The Height. Getting bar stools of the right height is a crucial factor. It will assure you the most convenient and comfortable sitting experience because you will have the optimal leg space between the counter and the stools. To achieve that, first measure the height from the bottom of the counter to the floor. Then deduct 10” to 12” from this number. This will give you the height the stools should have. So, for example, if your counter is 36” in height (which is a standard counter height), you should go for 24”- 26” stools. If you have a counter with a raised eating area, measure the distance from the bottom of the eating surface to the floor and then deduct the 10”- 12” to get the right height for your stools.
Small stools. As well as the standard 36” bar stool, which is the average height for an average bar counter, all bars from local taverns to up-market cocktail lounges have additional seating areas. Obviously, the standard size of bar stool would be inappropriate for such a bar table or lounge area. Therefore proprietors should always have a stock of smaller stools for the lounge and seated area in the public bar. Usually, in most cases, only a 20” stool would be required to meet the comfortable table height. A good rule-rule-thumb for a table stool would be to give approximately 6” between the seat and table surface.
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Kitchen stools. Whether its a modern breakfast bar you have or a traditional pine table, kitchen stools can be ideal for your seating requirements. Traditional chairs or bar stools like those pictured below can give that warm feeling that you had whenever you where in your mama's kitchen. Alternatively a metal, chrome or aluminum look can add sleek and sophistication to any modern kitchen. As with the pub stools the height of the counter should be considered prior to purchasing any stools or chairs. The standard breakfast bar is usually 36” which would suggest that you use a 30” stool. When considering a breakfast bar the rule-of-thumb is to have a 6-10” gap between the counter and the seat to derive maximum comfort. However, if you have traditional seating arrangements around a table leave a 6” gap.
If you have a general idea of the look and type of bar stools you are looking to purchase, it is best to search for an online furniture retailer where the pricing is much more competitive and therefor will often be priced much lower than physical retail stores. If you are buying your bar stools in bulk, often times you will be eligible for a volume discount, helping you save even more money than if you were to purchase your stools one at a time. There are also cheaper upholstery options that can help save you money as well, for example look for a vinyl or leather look-alike material if you want a leather bar stool. If you are less particular to the level of comfort your stool will provide and are more concerned with the appearance opt for an ABS plastic stool. ABS plastic, although sounds cheap and flimsy, is resistant to heat, chemicals and impact making it a viable option for bar stool seating.
Upholstery – There are a number of upholstery options and styles available for bar stools with the main choices being wood, plastic/acrylic, fabric, leather, and vinyl. When trying to figure out which upholstery will work best for your home the best place to start looking is your kitchen or bar area to determine which will go best. If your kitchen or bar area already has a pre-existing modern vibe opt for something a little more edgy such as modern plastic/acrylic stools that are often available in a variety of fun modern colors to choose from. If you take pride in your kitchen's wood workmanship you can easily accentuate this with wood bar stools that come in a number of different finishes to match your cabinets or counters. We all love kids, but know that they are prone to spills and stains on our furniture. If you have kids in your house stick with a material that can be easily cleaned such as vinyl. If you are opting more for comfort and will be using your stools for extended seating fabric upholstery is always a safe bet for a comfortable sitting experience.