Chess Sets for the Family

When selecting a chess set for the family, consider where and how often chess will be played. These are the most common criteria for selecting that ideal set.

  • A basic club chess set helps players of any age with the tactile reach and feel of chess pieces that support learning. The standard size of 20" square with 3.75" tall King piece suits club, regulation, and home use so it's the most versatile and therefore a good first set. These are very easy to take with you anywhere you go with the roll-up style board. 
  • A classic wood chess set adds to the attractiveness and overall experience of playing and learning the game at home. We have a variety of excellent budget wood chess sets in this selection.
  • A travel chess set is smaller, lighter, and keeps the pieces in place. Our favorites are shown here.
  • A luxury wood chess set is a fantastic way to reward a young person who is showing dedication and commitment to learning. It can also be an excellent first chess set in combination with a basic club set if you want two sets -- one for at home, and one for both home and club.
  • An heirloom style chess set is our ultimate set for families. It's a fine set of pieces paired with a U.S.A. made hardwood handcrafted chess board.

Did you know? Every one of these sets is a "Staunton" design. The term originated in 1849 with Englishman Howard Staunton's original chess pieces which marked the present modern era of chess piece design. Over the last century and a half the word Staunton has come into every day use to describe the general design of chess pieces familiar today.


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"Here's my favorite demo board for leading a chess class. Easy to see pieces. Easy to move pieces. Love having the red stars to highlight squares... can even pull out the dowel in the bottom edge of the demo board to use as a pointer when talking about diagonals, ranks, files, etc!"

Elliott Neff, author of a Pawn's Journey