The classic bar stool is more functional than stylish but a wide selection of wooden and metal stools are highly functional as well as stylish. Many of today's wooden bar stools and metal bar stools are stylish pieces of furniture in their own right that also fulfill the function of the classic stool. The swivel seat is an excellent feature on many stools, especially if they will be used in a tight space, but be careful as the swivels on some stools tend to break and are not as durable as getting a non-swivel stool. Seat backs are also a good feature to consider as they are more comfortable. When trying to choose a style for your bar look to the rest of the dining area for inspiration. Many manufacturers offer the same style of furniture in both a bar stool and chair version.
A restaurant owner avoids crowding their dinning room, the same logic holds true for the bar area. Too much furniture crowded together can cause an uncomfortable experience for the customer. The industry standard for seating placement is 26 to 30 inches distance as measured from the center of each stool. This provides enough room for dinners to eat and socialize without feeling crowded. Using this method, a business owner can measure their allotted bar space and then determine how many bar stools they will need.
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Features – Generally speaking, when you are looking to purchase a bar stool, the features and how adjustable the stool will be is usually is not the first concern that comes to mind. Although a bar stool does not need to come with the same high level of adjustability you would look for in a regular office chair, there are some features that may be desired for your home. The first feature that any bar stool should have is a footrest; your feet will need a spot to rest with the floor being inaccessible at that height. A footrest will allow you to sit more comfortably on the stool and keep your body in a natural position.
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.
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.