When I see the same furniture pieces over and over in Pinterest or design magazines I get curious. And when I get curious I do fact lists, and when I do fact lists I might as well share them with the world.
Let’s start with the basics: Eames Chairs. They are everywhere. I wonder if you can call yourself a designer unless you have placed one of these chairs in one of your projects. My answer is probably not. The thing is that, for a couple that wanted to do affordable furniture for the masses, a $400 dining/desk chair does not fit the profile, but boy are they cute!
There are two authorized manufacturers of Eames products: Herman Miller, Inc (US) and Vitra International (Europe). You can find legal knock offs by other brands in case you don’t want to spend so much. Just pretend they are Eames and stay quiet. The ugly truth is that 90% of people will never be able to tell. The thing is that for most of us spending $400 for a dining chair is unthinkable, but I still want to have a nice house with nice things, so maybe I will buy the $100 very similar, almost identical, I can’t tell the difference chair and dream of getting the real one when I become a millionaire after playing Blackjack in Vegas. Totally plausible.
Well, here’s to Vegas! And here’s. a short list of the Eames chairs I see most often.
- The Eames Fiberglass Armchair
This chair is everywhere. It seems that no dining room is worth eating in if you don’t have at least four, and, no nursery is baby worthy without the rocking version. As a quick summary, Charles and Ray Eames designed this chair around 1950 for the ‘International Competition for Low-Cost Furniture Design,’ sponsored by the Museum of Modern Art. The chair comes in different color and bases.
Here are some pictures.
- Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman
Most humans don’t know what a Eames chair is, let’s be realistic, but everybody living in LA has at least seen an Eames Lounge Chair at some point. I love our white lounge knock off that my husband bought in a thrift store for $100 15 years ago and then I took to reupholster in white for $450 last year. It was the most beautiful piece in my living room until my son decided to paint the ottoman with a black Sharpie (I am not kidding!!!). Now I feel much better about not buying the real $4,800 version.
- Eames Lounge Chair Wood (LCW)
This chair won the Museum of Modern Art’s “Organic Design in Home Furnishings Competition” in 1940 and it was named the greatest design of the 20th century by Time Magazine. It is the result of a process that is able to mold thin sheets of veneer into gently curved shapes. The Eameses experimented with plywood for years before being able to mold it and shape these chairs for mass production.
The cheapest non-upholstered version is $869 a piece. It comes in many colors and materials. Look at this wide range of alternatives for home design: