Choosing The Perfect Kitchen Stool

Choosing The Perfect Kitchen Stool

Now more than ever with great rooms and open concept kitchens, it’s critical to choose the right stools for your island. Think about it….not only do you sit in the kitchen stools frequently they typically take center stage in the room. Additionally, they can be quite pricey. So I thought it would be a good idea to share with you the criteria I use when choosing the perfect kitchen stools for my Fairfield and Westchester clients.

By the way, have you heard about kellydesigns new E-Design Service? While I wrote this with the intention of giving you tips for you to do this yourself, I also realize that choosing items for your home, especially all-important counter stools can be quite challenging. So, while your reading through this, if you find yourself thinking "I could use some help!" our E-Design service may be for you. It's a great design alternative for people that are busy, like to shop and want to spend less money over traditional interior design services. Packages start as low as $85 and go up to $999. You can read all about it here.

So now let's get right into the criteria you must consider in order to get the perfect counter stool!


To get a stool that is both comfortable and looks great, it's important to get this right. If you haven’t purchased a kitchen stool in a long while or it’s your first time, it’s relatively easy to end up with the wrong size.

Start out by measuring the height of your island.

  • If your counter is 36″-39″ in height, you need a counter stool that is 24”-26” from floor to seat.
  • A counter that is 40″-42″ in height, pairs with a bar stool that is 28”-30” from floor to seat.
  • For both counter and bar stools it’s ideal to have 9″-13″ between the seat and the island for maximum comfort.
  • It’s important to provide enough space between stools for people to eat, drink and socialize without bumping elbows. Here are the rules of thumb we use: If the widest part of your stool is 16″-18″ allow 21″-22″ of space per stool. If the widest part of your stool is 19″- 22″ allow 24″ to 25″ of space per stool.
  • If you choose stools that swivel and/or have arms, you’ll need to add a bit more space between stools.


Think about how you will be living with these stools?

  • Is the placement in your room between the living area and the Kitchen? Perhaps you want a stool that swivels so you can socialize in both areas.
  • Do you have young children? A stationary stool might be best for safety.
  • How often will you be sitting in the stools and what will you be doing in them? This will help you decide whether or not to consider stools with backs and arms.
  • How mobile do you want them to be? If you will be shifting them around, its probably best to forego arms and opt for something less bulky.

Give this some serious thought as a piece of furniture is only as good as it is comfortable.



Start by taking note of the color of each feature of your Kitchen. Include your counters, cabinets, back splash, floors, walls, any accents and even your appliances.

Identify the overall color scheme. If you have a lot of color in your Kitchen, you may want a stool that blends in. If your Kitchen is mostly monotone, a stool provides a great opportunity to add a pop of color. Pull that color from somewhere in the room. That could be from something as simple as a black window frame, the finish of the lighting or hardware or an adjacent room's accent color.

If you have a great room, choose something that compliments the colors in the living and eating spaces.

In either case, look now at your list of the colors of the elements in your Kitchen. The counter top is a great place to pull colors from. You can also pull colors from any element in your Kitchen, including stainless appliances and your light fixtures.

Last but not least make sure your stools contrast the main color of your island as well as your floors.


I hope this helps you choose the perfect stool for your Kitchen. This is one of the most difficult decisions to make because you use and see them so much. So if you need help making the right choice above and beyond what I’ve written here, feel free to reach out to me anytime and follow me on social for inspiration.