How To Choose The Perfect Accent Chair

How To Choose The Perfect Accent Chair

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Need a functional chair that’s far from boring? Quirky accent chairs are a chic, stylish way to add colour and flair your home without even trying. Whether it’s the bedroom, living room, or dining area, follow our guide for tips on how to choose the best accent chair to elevate your living space.

What is an accent chair?

Accent chairs are decorative chairs designed to create visual impact. Often single seats, accent chairs provide additional seating in a room although their main function is to create a funky focal point that adds impact to a room.

Accent chairs are versatile! Their varied designs, materials, colours, and patterns mean that there’s a perfect accent chair for every room scheme. Place an accent chair in any part of your house that needs a ‘visual lift’, including hallways and dining areas.

Accent chairs are often used to create a quirky contrast or pop of colour. Think lime green velvet against moody grey. However, thanks to the variety of accent chair styles and materials available you can still make a statement with a minimal accent chair. Scandi style, for example, often pairs striking mid-century chairs in charcoal or midnight-black to pair with natural-toned rooms.

Careful consideration is needed before buying an accent chair. The impact might be lost if your quirky accent chair blends too much with your decor, and there’s always the danger of an accent chair looking garish instead of intentional.

That’s why we’ve created this guide to help you choose the perfect accent chair for your room.

Open Armchair Buttoned Back in Osborne & Little Encore Velvet

How a quirky accent chair transforms your room

Provide a focal point

In any room we recommend placing 2-3 “statement pieces” that draw the eye and say something about the story of the room. You can do this with mirrors, artwork, and of course, a quirky chair.

Accent chairs are the easiest way to make a statement within a room. Simply pick an exciting pattern, vibrant colour, or eye-catching style to add more excitement to a flat space. Remember to keep an element of cohesion to your statement pieces to avoid unintentional clashing. For example, the fuschia colour of an accent chair could be repeated in bed linen or candles.

Layer up on texture

Accent chairs come in a wide range of fabric. Everything from leather, velvet, cotton, and other natural materials like linen is possible. The abundant textures available mean it’s easy to add depth to a room. You can add cushions for extra colour and visual interest, or leave bare to draw the eye to the plush material, quirky pattern, or interesting shape of your chair.

A splash of colour

Enliven a neutral room scheme with a colourful accent chair. Neutral decor looks chic and timeless, however sometimes plain walls and carpet can become bland. Adding a splash of a vibrant shade will lift the room. And add a flash of personality. Colour doesn’t have to be jewel-toned; a dusky pink accent chair against cream walls makes a beautiful, chic statement.

Antique Chair in Marvic Trellis Cambridge

What are the different types of accent chairs?

There are several types of accent chairs, and each one brings a different atmosphere to a room. Here are the most common:


Armchairs can be used as accent chairs, particularly ones that come in an eye-catching design or are upholstered in a funky pattern. Traditionally, armchairs matched the fabric and design of the sofa, but here they should contrast in order to create a visual statement.

Browse our armchairs.

Slipper Chair

A slipper chair sits low to the ground and lacks arms. They usually come with a high back and were designed during the Victorian era as a place for ladies to sit while putting on their slippers. This makes them an ideal accent chair for a bedroom where space might be limited.

Browse bedroom chairs.

Wingback Chair

The Wingback is a classic chair that’s been around since the 17th century. Traditional wingback chairs were upholstered in velvet but now they come in an array of funky fabrics and patterns. Elegant and timeless, a wingback chair makes a striking statement in spacious living rooms.

Browse our Wingback chairs.

Chaise Longue

Love to lounge? Then the chaise longue is the accent chair for you. These accent chairs have a long pedigree and were often seen as symbols of luxury. The chaise is as functional as it is beautiful; you can sit and recline on it in addition to creating a chic focal point for your room.

Browse our Chaise Longue collection.

Tub Chair

Tub chairs or ‘bucket chairs’ are a popular guest bedroom choice. Their rounded shape and low, curved back creates an inviting space to sink into. Modern and minimal, tub chairs are ideal for smaller space or to create a comfy ‘zone’ in hallways.

Browse our tub chairs.

Where to put an accent chair

Accent chairs can be placed anywhere within your home!

Try them in your:

  • Living room
  • Master bedroom
  • Guest rooms
  • Hallway
  • Study or home office
  • Dining Room

If you have a large living room or bedroom we recommend two accent chairs side by side for maximum impact. Accent chairs come into their own when entertaining guests or simply as a comfy, chic spot to perch while tying your shoelaces. Typically, our customers create cosy nooks by placing a wingback accent chair next to a fireplace or bookcase, or pairing them with an ottoman or footstool.

Create cohesion and drama where a room feels flat – usually a quirky accent chair is the final touch that pulls everything together.

Standard Wing Chair

Choosing the right colour for your accent chair

The perfect colour for your new accent chair will depend on your room’s existing colour scheme. The point of an accent chair is to draw the eye to a particular area in your room, and you can use colour to achieve this in a number of ways.

There are an almost infinite number of shades, so picking the perfect colour can feel overwhelming. To narrow it down try keeping the 4 main colour attributes in mind:

Warm vs. Cool

Is your existing room scheme warm or cool? Knowing the ‘temperature’ of your room can help when picking a chair as you can either match the existing warmth in the room or pick a cool shade to make your accent chair stand out.

Warm colours have red undertones. Think orange, yellow, olive green, burgundy, beige, and cream. Even grey can have a warm undertone.

Cool colours, on the other hand, contain blue undertones. Blue, purple, pink, violet, and stark black and white are all examples of cool colours.

In truth, any colour can be warm or cool depending on the undertone. Mixing warm and cool within one space is a clever way to achieve balance. For example, navy blue chairs against a warm cream wall. You can also play around with wood accents (warm) and chrome finishes (cool) to warm up or cool down a room.


Tonal looks aren’t limited to the fashion world, they can be applied to interiors, too. Tonal or ‘monochromatic’ interiors are harmonious and relaxing — at the same time they can make quite a statement!

In essence, a tonal colour scheme utilises various shades of the one hue. Take red for example. Within that colour palette you have a variety of shades: cherry red, rich burgundy, deep maroon, bright berry, and dusty rose to name a few.

In terms of picking a quirky accent chair, choosing the deepest or brightest shade in your chosen palette will draw the eye.  You could also determine the dominant colour in your palette then go a shade lighter or darker for the accent chair to create cohesion.


Contrast refers to the luminosity of colours. Colours can be high or low contrast depending where they sit on the colour wheel. High contrast colours sit opposite one another on the colour wheel, while low contrast colours will be found side by side. There’s no right wrong; whether you prefer high or low contrast is personal preference. However, placing a dark coloured accent chair against a light wall will create more visual impact. For example, a mustard armchair against a dark navy wall.


Saturation refers to the intensity of a colour. High saturation colours appear more intense and vibrant, while low saturation colours appear paler, perhaps even washed out. Picking a highly saturated colour for your accent chair will make a bold impression. You just have to be careful how the other elements of the room come into play — you’re aiming for rich and vivid, not garish.

Open Armchair Buttoned Back in Osborne & Little Encore Velvet


Colour isn’t the only way to have fun with an accent chair. Introducing a pattern via your chair’s upholstery can introduce a bold, quirky element to your room without going overboard.

You can pick from a variety of patterns depending on your taste:

  • Geometric
  • Floral
  • Stripes
  • Polka dot
  • Damask
  • Paisley

Introducing patterns with an accent chair is a great way to add personality to neutral room schemes. And for lovers of maximalism the lure of a funky accent chair will be irresistible!

Bedroom Chair


One more consideration before buying an accent chair is the material. Different materials perform better in terms of durability, and from an aesthetic point of view, upholstery texture adds layers to a room scheme.

What material you pick depends on your lifestyle and personal taste.

Here are a few to consider:

  • Leather. Classic and easy to clean, a leather accent chair screams luxury. Leather chairs in caramel and cognac shades look refined in tonal room schemes and can be made with tufting to create an aged, vintage look.
  • Velvet. More durable than you’d think, velvet is the accent chair. It feels luxuriant and comes in a variety colours, though we think it shines brightest in highly saturated jewel tones!
  • Cotton. Cotton is durable and easy to clean. It looks great in neutral colours like white and grey, and the natural weave will look harmonious in organic-inspired rooms.
  • Wood. The warm, inviting texture of wood is perfect for accent chairs designed for curling up in by the fire. Mahogany gives a masculine edge while honey-toned wood will go with a neutral, natural room scheme.
  • Metal. Metal feels colder than wood but works exceptionally well in contemporary dining rooms and living spaces. Introducing metal via chrome castors on your accent chairs will help create a modern, sleek look.
Stamford Chair in Ian Sanderson Cossack Plaid

Our favourite accent chairs

We’re not called The Original Chair Company for nothing! We specialise in bold, quirky accent chairs — though our classic designs can be finished to suit minimal palettes too.

Our accent chairs are made by British artisans from hard-wearing, quality material so you get a chair that’s built to last, even if you’re only sitting in it occasionally. Everything down to the castors is customisable, and our Fabric Studio contains hundreds of textures, prints, and colours, allowing you to create a style that’s all your own.

An accent chair is the best way to freshen up a space, experiment with colour and pattern, and bring a room to life.

Here are some of our favourites:

1.     Liberty Chair

Swathe Liberty in any fabric you please! Upholstered in this blue floral print, we think it makes an elegant addition to any bedroom.

2.    Fireside Chair

Fireside is a funky accent chair that looks cosy next to bookcases and fireplaces. Modelled after an antique design, the Fireside Chair is a classic shape that can be modernised with bright patterns and colours.

3.    Retro Chair

Fan of funky accent chairs? Look no further than our Retro chair. Its smooth, wooden arms have a mid-century modern feel and the bold upholstery creates an impression.

4. Bath Tub Chair

Bath is one of our popular accent chairs. Its button back and sleek tub style makes it a versatile option for any room.

5.    Eclipse Bar Stool

Add pizzazz to your dining area with a set of beautiful eclipse bar stools. Upholster in velvet for decadent dining.

Browse our entire online range today or visit our UK showroom to see Original Chair quality for yourself.

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