If you’ve never been passionate about interior decorating, that means that most furniture-related terms that describe style are unfamiliar to you. After reading the title, you might be left wondering what a mid-century dining chair is.
Similar to the furniture designed between the 1940s and the 1960s, the mid-century dining chair is basically a seating element that’s located right at the border between modern and traditional styles. With that in mind, how does one find the best mid-century dining chairs that fit their home or office decor?
Benefits of Choosing Mid-Century Dining Chairs
For those of you that are new to this whole interior designing concept world, we wanted to go over the reasons why someone would opt for mid-century dining chair (or for any piece of furniture that matches the aforementioned style, for that matter):
- You will never have to choose between modern and traditional chairs if you’re not sure which ones you like better. Mid-century chairs are designed as old chairs but with a new approach. It’s basically as if someone took a dull old-looking wooden chair and gave it a modern twist so that it can actually match the contemporary decor inside your home.
- If you were actually buying mid-century dining chairs, you would end up spending a small fortune, whereas the reinvented designs and products (like the ones we have added to the list below) are a much more affordable alternative. It is, therefore, a very rewarding investment not just in terms of looks, but also in terms of how much money you’d be saving.
- Because mid-century dining chairs are designed with both traditional and modern elements, they won’t go out of style very soon. As you will discover by examining the products below, plenty of these products have a very modern design and unique shapes that you normally wouldn’t have seen decades ago. That makes them great modern pieces that still maintain some traditional elements.
- When it comes to the actually looks and chromatic options of mid-century dining chairs, your options aren’t as limited as you think. Since most of them come by the classic approach of wood meets upholstery, you can get really playful when it comes to color combinations. For instance, you can find chairs with upholstery in simple colors, like gray or cream, but also ones in daring lime green or burgundy.
- For the most part, mid-century dining chairs are either very easy to assemble or come fully assembled. We know that putting together furniture is a chore than not a lot of people want to deal with, so the ease of setup is always a feature that people look forward to.
Mid-Century Style Characteristics
We keep hearing about the elegance, style variety, and convenience of having mid-century dining chairs, but how much do we really know about their worth? What does it mean to have a room decorated in mid-century style?
- There are a few things to keep in mind when you decorate in mid-century style: functionality plays a key role, ornamentation and non-traditional materials are equally as important, and sleek lines plus geometric forms make excellent combinations.
- Mid-century style uses plenty of colors, including black and white.
- There are a lot of materials used in this style, such as vinyl, glass, plastic, and metal.
- Avoid combining furniture and elements with too many different patterns and stay true to a single color range for a more in-depth effect.
Types of Dining Chairs
The variety of dining chairs available might cause a bit of confusion when you come across terms that you aren’t familiar with. In order to keep you informed, we’ve put together a list of the most common types of dining chairs, with a short description that will help you identify them easier and tell you which one is more suitable for your needs:
- Armchairs are really popular and one of the most classic options that you’re probably familiar with by now. They are usually used as side chairs because of their larger size, and their use isn’t limited to just the dining table. They normally have upholstered seats and are quite heavy in weight.
- Side chairs are another traditional dining chair option and their name gives out their position, which is by the side of the table. They range from casual to very formal.
- Parsons chairs’ name comes from the Paris Parsons School of Design, and they are characterised by upholstered seats and simple lines. They are compatible with multiple types of interior decors, ranging from rustic to minimalist.
- Wingback chairs have a more sophisticated look as they are designed with “wings” on the side of the chair. A lot of people choose to place wingback chairs only at the head of the table.
- Ladder-back chairs are characterized by horizontal slats that make up the backrest and they are primarily constructed out of wood.
- Slat-back chairs are designed with vertically-running slats on the back of the chair, and they are available in a wide range of styles.
- Windsor chairs have an English-inspired design and they have a half-circle back with slats running vertically.
- Cross-back chairs have an X-shaped backrest and can also be found in multiple styles.
- Slope chairs have simple designs and are usually found with upholstery seats that are mostly made from genuine or faux leather.
- Barrel-back chairs have backrests that are shaped like bowls and allow your back to sink into them more than it would on other types of chairs.
- Splat-back chairs have a vertical column that runs across the back of the chair and they are mostly made out of metal.
- Wishbone chairs sport a Danish-inspired design and are characterised by a wooden base and upholstered or woven seats. They have a curved frame that inspired elegance, and they’re paired really well with minimalist or boho-style room decors.
- Cantilever chairs have a very unique look and are designed with more flexible legs that makes them bend under pressure.
- Slipcovered chairs are very formal and they are often found in elegant restaurants and ballroom-type decors.
- Plastic-molded chairs have a very airy and funky look, usually have metal or wooden legs, and can be wiped clean with a cloth.
What are the best dining room chairs?
The ones that match your existing decor and that you feel comfortable sitting on when you’re having dinner. The list above gathers such a wide range and chair styles, you are the only one fit to determine which type of chair you find most comfortable and worthy of your money.
How much should you spend on dining chairs?
The thing with dining chairs is that there are so many models to choose from, you can end up spending anything between $90 to $1,000. It’s all up to you.
Should dining chairs have arms?
It depends whether or not your focus is ergonomics. Dining chairs that have armrests are considered to be more comfortable, especially if you sit on them for longer periods of time. They’re perfect for people who want dining chairs they can lounge in.
Tip 15 Best Mid-Century Dining Chairs
Simple, and yet so elegant: that’s probably the easiest way to describe the Blomquist chair set. The white seating is contrasted by the solid wood legs that have so much to offer in terms of support and visuals. The assembly process requires screwing in the legs, making this set ideal for those who won’t really have the time needed to put furniture together. It is the perfect addition to modern spaces, be they at home or in an office/commercial space. The set includes four chairs that are made of white matte plastic.
Upholstery chairs are a classic choice for most homes because of the comfortable seating they provide. The West Alton chair, with its distinctive features and quality construction, makes a comfortable dining room piece that could serve in a multitude of other scenarios as well, including as a kitchen chair. The frame of the chair is made from metal and comes with polyester upholstery in a charcoal gray color that generally very easy to match with other room decor elements. It has a weight capacity a little over 220 pounds and the backrest is covered in upholstery as well.
Meant to serve as an accent chair but also being a suitable choice for dining setup, the Frederick chair is a true sight for sore eyes. Its unique design and beautiful color variety make it an excellent choice for people who are looking for furniture pieces different from anybody else’s. It can support a total weight of 250 pounds thanks to its plastic and solid wood legs. It is completely covered in upholstery that’s made from polyester fabric and filled with comfortable foam for more seating and backrest support.
When you’re ready to sit down and enjoy a comfortable meal or you just want to have a nice talk in the kitchen with your family or best friend that just dropped by for a cup of coffee, the Dayanara chair is there to give you the much-needed seating space. At a first glance, it might look like a solid metal chair but it is, in fact, made from beechwood with a black finish. It can support a total of 275 pounds and comes with woven seating support. Because it has no armrests, it can also be a real space saver if you simply push it underneath a table or a desk when you’re using it.
Made from solid oak and with a wide range of finishes and upholstery colors available, the Chisdock chair is the kind of product that you want to have in your mid-century inspired setup. The seating is made from comfortable foam that’s wrapped up in polyester blend fabric. Note that the backrest has no seating but manages to stay comfortable nevertheless, and that’s thanks to the curved shape. The natural oak construction has a capacity to support weights of up to 250 pounds. The package comes with two identical chairs that are available in natural oak or natural walnut finish.
The Westboro chair is the moth of all comfort, as it is completely covered in upholstery that’s designed to make dinner as pleasant as possible. The legs are made from durable metal that can support a total weight of 220 pounds. Covered in polyester blend upholstery, the chair is designed with an extra padded seat so that you won’t have to get up from the dinner table too soon because you feel discomfort. The charcoal gray upholstery also makes mixing and matching the chairs with different room chromatic quite easy.
Some of the best mid-century dining chairs excel through simplicity, and while the Drumawillin set may seem minimalistic, it offers a great seating experience in a multitude of scenarios. The frame of the chair is made from solid wood and is available in an oak and a walnut finish so you can have a light and a dark-colored option for your home’s needs. The upholstery is made from a polyester blend and it’s filled with comfortable foam. Because they are short in height and have no armrests, the chairs an always be pushed under the table and this saves a lot of space.
When wood meets faux leather, you know that you’re dealing with a product that’s looking to combine traditional and modern elements to create something truly unique. That is also the case of the Thelonius side chair, designed from a combination of faux leather upholstery and manufactured wood legs and backrest. Thanks to that silhouette and the tapered circular legs, this might just be one of the best mid-century dining chairs we’ve seen so far. The cushion is covered in faux leather and offers medium-firm support. Overall, the chair has a weight capacity of 250 pounds.
Here we have yet another great example of how wooden legs perfectly match a chair with a top side covered entirely in gray upholstery. With legs made available in beautiful walnut shade, there is something about this chair that brings you to the border between modern and traditional furniture. The fact that is can support up to 400 pounds in weight also helps, since the average for this particular type of chair design and construction is around 250 pounds. The stain-resistant fabric upholstery comes with synthetic fiberfill to offer a comfortable seating experience.
When it comes to mid-century dining chairs made from solid wood, the Zeller is a beauty worth mentioning. It is made from beechwood and can support a total weight of 250 pounds. With its iconic design and wishbone shape on the central slat, the Zeller chair has a beautiful wooden finish that almost makes it look like a handcrafted product. The woven seat is supported bu four tapered round legs. The set includes two identical chairs and both of them come fully assembled, which means less stress for you.
In our efforts to put together a list of the best mid-century dining chairs, we came across the Adison. With solid wood legs to offer total support of 250 pounds, these chairs are designed with a modern look and a beautiful combination of colors. They have a foam seating that’s covered in polyester blend woven fabric, staying true to the modern approach of a classic piece of furniture.
There are plenty of ways to describe the Marin chair, but one of the best ones would be “bold”. With a unique design that defies the geometry associations we normally make when thinking of chairs, every feature of this chair was designed to be mesmerizing. It comes with angular recessed arms and a solid wood skeleton that provides support for people who weigh up to 300 pounds. The upholstery is made from a combination of polyester and just a little bit of cotton to offer that extra sense of luxury.
If you are a fan of dining chairs with a sculptural look, the two Steven dining chairs that are available in this set are your go-to products. The winged seating brings forth the daring and beautiful combination between solid and manufactured wood. The contrast is even more amazing when you see the cherry color combined with the white upholstery made from a polyester blend with foam fill. Supporting up to 250 pounds in weight, these two chairs come with chrome support that connects the back to the seating.
The Becker dining chairs are the type of product that’s difficult to describe because of the bold and unique approach of the design. They are the kind of product that you have to see for yourself in order to determine if they belong in your home or not. Made from bentwood and plywood with veneer, the walnut chairs are yet another example of how manufacturers defy chair geometry once again and keep coming up with ingenious ideas designed for modern homes. The boxy hourglass shape of the backrests is certainly the centerpiece of each chair. The two chairs that are available in the set have an individual seating capacity of 250 pounds.
I want to say that we saved the best for last, but the Dylan chair is just as unique as most of the others that we’ve shown you today. It is a product that surpasses everything you knew about boring dining chairs and shows you how eye-catching such a trivial furniture item can be. The legs of the chair are made from manufactured wood and plywood, offering support for people who weigh 250 pounds or less. The walnut finish comes in contrast with the cream seat that’s covered in polyester upholstery concealing comfortable foam padding.
One of the things that we most love and appreciate about mid-century dining chairs is the possibility to fit them in such as a wide variety of decors. They can easily find their way in wooden cabins and modern studio apartments alike, making them such a versatile piece of furniture that it became present in a lot of homes all over the world. With that in mind, the list of chairs that we’ve just shown you is just a small part of what’s out there, but it’s a great place to start if you need ideas and inspiration for your future mid-century dining chairs.