Sitting around the table – whether it’s the kitchen table or the dining table, on a comfortable dining room chair, sharing a meal and conversation, that’s the way memories are made.

But how do you find those perfect dining room chairs? The ones that fit your table perfectly, are super comfortable, and add style to your space?

In this article, Kim Fogarty from Kimberly James Furniture provides you with practical and helpful tips for finding your new dining chairs.

Kimberly’s advice covers three key areas:

  • Dining Chair Form
  • Dining Chair Function
  • And Style



Form – What to consider when looking at Dining Room Chairs

Dining chairs need to work with your dining table, and the physical dimensions and shape of the chairs is important.


Dining Chair Width

The overall width of the dining chair is important for comfort – a wider seat might make for a more comfortable spot to sit, but not if you are all squished up against your neighbour. You need to make sure your guests have got adequate room to enjoy their meal.


Dining Chair Height

Possibly even worse than a narrow chair or being tightly packed along a table, is not having enough room for your legs under the table, so that you literally feel sandwiched between chair and table top.


Measuring a dining chair

So the important thing with the dimensions of new dining chairs is to see how they are going to fit with your table.

  1. Measure the width of the chair at the widest point – include the arms if your chair has them.
  2. Then measure the diameter or length of sides of your dining table. On average you need to allow at least 60cm for every chair. If your chairs have arms, you might need to increase this to nearly 70cm.
  3. See if you can take the chair you like home with you. Pop it under your table and measure the gap between the seat of the chair and the underside of your table top. A good rule of thumb is to make sure there is 30cm between the bottom of the table and the chair seat.
  4. If your chair has arms its wise to allow for at least 15cm of clearance between the top of the chair arm and the under side of the table.



Function – What to consider when looking at Dining Room Chairs

When choosing your new dining chairs think about who’s going to use them and how often – if you buy the right chair for the function they’ll stay looking their best for much longer.

The biggest determinant here really is – how hard wearing do they need to be?

If you are looking for new dining chairs for an open plan kitchen dining area, or your every day chairs, then you need something that will be pretty durable. If you also have kids in the house, then having a chair that is easily cleaned will also be important.

Choosing a chair made from sustainable timber, is a good start – solid and easy to clean. If you’d like a little more padding, but still need an easy clean option, PU leather is a man made leather look material that is both hard wearing and easily cleaned.

A chair upholstered with real leather will require some care but will be as equally hard wearing and easy to clean. While leather is more expensive to buy than PU, leather breathes and has a more natural appearance.

If you have small children, its probably best to avoid chairs upholstered in fabric. If you are looking for a fabric chair – make sure you choose one that is hard wearing and preferably treated with a stain repelling fabric protection spray. This way the chair will stay looking good for longer.



Dining Room Sets – are they still a thing?

Dining suites. You know the dining room table that comes with matching chairs, maybe a pair of carving chairs if it was a fancy dining suite, and possibly a matching buffet or hutch. Are they still a thing I hear you ask? Thankfully, No!

When you are looking for your new dining table, the first thing you should know is that you can choose – choose the table you love, choose the chairs or bench that you want to pair with it, and then think about any storage pieces that you might also like. This means that you can style your dining space to reflect your own personal style, and it gives you the flexibility and choice.



What’s on trend for dining room chairs?

Before jumping on the latest trends band wagon , first consider the colour of your table and what it’s made of. Look for chairs that that will coordinate well with the table in terms of colour and finish. The dining chairs don’t have to be part of a matching set, in fact you can even mix and match your chairs to create an eclectic look.

Alternatively, natural toned chairs are always a winner. White, black, grey or timber are always a popular choice. At the end of the day it’s important to buy the chairs that you love so don’t be afraid to follow your heart.

Here are some of the on trend and popular dining tables and chair combos:


Kim’s Final Tip:

When you’ve found the chairs you love, think about getting two extra – use them in your home office or your spare room, and then when you’ve got extra’s for dinner, you’re sorted.

Shop Dining Room Furniture


leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

  1. Hi Kimberly James,
    I love what you are doing, so informative and professional.
    Very proud 😘😘