What Is the Recommended Dining Bench Depth?

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The dining bench is a nostalgic and practical seating alternative to the traditional chair. You'll find dining benches in many styles, from the plain wooden bench to the curved, upholstered banquette. Large families sometimes prefer them to chairs, because three or four young children can scrunch together on a single bench.

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No Size Standard

Dining benches vary considerably in depth. The Business and Industrial Furniture Manufacturer's Association sets ergonomic guidelines for office chairs, but these standards do not apply to dining benches. A no-frills, Amish-style bench might measure just 12 inches, while the upholstered dining bench from Hammary's Low Country Chippendale group measures a generous 23 inches.

Stock Cushions

Standard stock dining bench cushions at Ballard Design, Pottery Barn and Crate & Barrel typically measure 16 inches in depth. You can purchase custom-made cushions in any size you like. Yet, to keep costs down, consider a dining bench depth between 16 and 18 inches, which will accommodate many stock cushions.

Consider Comfort

Regarding seat depth, The BIFMA states that users should be able to sit in a chair without undue pressure against the backs of their knees. Think about the size of the individuals using the bench. Tall individuals may prefer a deeper bench, while petite individuals will find a narrower depth more comfortable.

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