If your living room or bedroom furnishings seem a little mundane and monotone, adding an accent chair or two might be all you need to spice up the space. As the name suggests, an accent chair draws the eye to the piece, brings out an existing color in the surrounding decor, and creates a focal point in the room.
Matching furniture sets bring design uniformity to a room, but they can also be boring, and that’s where an accent chair can introduce some excitement. However, Instead of just being a design enhancer that completes a room’s look, an accent chair should also be comfortable, providing a spot to sit and relax.
The best accent chair for your living space will depend on the look you want to achieve, the color and style of your existing furnishings, and how much available space you have as well as the level of comfort you want the accent chair to possess. In this guide, learn what to consider when shopping for the most comfortable accent chair for your home, and discover how the following accent chairs can add both comfort and style to your abode.
- BEST OVERALL: Christopher Knight Home Evelyn Arm Chair
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Roundhill Furniture Chocolate Pisano Accent Chair
- BEST LEATHER: Stone & Beam Lauren Oversized Accent Armchair
- BEST WOOD: Lexicon Fabric Accent Chair
- BEST RECLINING: GDF Studio Elizabeth Tufted Fabric Recliner
- BEST MODERN: Yaheetech Round Tufted Back Chair
- BEST VINTAGE: HOMCOM Retro High Back Armless Chair
What to Consider When Choosing an Accent Chair
Accent chairs are common in living rooms and family rooms, but they can also be assets in bedrooms, especially large bedrooms that feature seating areas. When choosing a comfortable accent chair consider various factors, such as the shape and style of the chair, the material, and how the color and design will enhance your existing furnishings.
Accent chairs are available in a few basic shapes and sizes, and, as the word ‘accent’ suggests, you’ll want to select a shape that accentuates the other furnishings in the room. The following profiles are popular forms of accent chairs:
- Armchair: The most common type of accent chairs are armchairs, which are usually upholstered, padded, and designed for comfort. They come in various materials, styles, and sizes, and have one element in common: armrests for comfortable sitting.
- Slipper chair: Slipper chairs are similar to armchairs, just without the arms. They’re typically upholstered with an armless design that brings a contemporary look to a room.
- Barrel chair: Named for the rounded sides and back that resemble a barrel, barrel chairs offer a cozy look and feel and are often overstuffed for comfort.
- Wingback: Featuring a high back and inward tilting sides that resemble wings, wingback chairs offer a traditional and classic look. They are often on the larger side and require ample floor space.
- Papasan chair: All the rage in the 70s and 80s, Papasan chairs feature a round rattan base that supports an overstuffed circular cushion. This Japanese-themed accent chair requires a fair amount of floor space and, depending on the size, may seat one or two people. Its relaxed style makes it well-suited for family rooms and bedrooms.
- Chesterfield chair: Wide, deep, and tufted, Chesterfield chairs are a standout in accent chairs. Typically a bit broader than a standard armchair, they feature armrests that are the same height as the back of the chair, giving the chair both a classic look and comforting appeal.
- Recliner: A favorite in family rooms and finished basements, recliners offer relaxation and casual appeal. And they do double duty as an ottoman since the user can push the backrest into a flat position and simultaneously raise the footrest. Many recliners are large and overstuffed, but if you’re looking for something more traditional, you can find one in a wingback or standard armchair design.
The majority of accent chairs are at least partially upholstered, and most are constructed with wood frames. Choose from leather, velvet, suede, and several other fabrics. If you have pets that sit on the furniture, consider a material that’s easy to clean, such as top-grain leather, rather than velvet.
Upholstery fabrics feature a wide variety of designs, from delicate floral patterns to loud geometric designs that demand attention when you walk in the room. When choosing an accent chair, consider picking a fabric that repeats other designs in your home. For example, if your kitchen cabinets feature drawer pulls with a fleur de lis design, placing an accent chair with the same design in an adjacent room will help to visually pull the kitchen and living space together.
Not all colors look good together, and when shopping for an accent chair, it’s wise to consider the colors on a basic color wheel. Since you’re looking for a chair that accents existing furniture in a room or just the room itself, choosing either a complementary or split complementary color will offer attractive results.
- Complementary: Colors that contrast yet complement are found opposite each other on the color wheel. Choosing a complementary color for your accent chair will create a high contrast but will still look appealing. For example, if lemon yellow is the dominant color in the room, you might try an accent chair in its complementary color—a bright shade of purple—to draw the eye.
- Split complementary: For a bit less contrast, consider a split complementary color for your accent chair. Locate your base color on a color wheel, find the complementary color on the opposite side, and then choose a shade that’s on either side of the complementary color. Using the previous example, this would mean selecting either violet or indigo for the same yellow-dominant room. Both violet and indigo will still complement the yellow furnishings but with just slightly less contrast than a bright purple.
Our Top Picks
To qualify as a Top Pick, an accent chair had to be well-made, attractive, and, of course, comfortable. While designs, material, and color vary, these options for a comfortable accent chair are well-suited for a range of interior themes.
This mid-century modern accent chair from Christopher Knight Home Store packs a visual punch. If you’re a fan of retro styling, you’ll love the post-WWII lines of this accent chair that is as comfortable as it is attractive. With an industrial flair, this chair will complement contemporary, traditional, and even Bohemian-style décor.
This retro chic chair features a soft, supportive seat and back padding in a button-tufted square pattern paired with upholstered armrests. It features heavy-duty rubber legs for stability, and the durable textile fabric resists staining for easy cleanup.
Lean back in comfort in this armless, slipper accent chair that’s just begging you to sit down. Available from Roundhill Furniture Store, this contemporary chair offers a splash of color and style. Its over-padded seat is comfortable and relaxing yet durable and easy to clean.
The textile fabric features a chenille weave giving the chair an oh-so-soft feel. This accent chair boasts solid wood legs and includes a pillow for use as a back bolster or as a visual tie-in when positioned on a nearby sofa or chair. Overall, this comfortable slipper chair will complement modern décor as well as contemporary and retro styles.
This accent chair from Stone & Beam features extra-durable, top-grain leather upholstery in a welcoming overstuffed design to update and balance the look in a living room or a bedroom. It features a removable seat cushion for easy cleaning and both padded arms and a padded backrest for comfort.
The chair sits low to the floor, supported on block-style wood feet. Available in seven shades, the conventional design of this accent chair will complement modern, traditional, and country-style interior decor.
Enjoy the natural warmth and beauty of real wood with this accent chair from Lexicon that features a rich walnut frame combined with an upholstered seat and back. Available in five striking colors, it provides retro appeal with its slightly curved wooden arms and legs. The foam-padded seat and back make for comfortable lounging, and the wood frame and legs are sleek and smooth to the touch.
This accent chair will complement a variety of interior designs in both living rooms and bedrooms and may serve to draw out the richness of other wood elements in the home.
You can have both the classical look of a wingback chair and the lounging comfort of a recliner with this accent chair from GDF Studio. Due to its traditional wingback style, the chair doesn’t have the bulky appearance typical of an overstuffed recliner. But by grasping the arms of the chair and pushing backward, the back of the chair reclines and a footrest appears, offering a comfortable and attractive spot to sit and relax.
The chair is made with long-wearing textile fabric for durability, and it’s firm, padded cushion is designed to be cozy yet supportive. The chair features a fashionable nailhead design along the sides and under the armrests, and the legs are constructed of solid birch wood that will stand the test of time.
Don’t fret: You can round out the look of your living room or bedroom furnishings without spending a lot of money. This contemporary, swivel accent chair from Yaheetech offers a sleek, modern look at a budget price. Its pub-style construction features a rounded design that will complement other modern furnishings or add a splash of funkiness to a retro-style room.
Padded and covered in faux leather, the chair is easy to wipe clean, and its seat height is adjustable. The seat on this accent chair swivels 360 degrees, so you can turn and face any direction in the room without moving the chair.
Add an imperial flair and the luxurious feel of velvet with this accent chair from HOMCOM. This slipper-style chair features durable textile velvet upholstery with a diamond-tufted design on the inner back and seat. It features solid wood legs and a high back with a Chesterfield-style roll at the top, giving the chair a regal look.
The stately style and ultrasoft velvet fabric make this eye-catching piece well-suited as a bedside chair or as an attention-grabbing accent chair in a retro-style sitting room. This chair is available in five striking colors—bright blue, crimson red, cream white, soft grey, and rich black.
FAQs About Accent Chairs
If this is the first time you’ve shopped for an accent chair, you likely have a few questions. Check out some of the most frequently asked questions and their answers below.
Q. How do you clean an accent chair?
The best way to clean an accent chair depends on the fabric. However, in general, use the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove dirt and dust. If a spill occurs, follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions found on the label attached to the chair’s bottom.
Q. Do accent chairs have to match other furniture?
No. Accent chairs are often a different color or feature a different pattern than other furnishings to add excitement to a room.
Q. Can an accent chair be taller than a couch?
An accent chair can be taller or shorter than a couch, but opt for a style that complements your existing décor. A flashy chrome pedestal chair might look out of place in a home with traditional furniture, but a wingback chair would fit right in.