Parts Of A Chair (Dining, Office, Rocking & Recliner)

See the different parts of a chair including different chair types such as a wooden dining, office swivel seat, rocking chair, recliner and lounge chair.
Parts of a chair with dining, rocking, office and recliner seats The chair is one of the fundamental pieces of furniture you will need in your home, offering functionality and comfort at the same time. With different types of chairs you can buy, there are different parts that will help them function well and even be more beneficial compared to other chair types.  

If you are up for the challenge of learning everything about your chair and identifying what these different parts can provide your home, here are some of the different types of chairs and their corresponding parts that you should know about.

Parts Of A Wood Chair

Dining chair parts Starting from the basics will always be a good first step and with chairs, a wooden one can be considered the standard one. A wooden chair, usually known as a dining chair, has a straightforward design. And it has three basic parts, including the backrest, legs, and seat.

There may be some addition like the armrest and other elements to improve support and function but these are the major and common ones.

For more ideas on what’s in store for standard chairs, here are some of the parts you can expect. 

• Apron – A horizontal piece of wood, this part is the front and back bracing that connects the legs together on both sides and supports the seat.

An aprons goal is to provide extra structural support to the chair where your thighs are rested when you sit on it. The front bracing is notably shorter than the back bracing, accommodating more room for your knees. 

The apron can also act as a decorative element and can come upholstered both for comfort and aesthetic appeal. This creates a strong shift in the appearance of the chair. 

• Arm Supports – Just as it’s named and often only referred to as arms, these are the parts of the chair where you lay your arms for comfort. They are usually located on the sides of the chair and connected both to the seat and the back. 

• Backrest – The back part of the chair, the backrest is literally where you rest your back when sitting on the chair both for support and comfort.

A backrest is usually composed of other sub-parts that provide extra support, including the back post that vertically runs through it and the rails horizontally installed in the backrest for added stability. 

• Corner Seat Brackets – These corner brackets commonly reinforce the apron so that they will be supported more. They will act as a supportive feature and decorative feature at the same time. 

• Cross Rail – Part of the backrest, the cross rail is the horizontal piece that offers both stile and back support. These rails can come in more than just one and that would depend on the chair you’ve chosen to purchase.

A cross rail may also be referred to as mid-rail, this part is positioned horizontally on the backrest’s center, adding back support in the process. 

• Cross Stretch – This part of the chair is a horizontal piece that’s connected to the front legs and then to the chair, connecting these two areas in order to add strength and stability to the frame of this piece of furniture. Besides this function, it also adds visual value to the design. 

• Ear – These small elements appear above the top rail and are named as such because they look like the ears of the chair.

When the tips of the stile extend over the top rail, they form an extra part on top of the chair. This part can both be structural and aesthetic, adding support and at the same time a distinctive look. 

• Frame – The chair’s frame is one of the most vital parts of the chair since it is responsible for the stability and durability of the piece of furniture. This requires it to be well-made, durable, and comfortable enough for daily usage. 

• Legs – When it comes to chair support, the legs are the major player since they are the elements that are connected to the floor. This means that they need to be incredibly durable to support your weight.

Chair legs are also responsible for giving the chair its elevated position above the floor and come in two types of pairs, including the following:

  • Rear legs – These are the legs responsible for the chair’s back support and are connected from the back of the seat extending to the floor. 
  • Front legs – Supporting weight and providing stability, these legs are vital in the design and function of the piece of furniture. They are connected at the front of the seat and stretch toward the floor. 

• Lower Rail – The lower rail is a horizontal wooden piece that connects two vertical posts the same way as the top rail but only on the lower part of the chair’s back.

A lower rail comes as either curved or straight, along with inlays and carving, adding visual character to the chair and more than just support. 

• Seat – The crucial part of the chair, the seat is the area or element you sit on and that your bottom touch. The seat needs to be sturdy and leveled enough to accommodate your body and can either be upholstered or not, depending on the design. The upholstered ones provide better comfort for a lengthier time on the seat. 

• Seat Cushion – The main goal of this part is to offer comfort as you sit on it. This means that it needs to be large and soft enough to accommodate you. So when you choose, make sure that you find the size and comfort that fit your needs. 

• Slip Seat – Protecting your chair, a slip seat is something you can cover your furniture in to keep out dirt and other external elements that can dirty your chair or cause more serious and permanent damage. 

• Splat – The splat is the vertical piece located at the central part of the backrest, adding further back support. To provide better comfort, it can come in a curve shape to go with the curve of your back.

• Spindles – Helping add structural integrity, spindles are vertical pieces that tie the legs together through the backrest’s center.

Normally made of wood but can also come in plastic or metal, these spindles have a round, oval, or square shape and work together with the rails. A broken spindle will lead to a sagging and creaking so make sure you take note of this. 

• Stiles – Considered to be extensions of the chair’s rear legs, stiles contribute to the vertical integrity and stability. An integral part of the frame, this vertical element helps support the backrest and the frame in general.

They can come either curved or straight, depending on the design.. For a traditional look, go for the straight stiles while the curved stiles offer a more luxurious feel to them. Thicker stiles also offer more durability and so can help with more heavy-duty usage. 

• Top Rail – Works the same way as the lower rail, the top rail is also a horizontal piece that connects the two vertical posts of the backrest and the difference is the location of this part. Can be curved or straight, this part provides enough support to your chair’s upper back. 

Parts Of A Swivel Chair 

Parts of a swivel chair A swivel chair, also known as an office chair or a desk chair, is a vital part of your office furniture. It is the piece of furniture that you will spend so much time with since you will sit on it when working the day.

This means that it is important to learn more about it and its parts since they can either help you be comfortable while you work or they can cause you to suffer when you work for the entire day. 

This type of chair is usually comprised of the seat and the base and they have their own corresponding sub-parts that you need to learn about. 

Swivel Chair Seat

This refers to the top part of the swivel chair and features the following sub-parts: 

• Headrest – Also called headpiece, this refers to the top part of the chair, responsible for supporting the neck and head of the person sitting.

The headrest needs to be designed in a way that will help ease your neck stain and tension, especially since you are bound to spend some time sitting on the chair because of work. 

• Backrest – This covers the entire back of the swivel chair, responsible for supporting the posture of the person sitting. You lean your back on this part and can be extra comfortable when it is padded. 

• Arm – Also known as an armrest, this is the part where you play your arms (specifically accommodating your elbow and forearm) on so that they won’t get tired easily.

The arms can be adjustable and they can also come with a cushion for added comfort. These arms can come in two or just one, depending on the design. 

• Seat – Usually cushioned, this is the part where you lay your bottom on to sit. It can be made from fabric or leather and attached to the chair using bolts and screws. 

• Seat Tilt Adjuster – This vital part of the swivel chair enables the person to get access to several functions, including tilting backward or locking it into place.

This allows you to accommodate your posture and be seated in the most comfortable position you prefer to have. Changing functions can be possible by simply turning the adjuster’s knob.

• Seat Tilt Tension Control – This part of the swivel chair is the mechanism responsible for controlling the amount of tension in the seat, depending on your experience and the feeling of tipping backward.

Located under the seat, it allows you to set it to loose, which can make the chair feel unstable since it’s easy to tip over, or tight, which will control the tilting function of the chair. 

Swivel Chair Base

Similar to a pedestal, this part has a spiderweb design along with multiple prongs that help in the chair’s stability. A stable base will prevent the chair from toppling over. The base of the swivel chair is the lower part of the furniture, which is comprised of the following sub-parts:

• Swivel – This refers to the mechanism that allows the chair to rotate 360 degrees, which is how it got its name. It’s located at the chair’s base and makes working while sitting more enjoyable. 

• Arm – This is the part that’s attached at the base of the seat’s bottom, securing the chair to the base. 

• Pneumatic Cylinder – Responsible for adjusting upward and downward to adjust its height, this cylinder is filled with air and the pressure inside it allows you to adjust up or down using a lever. This mechanism also helps support your weight while sitting and most can accommodate at most 250 lbs or more. 

• Spindle – Attaching the pneumatic cylinder to the base of the chair, the spindle acts as an element of support to the chair and can either be made of plastic, metal, or wood, depending on the design.

• Casters – This refers to the wheels installed on the bottom with screws, allowing it to move easily from one place to another. Besides mobility, these casters also help with the chair’s stability.

A swivel chair comes with either five or four casters and they all need to be cleaned and maintained properly to avoid possible accidents. The fifth caster is the center-locking caster and is installed in the middle, helping support your weight.

Parts Of A Rocking Chair 

Parts of a rocking chair A rocking chair, while not a staple in homes, can be a wonderful addition if you want to comfortably snuggle and even take a nap on it. Compared to a standard chair or even a swivel chair, this type of chair has parts way different, including the following:

• Seat – This part of the rocking chair is designed to accommodate your entire weight and so it needs to be durable enough to function.

The traditional seats are made from solid wood and can either be flat or curved. You can also find them in the form of slatted wood, woven wicker, and even fabric sling. And some may also be padded for additional comfort. 

• Back – This covers the upper back to the lower back of the rocking chair. The back is made from thinner and rectangular slats (straight or curved) that can either be positioned horizontally or vertically and evenly spaced apart all throughout the area. There are also rocking chairs that are installed with pads and cushions, ensuring comfort for your back. 

• Arms – One of the basic structures of rocking chairs, the arms are useful to prop your elbows on in order to fully relax and benefit from this type of chair, along with the installation of cushions on the arms. They can come as solid wood and a smooth curving piece. 

• Legs – This part of the rocking chair is responsible for giving stability and support to the structure. The major difference between the legs of a rocking chair and the traditional chair is that the former is connected to the rockers, allowing them to function better. The front legs are shorter than the rear legs, which extend all the way to the back of the chair. 

• Rails – These supportive structures are what keep the rocking chair sturdy and stable, even with the constant movement brought by the chair. These rails are usually short and thin pieces of wood that are installed in the seat’s perimeter and come either squared or rounded, depending on the design. 

• Stretchers – Supporting the legs, these structures look similar to rails but rather than connecting the chair and back, they join the legs together for more stability.

There are three stretchers, including front stretchers, side stretchers, and back stretchers. They reinforce the chair and prevent the seat from depressing and warping from the weight. 

• Rockers – Also known as rocker rails, they are attached to the lower part of the legs and are responsible for facilitating movement that allows it to function as a rocking chair. 

Parts Of An Office Chair 

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If you’re looking for the different parts of an office chair, you have quite a few options to consider. Most of the time, office chairs can be swivel chairs so you can check out the different parts of a swivel chair.

An office chair though would rely on your preference and you can go for the traditional four-legged chair too. You can even choose a recliner if you want and have the budget for it.  

Parts Of A Recliner Chair 

Recliner chair A recliner chair is very much a comfortable chair you can place in your living room or entertainment room. Compared to other types of chairs, it has more complicated parts and so may be a bit overwhelming.

The different parts of recliner chairs will also rely on the model you are considering. For the basic recliner chair model through, here are the external and internal parts you can explore. 

External Parts

Recliner chairs have the following external parts you will easily see from the outside.

• Frame – Mostly made from metal or hardwood, this part is the main component and support of the chair. It is usually attached with padding to contribute to the comfort it features. 

• Fabric –  After the padding, the fabric is used to cover the entire recliner, adding protection to the furniture and at the same time aesthetic value.

The most common fabrics used on this chair are microfiber, vinyl, and leather, which can affect the cost of the chair (with leather being the most durable but also the most expensive option).

• Padding – This is usually added to the frame in order to add weight and comfort to the entire chair. Similar to the headrest, it can be made of fiber or foam, and the firmness and softness will dictate how comfortable the recliner chair will be. 

• Back Cushion – This is specifically the padding arranged and installed to the back of the chair not just for comfort but for enough support to your spin. Most recliners also offer lumbar support that reduces back pain. 

• Seat Cushion – Another padded part in your recliner, this is focused on the comfort of your bottoms. It needs to be large enough to accommodate you and firm enough that it won’t sag and remain depressed just for sitting on it for a few hours. 

• Headrest – Providing neck and head support, this part can be made of fiber or foam. It can easily be positioned to accommodate the most comfortable one for you.

• Armrest – Just as its name, this refers to the area where you put your entire forearm, maximizing comfort in the experience. 

• Footrest – Similar to how the armrest works, this is the area where you place your feet on and can be considered by many as a luxurious and extremely comfortable addition to the recliner. 

Internal Parts

The internal parts are the small yet vital structures that make the recliner function as it is. Some of these parts include the following:

• Mechanism – This part is what makes this chair a recliner in the first place. Installed inside the frame, it allows the chair to be moved in different positions. 

• Motor – Powering the reclining mechanism, this part is only available in electric recliners with an engine and can also be found inside the frame.

• Hinges – These are responsible for attaching the backrest to the frame and allowing it to either move forward or backward for a more comfortable position. 

• Latch – Found on the frame’s side, this part allows the chair to be kept upright when preferred, most usually when not in use. 

• Cord – Plugged into an outlet and connected to the motor, this is the part used to power the reclining mechanism.

Parts Of A Lounge Chair 

Eames A lounge chair is a piece of furniture that prioritizes comfort above all but it can come in different forms. It can be an upholstered lounge chair or an outfitted one with waterproof removable cushions. The most traditional lounge chair though is the one that’s usually found in a psychologist’s office. 

With many types of lounge chairs available in the market, this means that discussing the different parts of a lounge chair can be complicated. Some of the most common parts of a lounge chair include the following: 

• Top Back Rail – This refers to the horizontal piece attached to the two uprights of the chair using nails and screws. It helps attach the armchair to the side rails and normally measures around 5 inches. This simply provides more support to your chair’s back. 

• Top Arm Rail – Part of the frame, this rail connects the two vertical posts for better support for the arms when sitting down. 

• Arm – Comes in a variety of sizes and supports your arms. They can either be fixed or adjustable, depending on how they are designed. The former cannot be moved while the latter can easily be positioned to accommodate your comfort.

• Frame – This is the most important part of the lounge chair since it provides the general structure of the furniture, as well as accommodates the design, features, and add-ons. It can be made of wood, metal, or plastic depending on the manufacturers. 

• Backrest – In lounge chairs, this is one of the most important elements of the furniture since more than just a “seat”, it often acts as a “bed”. This part helps support your back and can be upholstered to add comfort. 

• Back Stretcher Post – Supporting the backrest, this part is attached to the frame for more durability and stability to carry on your weight as you are set in a comfortable position. This is attached to the backrest using either nails or screws.

• Seat Cushion – Normally made of soft upholstery material, this part adds comfort when you use your lounge chair. 

• Legs – This is simply the part that supports your legs when you use the lounge chair and can be kept elevated from the ground for a more comfortable position. 

• Front Rail – Considered as the front frame, this connects the two front legs in order to help with the weight support. They can either be curved or straight too.  

• Side Rail – Located at the side of the frame, this piece runs from the side all the way to the back for more support. It can be made of either metal or wood and can also come straight or curved.

• Pillow – For maximum comfort, lounge chairs can also come with a pillow. It can either be sewn on the chair or an added option you can take out if you don’t feel like using it. 

What Is The Back Of A Chair Called

Office with white office chair white paint The back of a chair is called the backrest since it is technically and literally the area where you will rest your back when sitting on the chair. The backrest offers support to your posture by alighting your neck and your entire back.

The shape of the backrest will help you maintain the correct sitting position and maintain the proper curve of the spine. This part of a chair will help you comfortably sit on it for a long time without your back getting tired. 

See more related content in our article about the parts of a bed here.

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