Farmhouse Bar And Counter Stools

When we were building our new house, it took a while for me to choose the perfect counter stools. I love the ones I ended up purchasing.

Difference Between Bar and Counter Stools

Forgive me, but I tend to call them all bar stools. However, there is a height difference between the two.

Counter Height

Counter stools are shorter, usually around 24-27 inches high.

If you have an island, it’s probably around 36 inches tall, so the 24-27 inches high counter stool will fit perfectly because you want 9-12 inches between the bottom of the countertop and the top of the stool cushion.

Bar Height

Bar stools are taller, typically around 28-30 inches high. That’s because bars are usually 42 inches tall.

How Many Stools Will Fit At Your Island Or Bar?

You’ll also want to pay attention to the length of your kitchen island.

I’ll tell on myself. I thought I could easily fit four bar stools at my 8-foot-long island, but I didn’t realize how wide the stools would be. Three fit perfectly and I’m using the 4th one as my vanity stool in my bathroom. I should have thought to measure the width before I ordered them. That’s why I’m encouraging you to measure height and weight!

You can usually fit three counter stools comfortably at an eight-foot island, just make sure you measure. You generally need about 4-6 inches between each stool.

Of course, the longer the island or bar, the more stools will fit.

Types of Stools

When it comes to bar stools, there are so many different styles to choose from. It’s best to decide ahead of time what fabric and what type of bar or counter stool you’re looking for.


Do you want a back on your stools? A lot of people do. I chose to skip the back and here’s why: I use the island for the buffet area whenever I’m entertaining. The backless stools don’t get in the way when I’m using the island for the buffet.

Plus, the grandkids are the only ones that ever sit at the island since I have a breakfast area and a dining room.

You can see my stools in the photo below. I love how they are tucked out of the way when I don’t need them.

navy and white kitchen

In this photo below, you can’t even see my counter stools. Mission accomplished! (I wish I had that charcuterie board right now!)

charcuterie board on the kitchen island


Adjustable stools can be raised or lowered so you could use them for bar or counter height stools.

Arms or No Arms?

These types of stools don’t take up as much space because they are armless.


The counter stools I had at my last house swiveled and I hated them. Someone was always bumping up against the countertop. It was granite and never showed wear and tear. However, I’d cringe every time someone banged into the countertop.

Some types of countertop surfaces may chip from the constant bumps. Trust me, if it swivels, the kids and some adults are going to swivel all day long.

What Type of Material For Your Bar or Counter Stool?

Typical materials for bar and counter stools include wood, leather, metal, fabric, and rattan. My stools are by Universal Furniture and are made of woven abaca. I’ve had them for a little over a year and they are still in excellent condition. You can find my counter stools here. 

Pro Tip: I called my local furniture store and asked if they could order these stools for me. They could and I saved 1/2 of what they cost online. Plus, I supported a local small business! Always shop local if you can.

I’m sharing more of my favorite bar stools down below. Just click the photos for more information.


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Alli loves her southern, country lifestyle. Whether she's decorating her new modern farmhouse or cooking up a storm for her family, Alli is all about living her best life now and spoiling her grandkids! She enjoys traveling, reading, Duke basketball, photography, and all things coastal. Alli wants to be a beach bum when she grows up.

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