Are Accent Chairs Necessary?

Accent chairs, side chairs, and occasional chairs; no matter what you call them, there’s no shortage of styles available to buy! When you decorate (or redecorate) a room, you might be wondering if you should add some accent chairs into the mix.

But are accent chairs really necessary?

Accent chairs aren’t 100% necessary in a room. If your budget is tight or your room is small, you can skip adding that accent chair. That said, they’re a phenomenal way to shake up the design of a room, add that finishing touch, or add extra seating to a room where you tend to hang out with friends and family.

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When you're designing a living room, home office, or really, any room in your house, you might wonder if you should add an accent chair. When should you use a side chair and when should you skip it? And if you DO use an occasional chair, how do you choose the best accent chair for your room? Find out the answers to all of your questions in this article.

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When should you add accent chairs to a room? Do accent chairs have to match each other? What considerations do you need to know when choosing an accent chair for your home? In this post, I’ll answer all of those questions, so keep reading!

Are Accent Chairs Necessary?

Buying new furniture can be fun and exciting when you move into a new home or decide to redecorate your current one. When you’re styling a room, you’ll need to decide if you want to include an accent chair (or two).

Many people swear by accent chairs as the perfect finishing touch, while others don’t bother with them.

So, are accent chairs really necessary, or can you get by without them?

If you can fit them, I’d always err on the side of yes, add that accent chair! They go a long way to adding personality and style to your home. From a functional standpoint, it’s always welcome to have an extra seat or two when you have guests.

However, accent chairs aren’t 100% necessary. I’d even go so far as to say they’re a bad choice for an overly small room if you already have all of your functional pieces. So let the size of your space be your guide.

Buy this chair at Target

Why Do People Have Accent Chairs In Their Homes?

So, accent chairs aren’t a necessity for every room, but most people still choose to have them. Why is this? Most people enjoy the added visual interest or pop of color accent chairs add to a room. As mentioned earlier, the extra seating doesn’t hurt either!

An accent chair can also draw the eye away from things you don’t want your visitors focusing on in your home. Choosing an accent chair in a contrasting design will pull focus to the chair and away from any undesirable features of the room.

People who have large families or entertain often will generally choose to have accent chairs to provide extra seating when people come over. Remember: accent chairs are for both looks and function.

I also find that an accent chair or two in a home office is very useful if you have the space!

Buy this chair at Burke Decor

Do Accent Chairs Have To Match?

When choosing accent chairs, you may question whether they should match or can they be completely different?

Accent chairs don’t have to match if that’s not the look you’re going for.

Accent chairs that don’t match your current furniture and each other will make more of a visual impact. When selected carefully — this can be a really sophisticated look!

Mismatched chairs work well in vintage, eclectic, rustic, and boho spaces. If your style veers towards classic, traditional, or modern, stick with matching accent chairs.

For my living room, I was aiming for a modern traditional vibe so I opted for matching accent chairs. Take a look to see how I styled them!

Buy this chair at Anthropologie

Considerations When Choosing An Accent Chair

If you’ve decided that an accent chair will work in your room, there are a few things you need to consider when shopping.

Choosing an accent chair can be a little overwhelming. There are so many to choose from!
You don’t want to panic-buy something, only to find that you don’t like it once it’s in place.

You need to consider the following things, as they can help you find the perfect accent chairs for your home and style.

Size And Space Of The Room

The first thing you need to consider before purchasing accent chairs is the size of the room you want to place them in. Accent chairs are meant to draw attention to the space and create a focal point in the room.

However, buying a chair too big or small for the space could make the room seem off-balance. If you have a small room, buy a smaller accent chair as it will still do the job, but it won’t look out of place.

The Style Of Your Home

The style of your room is a huge determining factor when choosing accent chairs. For example, if you have a minimalistic style in the room, then an art-deco-styled recliner chair made from polyester will look just plain wrong.

Visualize the vibe you’re after in the room and search for accent chairs that match that feeling. Think of keywords like “cozy green accent chair” or “mid-century modern walnut chair” or “modern leather side chair” and plug them into Google shopping or Pinterest to see what comes up.

If you’re hesitant about the style or color of accent chairs to go for, try going to a fabric store to collect some fabric samples. Take them home and see what looks good in your room!

The Texture And Color Of The Accent Chair

Once you’ve narrowed down the vibe and style of the room, consider the color, texture, and pattern that would bring that vision to life AND complement what you already have in the room. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you want the color to contrast or complement the existing color scheme?
    If you want some pop in a cool color scheme, choose a chair in a warm tone or vice versa. Looking for something more subtle? Try a neutral color or experiment with the monochrome look by choosing a lighter or deeper tone of the room’s dominant color.
  • What textures do you already have in the room?
    Nine times out of 10, you’ll want a contrasting texture. For example, if you have a smooth leather couch, consider a plush velvet or nubby boucle for contrast. Linen sofa? Try a sleek wood chair for a classic pairing that still offers contrast.
  • Are you already playing with pattern in the room?
    The pattern on the fabric of your accent chair should follow the same guideline as the texture. Contrast is key! If you want to do pattern on pattern, be sure to mix large patterns with significantly smaller ones. Hate pattern? Sticking with solids is completely ok! You can always add pattern later by styling a throw on your chair.

Buy this chair at Kirklands


Accent chairs aren’t entirely necessary in a room, but they’re a fantastic way to add style and function to a room large enough to fit one.

When choosing an accent chair for your home, you need to make sure you choose one or two that fit your home’s style and size, so the chair looks like it’s meant to be there. With any luck, this article has answered your questions and persuaded you to go and get yourself some accent chairs!

Want more? Here’s the full collection of Bloom in the Black decorating posts. If you’re interested in having me cover a particular topic, shoot me an email and I’ll add it to the list!