In the dining rooms I've designed, I usually choose a traditional wood table (fyi: I've never been a fan of glass dining room tables), and to add interest I always surround it with chairs of a different style and/or color. There are so many chairs out there (and so many expensive ones), most people become completely overwhelmed. Asked to find some reasonable alternatives for a recent project of ours, we came up with these five great dining chairs. Our first choice is an aspirational one, found on 1stdibs.com. This set is considered the investment piece of the bunch. We adore caning, and these chairs are such a wonderful example of this particular style. They were designed by Ward Bennett and made by Brickel Associates in the 1960's. The price is high at $3,200, but like I said, this is would be an investment. If you're interested, you should probably have cushions made for these chairs, as they'd be much more comfortable. In any event, these are just beautiful to look at.
Clockwise from top left: Design Within Reach Marais A56 Armchair $275 ON SALE for $137.50 in gunmetal grey -- This French chair, designed in 1934, was created for use in the weather forecasting rooms on battleships. They're incredibly durable with rubber feet to prevent damage to floors (they're also stackable). They'll add a pop of color to any room in bright red or yellow. Wisteria Louis XVI Chair $379 -- This elegant chair is a simple, less ornate version of the typical Louis XVI chair. We love the bleached oak finish and roman column-esque chair legs. A great value for the price. Target Bistro Chair $99.99 - If you're just starting out in your first apartment, this piece is great for small spaces (it folds up for storage purposes too). The cafe chair is a classic chair form, modernized here with a pewter finish. CB2 Orbit Armchair $119 -- The orbit is made in Italy and reminds us of some of the ultra modern furniture we saw recently on our trip to Milan. These would raise the cool factor in any dining room. Ward Bennett Cane Chairs (top) available at 1stdibs.com.