Help me with my decorating issues!
May 6, 2011 6:34 AM   Subscribe

Please help me find a desk chair that will help ease my lower back pain and look pretty, too!

I have decided that the hand-me-down chair I received in college has got to go; it hurts my back even to sit in it for a few minutes. The problem? I recently bought a lovely antique desk, and I'm not sure what to pair with it. Here is a picture of the desk - please excuse the mess, I've just moved!

I am looking for specific recommendations of chairs that you've had personal experience with, if possible. Pretty much anything goes as far as design is concerned, I'm willing to go with bright fabric or simple and plain. Not a big fan of metalic, though. Doesn't have to be antique at all, it could be totally modern, as long as it doesn't actively clash with the desk.

Any ideas? Many thanks!
posted by backwards compatible to Home & Garden (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Is the desk tall enough for you to use in proper working posture? It looks a little short in that picture. Just something to keep in mind when you get the perfect chair suggestion!
posted by theredpen at 6:57 AM on May 6, 2011

the aeron is the quintessential and ubiquitous office chair for comfort, and ergonomics.

link to main page here.

they can be had used (and they have a 25 year warranty - i think its 25.. its long)

and how about me using quintessential and ubiquitous in a sentence? neat!!
posted by chasles at 6:57 AM on May 6, 2011

Herman Miller makes some of the very best office chairs from an ergonomic perspective. Their offerings include the Aeron but they make cheaper chairs as well. I love their Equa chairs which tend to be a bit cheaper than the Aeron. If you want something a little fancier they come in leather, but I don't think those are so cheap. There are a few things in life where the extra money for the highest quality unquestionably is worth it - office chairs would be one of them.
posted by caddis at 7:12 AM on May 6, 2011

I'm a big fan of the Steelcase Leap. I like it better than the Aeron because I think it has better controls, especially for my back. I can lean back just the right amount and feel comfortable. Definitely try out some chairs for yourself to get a good feel.
posted by aloysius on the mixing boards at 7:30 AM on May 6, 2011

I should have mentioned that, theredpen. I am a short lady, so I found a desk that fits me exactly. It was actually a ladies dressing table, in a former life.
posted by backwards compatible at 8:07 AM on May 6, 2011

Oh good. I mentioned that only because you said your back was bothering you. I use a Steelcase Think BTW -- it is great but actually doesn't go up tall enough for me, so might be great for you. A little modern. Their customer service is some of the best I've ever seen!
posted by theredpen at 8:21 AM on May 6, 2011

The chairs from the big players like Herman Miller and SteelCase can be had in small sizes. Most come in small, medium and large and are adjustable from there.

I sit in a Leap chair at work and can attest to its worth. It is sturdy, comfortable and provides good adjustment. I do still prefer the Equa but that wasn't being offered when I got to choose a chair.

Whatever chair you get, don't forget to get out of it every thirty minutes or so, even if it is just for a couple of minutes. That will go a long way toward reducing back discomfort or worse.
posted by caddis at 9:17 AM on May 6, 2011

+1 for Herman Miller or SteelCase. Quality chairs are not cheap, but they are not as expensive as physical therapy. I suffered lower back pain and sciatica for years until I bought a pair of them--one for work, one for home.

Just be sure to try a few before you decide. Once you've made your choice, go find one used. You can find an Aeron for around $400-500 used and with all the features.
posted by Hylas at 10:35 AM on May 6, 2011

Cute desk!

I would recommend getting my favorite back saver, the Back Vitalizer pillow. It looks weird but it's amazing! You don't blow it up all the way, just a little puff of air, and it adjust just perfectly to you. You can either put it behind your back or sit on it. My dad and I are both obsessed, and my (very picky) coworker got one too.

In terms of picking a chair, your best bet is to go sit in a whole bunch of them. I found my work chair at Sams Club for like $79 and I love it. Sorry, no idea on the brand.
posted by radioamy at 10:45 AM on May 6, 2011

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