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Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Five Must-Have Dining Chairs

Becky

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I’m a chair nut. When I moved, my moving men kept putting every single side chair I owned into my dining room, their permanent locations, T.B.D. By the time the dining room table arrived, there wasn’t any room to put it in the sea of chairs. Remarkably, they all found a spot, as I love an occasional chair here or there and don’t really tend toward matchy-matchy sets.

Anyway, from one chair nut to others or potential others, here are chairs to be on the lookout for at yard sales and chairs to invest in for your permanent (museum-ish yet functional) collection. I’m going to stick to five dining chairs as otherwise we’d be here all day and I have other stuff to do, but it’s a solid start.

1. Anything by Thonet, particularly with bent wood. These date back to the mid-century. Of the 19th century, that is, somewhere ’round ever-stylin’ Vienna. They still look fly today. Love. Scour second-hand websites and yard sales. A Thonet is a great score.

2. The Emeco Navy Chair (1006 Chair). These chairs were built to stand up to violent seas and dudes in the Navy. We’re talking torpedo blasts on the side of a destroyer. Not only are these suckers strong, they have classic mid-century industrial style that will never fade.

3. The Hans Wegner Wishbone Chair (1949). This versatile chair adds warmth and style to many different kinds of dining rooms. Though first impulse is to go all Danish modern around it, it works very well in more traditional spaces, spaces with Asian style, eclectic rooms as well as very minimalist rooms.

4. Arne Jacobsen’s Series 7 Chair (1955). Re-released, this classic is often imitated by chain stores and catalogs – don’t fall for the imitations; having a licensed chair is worth the investment. This versatile and curvy little number looks great for formal dining, casual eat-in kitchen dining and at a desk or dressing table.

5. The Kartell Masters Chair (2010-ish?). Philippe Starck mashed up the silhouettes of three chairs here – Jacobsen’s Series 7, and two others we didn’t have room to include – Eero Saarinen’s Tulip armchair, and the Eames’ Eiffel Chair to get this meaningful back.

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Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Emeco Chairs and Stools Are as Fresh and Modern as Ever

Becky

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I love seeing my favorite pieces used in fresh designs, both commercial and residential. We recently received some gorgeous shots of the iconic Emeco chairs in action that I thought I’d share.

This is Urban Farmer bar by environmental designer, David Ashen of D-ASH Design. The space combines the 1951 Barstools from Emeco with reclaimed materials such as a 20-foot communal table. You can visit it on the 8th floor lobby of the Nines Hotel in Portland. The restaurant honors local culinary traditions, sourcing ingredients from organic farms nearby. But can you can go visit the cult that raised the chicken you want to order like Fred and Carrie did on Portlandia? I’m not sure.

Here’s a closer look at the 1951 stool. It’s looking better than ever in 2012.

This may be one of the most aesthetically pleasing workplace cafeterias I’ve ever seen. Well, it’s more of an intimate kitchen, and it’s at the headquarters of Clif Bars. It’s called Kali’s Kitchen and their website is pretty great; check it out. The employees over there are eating a lot of other things besides energy bars! Designed by ZGF Architecture, the kitchen design prioritized sustainability and re-using materials. Appropriately, the seating includes the 1006 Navy Chair and Navy Stools, which are made with 80% recycled aluminum.

Here’s a close up of the Navy Stool.

If you have an Emeco fetish like I do, you’ll love checking out their Tumblr stream. I also rounded some Navy Chairs up a long time ago for my other gig at Houzz. Designers tend to pick the chairs for the freshest rooms around, whether at a home’s kitchen island or in the chicest of bars and restaurants.

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