How to Choose the Right Bar Stool for Your Bar

Posted by Stephanie Hilliard on Sep 01, 2023

How to Choose the Right Bar Stool for Your Bar

When choosing bar stools for your restaurant’s bar, there are so many options you can go with for your seating, and it’s up to you to pick! Bar stools are the focal point of any bar and there’s a lot to decide on before you click “add to cart”. 

Furnishing your bar space is no easy task but we hope this mental checklist can give you some peace of mind about what to look for and help you narrow down your options.  

Do you want your bar stools to swivel?  

Figuring out whether you want your bar stools to swivel or not is a big first step in choosing your seating. This can help narrow down your styles to choose from, making your decision a little easier. 

If you do want them to swivel…you’re going to be looking at either bucket bar stools or standard swivel bar stoolsBucket bar stools are typically padded in the seat and back, similar to club seating; these are great if you want customers at your bar for extended periods of time. Standard swivel bar stools are great for sharing a look with the rest of your dining room  because they can have the same silhouette, but also the perks of swiveling! These swivel bar stools have your choice of seat, but are not typically padded in the back. 

If you don’t want them to swivel…then a stationary bar stool or backless bar stool will be more your speed. Both of these types of bar stools don’t need as much room and are ideal for smaller spaces or anywhere where you don’t want to have to worry about a seat being constantly swiveled into your bar.  

Do you want your frame to be metal or wood?  

Ah, the great metal versus wood debate! Some bar owners swear by metal frames, and others want the classic look of the wood frame. Both of these frame types can be used in commercial establishments and come in a variety of finishes to accent your atmosphere. 

Deciding what looks the best in your dining room can help you select the correct frame. Wood frames tend to be the norm in traditional seating and can provide a warmer look. This material tends to wear over time and should have its hardware consistently tightened for optimal performance. Metal frames can be more versatile in looks, fitting into industrial, rustic, and classic seating seamlessly, and can last longer under heavy traffic because of their fully welded frame. 

What kind of seat do you want?  

Your seat selection is where personal preference and practicality collide! If you’re going with a bucket bar stool, your selection is limited to your vinyl choice. But, if you’re choosing a standard swivel bar stool, stationary bar stool, or backless bar stool, there are a plethora of seat options to choose from. These bar stools can be made with vinyl or wood seats, depending on your preference.  

Our standard vinyl seats are a popular choice as they come in more neutral colors, but we also offer a selection of custom vinyl options for something a little different. If you want something less cushioned, a wood seat can warm up any space, including our rustic wood seat selection. The wood seats are a good tie-in to match your bar or high top tables. Choosing your seat options wisely can reflect your style and finish your bar stools for a completed look.  

With so many options when it comes to movement, frame, and seats, it can feel overwhelming but narrowing the basics of what you want for your bar or restaurant can help make this decision much easier. The more confident you feel about your selection and purchasing the right furniture, the faster you can get back to catering to your customers!  

Need help furnishing your bar space? Contact our customer care team at 800-986-5352 or through the chat function on our website to get started completing your seating layout today.  

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