Form and function

Thursday, 30 June 2011

In the battle of form versus function, this Orchestra Chair (model 661C) designed for the Royal Festival Hall in 1951, illustrates quite beautifully how a little of latter can influence and shape the former.  It was Day's careful attention to the ultimate function of this chair - to elegantly accommodate the tailcoats of the members of the orchestra - which largely determined its form.  The original chair - which also had a small rail under the seat for holding the musicians' bows - was fabricated by Kingfisher Ltd. and upholstered using Tygan, a heavy duty woven plastic designed by former Bauhaus weaver Margaret Leischner and produced by Fothergill & Harvey.

Festival fever

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

It was such a joy to finally see Robin Day's Lounge Chair, designed in 1951 for the Royal Festival Hall, up close and personal.  With its fluid one-piece moulded plywood back and arms veneered in rosewood, upholstered seat and back pad in a delicious mustard yellow fabric and thin cooper-plated steel rod legs, one could instantly see how this design was viewed as being 'radically different' when it was first introduced.  Wait.  Cooper-plated steel legs?  Really?  Why didn't we know this?  And how can it be that the chair displayed at Pallant House is the only authenticated Lounge Chair to have survived the Royal Festival Hall's refit by London County Council in the early 1960s?  What happened to all the others?  Where are they?  Where?

First image:  Elegance on a Shoestring

Daytime TV

Monday, 27 June 2011

We can't promise we're going to blog all week about Robin and Lucienne Day, but we're going to give it a damn good try.  Inspired by our recent trip to the Pallant House Gallery, we're currently putting together a post on the Lounge Chair designed by Robin Day in 1951 for the Royal Festival Hall.  So whilst we beaver away in the background, here's a short introduction - using fancy moving pictures this time - to some of the wonders created by this now-infamous British couple.

Contemporary Days: The Designs of Lucienne & Robin Day from Design Onscreen on Vimeo.

Day trip

Saturday, 25 June 2011

With the 'Design and the Modern Interior' exhibition at Pallant House Gallery about to draw to a close, we thought we'd better nip down to Chichester tout suite.  The exhibition, which brings together the furniture designs of Robin Day and textile designs of his wife Lucienne, was a complete joy to behold, with three rooms dedicated to a truly wonderful collection of fabrics by Lucienne, many of which were cunningly used as a backdrop to complement some of Robin Day's most iconic pieces of furniture.

Here's a little taster of beautiful, British, mid-century designing at its best .......

You beauties

Friday, 24 June 2011

Oh dear.  It would appear that we're spending too much time over on that well-known auction website.  But is that such a bad thing?  We'll let you decide once you've checked out our latest find ...... this uber gorgeous pair of easy chairs by Frederik Kayser for Vatne Møbler, Norway.

Kayser was one of Norway's most respected designers during the 'Scandinavian design' period, designing furniture for several of Norway's most famous furniture manufacturer.  Bright, functional, modern and light are all characteristics for his furniture, but they are also classic and the handcraft shows clear 'Danish' ideals.

Credits/Images:  Deconet, happytodays

Looking good

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

OK, so the majority of the surface buttons seem to have gone AWOL and the upholstery is generally looking a little on the tired side, but that doesn't detract at all from the beautiful proportions and delightful shape of this 1950s sofa.  Oh, and those legs .... just look at this legs!

Images:  City-furniture

Mystery solved

Monday, 20 June 2011

A super duper thank you to Ben from Modern Room who got in touch to say that the Goble chairs we recently featured were in fact designed by Dorothy and Paul Goble for Stag Cabinet Co. in 1962.

Ben helpfully added that the only place he'd seen these chairs is at 2 Willow Way, a unique Modernist home designed by architect Ernö Goldfinger in 1939.

Thanks Ben!

Oh, and if you fancy owning your very own pair of Goble chairs, you may want to check out Modern Room!

Stag party

Friday, 17 June 2011

Having not posted for one whole week the pressure's on to find something a bit special.  Gulp!  Can we pull it off?  Does it really matter?  Um, no!  But here's some deliciousness we spotted over on a well-known auction website that caught our beady little eyes - a pair of S.725 Goble chairs manufactured by Stag Furniture.  The name Stag Furniture and that of its most well-known designers, John and Sylvia Reid, go hand-in-hand - however, neither Reid designed the Goble chair.  So who did?  Huh?  Huh?

Credits/Images: Ben Joyner

Colour by numbers

Thursday, 9 June 2011

The Boyd Baker House was commissioned by mathematician Michael Baker and built in 1966 by one of Australia's most highly regarded architects, Robin Boyd.  The property features iconic mid-century collectibles in every room - including designs by Australian designer Grant Featherstone, as well as Hans Wegner, Arne Jacobsen and Eames, to name but a few - and the striking colourways all combine to create an attention-grabbing space.

Credits/Images:  Habitus Living

Commercial break

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Love this set of Knoll advertisements from 1966, 1965 and 1952, respectively.

Images:  sandiv999 via Flickr


Monday, 6 June 2011

We've featured Rob Parry's Easy Chair before but only in passing, so here's a closer look.  Constructed of rosewood and steel (although we have seen examples made of walnut/teak with a chrome frame) with wool upholstery, it was designed by Parry during the 1960s for Gelderland.  Parry was a student and employee of Dutch minimalist architect and designer Gerrit Rietveld and during the fifteen year period between 1945 and 1960 he designed several pieces of furniture.  Parry's furniture collection is however mainly unknown because most of his designs were only made for special projects and never put into production - many models only exist on paper or as a scale model. 

Credits/Images:  1st Dibs, Galerie Vivid

delightful deviation #1

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Do we have to blog about chairs all of the time?  Who makes the rules ..... oh yeah, we do!  So we're going to feature something completely different today because, well, we want to.  We found these delightful and beautifully sculpted owl figurines hand-turned from solid walnut over at Howkapow, a colourful online shop featuring unique work from new and independent designers.  The owls are designed by Matt Pugh, who creates timeless, unique pieces from quality sustainable materials combining simple detailing with playful designs .... and guess what, we love them!

Images:  Hokapow

Dining in style

Friday, 3 June 2011

We just love everything about this light and airy space - the chandelier, pared-back kitchen, black-framed windows, white walls - all of which combine to show off to stunning effect the rich rosewood tones of those delicious LCM chairs designed by Charles and Ray Eames.

Image:  Le Boeuf

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