How to Pick the Best Chair for Your Living Room


SOURCE: Lexi Westergard Design


When it comes to decorating we tend to spend a lot of time talking and thinking about our sofa or sectional. A close second to that is the coffee table. These are definitely important pieces as they set the design aesthetic for our living room but we can’t ignore the supporting characters in our space. 

So often we overlook the importance of a well designed chair. Chairs add so much character to our space so why is it so often an afterthought? I want to share the different types of chairs and talk about which one is best for your living room. 



SOURCE: Pure Salt Interiors


There are a few important factors that you need to consider before deciding on which chair is best for you. Of course, as a designer I need to start by saying that style is always important. You need to consider your design style in your living room and find a chair that works within that aesthetic. If you love traditional design and your sofa has round arms and a high back you don’t need to copy that exactly but you do need to incorporate a chair that has some traditional details to match the sofa. Here are a few tips to help you get started:

Avoid buying matching sets. That trend is outdated and will make your living room furniture look old.

Consider the functionality of the chair first. If you want a place to sit and watch movies, go for a deep chair that allows you to curl up for long periods of time.

It’s ok to use matching chairs. It’s also ok to incorporate 2 different chairs if you feel confident that both of them work together as well as with the rest of the furniture. 

Add texture and visual interest to your living room by incorporating a chair that has wood or something woven like rattan integrated into it. 



1/ The Club Chair

SOURCE: Jake Arnold


While most of us are familiar with a club chair you might be surprised to find out this chair originated in France. The reason it’s surprising is that we tend to think of European furniture as being more petite. This is one of the larger styles of chairs and it takes up quite a lot of space. Because of this it’s important that you have a large, open living room if you want to add a club chair or two into the space. 

Club chairs are comfortable because of their large seats and rounded arms. They’re a great chair if you love to lounge around for  long periods of time and really want a chair that’ll keep you comfortable.

Where Does This Work – since the lines of this chair are a little more traditional it’ll look great in a traditional or transitional living room. If you lean more towards contemporary you’ll probably want to avoid this chair. You also need a larger space to accommodate the size of this chair. 


2/ The Slipper Chair

SOURCE: Litten Tree Antiques


Here’s another gift brought to us from Europe although this one dates back to the 18th century. It was originally used primarily in bedrooms but in the 1950’s Billy Baldwin brought the slipper chair to America and started to use it in living rooms.

This one has no arms and sits low to the ground so it’s the best choice for condos and small living rooms. Just because you’re short on space doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice style. 

Where Does This Work – if you don’t have space to include chairs in your living room the slipper chair can sit in a corner looking pretty until you need it. They work well in contemporary and modern spaces where the sofa may also sit lower to the ground because it’ll keep the seat height consistent.


3/ Barrel Chair

SOURCE: Simple Stylings


This little cutie works well in almost any living room. Its round, barrel shape gives it its name but the name doesn’t do justice to how good this chair looks in a living room. Sitting in a barrel chair is like getting a big hug from your chair because it wraps around and envelops you. 

Where Does This Work – fortunately, this style comes in various sizes so it can fit into almost any space. It also works with virtually any design aesthetic. If you have an awkward configuration and need your chair to work double duty, consider a barrel chair that swivels. This will allow you to be part of a conversation area and then turn the chair to watch tv.


4/ The Lounge Chair

SOURCE:  Rue Magazine


If you have the space and you really want to indulge in comfort, the lounge chair is your very best option. The lounge chair you may be most familiar with is the Eames chair which has been in production since the mid 50’s. Its iconic wood frame makes it a design classic but it’s not just good looking. It also has a deep seat and a back that tilts back for comfort. 

Where Does This Work – You need a large space to incorporate a lounge chair. It can be part of a grouping or can sit alone, particularly if you add the footstool. The mid century design works with almost every design style. The only exception is traditional design.


5/ Wing Back Chair

SOURCE: Cupcakes and Cashmere


If you love traditional design you might already own this classic. This chair style has been around since the 17th century so you can feel good buying one of these. It’s unlikely it’ll ever be out of style.

Where Does This Work – This chair really only works in a traditional or transitional space. They tend to be on the larger side and that is in relation to both width and height so be sure you have the space. This chair can overwhelm your smaller spaces.


Do you need help finding the right furniture for your space? Contact me to discuss how I can help you.


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