Fill in the blank: "I love my barstools because ___"

Molly PhillipsMarch 6, 2013

Starting my search for counter-height stools and I don't know if I want arm rests (which makes them wider, I know) or a small footprint, if swiveling would make them easier to get in/out of or just constantly hit the counter, if they should be made with leather, a funky fun fabric or color, aluminum, if they should have a low back, high back or no back....just not really sure.

FWIW, my peninsula is 85" long. I'd love to fit 4 stools on it but I know that may be tight. Cabinets are a white shaker with a natural limestone quartz (doors/drawers and counters haven't been installed yet or I'd post a photo). I also have two young children (6 & 3) so I need something climb-worthy.

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What do you mean by counter height? In my seach I found it can mean anything for 24" to 27.5" It turned out we needed 26" which were hard to find.

I did find some so I will say I love my barstools because they were low cost, swivel, durable, and look cool.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:06PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

I hate my barstools because they were cheap. Got them at Pier One. Unstable. And uncomfortable. So then I find these back support things at the dollar store that strap on and give you lumbar support!

Ha! Everyone who parties here, loves that lumbar support!

My husband thinks they are ugly, but even he admits, they make the bar stool much more comfortable.

We found some new ones online, and we'll go with those for our new house, but I'm keeping the others and the lumbar support thingies!!


    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:13PM
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We've had 6 bar height Pullman leather barstools from Crate & Barrel for 7+ years now. They were a little pricey when we bought them ($299 each). They are well padded, comfortable for sitting in for long periods of time and wipeable after every meal. They have cross braces on all four sides too. I will be looking to replace them this year, but unfortunately it looks like they don't make these anymore. :(

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:25PM
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We do have swivel bar stools, and I like it, but not a deal breaker one way or the other. We put little silicon bumpers on them to keep them from bashing the counter. Unless you're looking for them, you don't see them.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:35PM
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Molly Phillips

Oh, yeah. Adding photos and where you got them works awesome for those of us stuck in decision making purgatory.

Debrak, I just assumed we needed 24" height but really haven't measured...we're just pulling them up to the counter that has base cabinets. How did you measure for the correct height? Where should the seat be in accordance to the counter?

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:40PM
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I like our stools because they are well made and comfortable. We have had them for 2 years and the show no signs of wear. Plus, they were customizable so we could pick the stain color and fabric. They are from Saloom furniture, and come in a wide variety of other styles.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 2:50PM
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I was all set to drop about $1000 bucks on nicely made, sturdy, stylish stools. I have an 87 inch peninsula (close to yours) and will have seating for my three young kiddos there, ages 3-8. Surprisingly, I was told to check out target for stools. I was impressed with their options and I wanted something black and wooden in a traditional style to go with my new kitchen with white shaker cabinets also. I love photos with the contrast of dark wood in all the new white kitchens. I also knew I didn't want swivel because I think my kids would spin on them and eventually break them. I got three of their Adams stools ( in counter height. They were on sale for $60 dollars with a buy one get one 30% off promotion so I got them for like $50 bucks each, because I used my red card and saved another 5%. I made DH put one together a few weeks ago to be sure they'd work, so that they'd be ready for when the kitchen is finished (in two weeks). It took him less than half an hour and will take even less for the others I'm sure.

So, we have one set up in our bedroom for now. All three kids have climbed and sat on it at least 5 times a day - anything new in our house is a target for getting played with incessantly. They are surprisingly substantial, don't look skimpy at all, a nice rich black color with a big, thick wooden seat. I planned to get seat cushions anyhow at Ballard Designs - but with these chairs I think I'd need them anyway, because they are a little "slippy" - maybe because they are so new and smooth still. The other thing I really like is that they came with silicone gliders already in the feet and on the hardwood floor in our bedroom there has been no scratching so I will totally trust them on my newly finished kitchen floors too.

I figured at that price, even if they get scratched up and abused which they will no matter how much I spend, I won't feel bad replacing them.

Happy hunting!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 3:00PM
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I bought target counter stools12 1/2 years ago when our house was new. They were $50,so I figured "good for now". I didn't like the cushion, so I covered it in an attractive fabric then clear vinyl (since I had lots of little kids running around my house.

Surprise surprise - instill have them - and like them a lot! Best $200 investment ever!

The only downside is that after years of use, the screw holes that attach the seat to the chair have kind of fallen apart...btw- this is our main eating area - these get abused horribly. (Please excuse the leg and the dog,,,,)

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 3:43PM
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We got our barstools precisely because we wanted 27" seats. That is what we had before, and it seemed ideal. We got one floor model and ordered a second one made. When we got it...oops! The seat was only 24". And they "don't make 27" anymore." 24" is too short for me if I want to prep while seated.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 4:10PM
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I love my barstools because they are old and they have a history and the industrial look helped me make the transition between an old outdated kitchen to a "new" old kitchen. Oh, and because they swivel, which I never knew I wanted until I had them.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 4:33PM
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In our case our island is 37.5 " high. While googling stools I noticed different heights. Using a step stool and a box I mocked up a 24" stool and we had a 29" in the basement. In trying both it seemed 26" would be just right. and it is!

Ours are from Regal stools. Bought directly as other websites mark them up alot. They are not for everyone but fit my kitchens vibe. $55 each.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 4:34PM
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Clearly barstools are quite individual in both aesthetics and comfort. That said, I love ours because they were exactly what we were looking for: not wood, because we had enough wood going on; kind of modern; and very comfortable, which was actually our biggest concern. They are Way Stools by Calligaris:

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 4:36PM
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suzannesl: I have been looking for bar stools also, and I really like the look of yours. Do you remember where you got them or have any specific information? Are they comfortble? Thanks, Stacey

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 5:02PM
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We had barstools I liked, black metal with a copper looking back rest, but my daughter tipped it over and cracked it.

I then got rid of both of them and now we just have this beast:

While large and ugly it is great for little kids to help in the kitchen. Both my 3 yr old and 18 mo old fit in at the same time.

When we graduate back to barstools I want these from Ballard:

Personally I think backless stools look better, ones with backs can clutter up the look. Backless stools are not as comfortable though, but then again I don't find barstools to be particularly comfortable to begin with (even one's with backs)

I really like the industrial vintage stools Irmaly posted, but I know my kids would crawl underneath and whack their heads on the adjuster pole thing.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 5:23PM
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I love the color of mine and their clean lines. I also love (and hate) that they can be used to build forts or act as ticket stands for kids playing movie theater.

They are surprisingly comfortable considering they are metal and have no back.

(Sorry about the low quality pic.)

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 5:31PM
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Costco bar stools for me. On sale at 159.99 each about 6 months ago. Dark brown/black leather swivel. Very substantial for larger folks!

What I like best about my stools? When all 3 are occupied keeping me company as I cook dinner! Glass of wine optional!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 7:11PM
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I love my counter stools because they don't take up much room, tuck underneath, have indentations to fit the bum nicely and comfortably, and look different (I was all set on the traditional saddle and then started to get sick of them as they are sold everywhere)...also because they were on sale :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: counter stool

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 8:05PM
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Love mine... we sit in them for every meal. Super comfy and swivel. I found mine on craigslist and held onto them for almost 2 years till we were ready. I had no idea of what my style was going to end up being but I knew I loved the stools. The original owner had only sat in them once... they were perfect. New they would have been over $750 each. I paid $300 for all four.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 8:42PM
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sdmomof3boys - I bought the stools at Costco in the fall of 2011 for in the neighborhood of $150 each. I thought they were less, but DH is much better at numbers than I am, so I'll take his word for it. I later saw some similar ones at Costco and took a photo of the box. It says they're made by Bayside - not exactly the same, but close. I also remember seeing something very similar at Target about a year ago. Hope any of that helps.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 9:07PM
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We love ours for their style & comfort. The really nice feature about their swivel is that the stool seat and the top of the stool base are the exact same size and shape and spin on one another. Because of this construction, it is extremely difficult for anyone to get pinched fingers when the stool swivels. Some of the stool we looked at had safety issues when it came to the swivel (i.e. potential pinched fingers, hand/clothing could get caught between the swivel and the protruding legs of the base, etc)

The ones in the photo below we borrowed from my parents temporarily. They are Hillsdale Furniture's Normandy counter height swivel stool. They have since discontinued the white and now only offer black. Normandy counter stools have a 28" height which was great for our 8 yr old but our older son felt his legs were a little close to the underside of the countertop (he's built like a linebacker). Hillsdale makes another stool called Northern Heights swivel counter stool that looks exactly like the Normandy but is 26" high. That height worked best for us. We also brought home too many stools to count in 24-25" heights and they all went back as we felt they were too low & made us feel like little kids sitting at the diner counter.

You can get the Hillsdale stools from many different vendors across the country in many different styles. We found the best deal was to go through to get them. If you call the 800 number for them, often the customer service agent can help you out with multiple discounts. We ended up using our 40% off coupon + free shipping and they waived the shipping surcharge as well. We had our stools in 4 days with standard shipping at a deeply discounted price compared to anywhere else. I checked and they are out of stock on them right now, but if you give it a few weeks, they will pop back up on the site.

Hope this helps!

Here is a link that might be useful: Hillsdale Furniture Northern Heights Swivel Counter Stool

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 9:46PM
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...because they are nowhere near my kitchen; they are located in my neighborhood bar! ;-)

    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 12:33AM
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Suzannesl- I thought I responded back but evidently I did something wrong. Anyway, just wanted to thank you for taking the time to respond with the info on your barstools. I really appreciate it! I got new granite in Thanksgiving and am just installing my backsplash this week. Problem is it makes everything else look old!!!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 9:09PM
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