Odd Man Out: Spare Dining Chairs Throughout the Home

Odd Man Out: Spare Dining Chairs Throughout the Home

Catrin Morris
Dec 8, 2011

In her new book, The Perfectly Imperfect Home, former editor of Domino magazine Deborah Needleman, outlines her "10 elements of style," one of which is the use of an odd or spare chair. She explains, While an odd chair is useful, it is not primarily for sitting. It is desirable primarily for its amusing demeanor, making it more like a piece of sculpture in the shape of a chair....The odd chair is the most individual of all. It is frequently diminutive, unusual-looking and solitary. (Think a little tufted Victorian thing, or a gothic-style wood chair or a child's chair pulled up to the coffee table.)

I couldn't agree with Deborah more. And another thing that is so wonderful about the random extra dining room chair is that it can sometimes be snagged at a discount because so many people are interested in buying a matching set!

Here are some rooms that make creative use of the odd chair.

Perfect Grey. Slightly beat up gilded antique chair paired with modern art. And to the right, an image from 79 Ideas. Here two odd Cherner chairs flank an ornate antique console table. Really, I will do anything to include images of the Cherner chairs!
Sanctuary. Beautiful use of two spare antique dining room chairs.
• Another spare chair. Home Life.
• A lovely little scene from photographer Mel Yates in Desire to Inspire.
• Here a random slipcovered chair adorns the hall in Dede Pratesi's 17th-century family villa in Tuscany from Architectural Digest.

• A little yellow vintage chair serves as a table of sorts in the hallway of Laura's Patchwork Style Apartment.
Absolutely Beautiful Things.
Noemi's Romantic Biedemeier Apartment in Berlin. Here a single upholstered balloon back chair looks lovely on its own.

Images: As credited above.

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