how should I choose my office chair fabric?

When you buy a new Office Chair the supplier should be able to offer you a wide selection of different types of upholstery for your new seat.

So what’s the best way of choosing a fabric finish for your Office Chair that’s right for you?

You will probably find that the supplier has a preferred fabric range and it is likely that they will encourage you to have your Office Chair upholstered in one these preferred fabrics.

This makes sense for them of course as it greatly reduces the amount of Office Chair fabric they have to carry in stock.

Having said that you should always ask to see the other ranges they offer as you may well prefer something other than one of the standards for your new chair.

Bear in mind though that you will probably pay a bit more for a non-stock fabric as it may need to be purchased specially for your Office Chair.

Here are some of the key points to consider when selecting your Office Chair upholstery.

Is it hardwearing? Manufacturers of fabric rate their product’s durability by rub count, so be sure to have them check it’s suitability for your chair. A good fabric will mean your Office Chair will last for a number of years.

Will the fabric colour be in keeping with your office surroundings? You don’t want your Office Chair to stand out like a sore thumb, conversely you may not want something that is too bland.

Avoid large or garish patterns for your Office Chair, they make look great and stylish now, but two years down the road they could look as dated as a seventies kipper tie! Keep to plains for your Office Chair upholstery and you won’t go far wrong.

Is the fabric fire retardant? There are certain minimum standards, make sure your Office Chair supplier adheres to them.

Can the fabric be provided with a stain resistant treatment? If you work in an area where your Office Chair could be subjected to a lot off dirt and grime it may be a good idea to have your chair upholstered in a treated fabric.

Bear these simple points in mind when selecting your Office Chair’s upholstery and it should give you years of good service.

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Should you use a footrest with your Office Chair?

I’m often asked if users should use a footrest with their Office Chair. I believe that there are definite benefits in using a footrest in conjunction with an Office Seat for certain users.

First, let’s begin by considering the correct leg position when sat in your Office Chair. Ideally, you should have your feet in contact with the floor when sitting in your Office Seat and your upper legs should be angled slightly downwards.

For a lot of Office Chair users this isn’t a problem, however for a significant number of users it is, particularly if you have short legs you may well find that your feet don’t meet the floor squarely when sitting at a desk in your Office Seat.

Incidentally, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you aren’t very tall you could just have a long upper torso. If you find that you have this problem with your Office Chair then a footrest could well be the answer for you.

Footrests are generally made from plastic and the most basic ones are literally a fixed triangular wedge shape that enables the user to position their feet firmly when sitting at their Office Chair.

The better quality ones have a height adjustable platform so you can adjust it to your ideal seating position. A number of the better ones also allow the footrest surface to pivot to enable you to find your most comfortable seating position when using your Office Chair.

So, to summarise if you find you can’t get your legs positioned correctly using your Office Chair, then by all means consider investing in a footrest.

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Some friendly advice on office chairs

A friend of mine asked me recently for some advice in selecting an Office Chair. She explained that she had seen what looked like a real bargain for an Office Chair at a local computer superstore.

I asked her what features the Office Chair had and she said that she wasn’t sure as she hadn’t examined it closely and wanted my advice on what to look for when selecting a suitable Office Chair.

I drew up a short Office Chair checklist for her listing points that she ought to consider before committing to buy the Office Chair.

Here’s my Office Chair checklist

1.    Is the Office Chair for occasional use or will it be used for several hours everyday? If it’s only occasional use then a        lot of my Office Chair criteria may not be that important.
2.    Is the Office Chair gas lift height adjustable?
3.    What warranty is offered with the Office Chair, 5 years is fairly standard, but on a very cheap chair it might only be        1 year.
4.    Does the Office Chair have arms and if so are the adjustable? This can help with  RSI if the chair is for regular use.
5.    Can the seat depth be adjusted on the Office Chair? Helps if you’re above or below average height.
6.    Is the back height of the Office Chair adjustable?
7.    Can you try it out in the store before you buy?
8.    Will the Office Chair finish and style fit in with the area you want to use it in?

I suggested that if she wasn’t getting the right answers to these questions that she look at alternatives from local seating specialists.

We spoke a week or two later and she thanked me for my advice and said that the Office Chair she had been looking at wasn’t suitable, but she had been able to find an excellent Office Chair from a local office interiors specialist.

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