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.
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.
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In the swinging 60s, a few people were incorporating bars into their homes and accordingly these stools began to make a small appearance in residential settings. The old wooden stools from pubs were popular but at this point we were seeing the emergence of metal and chrome stools. The wooden bar stools were found in basement or recreation room bars while the chrome and padded bar stools were most often found in living rooms and poolside. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, most bar stool, be they commercial or residential, were 30 inches high. During the late 1980s we began to see the advent of the 24 inch bar stool. This smaller bar stool is now the most popular type of residential bar stool. The 24 inch bar stool is very popular in families with children. The shorter stool is much more accessible and also safer for the little ones. The shorter stool is also better for adults that might have mobility problems. Being 6 inches closer to the ground makes a big difference for those you suffer from chronic hip or knee pain.
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.
Once restricted to the local public house in the United Kingdom and Ireland and to the imitators in North America, 30 ” and 24” bar stools are now common place household furniture. Not only have these stools entered into the residential furniture market but they have broken out of a centuries old mold. For centuries bar stools seemed to be of uniform size and material. Times have changed. For literally centuries, stools found in bars were 30 inches in height. Of course, the height was specifically engineered so that a person could comfortably belly up to the bar and consume much ale. The stools were generally constructed from oak or another hardwood. The stools were firmly balanced upon 4 legs that were each attached to the underside of the stool seat a few inches towards the centre from each corner. As you can imagine, having a sturdy base of support was an important element in early bar furniture.