Mixing chairs at your dining table creates a fun and laidback look, and another way to break things up is to bring in a bench. It's an alternative to the expected sets of four or six chairs, can often fit an extra person, and can be useful in another part of your home.
In putting together my own dining room, I've started to feel that everything is just a little too uniform for the small space - pair of large posters, pair of smaller prints, pair of windows. At this point, my fiancé and I are picking seating, and his idea is to offset a pair of chairs with a cushioned bench.
The look I'm hoping we'll end up with is like what's achieved in these images — pulled together but seemingly effortless. These dining room match-ups work because even though the styles of seat are different, there is continuity in another element such as the color of the wood or upholstery.
Images: 1. Amber Interiors 2. Another Country 3. Tineke Triggs via Decorpad 4. West Elm 5. Elle Decor 6. via Decorpad 7. Teri Lyn Fisher via Desire to Inspire 8. Emily Johnston Anderson for Apartment Therapy