A Simple Guide to Stools

Stools may be one of the most streamlined and “simple” categories of furniture you can buy, but there are still plenty of factors to consider before making your final decision. In our showroom, we carry a wide selection of stools from Canadian manufacturers like Vogel, Trica, and Bertanie, all available to customize and tweak to your needs and liking! In addition to obvious factors like colour, material, and cushion density (sit-tests are always a good idea!), here are a few aspects of stool design you’ll want to keep in mind when preparing for a multi-item purchase…

Stools of all Sizes

Before you get too excited about any one style or model of stool, it’s important to stop and measure your space. What height of table or countertop are you working with? Will your stools be paired with a cocktail table in the corner of an entertaining space, or sitting at the breakfast bar of your kitchen island? The vast majority of stools come in one of two standard sizes: bar height or counter height – many models will be available to order in either height. According to Hayneedle’s Bar Stool Buying Guide, “A counterheight bar stool is commonly 23-28 inches from the floor to the seat (23- to 28-inch seat height). Pair counterheight bar stools with 35 to 37-inch table heights. A barheight bar stool is commonly 29-32 inches from the floor to the seat (29 to 32-inch seat height).” Choosing the right stool height will make all the difference between being comfortable, squished, or stretched!

Vogel Deluxe Memory Swivel Stool - Counter height in plum leather upholstery

COUNTER-HEIGHT

swivel grey leather bar stool with back and espresso wooden legs

BAR-HEIGHT

Minimalist Stools

Ideal for: Streamlined homes & short-term sitters

Stools without backs (or with very low, decorative back details) or arms are simple, compact, and easy to tuck away under the counter when not in use. They take up the least space and are the least distracting in your overall design. They are also light and easy to move around, and tend to be less expensive (due to less material being used). However, these minimalist stools don’t provide the balance and back support that more full-bodied stools (and counter-height chairs) do. So if you’d rather sit back and relax on your stool, this might not be the best choice for you…

Trica barstools with minimalist back - grey and black tucked away under wooden waterfall breakfast bar in modern kitchenTrica barstools with minimalist back - grey and black tucked away under wooden waterfall breakfast bar in modern kitchen

Stools With Backs

Ideal for: Unsteady sitters & comfort-seekers

If minimalist stools feel unsteady to you, you may want to consider getting a more substantial stool with a half-height or full-height back. These stools are typically a bit more of an investment, but make sitting at a counter or bar height more natural and relaxing – and provide a little extra stability to those less comfortable at these heights. Stools with backs also offer opportunity for additional customization and personalization, whether through a decorative wood or metal back structure, or a statement upholstery choice – maybe even with some tasteful nail head trim to finish it off!

Trica Sofia barstools with full backs upholstered in grey fabric and stationed around a glass-top peninsula in a white, high gloss, condo kitchenTrica Sofia barstools with full backs upholstered in grey fabric and stationed around a glass-top peninsula in a white, high gloss, condo kitchen

Swivel Stools

Ideal for: Flexibility fans & active families

Swivel stools are the fun ones – versatile, playful, and the best option for busy homes and the life of the party. Looking for the option to carry the conversation from the sitting area to the cooking area? Swivel stools provide that perfect connection point where a guest can tie together the conversation across both parts of the room. And picture the flexible freedom of a simple swivel to turn and access either side of the counter, the table behind you, and so much more. Swivel stools can sometimes come with a “memory swivel” option, as well, which means the stool has some resistance built-in so when you want to you can swivel, but when you get up, it will return to its usual position – great for keeping spaces tidy and orderly!

Stools can be the perfect way to finish off your compact hosting spaces, or expand the versatility of your inviting kitchen dining area. Whether you choose to pair them with a table, a bar, or an island with overhang, stools are a great option for kids and adults alike, and can add a pop of personality (whether refined or energetic) to your new space. Connect with us in-store to see plenty more custom stools from Trica – only available to order in-person!

Explore our online Stool selection here.