If, like many people, your kitchen is eclectic with no particular theme, there is still a bar stool that will look great. You can really let your creativity show with hand painted stools that depict many items from flowers, to fruit to ocean scenes. One word of caution when choosing a bar stool – you must be sure to get the right height for your counter or table. Normally bar stool seats range from 17” to 31” in so there is a good chance you will be able to buy the stool you love in the size you need. To figure out what that size is, you should measure the distance from the bottom of the table or counter to the floor. An ideal fit would be to leave between 10 and 13 inches of space from the bottom of the table to the top of the seat of the stool, so if your table was 35” from the floor, you would want to get a 24” bar stool. This is rather important as buying a stool that does not properly fit your table or counter will result in uncomfortable seating.
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.
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Retro. Retro is in these days and what better way to accent your retro style kitchen than with stools that borrow design elements from the good old days. You can buy brand new stools that are chrome and vinyl in a myriad of styles. Unlike actual vintage stools you won't have to worry about rusting metal or ripped upholstery with new stools. You can get great stools with or without backs in a retro 50's look, a vinyl retro lounge look with a full back and arms, and even backless counter stools just like you would see in the soda shop.
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.
Pub stools-Take note of the height of your bar counter. Although the above statement may seem like common sense I have, on many occasions, been in bars and pubs where the bar stool was the wrong size for the bar or table at which I sat. Many proprietors spend a lot of time and energy on the look and feel of the bar's environment but fail to look seriously at how comfortable the customers will be when seated. For instance if you have a bar counter that is 46” then the most appropriate stool would be 34”. A quick rule-of-thumb is to have a 9-13” gap between the seat and the counter. This will give a very comfortable experience to the customer and have the average person in an ideal position at the bar. For a traditional pub or tavern with a 46” bar counter I would recommend a high-back wood style 34” stool with a foot rest. This would provide maximum comfort with that added authentic look and feel.