Classic or Craze: November/December 2014

For the November/December issue, we asked local design professionals about mismatched dining chairs.

By Melissa Mauzy



“Classic – mismatched chairs are indicative of the ‘not too matchy matchy’ style of decorating, which is definitely a classic look. I personally love the more laid-back feel of coordinating pieces with different woods, from different vendors, antique and new. A room has much more interest, personality and possibly drama with this approach.” Marcia Moore, Marcia Moore Design.

“Many young families are discovering treasures in flea markets or resale shops and are bringing those great finds back to life. Upcycling mismatched chairs and adding unexpected color brings a lighthearted feel to dining. Even though some may prefer the formal dining room, I believe most people with busy lifestyles have moved toward creating a more easy, comfortable and casual dining experience. This is a design that could be around for quite a while.” Laureen Wilder, Laureen Wilder Designs.

“I think it will last as it gives people freedom to do whatever they want and enjoy doing it! This is a great style for ones on a budget.” Susan Block, The Designing Block.

“CLASSIC! Mismatched chairs add a creative, sometimes unexpected touch to a dining or breakfast room table depending on the application. For example, in a more dressy dining room, replacing the host chairs with a different style, stain or paint color and fabric add interest. Another option would be to use the existing host arm chairs and replace the side chairs with Philippe Starck's Victoria Ghost chair!” M. Joyce Mathis, MJM Design Company.


“Just as the average homeowner is afraid of color, I feel he/she is also uncomfortable with mixed chairs at a dining table. Symmetry is much more comfortable to the eye for most people. Therefore I would say that mixing dining chairs is a craze.” Tom Manche, Thomas Manche Interiors.

“This attempt at ‘shabby chic’ is a craze and falls short of classic as four to eight different style chairs are forced to reside in harmony. After you get over this craze you may be able to repurpose a chair for a desk, a guest room, entry or two chairs for an impromptu café table. A better effort to attain that edgy feel would be to use a contemporary table with classic host chairs and the side chairs in a compatible style.” Jane Ganz, Directions in Design.