For restaurants, bars, bistros, cafes and more, bar stools make for ideal seating. They’re classy, they’re comfortable, they’re sociable – and paired upon with the right design, they can bring a unique look to your premises with little effort. It’s important, however, that you think carefully before diving into buying bar stools outright – have you considered the vibe and atmosphere of your venue? Stools can be immensely versatile as they can be put to work in more ways than simply giving your clientele somewhere to sit.
Flexible and Fitting
Bar stools can be used to outright transform a bar or restaurant atmosphere when put to the right effect. You could use them to encircle a whole space to create a relaxed, laid-back feel, or you could even position them along windows to allow for full, uninterrupted views of the world outside. Beyond these points, it’s worth remembering that no two bar stools are quite the same – though they all do sterling work in helping to fill those awkward, lingering spaces.
Bar Stool Height
Knowing how tall or short your bar stools should be is half the battle, but it doesn’t need to be difficult. Essentially, you’re going to need to consider the height of the tables you currently use, or your main bar. General rule of thumb dictates looking for stools which are around 12 to 14 inches shorter than these fittings and fixtures – so that, ideally, your customers’ chests should be above bar or table height with their knees below the roof. There’s a fine balance, but it’s easier to find than you may think.
Backless or Backed?
While bar stools come in a great range of styles and shapes, they are largely divided into two main types – backless and backed. Backless stools are clean, convenient and less cluttering than backed models – but stools with backs are considered much more comfortable for patrons for obvious reasons. It’s therefore worth bearing in mind how your stools are going to be used – are your patrons dining in? Use for lengthy periods such as for eating meals may benefit from comfortable backs – but for customers who are having drinks or are waiting to be seated in a main restaurant, backless stools are viable alternatives.
How Many Should I Buy?
Finally, a big question you knew we’d be answering – it’s important to get the balance right between having too few chairs (lowering the potential for hospitality) and too many (crowding your customers). The best thing to do, therefore, is to get your tape measure back out – measure up around 21-25 inches for each stool and you should have a comfortable layout which makes full use of your space.