In a Nutshell:
The Powell Furniture Big & Tall Davis Counter Stool is a basic counter chair, designed to be reasonably comfortable and blend seamlessly into most home décor schemes. Recommended for anyone who’s big and tall, and looking for an understated bar chair that won’t stand out in whatever room you place it in.
Value for the Money
Have you been struggling to find a decent bar chair that’s big and robust enough to support you properly?
If you’re on the heavier side, finding furniture that fits you properly can be a daunting, often frustrating challenge. The good news is that such furniture does exist. However, the best models are usually offered by smaller brands that don’t have a significant national or global footprint.
Where this type of furniture is concerned, most of the biggest brands in the industry tend to stick with models that support 250- to 300-pounds of user weight, because that range accommodates some 90% of the market. This fact, though, creates an opportunity for the smaller brands, and it’s one they’ve been happy to exploit.
Powell makes a few bar chairs specifically designed for heavier users. Broadly speaking, their offerings tend to fall into two categories: Artistic and functional. The Powell Furniture Davis counter stool is an excellent example of this latter group. It is by no means perfect, but for the right user, it could be exactly the finishing touch you’re looking for.
In the sections that follow, we’ll take a close look at everything this model has to offer, and we’ll be quick to point out its shortcomings. That way, you’ll have all the information you need to decide if this is the one you want. If your interest is piqued, read on.
An Overview of the Powell Big and Tall Davis Counter Stool
The first thing you’ll notice about the Powell Furniture Davis counter stool is that it’s a big, sturdy-looking stool. Unlike Powell’s more artistic models, this one seems almost childlike in its construction. It’s very basic and perhaps even a bit blocky looking.
It’s not that it’s an ugly piece of furniture; it’s just unobtrusive. It’s clear that the design team put most of their effort on functionality and relatively less on the form. The good news on that front is that whatever your home’s décor scheme, it’s likely that this chair will blend right in, politely fading into the background. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something that’s designed to make a bold statement, this almost certainly isn’t the chair you’re looking for.
Looking beyond aesthetics, here are a few basic stats that define the model:
These numbers point to a great deal of symmetry in the chair’s design. Everything about it is designed to support bigger, taller users. In fact, if you’re on the short side, this bar chair may prove to be a challenge to sit in, given that the seat sits 26” off the ground.
Note, too, the weight of the chair. Thirty pounds is on the heavy side for a counter seat. It’s not excessive and still should be relatively easy to move around if and as you need to, but the Davis is pretty hefty as bar chairs go. Mostly that comes down to the fact of its all-hardwood construction.
Adjustability and Comfort
There are no adjustable features to talk about where this design is concerned. Although the Powell Big and Tall Davis counter stool is reasonably well padded, it’s not what we’d call a luxurious seating experience.
It’s comfortable enough for short durations, and the seatback is surprisingly well-padded, but this isn’t something you’ll want to spend significant parts of the day sitting in. Still, if you’re only in it for an hour or two at a stretch, it’s got enough padding to provide a comfortable experience.
Note, however, that you won’t find any ergonomic features on offer here. That’s not much of a surprise; very few counter chairs on the market today are ergonomically designed. If that’s what you’re looking for, your best bet will be to venture into the world of unconventional office seating or perhaps investigate drafting chairs for use at your bar.
The upholstery looks nice but isn’t all that durable, and you’ll find that it won’t hold up well over time. Expect to start noticing signs of wear, especially at the seams after about a year of moderate to heavy use. Contrast that to the frame itself, which will hold up well for five to seven years, and perhaps even longer with proper care.
The relatively low quality of the fabric is unfortunate but is not entirely unexpected. When the material starts showing its age, you’ll need to spend a bit more money to have them reupholstered. Unfortunately, since this stool has upholstery on both the seat and the seatback, it will be a bit more expensive to have it reupholstered than would be for a standard bar stool, or a bar chair without a padded back.
Even so, it’s not a deal-breaker for most people. Just know that at some point, it’s going to be an issue, and when it becomes so, you can have the chair reupholstered in something that will last longer.
A final note in this section: These bar chairs swivel. That’s a smallish detail, but if it’s a feature you’re interested in, that’s one more reason to consider buying one or more of these.
Some Assembly Required
This is perhaps the biggest drawback of the Davis stool. Powell occasionally suffers from quality control issues, which is a common problem that smaller brands often struggle with. The Davis seems to be plagued by more of these types of problems than other furniture the company makes.
You may get lucky and get a stool that goes together smoothly. But don’t be terribly surprised if the holes don’t line up exactly as they should, which will make the assembly process harder and more frustrating than it ought to be.
Even so, it’s a bar chair, and as such, there aren’t many pieces to contend with. Worst case, you’ll find you have to do a bit of grunting and sweating to make the pieces fit together. But once you’ve got it assembled, the quality of the materials used in the chair’s construction will ensure that it gives you few, if any, problems.
If you get a “good” one, you can expect the assembly time to take about fifteen to twenty minutes. If you get one of the stools with misaligned holes, it will probably add ten to fifteen minutes to the total assembly time, but after that, it’ll serve you well.
Pros and Cons of Powell Big and Tall Davis Counter Stool
In no particular order, here’s what we think you’ll like best about the Davis:
On the other hand, it’s not without its problems, which include:
Overall, we regard the pros as outweighing the cons by a significant margin. Still, we understand that not everyone will agree.
Powell Furniture Davis Counter Stool Review Conclusion
We wanted to love the Powell Furniture Davis Counter Stool, but we don’t. It’s more expensive than some of Powell’s other, more artistic big and tall bar chairs. Although it’s reasonably comfortable, we didn’t rate it as high because we were expecting higher quality for the additional money, and this chair simply doesn’t deliver on that front.
It’s a good bar chair, and for the right user, it could be fantastic. Still, its shortcomings are significant enough that it negatively impacted the Davis’ overall rating. On that basis, we provisionally recommend it.
References & Resources
- Powell Home Fashions, Official Brand Website.
- How to Build Bar Stools, HowStuffWorks.
- Reasons You Need a Bar and/or Barstools in Your Home, Life is an Episode.
- Ask the Expert: Finding Bar Stools to Match Your Bar, Home Living Furniture.
- Bar Stool Height Should Conform to Counter Height, Las Vegas Review-Journal.