How to Choose a Chic -- Yet Perfectly Comfortable -- Office Chair for Your Home Office
(Left) Hooker Furniture Legendary Camel Executive Chair and (Right) Sunpan Modern Home Urban Unity Black / Gold Computer Chair, Both from LuxeDecor
More Americans than ever before -- in the current century, that is -- are working from home. The global COVID-19 pandemic has shifted our perceptions of both the traditional workplace and its impacts on worker productivity. Today, millions of Americans have converted to home office spaces, leaving behind their cubicles and commercial spaces. The adjustment has been difficult for many -- especially those working from their kitchen table, living room sofa or nightstand. However -- no matter your remote work situation -- the perfect office chair is a necessity for both health and productivity. Follow below for our tips and picks in the LuxeDecor “Home Office Chairs Buying Guide.”
Adjustability is key when considering many furniture and decor elements. It is essential in choosing floor and task lights. It is necessary when a space needs modular seating for entertainment. Similarly, adjustability is absolutely necessary for office chairs -- which are used at least eight hours each day when working from home. Ideally, each element of the chair should be adjustable in some way. This includes the chair’s height, the seat’s distance from the floor and the angle of the backrest and seat. You should be able to adjust the height of your office chair to your own height. For optimal comfort, you should be seated so that your thighs are horizontal to the floor. Look for a pneumatic adjustment lever to let you bring the seat higher up or lower.
(Left) Braxton Culler Koko Chaise Lounge Chair and (Lower Right)Kas Rugs Grey Scottsdale 12'' x 20'' Rectangular Pillow, Both from LuxeDecor
Considering your own health conditions, needs and restrictions will help you make the best choice when picking out a home office chair. Chances are your options are more abundant than they would have been had you still been working in an office. As such, take advantage of the many styles and shapes of office chairs available. A computer chair might not be best for you, even if you intend to work on a computer. An executive chair might not be sufficient even if you plan to take meetings and talk on the phone. For those with back pain, experts recommend choosing a chair with adjustable arm rests, height and backrest incline. Unfortunately, you might find a chair that supports your neck perfectly, but does not fit your lower back. In this case, remember that additional supportive elements can be purchased. Consider adding a lumbar pad or an orthopedic cushion if needed.
You should also consider the size and shape of your body when choosing an office chair. For instance, a taller person should search for chairs with deep seats that better accommodate the majority of the thigh. This is in contrast to shorter people, who should look for a shallow seat that allows their knees to bend properly.
Once medicinal in appearance, designers have finally seen fit to afford lumbar pillows a bit more aesthetic attention. If unfamiliar, lumbar support pillows prevent lower back pain and offer support to those fighting chronic pain throughout their lower spine, hips and pelvis. Lumbar pillows -- typically thin and horizontally oriented -- prevent the muscles from overworking throughout the day. By adding extra support, lumbar pillows encourage appropriate posture throughout the spine -- from the hips up through the neck. Lumbar pillows are exceptionally versatile -- making the money spent on one for your office chair well worth it. The more attractive versions can be placed on a sofa or sectional as a throw pillow. They can also be added to a bed for placement under the lower back during sleep.
Resembling an equestrian saddle, an orthopedic or ergonomic hip cushion offers additional support to the lower back. Often used by those with spinal issues, orthopedic hip cushions are sometimes referred to as “sciatica pillows.” These pillows offer support for people with issues like sciatica by creating a firm surface better suited for the body. Orthopedic cushions are often placed on the seat of the chair -- upon which users sit rather than rest against. The cushions are available in multiple shapes -- from the saddle shape to a pair of wedges. They can be found in a number of colors and patterns, making them unobtrusive against interior design schemes.
(Left) Modloft Broome Latte Walnut Left-Facing L-Shaped Desk with File Cabinet and (Right) Driade Moleskine by Driade Desk, Both from LuxeDecor
As you research which office chair is best suited to your design aesthetic and remote work needs, remember to consider other office furniture. Consider the shape, size and height of your desk, for instance. A tall desk can accommodate a taller office chair, but a shallow desk will need a shorter chair. An L- or C-shaped desk might not fit a wide office chair, while a straight, linear desk will. Furthermore, remember to keep in mind the style of your home office desk to avoid clashing the two furniture pieces.
Whether or not your office chair should have wheels will likely be determined by two key aspects of your home office. First, a home office’s layout should be considered. For instance, an office chair with wheels might not be necessary -- nor even functional -- if the desk is angled against a corner. This would place the desk chair in the very limited space where the walls meet, making wide movement difficult if not impossible. Second, one should consider the type of flooring. If the home office has shag carpeting, wheels likely will not work -- and if they do, might pull up some carpeting. However, tile, pergo, hardwood and low-pile carpeting are all conducive to chairs outfitted with wheels.
(Left) Gus* Modern Radius Executive Chair and (Right) Sunpan Modern Home Junction Dillon Cream / Thunder Computer Chair, Both from LuxeDecor
The furniture industry has adapted effortlessly to the recent spike in remote workers. It has filled online and in-person stores with countless styles of desks, office chairs and storage units. In a commercial office setting where each cubicle painfully resembles the next, style is often cast aside in favor of functionality. However, in a home office, the homeowner’s personal design aesthetic should be honored. Thankfully, furniture companies have quickly responded to this change, offering chic office furniture without the unattractive, basic plastic elements common to commercial spaces. Consider this year’s -- and 2021’s -- projected interiors trends when choosing your home office’s office chair. There is no need to skimp on style now that a slew of options is available.
Indoor climate variation can be just as damaging to furniture as outdoor climate fluctuations. Keep the indoor climate of your home in mind when choosing an office chair. This is especially important with an office chair as it will experience more constant use than practically any other furniture piece in your home. For instance, you might choose to shy away from a leather armchair if your house is particularly dry for much of the year. This is because leather has a tendency to crack when it dries out. Dried out leather can result in not only an unattractive finish but also an uncomfortable surface.
If you do choose a leather chair in an arid climate, consider positioning the office chair as far away from heating vents as possible. Similarly, in humid regions, office chair shoppers should shy away from those with woolen or heavily upholstered backs or cushions. Wool, brocade and other dense materials lock in heat and transfer it to the user. On the other hand, light, moisture-wicking materials like cotton and linen -- and even polyester -- perform much better.
(Left) Hooker Furniture Brookhaven Distressed Medium Cherry Executive Swivel Chair and (Right) Luxe Designs Executive Chair, Both from LuxeDecor
Interior design and home decor experts have invited antique and vintage-inspired elements into virtually every room throughout residential interiors this year. The Arts and Crafts Movement, Art Nouveau and Art Deco have contributed to the silhouettes and decorative elements of furniture in 2020. This trend is expected to continue well into 2021 -- especially as more Americans turn towards natural materials and organic color schemes. Choose a leather armchair or vintage silhouette to capture the trend before the year ends!
Organic materials are all the rage this year due to their stunning color tones, rich textures and nods to nature. Americans have been searching for home decor and furniture pieces made from more natural, sustainable materials as they spend more time at home. However, minimalism still has a hold on many consumers. The mess-free yet impactful silhouettes of linear furniture continues to capture the attention of buyers. Make a statement in your own home by choosing an office chair made from leather, glossy wood, suede or velvet.
Gus* Modern Radius Executive Chair in Stockholm Caramel, From LuxeDecor
Interestingly, while minimalism is still quite popular in interior design -- both amateur and professional -- maximalism has begun to take hold as well. One represents a zen space for contemplation and quiet thought, while the other might create a space inviting of creativity and productivity. Create a space full of vibrancy and excitement by choosing a brightly colored office chair rather than the typical black, brown or beige.