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Bar Stool Height Guide

Finding the perfect bar stools can be tricky. Not only is there color, style, and material to consider, but the right height is critical to a stool that is as functional as it is stylish. Narrowing down the right height for your bar, counter, or table is a great place to start when picking stools.

How Much Space Do You Need for Bar Stools?

When adding barstools to a counter or table, you need to bring legroom into the equation. You should leave about 10 inches between a seat and the counter or table. This distance is usually the most comfortable for someone of average height. To figure out how tall your chairs should be, grab a measuring tape, pencil, and paper. Measure from the floor to the top of the counter or table surface. Write down that number and subtract 10 inches to get the height of the stool you need for that space.

Remember to also measure the length of the counter to determine the number of stools that can fit in the space. A good rule of thumb is to allow 28 inches for each place setting.


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What is the Difference Between Counter Height and Bar Height?

Overall, counter stools and bar stools are pretty similar. They both come in similar styles, and you can find options with and without backs. However, there is a bit of a height difference between the two. Counter-height bar stools tend to have a seat height of 24 inches, which makes them a great choice for most breakfast bars and kitchen counters. Keeping the 10-inch legroom rule in mind, they’re ideal for dining tables in the 34-39 inch range.

Bar-height stools are slightly taller and usually have a seat height of 30 inches. You may also see these called pub stools, and while pub stools are typically the same height, you always want to double-check product specifications. Bar stools work well with tables in the 40-43 inch range.


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A third stool option is the table stool, but these aren’t sold at a standard height. If you want table stools, you’ll most likely need to purchase them as part of a dining set, but sometimes you can find them available individually. For a standard height table, look for a short stool or bench in the 18-22 inch range.


table stoolIf you have a non-standard height counter or table, adjustable-height bar stools will be your best bet. The seat height on these stools can be adjusted up to 10 inches to perfectly fit your space. At The RoomPlace you’ll find dozens of stools in all sizes and styles. Shop our collection online or visit our showrooms in the Chicago or Indianapolis to find the right one for you.

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