Those of you who know me know that I love a quality chair! This month I would like to highlight some of my favourites.
First and Foremost
Poltrona Frau’s Vanity Fair Club Chair
Poltrona Frau is the epitome of fine quality Italian design, and this chair has become the emblem of Poltrona Frau. Based on the designs of Renzo Frau, it was originally called Model 904 when it was first conceived in 1930. It was renamed the Vanity Fair in 1983. The chair is constructed of solid seasoned beech and the padding is hand-shaped vegetable horsehair and rubberized horsehair. Poltrona Frau leather is world-renowned and has been used for exotic car interiors. I have always loved the classic look of this chair that can suit both a contemporary and traditional setting. It is the perfect chair in which to sit and read, and the accompanying ottoman is a must.
Eames Lounge Chair
This Mid-century icon has stood the test of time and it certainly put Charles and Ray Eames on the radar for their timeless design. Many have tried to knock them off over the years but the genuine Eames luxury and function can not be replicated. It is the perfect chair in which to recline and take a power nap! What an elegant addition it would make to any home den.
Ball Chair – Eero Aarnio Made by Adelta
The Ball Chair was created in 1963 by Eero Aarnio and presented at the International Furniture Fair in Cologne in 1966. It has become one of the most famous Finnish design classics. This chair is like a cocoon for those easily distracted by external noise. It is on my wish list for sure and I have even thought of a spot where it could work in our home. The issue is that they are very large, so a wide doorway is needed to get them inside. This is one of the reasons they are best suited to an industrial loft space. Studio Pazo has an original for sale, however they are very pricey!
Iconic Barcelona chairs can be found in the Mies van der Rohe-designed towers in downtown Toronto. They are both comfortable and a statement piece with the striking chrome frame juxtaposed against the soft leather seat and back. I recently learned that their design is based on ancient Egyptian folding stools.
Mies van der Rohe designed this chair for his German Pavilion at the Barcelona Exposition of 1929. The Pavilion was the site of the inaugural ceremony for the German exhibits at the exposition, and the Spanish king was to preside. It had to be an “important chair, a very elegant chair,” according to the architect. “The government was to receive a king. . . . The chair had to be . . . monumental. In those circumstances, you just couldn’t use a kitchen chair.”
Although only two Barcelona chairs were made for the German Pavilion, the design was put into production and became so popular that, with the exception of one sixteen-year period, it has been manufactured since 1929. * MOMA website
The Womb Chair
I generally prefer leather upholstery as you can just wipe off spills, and it is hardy yet still very comfortable. The Womb Chair is an exception, however. For some reason I feel this piece needs to be fabric as when you sit in one it is like being enveloped in a big comfy sweater.
The Womb Chair was the genius of Eero Saarinen who is also known for his stunning marble Saarinen tables and matching Tulip chairs. This chair was designed in 1946 when Florence Knoll challenged Saarinen to create a chair she could curl up in. I would say this chair met the challenge!
The Egg Chair is another cozy spot for reading, and in my mind, it too should probably be fabric not leather. “In the midst of other designers working with more industrial materials Arne Jacobsen focused on the upholstered armchair, believing it could be reinterpreted through a modernist lens. The Egg (1958) proves so. A molded piece of foam sits beneath the upholstery, creating the chair’s fluid curves. Sitters can turn toward a conversation area or away thanks to the swivel base and the chair also tilts back for lounging. This is the authentic Egg Chair by Republic of Fritz Hansen. Made in Poland.” DWR
I would say Arne Jacobsen was successful in this re-interpretation of a fabric chair!
One theme you will notice among my chair choices is that every one of them exudes comfort. Great design is both form and function! These are only a few of my favourites in a long list of timeless chair designs.
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