How to choose the right bar stool

The Capital - - HOMES - By Kathryn We­ber Tri­bune Con­tent Agency

There’s no doubt the eat-in kitchen has changed. Once large enough to ac­com­mo­date a full ta­ble, kitchens now are out­fit­ted with is­lands, coun­ter­top eat­ing or din­ing bars. These new uses are great for space sav­ing, but they need the right seat­ing, which means se­lect­ing the right bar stool for your needs and style.

Height first: When se­lect­ing a bar stool, find­ing the cor­rect height is crit­i­cal. Too high, and your legs will hit the counter. Too low, and you’ll find your­self eat­ing with your arms raised. You’ll be both un­com­fort­able and your bar stool won’t look right.

Start by mea­sur­ing from the floor to the top of the counter. Stan­dard coun­ters are 36 inches high. This is of­ten the height of a kitchen is­land. This will re­quire a 24- to 26-inch stool. If this is for oc­ca­sional use, choose one that doesn’t have a back and you may be able to store it un­der the counter.

For a tall din­ing bar that’s about 42 inches high, a bar stool that’s 30 inches tall will fit the bill.

Op­tions: Start first with how you’ll use the chair. If you’ll only be us­ing it at the counter and not to in­ter­act with oth­ers in the room, then a sta­tion­ary bar stool will do. For kitchens that are part of a larger liv­ing space, you may want a bar stool that swivels. They en­able you to turn and view the TV or for guests to in­ter­act with those in the liv­ing room.

An­other con­sid­er­a­tion is whether you want your stool to be back­less. These are usu­ally stream­lined, but they can be­come un­com­fort­able af­ter sit­ting for pro­longed pe­ri­ods of time, though they of­ten store eas­ily. Arms are an­other choice in bar stools. These are won­der­ful for those sit­ting for longer pe­ri­ods.

Style: There is a wide range of styles in bar stools. You’ll find stools in wood, metal and rat­tan, as well as stool seats cov­ered in fab­ric. Acrylic is an­other chic and trendy choice that looks fresh and up­dated.

DREAMSTIME

Space-sav­ing kitchen is­lands need the right bar stools.

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