Have a Seat!
You've found a dining table that you love and now it's time to think about chairs. When chosen wisely, good dining chairs, benches or stools are an investment that will last for years and years. So go ahead and have a seat. We're here to share with you a few tips for shopping.
You've heard about side chairs and arm chairs but what is the difference? It's really all in their name. Side chairs are normally used at the long end, or sides of the table. They have no arms, only seats and backs. Arm chairs are often thought of as more formal. They are chairs with arms used at the head, or short ends of the table, for the host and hostess of the table. Traditionally this spot was the place of honor. Times have changed and we live a more casual lifestyle. You can feel comfortable using all side chairs, all arm chairs or even adding a family friendly bench or stool to your table.
Most dining collections have matching chairs. What you see on the store floor is meant to go together or match. Pull out the chairs and take a look to see if you like the overall color, finish and style. Glance up and down from the back to the legs. Do you like the look of the chair with this table or one you hope to use? Remember you will most often see the back of your chairs. If it's not to your liking, ask your sales associate if there are other chairs available in the collection. You are always welcome to mix and match when you special order,
There are always plenty of chairs to choose from. Do you want a certain look or style or an easy living choice, like rolling chairs? Do you want a fully upholstered back and seat, as on a Parsons style chair? Maybe you only want the seat upholstered. Ask about upholstery fabric options, including the very durable performance fabrics. Having a softer seat may not even be a feature you want if there will be kids around the table. An easy to clean all wood chair might be better. Consider your lifestyle, the way you actually live.
Now the most important step. Have a seat. Are the chairs you are looking at also comfortable? The chair seat and arch of the back varies between chairs. The better made chairs have shaping which is actually curved to fit a person's body. The longer you sit around your table the more comfortable you will want your chairs to be.
If you want a long lasting chair, it's time to turn the chair over. Look to see if the chair is solid wood or solid and veneers. There are quality pieces in both categories. The strongest chairs will have corner blocks, extra pieces of wood, in their corners. These corner blocks should be screwed and glued or even use dowels.You may see triple grooves in this area. This allows the wood to expand and contract without warping. Now look at the back. The strongest chairs have a one piece, two at the most, solid piece of wood from the tip of the leg to the top of the side of the back. Glance at the leg bottoms. Are there floor protecting glides or height changing levelers? There are up to 35 steps into making a quality chair. Expect a better chair to cost more that a "cheap" chair.
My favorite saying is "measure, measure, measure." and this is important if you are mixing and matching styles. You will want to make sure that you will have room for legs between the chair seat and table top and between each individual chair, so that people won't bump elbows at the table. Your sales associates can help you with this. Also ask about small and large chair options. The weight of a chair can vary and some are easier to pull from the table than others.
Now, as usual, we invite you to have fun shopping. Stop in at Bullerdick and we'll help you find a chair you'll want to bring home and enjoy.