A History of the Eames Lounge Chair & Ottoman
The iconic Eames lounge chair was finally launched in 1956 after a very long time in development by the husband and wife duo, Charles and Ray Eames. Created from molded plywood it was unprecedented. Upholstered in leather with an aluminium base it was their first foray into the high end furniture market. Before this they had focused on creating modern furniture designs that could be affordable for the masses (such as the Eames DSWs and DARs which were created from molded polypropylene shells). But in this instance they wanted to design a luxury item. While it was unmistakably a modern design with it’s cutting edge use of molded plywood, Charles wanted o imitate “the warm, receptive look of a well-used first baseman’s mitt”.
For the launch of the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman on the Arlene Francis Home Show they made a beautiful short film that you can watch on youtube here… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rglz_31knSE . This shows it being put together, slept in and fantasized in and was put together in just a day or two at the last minute. It’s a wonderful time piece.
Perhaps it is most well known for it’s pride of place in the Frazier’s living room in the eponymous TV sitcom in the 1990s.
After this the Eames chair became a the must have item for all the wannabe design aficionados in cities across the world. They would search antiques markets and vintage stores looking high and low for this interior design status symbol that would be the envy of all their guests when they popped over for a Merlot and a screening of the latest Almodovar film. Back then a vintage one would set you back around 2-3k. Which was a lot of money in the 1990s.
Since then it has appeared in numerous films and TV shows.
Fortunately we can now buy unofficial copies for a fraction of the price of the Vitra licensed version. Obviously if you can afford the licensed version then go ahead! It is available from John Lewis for a cool £8,260.00. If like me you’ve never even spent that amount on your car then a copy is the way to go. we think our version is spectacular value. Available in Rosewood, Palisander and Black Ash and upholstered in genuine Italian leather she’s a real beauty.
Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman£680.00 – £1,200.00