Theresa Nguyen March 29, 2020 Bar Stools
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.
When choosing bar stools, consider a few things: Do you want chairs with backs? How tall do they need to be? How many do you need or have room for? Do you want the stools to swivel? Do you want a style that blends with your kitchen's decor, or something that contrasts? What size will you need to ensure the look is proportional to your bar and the rest of the room?
Now it's time to learn how to measure for bar stools. Generally, you'll want to measure the height of a bar stool from the floor to the highest seating point. Once you have this figure, you'll need to measure from the floor to your countertop. With both of these measurements, you can determine, based on the prior chart, what stool works best for your space.
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.
Your bar stool spacing is really important because it also determines how many bar stools you will need. Too much or too little space makes for awkward scenarios for your guests, so do them a solid and break out the tape measure.
If you decide to cover your bar stool with leather, keep in mind that leather is a natural product made from the skin of cattle. As such, there will be variations in color and texture just as there are variations in texture and color of your own skin. Generally, the more expensive the leather, the more of these imperfections you will see. The "Cheaper" leathers used in furniture are often "corrected" leather. Corrected leathers are treated, sanded and dyed to remove these imperfections. Many are even stamped with a simulated grain pattern. Corrected leathers will most often match very closely from one piece to the next and may actually look more artificial than many vinyls! Consider it a unique trait if you happen to get a barbed wire scratch mark or even a "brand" mark. Many people pay extra for these imperfections that prove the authenticity of their leather.
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