A ladderback chair might have a back that is straight or slightly curved. Before you choose one, it can be helpful to sit in both types of chairs to see which style is most comfortable for you. While you are sitting in the chair, it can be a good idea to rock gently back and forth to see whether the chair squeaks or becomes unstable. After you have found a well-constructed chair, you can think about other options, such as color, design and padding.
You might find that not all ladderback chairs have the same type of back. Some of them might have one that is slightly curved, and others are completely straight. There also might be wide or narrow slats, and the distance between the pieces can vary. Keep in mind that different chair backs might feel different, so you will need to find one that is comfortable for you. By sitting in each ladderback chair, you can get a feel for how comfortable each model might be to sit in for an extended period of time.
One of the disadvantages of a ladderback chair is that the back might not be securely attached to the seat. While you are sitting in the chair, make small movements from front to back while planting your feet firmly on the floor. As you are rocking, pay close attention to whether the ladderback piece seems to give while you are doing so.
Look at the slats on the ladderback dining chair. Make sure that there are no broken or cracked pieces in this section. You also should inspect them carefully to make sure that they are securely attached to the vertical rails on the chair's back.
While you are shopping, you likely will encounter many ladderback chair styles. Some types of chairs might have intricate details carved on the legs or back. Others might have padded seats or feet. You can find ladderback chairs in various colors, so it should be easy to find one that matches your décor.
If you are looking for an antique ladderback chair, a good place to find one might be at a flea market or antique mall. Shopping for an antique model should be done much the same as if you were purchasing a new piece. An exception to this rule might be doing research on the price of antique chairs so you will know whether you have found a bargain or are simply being overcharged for this furniture.