Looking for a great way to add visual interest to a room? An accent chair creates an extra seating space that also draws the eye, making it the perfect blend of necessity and ornamentation
Incorporating accent furniture into a space has been a popular interior design trend for many years. Essentially any piece of furniture that stands out and immediately catches the eye can help to liven up a room, set a specific mood or tone, and even establish the concept of the space. Having a chair as the accent piece is often a designers first choice; modern accent chairs come in such a wide range that it’s always possible to find one that’s perfect for adding extra emphasis to a particular room.
Not only are there many different styles and types, but you can even pick anything from small accent chairs like barstools and tub chairs, to large chaise lounges and armchairs. Plus with the additional variations of colour and upholstery fabrics, it’s clear that an accent chair is sure to give you plenty of leeway to play around and achieve exactly the effect you wish for.
From a historical perspective, an accent chair is meant to be used less frequently than your other seating, this is also why you may see them referred to as an “occasional chair” in interior design articles. They’re mostly used to provide an extra or separate seating option – think reading nook in your bedroom or two-person conversation area separate from your main living room seating.
Today, modern accent chairs are more popular for their purely aesthetic appeal and the personality infusion they bring to any space. And while they can be bought in pairs, it’s more common to just have one accent chair that can be used to either complement or contrast with the rest of your interior design. Of course, making a decision on the best accent chairs for any space depends upon their purpose – while style is important, functionality is equally so if you want to have a home that’s comfortable and usable.
Whether it’s picking an antique accent armchair that will stand out in your modern styling, or choosing a loveseat in a hue that will tie together your colour scheme, the key point is to choose an accent chair that you just have to have; maybe due to gorgeous upholstery, a strong profile or a colour that caught your fancy.
This is what makes selecting an accent chair a lot of fun! Since a single one is usually all you need, cost isn’t too much of a concern, plus as your accent chair will see less wear-and-tear, it can even be upholstered in more delicate, less practical fabric. Of course, to avoid your room getting cluttered with a mish-mash of impulse buys, always keep the question of purpose in mind.
Regardless of if it’s a handcrafted rocking chair you see while browsing furniture online, or the dainty little scallop chair hiding amongst a slew of heavy arm chairs that draws you into that furniture store you pass every day, it’s important to figure out the reason you need that accent chair and how it will be used. Will it bring visual interest to an otherwise dead corner of your living room? Or maybe add some much needed comfy seating to your home office? Whatever your specific need may be, you can’t go wrong if you make sure that both the design of the chair and where you place it within your home is intentional and purposeful.
Still, there’s no stylistic pressure in making the choice, as there’s no need to worry about how it suits your existing interior design. Essentially, when choosing the best accent chairs for your space, if just looking at it makes you happy, then why not have it?
As previously mentioned, while there may be numerous and plentiful options in terms of colour and style, picking the right accent chair for you will ultimately come down to your interior décor scheme and the purpose you need it for.
So, let’s briefly talk about the various types of accent chair that are most popular today.
The armchair is a classic style that lends itself to any degree of comfort, making it the ideal choice for living rooms and family spaces. Typically wide and deep with thick, comfortable cushioning, many arm chairs are made in the style of lounge or sofa chairs, with large arms that provide additional support, so people can relax when they sit down. This type of accent sofa chair is perfect for afternoon naps, movie nights and long usage, providing the highest degree of comfort.
Also occasionally known as the “slipper chair”, armless chairs tend to provide less support and also slightly less comfort for longer usage. Since they don’t have arms, this style of chair has a lighter, more airy look and generally seems much less bulky than the traditional armchair. If you’re looking for a cosy yet more dainty reading chair, and want to up the comfort factor, an armless accent chair with ottoman to match, could be the ideal accent chair for you.
While sculptural chairs aren’t always particularly comfortable (in fact, they’re usually known to be the least comfortable style of accent chair), they are usually the most visually arresting! Most sculptural chairs are crafted with a unique, interesting form that easily lends itself to being the focal point of any room. With their sleek, sharp silhouettes, this style of chair might have metal or wood arms and legs. As an accent chair, a sculptural wood arm chair may be a great choice if you don’t want to consider colour, as wood finishes go with almost any colour scheme.
The most elegant form of the accent armchair, wingback chairs are the perfect fit for a traditional living room or a bedroom where luxury is the theme. This style of chair was originally created to be placed before a stone fireplace; with two large wings on either side, it helped keep people warm in bygone eras by trapping heat around the seated person. Today, they can be placed anywhere in a home, and are a much loved choice of accent chair due to their classic yet chic styling.
Take exact measurements and ensure there will be enough space to move around the chair. It may seem obvious that small accent chairs are a better choice for small spaces, but we often forget that even a small chair will still have great depth and protrude from its space. When planning your living room design, remember to take into account not only the overall dimensions of the accent chairs but also their depth and how they will fit within the available space, ensuring a harmonious and functional arrangement.
Remember that once seated, a person will add to this required depth; if you pick the wrong size of accent chairs for living room areas with high traffic, both the chair legs and the seated person become a tripping hazard for people walking around them.
If you have a particular chair in mind, before buying it, take measurements of the total square footage of its footprint, plot this out in masking tape on the floor space where you plan to place it. Make sure it fits as you have envisioned.
Particularly when choosing accent chairs for bedroom spaces or other rooms where relaxation is key, it is not only important to measure the width, depth and height of the chair, but also floor to arm height and floor to seat height. Additionally check the actual seat width and depth to ensure ideal comfort.
Lastly, don’t forget to check the weight of the chair. A bulky accent sofa chair works in spaces where they are just intended to be left alone, while many structured or modern accent chairs are lightweight and easy to transport or move. Again, purpose and usage are very important while making your final choice.
Now that you're more aware of the various types of accent chair styles that are available to you, we hope you’ll be able to go out there and pick the perfect one for your home! But if not, we’re always here for you!
At Beautiful Homes Service by Asian Paints, we partner with you to craft the home of your dreams – from making those first design decisions to delivering the ideal final outcome, we’re there for you, every step of the way! We even make it easier for you to source the latest in furniture, home accessories and décor styles with our curated collection. So, if you’re eager to get started on creating that perfect haven, and live in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bengaluru, Delhi, Pune or Kolkata, now’s a good time to get in touch with our team.