How to Choose the Perfect Wooden Dining Chairs

Since there is no universal standard for a dining room table, there are hundreds of thousands of different shapes and sizes to fit every kind of home. When you find the perfect dining room table, it might not come with chairs. But there's no reason your wooden table has to have matching wooden dining chairs.

Often, the best-looking chair and table sets do match, but you can still create an amazing set by finding styles that complement one another. Once you've found the right table, it can be a little daunting to figure out which chairs are the perfect fit.

Here are some helpful tips for picking out chairs that go well with your table.

Do They Fit?

Great looking chairs that don't fit your table will only break your heart. Make sure the size of your wooden dining chairs matches your table. This is an issue of both comfort and practicality.

Most dining tables will fall between the 28 to 31-inch mark from the ground up. At Home and Timber, our dining room tables are crafted to be 29" to the bottom of the table top. That means the seat of your chairs should range from about 17 to 20 inches high. Staying closer to 17" height will offer optimal seating for most adults while also allowing room if you choose to add an upholstered chair seat. 

The aim is to keep about 10-12 inches between the seat and the tabletop. It can vary a little more widely, but that is the ideal you'll find in most standard sets.


Harvest Leg Table with the Parkway Side Chair with Upholstered Seat


Just to be sure about what looks good with your table, consider a few different configurations of chairs, benches and tables. You'll get an idea of how chair styles can effect the look and feel of a table.

If you choose to add an upholstered seat or a full upholstered dining chair be aware that it will compressed when you sit on it.

Upholstered seats can appear to be very high until someone sits on the cushion. 

About an inch to an inch and a half below the cushion uncompressed is the sweet spot. That's the figure you want to use in your ratio between your table and wooden dining chairs.

How Wide?

While searching for the perfect wooden dining chairs for your body, don't forget about your table. Chairs vary in width and depth. Having chairs that constantly bang against your table legs or against the other chairs defeats your purpose.

Whether you have a rectangular table or one with rounded ends, your chairs should slide under without hitting the legs of the table or anything else underneath. This is your standard for every table.

If your table is long enough to try to accommodate more than one chair on each side, be sure they don't hit each other. You can guarantee that if your chairs touch each other, your diners will feel crowded together when they're having dinner.

Make sure there are a solid two inches between your chairs at the minimum.


Manchester Trestle with the Olson Upholstered Dining Chair

What About Arms and Backs?

Chairs with arms are a little trickier. They can end up being designed in such a way to take up much more width than the chair seat would on its own.

Your chairs with arms shouldn't hit the bottom of the table. And, while it may seem obvious, the arms should fit under the table. Otherwise, your dinner guests will be sitting too far away from the table to feel comfortable.

Chair backs are mostly an aesthetic choice. Having them higher than your table height is a must for tucking them in and pulling them out.

The rule of thumb is for your chairs to be at least two inches above your table, or else they'll seem sort of squat. Higher backs are often more elegant, so chair height depends on the type of home you're styling.


Barrington Double Pedestal with the Bradshaw Upholstered Dining Chair

Speaking of Style

Once you get the practical stuff out of the way, you need your wooden dining chairs to look good with your table. An elegant wooden dining chair with all sorts of curved accents may look amazing, but when you put it against a rustic cherry wood plank top trestle table...there might be a severe mismatch.

Find common elements between your chairs and your table. This can reference the time period they come from, the color of the finish, or how formal the design looks.

Even if your tops don't look the same, finding similar leg design between them can tie them together aesthetically.

Natural quarter sawn white oak dining chairs can look great in a well-lit country home. Paired with a walnut double pedestal table with a dark tavern finish and a delicate ogee table edge though? They might not look so great anymore. 

A simple farmhouse table gives you a wide variety of options for pairing wooden dining chairs. You'll find that the simpler you keep things, the easier it is to pair.

Make yourself familiar with different wood and stain types. If you can match the tone of the finish and wood type, you'll be in good shape.

Where To Find Perfect Wooden Dining Chairs

If you're still struggling to put the pieces together, contact us and let us know. We've got years of expertise navigating through different chair and table combinations. We are always happy to help you in any way that we can!


How to Choose the Perfect Wooden Dining Chairs