Barstool Buyers Guide

Barstool Buyers Guide

Bar stools are great accent pieces for the right place in your home and an essential element of your bar/restaurant décor. Whether you're shopping for your home, bar or restaurant, there are several important considerations to keep in mind.

As a good starting point, you'll want to think about whether wood or metal fits best with your design theme and the space you're furnishing as well as which type of upholstery will complement the overall look.

Metal vs. Wood

The choice between metal and wooden bar stools is usually based on design preference and theme.

Wood Barstools

Wooden Bar Stools

For a traditional or old world European pub look, wooden barstools are usually better suited. Not only durable and sturdy, they are versatile and fit in with most commercial, restaurant and residential décor. If you decide to change your decor sometime in the future, wooden bar stools can be stained or painted for a completely new look.

At BizChair, we feature a diverse range of wood finishes, including cherry, beech, walnut, mahogany and natural wood.

Metal Barstools

Metal Bar Stools

If you're looking at barstools for the kitchen, shopping for outdoor furniture, going for vintage 1950s look, or venturing into futuristic style, metal barstools are the way to go. Made from chrome, aluminum or stainless steel, metal bar stools are easy to maintain and hard to damage, scratch or dent. They don't rust or corrode from contact with water and can be polished to look like new for many years.

Barstool Upholstery

Barstool Upholstery

When choosing between upholstery options, there are two primary considerations. The first and most obvious is coordinating with the room's décor. Color and texture are factors in matching seat fabric with the counter surface as well as the rest of the room. Second, consider how the material will hold up over time. If the stool will be used daily in high traffic situations, easy to clean vinyl upholstery is very practical. For less frequent use, such as in a home bar or kitchen area, softer materials are a good choice. Leather barstools have a richer look and are easy to clean, but can become discolored if located in direct sunlight.

Counter height Barstools

Counter Stools vs. Bar Stools

The primary differences between counter stools and bar stools are height and location; bar room, diner/luncheonette, auto parts, or kitchen counter.

Size definitely matters when it comes to counter and barstools. Barstools are generally 30 inches from floor to seat while counter stools are usually 24 inches. The chair seat should be a comfortable distance from the bar or counter surface. Industry standard is 10-12 inches between the seat and the surface of the bar or counter to provide leg room, while still allowing easy access to eat, drink and be merry. Most metal bar stools offer the option to adjust from counter to bar height with an adjustable height cylinder or a gas lift handle located below the seat.

BizChair has many styles of adjustable height counter stools to accommodate different sized people.

Bar and Counter Height Barstools

Bar/Counter Stool Height

Stool height should be in proper proportion to your bar or counter height.

Bar/Counter Height   Bar/Counter Stool Height
41-43"   29-30"
35-37"   24-26"
28-30"   18-19"
Barstool Spacing

Barstool Spacing

Allowing for personal space between barstools is very important to maximize comfort.

The distance between the stools should give people plenty of elbow room; ideally 26-30 inches between the centers of each stool. Measure the bar or counter space to determine how many barstools will fit to ensure you don't buy too few or more than you really need.

If you have a specific question or need more information, call one of our knowledgeable customer service representatives at 800.924.2472. To visit our showroom, please call for an appointment.