Originally drafting chairs were almost exclusively used by architects, artists and engineers. But, as more and more people are making the conversion to standing desks, drafting chairs are becoming a much needed asset to productive work.
Drafting chairs have quickly become a popular ergonomic solution to use in the modern workspace. Perfect for standing desks or elevated workbenches, these chairs not only meet height requirements, but they provide the support your back and limbs need when working long hours.
The best drafting chair will support your back, and promote a healthier and safer posture whilst you work. Using one of these chairs should help to eliminate the aches and pains we experience from sitting down over long periods of time.
Below are 5 of the best drafting chairs available on the market right now.
Best Drafting Chairs
Top Rated: Office Star Deluxe Mesh Back Drafting Chair
Dimensions: 23 x 26 x 50.25 inches
The Office Star drafting chair is one of the top rated products in this category, and comes at a relatively low price.
The chair features a heavy duty nylon base, and dual-wheel casters means that the chair will move easily across carpeted flooring. In addition, the product features a breathable screen back, which follows the natural “S” curvature shape of our spines which provides natural support.
You can also choose whether you’d like the seat covering to be fabric or vinyl – the material preference is completely up to your personal choice. However, if you will be sitting down for longer periods of time, it’s better to opt for a fabric seat covering.
There are no armrests attached to this chair, which is perfect if you’ll need free movement of your arms – such as drawing or working with plans/blueprints. However, if you’ll be typing you may want to invest in a chair with armrests.
- Available in two different material finishes
- Adjustable footrest and backrest
- 360 degree rotation
- Built-in lumbar support
- Suitable for all heights
- Not the comfiest seat after hours of working
- No lock on wheels – caution needing when moving on wooden/tile flooring
- No armrests
- Breathable Screen Back and Mesh Seat with Built-in Lumbar Support
- Pneumatic Height Adjustment 24.25 inch to 33.75 inch
- Back Adjustment
- Adjustable Footrest
- Heavy Duty Nylon Base with Dual Wheel Carpet Casters
Best Armrest Option: Modway Veer Drafting Chair
Dimensions: 22.5 x 25.5 x 50 inches
Boasting a breathable mesh fabric and a padded seat, the Modway Veer drafting chair provides a comfortable sitting experience. The generously padded seat uses a waterfall design to not only provide comfort, but also encourage blood circulation.
With a tall glass cylinder, there is an option to adjust the height, ranging from 21.5 inches to 29.5 off the ground. This chair also features a one-touch lift, making it easy to adjust the seat to your preferred height settings. The dual-wheel casters also make for easy-gliding across carpeted floors.
If you’re specifically looking for a drawing chair with added armrests, the Modway Veer features armrests for support when typing. Additionally, the armrests can rotate up to 90 degrees upwards, allowing you to adjust to the most comfortable settings for you.
- Breathable mesh fabric
- Padded seat
- Armrests for support when typing, can also rotate 90 degrees upwards
- One-touch lift
- Easy glide wheels across carpeted floors
- 360 degree rotation
- Chrome plated foot ring
- Assembly instructions are difficult to follow
- Chair tilts backwards, but does not lock into place
- Padding in seat is not long lasting (average 6-12 month lifespan)
- ADJUSTABLE HEIGHT - With a tall glass cylinder, Veer is ideal for office desks, reception areas, and studios alike. The stool's one-touch height adjustment ranges from 21.5" to 29.5" off the ground.
- ERGONOMIC SUPPORT - Featuring a breathable mesh back, lower back lumbar support, and padded waterfall mesh seat, sit relaxed in a thoughtfully designed chair that adjusts according to your needs.
- SLEEK STYLE - Refresh your work, home, or school space with a seating choice that makes a sleek, stylish statement. Sitting atop five dual-wheeled casters, glide around any flooring surface with ease.
- QUALITY DRAFTING STOOL - Featuring a 360 degree swivel and a sturdy nylon base and frame with armrests that rotate up to draw, paint and draft with ease, Veer offers reliable support for everyday use.
- STOOL MEASUREMENTS - Overall Product Dimensions: 26"L x 26"W x 42 - 49.5"H; Cushion Thickness: 2.5"; Weight Capacity: 331 Pounds. Seat Dimensions-19 L x 20 W x 21.5 - 29.5 H inches. Backrest Dimensions-18.5 W x 22 H inches. Armrest Dimensions- 10 L x 3 W x 2 H inches
Best Lumbar Support: Harwick Evolve Chair
Dimensions: 26 x 26 x 48.5 inches
The Harwick Evolve chair is known on the market for providing the best lumbar support to its users. The thick padded cushion reduces muscle strain, allowing you to work for extended periods of time.The “S” shaped design of the mesh backrest features built-in lumbar support which is designed to ease lower back pain.
Additionally, the infinite tilt lock allows you to lock the chair into any tilted position, which can help you find the position which is the most comfortable for you. The adjustable back is great for taller users, and the frame can support up to 250 pounds.
The product also features flip-up armrests which allows you to move closer to your desk when you need it. There’s a fully adjustable foot ring, so as you adjust the chair to your height preference, the ring can also be adjusted to prevent any strain placed on your inner thighs.
Like some of the other products mentioned, the Harwick Evolve uses dual-wheel casters – which makes it easier to glide over carpeted floors.
- Thick padded cushions provide great lumbar support
- Full adjustable back, arm and footrest – can mold the chair to fit your requirements
- Infinite tilt lock – lock chair into any position
- Flip-up armrests so you can choose when you want to use them
- Stylish gunmetal finish
- Dual-wheel casters and 360 degree rotation allows for ultimate control
- Some buyers found uncomfortable after sustained sitting periods
- Padding can lose it’s comfort after a few months of use
- The back support can be too intense for some – make sure you adjust accordingly
- Ergonomic design for all-day comfort and support
- Duragrid black mesh seat and back keep you cool throughout your workday
- Heavy-duty design supports 325 lbs. Dimensions: Seat size: 19"W x 19.5"D. Back size: 17.5"W x 21"H. Seat height: 24" - 31"H (measured from the floor to the top of the seat)
- Built-in lumbar support to ease lower back pain
- Flip-up armrests allow the chair to move closer to your desk. Arms to seat measurement: 6.5 inches
Most Reliable: Flash Furniture Mid-Back Ergonomic Drafting Chair
4.3/ 5 Stars
Dimensions: 25.5 x 24.5 x 50.75 inches
The Flash Furniture drafting chair can reach the tallest height out of all the products listed, and is generally considered one of the most reliable drafting chairs on the market. It’s made from high quality nylon materials, so you can be sure that the product will not only function well, but last longer.
This drafting chair gives you great lumbar support when sitting at your desk for prolonged periods of time. The chair height adjusts from 24 -32 inches, meaning you can adjust it according to your height. The seat also employs a waterfall edge design which is important to encourage lower limb circulation.
A handy feature is the 2-to-1 synchronized locking system which allows for complete control over the backrest tilt. There are also padded armrests which provide support for your arms whilst typing, and the mesh back not only supports your spine, but allows air to flow to your skin.
Who said office chairs had to be boring? The Flash Furniture Drafting Chair also comes in a variety of stylish colors, which will fit your aesthetic preferences.
- Mesh back provides ventilation and lumbar support
- Full 360 degree rotation
- Adjustable footrest
- Tilt lever allows you to recline without the worry of falling backwards
- Available in a range of colours from bright and colourful, to sleek and professional
- Waterfall style seat promoted lower limb circulation as you work
- Chair becomes creaky after several months of use
- Tilt-lock can be temperamental
- Whether you're moving up the corporate ladder at work or illustrating your latest comic at home, a comfortable chair is paramount to your success. This drafting chair features an abundance of ergonomic features to keep you on task and productive
- Ventilated curved back provides lumbar support and breathability, full swivel seat, height adjustable chrome foot ring, pressure relieving waterfall edge
- Tilt lever - push in to lock in an upright position; pullout to activate rocking motion, while tilt tension knob controls tilt resistance
- Contemporary style ergonomic drafting chair for the home or office
- PRODUCT MEASUREMENTS : Overall Size: 24.5"W x 25.5"D x 43.25-50.75"H | Seat Size: 20.25"W x 19"D x 23-30"H | Back Size: 17-20"W x 23"H | Arm Size: 31.5-39"H from floor; 8"H from seat | Foot Ring Size: 20" Diameter
Best Multi-purpose: AmazonBasics Tall Drafting Stool
Dimensions: 24.4 x 24 x 42.5 to 48.4 inches
As one of the more affordable options on the list, AmazonBasics drafting stool serves a multi-purpose function. Perfect for home use, workshops and clinical spaces, this is a well rounded stool that most users will find comfortable.
One of the more prominent features of this chair is the fact that you can remove the backrest, turning it into a true stool. This is beneficial if you think backrests hinder your posture more than they help it.
Additionally, the absence of armrests means that you will be able to move freely without any obstructions, allowing you to get your work done when seated.
Although the product states that the footrest is adjustable, it seems that the footrest is actually locked in one place. However, it is pretty sturdy and can sustain up to 250 pounds. Another issue to consider is that the backrest cannot be adjusted when it is attached to the seat, so you don’t have as much control as market competitors.
- Simple minimalistic design
- Provides lower back support
- Backrest is detachable
- Ultra high seat for tall work spaces
- 360 degree rotation
- Footrest is not adjustable
- Can only adjust the seat height, not the angle of the backrest
- Drafting stool with black bonded leather upholstery—ideal for home or workplace
- 250-pound weight capacity; adjustable seat height (from 30.3 to 36.2 inches)
- 360-degree swivel; chrome arched base with heavy-duty, dual-wheel casters for smooth maneuverability
- Supportive back cushion measures 16.5 by 10.2 inches (WxH), sturdy foot rest
- Measures 24.4 by 24 by 42.5 to 48.4 inches (LxWxH); weighs 22.7 pounds; backed by an Amazon Basics one-year limited warranty
Best Drafting Chairs Buyer’s Guide
If you’re going to invest in a standing desk, then getting a drafting chair is an important addition to help you maintain a healthy balance between sitting and standing.
You can easily become overwhelmed by the vast number of drafting chairs on the market, each boasting their own unique features, but it’s important you find a chair that meets your own specific requirements.
Here are the most important features to consider when purchasing a drafting chair:
When purchasing a drawing chair, the most important criteria you’ll want to consider is the comfort level of the seat. The seat needs to be able to properly support your legs, arms and back to not only promote a healthy posture, but to ensure that there is an adequate circulation of blood flow.
Having a comfortable seat that supports you is vital as your feet won’t be touching the ground when seated at a drawing chair. Additionally, having an adequate circulation flow can help you to not only work longer, but healthier.
The most common and comfortable seat design is the “waterfall”. This is where the front edge of the seat usually curves down, following the way our legs naturally gravitate downwards.
You might think that having a comfortable seat will be the only level of comfort you will need to look for when purchasing a drafting chair, but that is not the case. Getting the best out of your chair’s comfort can factor in several different features.
For instance, have you considered the material of the chair you pick? Most people find that mesh-panelling is a better choice if you plan on sitting down for longer periods of time. However, faux leather can feel better if you will only be sitting down for short bouts of time.
Another aspect to consider is the size of the seat itself. A smaller chair might be more practical, but a larger seat makes for a larger surface to sit on, and enables you to be able to move around more.
Additionally, being able to feel a chair’s frame when you’re sitting down isn’t a good sign, so choosing a chair with more padding will make for a more comfortable sitting arrangement.
Footrests are a critical feature of drawing chairs as we are elevated off the ground. Therefore it is important to have a foot rest so your feet don’t dangle, which will add pressure to your inner thighs.
An added bonus is an adjustable footrest, so when you adjust the drawing chair to your height preference, you can adjust the footrest to the right height for you.
To armrest or not to armrest? That is the question.
Deciding whether or not you want to purchase a drawing chair with an added arm rest is completely up to you. When considering this feature, think about what type of job you’ll be using the drawing chair for.
If you will be using a keyboard often, an armrest is a great addition to help support your arms whilst you type. However, if your work is more practical such as drafting design work or working with physical objects such as charts and blueprints, an armrest will only get in your way.
When it comes to drawing chairs, like armrests, backrests are completely down to your own personal preference. Some people gravitate towards backless designs, so they can force themselves to maintain an upright posture each time they’re at their desk.
However, if you find your mid body tends to get tired quickly and you’d prefer some extra support, choosing a drawing chair with added back support is definitely the way to go.
If you do opt for a backrest, make sure you pick one that has an “S” shape to it. A “S” shaped chair back gently follows the contours of our spines, providing natural support that won’t put any unnecessary strain on our backs. An added bonus is tilt adjustment, this will allow you to lean back often which is perfect for stretching throughout the day.
It’s important to consider durability when you’re purchasing a drafting chair, especially as you’ll probably be using it very frequently.
Look out for heavy duty nylon bases, and strong metal cylinders that prop the chair up. It’s also worth noting that you should opt for a hydraulic lift.
Although it’ll wear out over time, replacement lifts are easily purchasable and can be installed. In addition, make sure the quality of the wheels is up to standard, as faulty wheels are a potential accident waiting to happen.
When it comes to purchasing the very best, our finances often get in the way. However, when looking at getting yourself a drawing chair, it’s worth spending a little extra money to ensure that it will last you. For instance, a chair with a metal frame may be more expensive than a plastic chair, but it’ll most likely last longer.
Additionally, one of the main selling points of a drawing chair is the support, so it’s not worth getting a poorly fitted chair that will sacrifice your posture. This will only affect you in the long term as it can lead to chronic injuries.
In conclusion, it’s better to pick a drafting chair you can afford based on your needs, versus purchasing the cheapest chair you can find.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Does Ergonomic Mean?
You’ve probably seen this word thrown around a lot when researching drawing chairs, but what exactly does it mean?
An ergonomic design ensures comfort and proper posture throughout the day. It refers to human engineering (or biotechnology) used in the design that focuses on increasing office productivity and minimizing any injuries sustained from sitting for hours on end.
Unfortunately, the word ‘ergonomic’ is a trending term which is used in the industry a lot, even if the product doesn’t feature an ergonomic design.
Ultimately, when you see the phrase ‘ergonomic’ when looking at a drafting chair, it’s referring to the comfortability of the design. Also the design should promote proper posture which will increase productivity and diminish pain/strain when working.
Can I Use a Drafting Chair with Regular Desk Heights?
Typically drafting chairs can be lowered to fit a regular working desk, but as they are designed for taller working spaces they may not function as expected when set to a lowered height.
For instance, if you’re using a drafting chair at a lower level the footrest function can be redundant, as you can support your feet on the ground.
Some chairs do not reach lower heights, so be sure to check the product specifications and reviews before purchasing a drafting chair for a lower height.
What is Lumbar Support?
Lumbar support can refer to anything that provides support to the lumbar region (otherwise known as the lower back) of the body. Most ergonomic chairs will promote lumbar support, however if you find that you are experiencing any pain in your lower back, it could mean that your backrest is set too high, too low or too deep.