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How to Choose the Right Multi-Purpose Dining Chair

Castlery   |   Sep 15, 2020

marble dining table with wooden dining chairs in mid-century modern space with console Pictured: The Kelsey marble dining table with Kelsey chairs.

With working from home and remote learning the new reality, the role of the modern dining room has evolved to become a multi-tasking area.

It is now the best time to shop for an all-in-one dining chair that can rise to the occasion, whether it is for dine-in meals or a WFH set-up. So, take a seat while we take you through the essentials in choosing a versatile dining chair.

Getting the Numbers Right

Proportion and scale are key to a comfortable home. In this case, we’re talking height, legroom and the number of chairs you can fit around your table.

The standard height of dining tables is around 76cm, so the height of your chairs should be around 43cm to 48cm high.

round glass dining table and dining chairs with shelves Pictured: The Theo round dining table and Wyatt chairs cater sufficient legroom for optimum comfort, which prevents slouching and other types of discomfort. Image credit: @michel_janse_smith

Having a wide enough seat is also important for anyone to dine at ease.

Most dining chairs are between 40cm and 50cm wide. To keep a comfortable distance, the magic figure is to leave at least 60cm of room between each chair from the middle point of each seat.

The next thing to keep in mind? Your table length. It will dictate the width of your chair and how many chairs it can accommodate comfortably.

As a rule of thumb, we recommend four guests for our round tables such as the Theo round dining table. For rectangular tables, four to six people can occupy our tables of 150cm, while six to eight diners can sit around tables measuring 160cm to 180cm. For a larger party of 10, tables that are 210cm and up will do the job nicely.

Pairing Your Chairs with Style

Getting your numbers right is half the battle won. When it comes to styling your dining setting to suit your interior, there are a few sure-win formulas to nailing the look down.

For a timelessly stylish dining set-up, going with classic and enduring styles like Mid-century modern and Scandinavian designs make for a safe bet. Their organic design lines, tapered legs and muted tones make for versatile design traits that suit most interiors.

mid-century modern dining table and dining chairs Pictured: Our Joshua chairs offer a timeless mid-century modern style that looks right at home in both casual and formal settings.

Not sure if these styles will look right in your home? Check out Castlery’s new shopping AR app here. It lets you place, project and rotate multiple furniture designs to see how they fit in your space.

Comfort is Key

For a dining chair suited for hours of lounging, these main features will elevate your comfort level:

  • An ergonomic form: A gently rounded back that follows the natural curve of your back and a slightly scooped seat or imprint on the seat will bring better support.

  • Plush padding: Cushioning the backrest and seat provides extra comfort, especially during those long Zoom sessions.

  • Armrests: A feature that’s suitable if you want to rest your arms while tackling hours of deskwork. If space is of concern, settle for one or two armrest chairs and place them at either ends of a long table.

  • Sturdy frame: Go for a robust and well-made frame which will offer durability for daily use. Castlery focuses on good workmanship, quality and proper joinery techniques to bring you stable pieces that are built to last.

dark wooden dining table and chairs in mid-century modern dining space with bar cart and sideboard Pictured: The Vincent dining table and Vincent chairs feature a curved backrest to cradle your back with good support and a thick padded seat for longer sittings.

Upholstery or Not?

Upholstered dining chairs offer lasting comfort but maintenance might be trickier when there are kids or pets in the picture.

While un-upholstered chairs are a safe bet, parents and paw-rents can still enjoy upholstered seats by keeping a fabric care kit handy. It will take care of most stains and spills in a jiffy.

Another bonus of upholstered chair is how it carries formality and class, and can be easily repurposed as a home office chair, or a dressing table chair.

mid-century modern dining table and chairs Pictured: Our Lily dining table and Lily chairs. Upholstered in quality fabric, these padded chairs are great for those long, leisurely dinner parties.

Play Up Your Seating Options

Other than regular dining chairs, benches and bar stools can bring extra mileage to your dining space and to different parts of your home.

For instance, while not in use at the dining table, your multi-functional bench can serve as a divider, patio seating, a bed bench or a foyer seat.

windowside wooden dining table, dining bench surrounded by potted plants Pictured: Our Seb dining table with Seb bench. When not needed, the double-duty bench works well as a bed bench or entryway seat. Image credit: @homedeco

And with eat-in kitchens a big thing everywhere now, dotting your island counter with bar stools will turn it into a casual but cosy breakfast nook.

With this timely and practical guide to selecting dining chairs, you can now explore the ways in using your dining room more efficiently.

Add more functionality to your home today by shopping our versatile selection of dining chairs here.