The A-Z of Accent Chair Styles
Accent chairs can do double duty both as functional pieces and features to add a pop of colour to your decor. Think about both purposes when looking for a new addition to get the most for your money. To help you out, here are some of our favourite styles to get you started.
There’s one rule about buying furniture. That is there are no rules. It’s all about creating your unique look. You can mix and matches styles and designs. The possibilities are endless. That’s what makes buying an accent chair fun.
Think of the statement a retro 50’s chair makes in a traditional style living room. With the right piece, you have an instant focal point. Add a splash of contrasting colour, and you have something your guests will notice.
People often think of French provincial furniture as being formal. Actually, it came about as a rebellion to the urban Paris designs back in the 18th century. It’s not ruffles and lace but rather simple and classy. You’ll see these chairs most often in muted colours or pastels like lavender and grey.
Contemporary chairs often feature upgrades on classic designs that emphasise comfort. They may seem traditional with some modern touches. It’s the best of both worlds. They sometimes have bold, primary colours and minimalist details.
Classic traditional is just what it says. It is a timeless style that has stood the test of time. They often are heavy, sturdy pieces that will last. You usually won’t see wild oranges or crazy greens. It’s more of something that the oldies might like.
The mid-century style couldn’t be more different. Pieces of this type embrace the 50's retro look. They sometimes break the rules of traditional design. And they’ll catch your eye because of that look. It’s not a style for everyone. But the furniture certainly could start a conversation.
The outdoor look is practical. It’s furniture that can take the elements. They are often lighter pieces since you’ll probably move them around more than indoor chairs. You’ll see them with mesh or open backs to keep you cool during hot summer afternoons.
Metal accents and elements define the industrial style. You may think that they look modern. They may resemble traditional pieces but with a look all their own. Black, silver and grey dominate the typical colours.
The Scandinavian style blends elements of the modern and mid-century looks with a Nordic twist. It is minimalist yet comfortable. It often has natural wood components rather than metal or chrome.The colours are bright and bold unlike the darker hues of mid-century pieces.
Now let’s talk about the various designs. Often certain styles lend themselves to particular designs. But that’s not always true. That’s where the interest of a piece comes into play. Like the style, the design says a lot about a room’s mood.
Keep both the style and design in mind when choosing your accent chair. A chair with a design that invokes a similar feel as the design will amplify it. One piece of furniture will capture the atmosphere you want to create.
One word description: comfort
Mood: relaxed. It says, “Stick around for a chat over a cuppa.”
Description: The slipper chair is typically an armless chair with plenty of padding to make it comfy. It usually sits lower to the floor with short legs. This emphasis on comfort gives it a feminine feel to it. It works well with French provincial or traditional style rooms.
Uses: Tufted backs give it a classy look. It’s a great choice for small spaces or even as an alternative to a bench at the front door.
One word description: relaxation
Mood: relaxed with a more masculine feel
Description: Like the slipper chair, the club chair is an upholstered armless chair. The masculine bit comes from its history in English gentlemen's clubs of the 1850's. It’s a heavier piece.
Uses: A club chair in leather will capture the essence of this piece’s history. It works well with most styles especially classic traditional or even contemporary with a bold fabric pattern.
Wing Back Chair
One word description: traditional
Mood: Quiet. This is a chair you want to curl up and read a book.
Description: The wings of this chair give it its traditional form. They served to protect you from drafts back in the day when a fireplace kept you warm. Don’t be fooled though. You’ll find a lot of variation on this design that is anything but formal.
Uses: This design works well as a focal point. Its shape draws your attention. Changes in the form go hand in hand with different styles. The traditional wide wings are the most formal.
One word description: eclectic
Mood: carefree. The occasional chair often captures the essence of a true accent chair. That’s especially true if it is different from the style of your room.
Description: Of all the types, the occasional chair defies description. It can be whatever you want it to be. Often, it sits patiently in the corner waiting until a mate shows up for tea unexpectedly. You’ll find lighter pieces that you can easily bring to the table.
Uses: This is the piece you can use to make a bold statement. It’s a great choice if you want a designer chair but only have the budget for one or two.
One word description: roomy
Mood: cosy. This is the type of chair you’ll want for reading a book or watching an old movie. The extra space means you won’t feel cramped. Curl up or stretch out.
Description: The tub chair is an oversized chair that you can sink into easily. They are usually upholstered with plenty of padding for comfort. It can fit with any style. You’ll see a lot of variation in the shape and form.
Uses: The tub chair has the cosiness of a wingback chair to capture the warmth. Grab an extra blanket for cuddling. It’s a good option for larger rooms. It’s also a great choice for smaller spaces where a love seat is too big.