Welcome to part one of the Vintage Comfort Series!
If there's one thing that will throw our entire office into a frenzy, it's when a piece of Eames furniture comes up in one of the sales on our site. There is one piece in particular that really gets our attention though, the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman.
I’ll admit something to you. Up until about six years ago, I had no idea that this chair even existed. Now I keep my eyes peeled at every estate sale I go to in hopes of stumbling across one of these beauties. Although I'm sure as soon as I got it home, I would have to share it with my feline friends. I know, cat claws on a $5000 chair? I cringed too.
This piece of mid-century modern history was designed by the husband and wife team of Charles and Ray Eames for the Herman Miller furniture company and finally released in 1956 after years of development.
The Eameses wanted to give the consumer a piece of furniture that not only looked ultra-futuristic but was also very comfortable. Honestly, who wouldn’t want to sit in a chair that is described as “it feels like you’re sitting in a broken-in baseball mitt?”
What do you get when you combine five layers of plywood, a Brazilian rosewood veneer with leather, down, and feathers? You get a $310 chair (estimated price in 1956) that would become the new standard in luxury furniture.
Nowadays, to be more environmentally sustainable, the Eames chairs are made with cherry, walnut, and Palisander rosewood. The feet on the Eames Lounge Chair are called “domes of silence.” If that doesn’t make you want to shell out your kid's college funds for one of these bad boys, I don’t know what will.
The details are the details. They make the product. The connections, the connections, the connections. It will, in the end, be these details that give the product its life. -Charles Eames
The world got its first glimpse of the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman on the Arlene Francis “Home Show,” and from there, it didn’t take long before it became one of the most sought after pieces of furniture on the market.
Check out this video of the unveiling of the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman!
Eames in Pop Culture
The Eames Lounge Chair has made several appearances in pop culture over the years. Mad Men, Shark Tank, Friends, and Iron Man are just some of the movies and television series that have featured this iconic piece of mid-century modern history. Hey, if it’s good enough for Don Draper, it’s good enough for me! You can also find original pieces in several museums and showcases around the country.
The Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman are pieces of history that came about due to the demands of people in the 50s wanting to be as comfortable as possible. The next time you’re at an estate sale, keep an eye out! Also, if you buy one, let me know so I can come to sit in it. :)
If you loved learning about the Eames Lounge Chair, you'll love part two of the Vintage Comfort Series, the Ovalian Egg Chair!