Barbara Stewart March 29, 2020 Bar Stools
If you'll just be using the stools for a few drinks and a little conversation, comfort isn't as big of a factor, so you can focus on style. Most of the time, you'll see the back of your bar stools, so choose something that has a rear view you like. Retro bar stools in brightly colored vinyl will give your home bar a whimsical feel — like a burger joint or an ice cream parlor. Wood bar stools can feel traditional or casual, depending on the type of wood and whether or not the seat is upholstered. Sleek metal bar stools with low backs can turn your home bar into a swanky hangout.
Do you want kitchen bar stools with backs? You'll need to determine how this style of bar stool will fit under the overhang of your kitchen island, and whether or not it will overpower your island visually. You'll also need to consider your budget. Bar stools come in a wide range of prices, from discount-store price tags to custom-designed big-ticket pieces.
The key determining factor in what type of seating you'll have depends on your kitchen's layout. If the room is spacious, with a center island or bar, you'll have a wide range of kitchen or bar stools from which to choose. Let your decorating style lead you in your search for stools that will be the right fit. Larger eat-in kitchens may have room for both a bar and a dining table. If so, you can coordinate or complement the styles of your bar stools and chairs based on your decorating style.
We recommend measuring the distance from the floor to the underside of your counter before ordering so you can narrow your product search to either bar height or counter height models.
What material do you want your bar stools to be made of? For a traditional look, choose oak or other wood and stain or seal it to suit your tastes. Sleek lines in painted wood or metal will complement a contemporary kitchen. Or you can create an eclectic look by choosing bar stools in a contrasting style or color to the rest of your kitchen's decor. You'll also want to consider whether you want cushioned seats on your barstools. Fabric cushions add comfort, but they can be a hassle to clean after food spills. You can choose leather or vinyl instead. If you have children, you'll want your stools, including the seats, to be durable. A bar stool with a curved wooden seat can be just as comfortable—if not more so—than a cushioned seat.
Bar stools and counter stools instantly call friends and family over to your entertaining space. Your first thought will probably be a matched set that features matching seat materials and frame styles (say, dark wood with a bourbon-colored seat). That's always a timeless option when you're designing a entertaining space. It's classic and easy on the eye, which is why we love that look. But there are other design concepts worth considering; we'll share a few here.