How High Is Your Table or Counter? Here Is the Perfect Seating
Are you looking to replace or renew seating in your dining room or kitchen this year? You may be surprised at the all the options available. Do you know if you need a chair of regular height, a counter stool or a barstool? First determine how high is your table or counter. This will help you to find the perfect dining room chairs or stools for a table or countertop you already have.
Let’s start with the most popular and traditional choice: chairs.
A standard height for most dining room tables is 28 – 30”. That means you are looking for chairs that allow for at least a foot of space between the seat and the bottom of the table. Don’t forget to consider the apron of the table; about 7” is appropriate for the distance between the bottom of the apron and the seat of the chair.
The overall height of a dining chair, which includes the legs and back, is less important than the height of its seat. That means that most chairs made for standard dining tables have a seat that measures between 18” and 23”.
Consider the arms on a chair, as well. They need to fit beneath the dining table. Be sure to check all dimensions before settling on the perfect dining chair.
Counter-height tables are typically 34” to 36”. A table or counter of that height requires stools with seats that measure 24” to 26” from the floor to allow for sufficient space between the seat and the bottom of the table or counter. While 12” is standard for comfort, depending on the size of you and your family, you may wish to go with another inch or two, or a bit less, anywhere from 9” – 13”.
Lastly there are barstools or pub height stools. These are generally 28” to 30” tall from the floor to the seat and fit perfectly with a bar top of 40 to 42 inches in height. Once again, it is important to keep in mind whether or not your stools have arms. You will need to take the measurement between the height of the arms to the bottom of the table, counter or apron, if applicable and aim for 7 inches.
Space Between Chairs or Stools
Of course, in addition to calculating how high is your table or counter is the necessary width when adding multiple stools or chairs.
First, measure the width of the tabletop, counter or bar. Next, find the width of the stools or chairs you wish to purchase. Usually, dining chairs are between 16 – 20” while arms add additional width. Swivel stools need a bit more space, as well.
Generally, if your seating pieces are less than a foot and a half wide, you can comfortably leave 6” between each one. For chairs or stools that are up to 22” – 24” wide or pieces that swivel, allow for a bit of extra space between each. Eight to 10” should suffice. Be sure to use the widest point of the chair or stool, which could be the back or the seat or even the footrest.
Finally, divide the total width of your table or counter by 32”, which is a general estimation. This will tell you if can fit two, three, four or more in the space you have. Of course, you can be more precise, if necessary and space is very tight.
For additional measurement considerations see our article on planning for the perfect size dining room furniture.