I absolutely love the wingback chair. I’m not surprised it’s incredibly popular again.
I’m fortunate in that my folks who were into buying and restoring antiques, gifted me and my wife an amazing set of antique wingbacks for our living room. They’re gorgeous and often visitors comment on them.
Fortunately for you, there are many newly released styles and colors designed today. You need to buy an antique and finish it (although it’s not a bad idea if you’re into that).
We researched many wingback styles, materials and customer reviews to come up with our list of the top wingbacks available.
What Is a Wingback Chair?
The wingback chair has a long history that reaches back to 17th century England. The term, wingback, refers to the two closed panels on either side of the arm chair. They extend from the armrests to the top of the piece and act to enclose the occupant of the chair. While that may seem claustrophobic by today’s standards, it served a practical function.
The side panels would serve as windbreaks to keep cold drafts from the occupant. Remember, these chairs go back to a time before fiberglass insulation and central heating. A fireplace provided the only source of warmth. The wingback chair could also protect individuals from the heat of it.
What Is the Wingback Style?
A few features define the wingback chair. First, there is the overall form. These chairs are typically taller than they are wide which gives them a high profile. Second, there are the side panels. This feature has seen a lot of changes through the decades. You’ll certainly find the classic form, but many styles have an abbreviated shape.
The legs of this style chair are typically exposed wood. You’ll see plain, simple designs along with ornate details and sometimes curved cabriole style options. Though as with everything else, there are variations on the theme.
How We Sifted Through the Wingback Chairs
As you may guess, there is a wide range of styles with the wingback chair. Many bear little resemblance to the traditional shape. We included a mix of both classic and contemporary takes on this form.
1. Solid construction was our primary consideration. The wingback chair often lends itself toward a smaller frame. Therefore, we only considered well-made chairs.
2. We preferred chairs closer to the original style. We like to see new takes on designs. But to keep to our task, we stuck with chairs that stayed close to the classic form. Otherwise, we’d be looking for a different type of chair.
Our choices include examples from several styles. Many cross over into other decors as well. These chairs offer an excellent example of a design evolves.
10 Top Wingback Chairs
1. Baltic Wingback Chair & Ottoman
- Style: Traditional
- Design: Classic shape with curved back, brass-finished nailhead trim, and ottoman
Okay, we’ll admit that the ottoman swayed us. It’s a piece we appreciate rather than putting our feet on the coffee table. The Baltic Wingback Chair & Ottoman brings a stylized element to the chair design that gave it a measure of class. The back is curved with the panels reduced to flared arms.
The seat cushion contains high-density foam for comfort. We loved the simple, but elegant pattern. The exposed wooden legs are tapered with a simple straight design. With the brass-finished nailhead trim, this piece looks sophisticated with fine craftsmanship to make it a real gem.
2. Grangeville Swoop Wingback Chair
- Style: Cottage/Country
- Design: Curvy design that is well padded with a pretty floral pattern
The Grangeville Swoop Wingback Chair is simply charming. It is a fine example of the cottage/country style. It embodies its essence in a chair that is truly comfortable. High-density foam seat cushion and generous padding on the back and arms make this chair an excellent accent chair.
The floral pattern is a brilliant touch for a piece of furniture of this style. It adds a casual feel to the chair that makes it feel homey. It has polyester fabric upholstery with an off-white background and a black design that says elegance.
3. Flavin Concave Wingback Chair
- Style: Modern/Contemporary
- Design: Wide framed, flared arm chair with modern design
The Flavin Concave Wingback Chair scores a homerun with a chair that exceeds in the modern/contemporary style. It’s a bit of a departure from the traditional wingback form with a back that is lower than you may expect. It has a wide curved back that is quite roomy. The curved lines of the piece lead your eyes all around its form.
The modernized Greek key pattern is an excellent addition that gives it a chic, retro look. The upholstery is gray/beige polyester that is set off beautifully by the simple black legs.
4. Stonehill Velvet Wingback Chair
- Style: Glam
- Design: Traditional wingback form with reduced side panels and lush velvet upholstery
The Stonehill Velvet Wingback Chair begins with the traditional form and takes its own spin on making it a luxurious piece of furniture. The oversize chair comes in navy or silver, but we like the blue best. The padding is thick and comfortable all through the design.
Little accents like the silver nailheads and the matching accent pillow make it stand out. We could easily see this chair in a Manhattan apartment. It has an elegance about it that is undeniable.
5. Bora Bora 2 Piece Wingback Chair and Ottoman
- Style: Coastal
- Design: Eco-friendly, solid rattan frame with high-density foam cushions on the chair and ottoman
Other than being gorgeous, the Bora Bora 2 Piece Wingback Chair and Ottoman creates a mood that makes it an excellent choice as an accent piece. The solid rattan construction is its outstanding feature that gives it an exotic feel that is perfect for the arm chair traveler. It retains the characteristic side panels of a wingback chair, but they are open rather than closed.
The foam cushions and tucked backrests raise the comfort level on this well-designed piece. We love the fact that it comes with an ottoman. It simply invites a refreshing afternoon nap followed by a cold glass of iced tea.
6. Spring Ridge Wingback Chair
- Style: French Country
- Design: Tall wingback form with reduced side panels and a wider frame
The Spring Ridge Wingback Chair is a scaled-down version of the wingback style. The side panels are reduced to a slight flare. The back is less curved than in previous chairs we considered. It keeps the proportions of height to width inline with the classic design proportions.
The upholstery is linen, a nice sophisticated touch to this piece. We loved the fact that it is made with rattan for extra durability. The wingback chair comes in taupe and blue.
7. Dampicourt Wingback Chair
- Style: Modern/Contemporary
- Design: High back design that tapers toward the seat with closed side panels
The Dampicourt Wingback Chair is an example of modern contemporary meets glam. First, there’s the design which is a unique twist on the traditional form with a back that tapers toward the seat. It keeps the closed side panel, true to form. It adds a huge glam factor with the richly colored brown velvet upholstery.
The chair includes several design elements that give it some extra class like the piping on the ends of the side panels and the dark brown legs that flare out. Even the accent pillow adds to its charm.
8. Chalina Wingback Chair
- Style: Rustic
- Design: Classic wingback form with reduced side panels that curve in slightly
The Chalina Wingback Chair is the epitome of rustic furniture. The linen seat cushion and tucked back are offset by sides of dark brown and white velvet. The pattern resembles that of a wild animal to give it an exotic appeal. This chair doesn’t ask for attention; it demands it.
It’s a solid, well-made piece with an uber-thick seat cushion for the tops in comfort. The side panels flare in slightly to keep it true to the wingback form. The exposed wood has a distressed look that fits in well with the character of the chair.
9. Baxton Studio Vincent Wingback Chair
- Style: Traditional
- Design: Classic wingback form with closed side panels
The Baxton Studio Vincent Wingback Chair comes the closest to the traditional wingback chair form of the chairs we reviewed. There is a quiet elegance about this piece. When we first saw it, we thought it was a chair we could sink into without hesitation. We were right. The high-density foam cushioning and tucked backrest made it a very comfortable chair.
The silver nailheads along the length of the side panels add a nice touch with the gray linen upholstery that says class.
10. Brittania Fan Damask Wingback Chair
- Style: French Country
- Design: Curved back with high legs and nailhead trim along the edges
The Brittania Fan Damask Wingback Chair captures both the French Country and glam styles with a bit of old world charm. It has a lower profile than many wingback chairs. The frame is more open with less of the sense of closure with side panels. The upholstery is a chartreuse fan damask fabric that gives it a sophisticated look.
Silver nailheads outline the entire form, making it jump out as an accent chair. Button tucking and tapered dark brown legs complete the look of this elegant piece.