can transform your dining room into the stylish heart of your home. It can also help elevate an otherwise drab dining table into a work of art. But with so many options out there, how do you choose the best match for your home? 

When looking for dining chairs there are a few things to keep in mind. First of all is comfort. If you are a great host, your guests will be sitting in these chairs for several hours at a time, so you want them to be comfortable.

Mismatched dining room chairs

Source: Eye for Design

Second is style. This can be a bit tougher as you want enough style to create a room that feels put together but not so much that they are distracting. I have listed a few chairs here that cover a variety of styles. I actually like a few mismatched chairs at my table - it gives a more collected feel, but this is harder to pull off in a more formal environment.

Don’t ignore cost either. I have listed a chair here from Ikea that is only $59. That is a steal, but notice it is molded plastic which will have much more inherent strength than a chair that I am made to assemble myself.

Lastly in terms of longevity, the more expensive the chair, the more conservative I get on the look as well. Notice the Mitchell Gold chair - it is markedly more conservative than the Crate and Barrel alternative.

On that note, here are 5 dining room chairs worth pulling up to your dining table. 

Antiqued Grey Cane Side Chair - Great Rattan Dining Room Chair Option

1. Rustic Rattan

I love a great rattan chair, like this Antiqued Grey Cane Side Chair from Mecox. They are comfortable and always bring a bit of relaxed elegance to the table. Be careful of using too much rattan, however, unless you are planning to create a more tropical feel.

Elston Dining Arm Chair from Crate & Barrel - Great loft style dining chair option

2. Industrial Chic

There is something very retro and quirky about the Elston Dining Arm Chair from Crate & Barrel. I am always looking for furniture appropriate for a loft, and I think this chair is definitely that.

Bone Inlaid Chair from Wisteria - Great chair for mixing and matching

3. Bone Inlaid

Mismatched chairs at a table are one of my favorite tricks. It instantly gives your space a cool, collected vibe. If you want to go a step further, try matching your guests to a style! I like this Bone Inlaid Chair from Wisteria in particular because it's elegant but not formal, and it works well with a variety of other designs.

Lightweight modern yellow chairs from Ikea

4. Light & Modern

Ikea is simply one of the best sources for inexpensive dining chair options. Case in point, these Janinge Chairs. The molded plastic will be a little more long lasting I think, and what about that color?

Sidney Arm Chair - Contemporary dining chair

5. Classy Contemporary

For the more serious table, I think this Sidney Arm Chair from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams represents a lot of great style. It could go super traditional or in leather a bit more retro. The attention to detail I appreciate too, creating an arm low enough to go under the table.

So what do you think? Could you picture pulling one of these chairs up to your dining table?

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