don't mention the war!

Friday, 30 September 2011

We like a chair with a interesting tale behind it, and what better example of just that than Ernest Race's DA1 armchair designed in 1946 for Ernest Race Ltd.  This chair was one of several designed by Race which avoided the Board of Trade restrictions on the use of wood by employing cast aluminium frame parts (visible in the legs).  The casting of aluminium had been developed for the munitions industry and after the war the technology was applied to the manufacture of furniture.  Proof indeed that the 'make do' mentality of the war years produced some stunning results!

Credit/Image:  V&A

up, up and away!

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Anyone who follows us over on Twitter will know that we're not really very keen on up-cycling.  Not up-cycling per se you understand, but up-cycling done badly and/or needlessly, with no particular thought process involved.  So when we received an email from Markus Friedrich Staab asking us to take a look at his 're-cycled, re-furbished, re-done' work, we immediately thought it was one for the recycle bin!  But curiosity got the better of us, and we soon found ourselves immersed in a colourful world of once mass-produced and homogeneous chairs - picked up from convention centres or found abandoned on the street - which had been given a new lease of life.  The purists amongst you may be rolling your eyes, but, on this occassion, we're just lapping up those clashing neon stripes!

swap shop

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Apparently this is a 'rare, wire chair known as the "Riviera 1000" designed in 1955 by the Dutch firm Artimeta, Soest'.  We say 'apparently' as we've done absolutely no research whatsoever to verify whether or not this attribution is correct.  Why?  Well, because it's quite refreshing to get excited about the chair rather than the designer and/or manufacturer.  We like this chair:  the shape is good, the base is simple and the black leatherette covers do their job quite nicely - adding both interest and, one may assume, comfort.  Would we swap it for our Bertoia?  No.  No way!  Would we swap it if our wire mesh chair happened to be an Eames Wire Chair?  Yes, yes we would!

Images:  trakl

delightful deviation #4

Saturday, 24 September 2011

As our quest for the ultimate sideboard continues, we couldn't not feature this compact - and alas too small for our needs - sideboard.  Now, we know very little about sideboards, but we understand this little gem was designed by Nils Jonsson for Hugo Troeds.  Does this make a difference?  Well, no, not to us ...... but what does are the drawers handles.  Yeap, the handles!  Their shape is simply delightful - and if one looks closely at the last photograph, one can see how perfectly the cupboard door slots behind them when opened fully.  Dreamy!  

 Due to an incorrect attribution on our part, we've updated this post here 

ladies and gentlemen

Friday, 23 September 2011

Just a couple of shots of the Martingala Chair - which we featured in our last post - together with one of our other Zanuso favourites, the Lady Chair ..... great name, great chair!

Images:  Arflexmilano via Flickr

cover up

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

We found this picture of Marco Zanuso's 'Martingala' chair for Arflex so intriguing that we decided to find out a little bit more about it.  Designed in 1952/3 and exhibited at the X Triennale in Milan in 1954, it was the first example of 'dressing design' ..... or, in today's language, the first armchair with removable covers.  The very first!  On closer inspection, the decorative detailing to the back of the chair is simply a means of disguising the ruched fabric which has been gathered - using nothing more than drawstrings - to provide a tailored fit to the 'dress' or cover.  Ingenious!

Image:  Jacksons

Black magic

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Oooooh, the eyes have it, we heart this sideboard!  As for the chair ........

Image: Bo-loget

A change of tack

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

When we began this blog it was meant to be a means by which we could record our passion for two things:  chairs and upholstery.  The blog subsequently took on a form of its own and quickly became a place to find a design classic or two, with posts on upholstery fairly thin on the ground.  So, in an attempt to redress the balance we're turning our attention (for today at least) to a dusty old book we found over the weekend - none other than the upholsterer's 'Bible'.  Although originally written by Frederick Palmer in 1921, 'Practical Upholstering' is still the most complete work on the subject, admirably describing the timeless techniques and best practice of the traditional upholsterer.  Without a photograph in sight, the book contains over 400 hand-drawn illustrations as a result of Palmer's habit of making sketches of chairs and settees at different points in their construction.  It's a wonderful and insightful book into the handicraft that is traditional upholstery.

Images:  chairsmith ©

Sweet charity

Monday, 12 September 2011

OK, so last time we featured Franco Albini we quite clearly stated that we weren't entirely sure where we stood on wicker.  And then, only the other day, we walked passed a charity shop that happened to have this chair in the window (well, not THIS chair, but a chair just like it).  Said chair, for sale, £8.  Eight pounds!  So in we went and did a deal.  We paid ......... eight whole pounds - well, one doesn't haggle in a charity shop.  Bargainous, even if it is wicker!

Images:  Gallery 33 via 1st Dibs

We are one!

Friday, 9 September 2011

Yes, we've been hanging out in this small and quiet corner of the inter-web for one whole year now, and what an interesting first year in business it's been!  We've met here, over on the twitter and in real life too, a whole host of inspirational people - fellow bloggers, designers, makers, dealers and more - as a result of this lil' old blog of ours.  But we couldn't have reached the dizzying heights that we've reached today (ahem!) without those delicious chairs.  So, without further ado, here are your top five chairs, as viewed by you - the most looked at, the most ogled over, perhaps even the most wanted - and it appears you have a favourite!

Images:  Galleri (Friso Kramer) V&A, Elegance on a Shoestring, (Flagline)

On what basis?

Thursday, 8 September 2011

OK, so here's the thing:  we find a number of Eames shell chairs over on that well-known auction website and the low-down is looking good - various colours, but mainly shades of yellow and orange (oooh), fibreglass (aaah), made by Herman Miller (oooh) - and then things take a nose-dive ...... stacking base (errr).  Yeap, you've got it - we're not huge fans of the stacking base.  So, what to do?  Leave the chairs alone and keep on looking, or buy, buy, buy and change the bases?  Decisions, decisions!

Images:  ModernDeluxe

circle time

Friday, 2 September 2011

We do like the simplicity of these side chairs attributed to Yngve Ekström.  Collectively, the spindled back and tappered legs - both of which add support to the circular aspects of the frame - make for a deliciously light and airy piece of furniture.  Add to that the sumptuous leather seat pads, and you've a seat we just want to sit in!

Images: Furniture Love

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