Tuesday, June 04, 2013

IKEA STEFAN Dining Chair Review

You've redone the kitchen, you aren't going to stop there, and you definitely can't stop now that you have a new kitchen table. A matching set of chairs is absolutely necessary. Hopefully, after the thousands of dollars spent, you decide to save a few dollars at the end and go for some cheaper chairs. I mean, they're just chairs you sit on for a mail before bailing to another room. Who cares what you buy? Right? You tell me.

I have no recollection of seeing a super comfy and cushioned chair available for either dining rooms or kitchens. Restaurants and dining rooms seem to always use the basic of the basic in terms of chairs. Some have really simple cushions, some are made of steel, others wood, some fold, etc. However, whenever I think of the chair one finds in a typical home kitchen or dining room, I think of a simple wooden frame chair -- thanks television. Oh look, there's one right here!

Ikea STEFAN Chair with Seat Cushion
With Ikea being the go to place for kitchens and furniture in general, it'd be odd not to find kitchen tables and chairs there. Over five years ago, we did the kitchen remodeling thing and replaced a very old and broken dining table, as well as the cheap, broken, and heavy steel chairs we had. That was one of the more expensive trips we made to Ikea.
Ikea STEFAN Chair Seat Surface
Ikea STEFAN Dining Chair - $25.00


There was something about putting this one together. We got these over five years ago, and I vaguely remember the assembly process as a somewhat unfun exercise. Maybe it was because we had just finished putting the kitchen table together and had to get through four chairs.

The chair didn't really have that many parts compared to all the other stuff I've put together. It was just a matter of joining the two sides together in the middle and then the seat itself. Looking at the instructions now on Ikea's website, there only appear to be a few dowels and screws to work with. And it was a pleasure to move the chair around to take the picture because it was relatively light (9 lb according to website). Must have been the fact that I had to do it four times in a row.


I haven't had much trouble in terms of stability with this chair, but then again, I haven't spent that much time in it. What I do know is that someone sleeps across two of them on a very regular basis and hasn't had any incidents that I know of yet.

Expandability / Customizability

As you can see, we got cushions with these chairs. Unfortunately, they do not appear to be available for sale anymore. I believe I saw another model available, but do not know if they work with this model or not. The cushions you see in the pictures were picked up on the showroom floor at Ikea in the kitchen/dining chairs section from a basket. They were not very expensive.

Another accessory used on these chairs were felt pads at the bottom of the legs to minimize floor scraping.

Ikea STEFAN Front View
Everyday Use
Secret's out: I haven't really used these chairs that much. I'm a carpet person and eat on carpets, rarely sit in any chairs except task chairs. It's funny, I usually grab one of these chairs to use as a "ladder" -- not recommended. There were a few times that I saw on them for longer periods of time (an hour?) and they were comfortable. Others in the house sit on them for hours at a time and look fine. Just remember that stripped right down, this is a wooden frame chair with no cushioning if you don't get any.

These chairs have been in use for over five years and have held up fine. Some wear marks can be seen in the form of stripped paint at edges. The picture below is of the backrest. At the lower horizontal brace/support just above the floor, there are many more spots of stripped paint. This likely occurred due to bumps and the brace being used as a foot rest. But there's a great thing about buying something made from solid wood (website says solid pine), which I will let you figure out.

Ikea STEFAN Chair Wear Marks

IKEA TULLSTA Armchair Review