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Materials Used in Chairs

By Clemency Hitchings, 6th April, 2010

The amount of furniture available to the consumer these days is immense, and as there are so many materials used in chairs, the choice can be a complicated one. Contemporary kitchen chairs retail in a medley of exotic materials, from faux leather to ABS Plastic and even metallic mesh. Meanwhile, more traditional items are available in a number of woods, cane and a host of other natural materials. There are also retro style chairs, and these tend to be made with faux leather, nylon and various other fabrics.

Joshua Dining Chair At Dining Table

Joshua Dining Chair Grey


The multitude of materials doesn't simply end at the seats either. The frames can be several different materials themselves. Chrome plays a dominant role in both retro and contemporary design chairs, and sports a dazzling finish which reflects light in ways that catch the eye. There is also brushed steel, with a more muted presence than chrome but no less durable, and also bare steel, which showcases the raw qualities and lustre of such metal.


Brushed Steel vs Chrome Chair Finish


Of course, a number of designs of kitchen chairs tend to be more traditional, too. Wood plays a large role in the more traditional designs, giving that rustic feel. Wood gives a certain depth and richness to any environment, with the grain giving added little details that catch your eye and draw you in. Wood has been used for millennia as a staple building and craft material, and it is easy to see why; light and durable, it can be shaped easily and effuses classic charm. Wooden dining chairs fit in well with kitchens in a terracotta colour scheme, or those with matching wooden beams. It is also superb anywhere with wooden cabinets or flooring. There are also cane and wicker seats, helping to perpetuate that rustic feel. The weave on these chairs produces a winning look, which draws in the eye with the pattern created. Meanwhile, cane is very comfortable, even proving orthopaedic to some!


Natural Oak Tree Trunk


Faux leather is a versatile material that has a multitude of uses, from furniture to bags and shoes. When used in furniture, it gives the look and feel of leather dining chairs, but is durable, scratch resistant and unlikely to stain. Faux leather provides a strong alternative to leather, in some cases, even surpassing it! It can be used to create a traditional look, with complex and opulent designs, or can be combined with simple lines and clean edges for a minimal and contemporary look.


Machine Stitching Faux Leather


Nylons can be used as either solid blocks, giving a look not unlike that of acrylics, or it can be woven to simulate wicker chairs. In these cases, nylon is a lot more durable and has a higher strength than wicker. It is also easier to clean and does not stain. Another upside is the softness of nylon; where hard cane seats may start to tell after long periods of use, nylon will remain as comfortable as ever.

By contrast, acrylics give a fresh look. Being mostly transparent and available in a range of colours, acrylic chairs are very airy and respond to light in a number of interesting ways. Tinted acrylics can emit a coloured glow to the room if light is shone through, creating some interesting effects and often proving perfect for that retro-psychedelic kitchen! Acrylics are also superbly durable and tend to weigh very little, meaning that they can be easily moved and relocated.


Black ABS Plastic Chair Seat


Whatever you're looking for, the sheer variety of materials used in chairs will make it easy for you to find a unique design that's perfect for your home, so don't miss this opportunity to transform your home. Take a look at our full range of dining chairs below.


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