Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Guilty Posting (again!)

The other day I started thinking that if I can't look after my blog what sort of mother will I be?

Don't panic I'm not with child but when I started these musings on all things seated-related, it was as if this blog was a new baby which needed nurturing and constant attention - these days I'm like one of those mother's who's kid is the last one at the school gates.

I do have a good reason for being so slack of late; I have a new job. Yes, that's right folks after 12 months of being in freelance wilderness, not knowing if I would be able to to afford to eat let alone buy the latest Established & Sons chair, I am in full time employment again.

I've rejoined the rat-race, become a commuter, chose to get out of my PJs before 12noon and I'm loving it.

Likewise, I'm rather smitten with these chairs from Very Good & Proper.

Called Canteen Utility, they are my new favourite pieces and I just adore them. I love their rawness and homage to old school chairs which has been effortlessly reinvented with the bright colours.

I promised myself something this time last year; that when I was in full-time employment I would treat myself to a new chair, a sort of "well done me" present to, erm, myself and you know what? I think it might just be one of these...

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Mid Century Modern

I thought I'd died and gone to furniture heaven this afternoon.

A short hop on the bus to East Dulwich, saw me paying my first visit to Mid Century Modern, the furniture show that has been delighting mid century nuts like me for seven years.

I was told by the show's owner that this was the busiest it had ever been with people from Holland and further afield as well as the locals all clambering to get their mits on a Wegner or vintage Eames rocker.

After a quick visit to the lovely Keith from Mini Moderns (who very kindly gave me a Sitting Comfortably? cushion which I adore already) I ventured into the main hall.

And wow, it's lucky my latest cheque hadn't cleared because I probably would have blown the rent on a chair or three.

Seeing all this beautifully crafted furniture got me thinking how awful it is people can get away with designing crap stuff (you know who you are!) every time I turned a corner, there was a new Scandinavian delight to get my heart racing a little faster.

One of my favourite stands was Orange & Brown, a company specialising in stunning furniture and based in Bristol, I for one am glad they made the slog up the M4.

There were too many gorgeous items on their stand to mention but once I got home I had a quick look at their website and found these two beauties.

This delight is a Falcon swivel chair by Sigurd Ressell and was designed for Vatner. There's not much else to say about it other than I utterly adore it. I love the shape, I love the chrome, I adore that it swivels and would probably sell my Nan to get my hands on one (sorry Nan!)
And my second choice from this treasure trove of beautifully made furniture is this side chair by Finn Juhl, not least because it reminds me of my own lovely dining chairs.

I skipped out of Mid Century Modern one happy lady, clutching my cushion and trying to figure out how to save enough money to buy the lot next year...

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Baby Boom

It honestly feels as if everyone I know at the moment (females obviously!) is either pregnant or has just had a baby.

I've now even become a little blase when I get the "I've got something to tell you" phone call - I'm excited for them all of course; even if it does make me feel old that all my drinking buddies are all of sudden with child.

So it's no surprise that a press release about vintage furniture for children stuck around longer in my inbox than it would have a year ago.

These two beauties are from a fab website called Molly-Meg, which stocks an array of vintage seating and accessories for the little ones in your life.

I love this 60s bucket chair which is every inch as stylish as its grown up counterpart and equally gorgeous is this retro-print, booster chair from California.
So, I'm thinking that for the next arrival (two of which are due imminently) they'll perhaps be getting a vintage chair instead of the ubiquitous baby-grow.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

I Rest My Case

I try not to have favourite, favourite designers - it always seems a bit unfair to me, like having a favourite pet or worse , child.

However, I'm totally in love with everything Case do - from their beautiful, 50s inspired bed to this little beauty.

The Bridge armchair is designed by Matthew Hilton, one of the designers who produce the stunning collection on offer at Case.

Some people would find this chair a little bland, not that exciting, non-descript some might say, but not me.

I've decided over the course of writing this blog (it's been a year by the way) that I adore simplicity. It's why my flat is painted in various shades of white, why my furniture is sleek and has clean lines.

Some people also might say that simple is boring, it's not - as this chair proves it's classic, it's stylish and in a strange way, it's comforting.

I really, really want some of these chairs to replace my slightly knackered dining set - so in the absence of an endless pot of money or super rich parents, I'll be playing EuroMillions on Friday - well you never know, it could be me...

Monday, 12 October 2009

Something Old, Something New

Some very dear friends of mine got married last week, which got me thinking that when I eventually tie the knot, I bet I'll be as concerned about the chairs used at the reception as much as the dress.

As I've said before, seating is extremely important to me - clearly otherwise I wouldn't be blogging about it and I love nothing more than a chair with a bit of history.

So after working my tiny little fingers to the bone today (sending a record number of emails) I thought I'd treat myself to some virtual shopping over at Retrouvius. It's a favourite of mine and not just because of their wonderful name but because they source some of the best retro furniture around.

These gorgeous bentwood chairs (am still yet to see this wonderful technique in action - hint, hint) are listed as being from the former Czechoslovakia and possibly Thonet.

I love their Modernist shape but what I really love is day dreaming about where they previously lived, who owned them, did their owners love them and how did they end up of the retro scrapheap before being lovingly rescued.

Monday, 28 September 2009

LDF: Part One

As I'm sure most design addicts are, I've been dedicating my Monday nights to Design For Life. It's the Philippe Starck-meets-Big Brother show that's setting out to find Britain's young design talent.

So far, I've been totally disappointed. Yes, I get to watch one of the grand masters of design share his thoughts, wit (who'd have thought he'd be so sweet?!) and experience but the "contestants" are dull, dull, dull.

Perhaps they're trying too hard to please but they range from being totally abstract (tra, Nebil - you dug your own grave last week) to the totally bloody obvious (the redhead one who's name totally escapes me because she is possibly one of the most boring people in the world) so I was starting to agree with Monsieur Starck's opinion that British design hadn't seen anything interesting since the launch of Habitat.

Well, all I can say, is that I hope he popped along to LDF last week, because I for one, was blown away by the abundance of talent on offer.

100% Design seemed to have ditched its desire to be a challenger for The Ideal Home Show and has gone back to its roots. Instead of endless salesmen trying to flog me bathrooms I neither wanted or could afford, I got to chat to designers about their designs.

I got to touch, I got to admire and stand in sheer awe at how in what must be one of the most challenging times for new and emerging designers (have I mentioned how much I despise this recession?!) they're upbeat and confident about their work.

Of course, there were lots of beautiful chairs on offer. In fact, I think the friends I walked around 100% Design with were bored to tears with me as I repeatedly sighed "I want, I want" by the end of the day, I'd become practically parrot-like.

And, boy did I want this beautiful Katakana chair from Dare Studio. It is absolutely a "me" chair. I love the elegant back and angular shape.

I'm on the lookout for a desk chair at the moment (a desk to go with it would be a good start I suppose) and this one is top of the list.

Saturday, 26 September 2009

The LDF Marathon

Wow, brilliant week all in all. I've been pounding the London streets in the name of design and have met, spoken to and seen so many exciting designers during London Design Festival that the blog posts are going to be coming thick and fast.

Just need to digest everything I've seen and heard so definitely come back soon and...

Watch this space...

Sunday, 20 September 2009

The Week Ahead

Wow, the week ahead is certainly going to be a busy one.

LDF is in full swing and the invitations for launches all over the capital not to mention a thousand requests to visit stands at 100% Design and TENT have been coming thick and fast.

I've been resting this week in preparation for one of my favourite past times: finding new designers.

During last year's LDF, I was on press week which meant I raced around Earl's Court like a total lunatic. With thoughts of mounting proofs in the back of my mind, I literally snatched press releases while throwing business cards at stands.

I didn't even make it to TENT and totally uncharacteristically left a Conran party early and didn't venture anywhere near Tom Dixon's launch do.

Oh, how different this year will be. I'm not on press, the deadlines have been met and backlog cleared and I'm free to enjoy.

The prospect of finding new chairs excites me beyond belief. Some people love shoes but as you know by now it's chairs that float my boat.

However, what's totally essential with all this running about and remembering who designs what and who you've promised to feature on your blog, is a comfy chair.

It's got to be stylish too of course, and this baby comes from one of my favourite design companies ever, Pinch.

Unfortunately, it's not in my living room (neither and also unfortunately is one of their gorgeous armoires - take a look at the website and you'll know what I mean)

It is of course on my wish list, yes that ever-growing list of beautifully crafted furniture which I fear will only be longer by this time next week...

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Catwalk Inspired

I wasn't going to blog today because I always think blogging with a hangover is a very bad idea.

You're leaving yourself wide open to spelling mistakes, getting designers' names wrong, uploading the wrong images etc etc.

But then, I logged onto Graham & Green for a little virtual shop to soothe my pounding head, high-heels damaged feet and slightly wobbly gait and found this new wonderful chair so I knew my rule about too many the night before and blogging had to go out the window.

I've talked before about how the fashion houses of Paris, Milan and London and even the high street massively influence interiors and this chair is a prime example.

I challenge you to find a shop without a studded bag, top or shoe at the moment, they're all the rage as are fashion editorial pages full of how to get the look complete with stud-inspired headlines.

So, hats off to Graham & Green for coming up with this studded, linen chair. I adore the classic shape and colour (olive green is one of favourites when it comes to interiors) and of course the studs. Not just because they're bang on trend but because they look rather cool.

Now, if you don't mind I'm off to curse those last few vodka and cokes and have an early night...

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Italian Throne

Being half-Italian, I'm probably a little bit biased when it comes to Italian furniture and designers.

So, when I was browsing fabulous interiors store TwentyTwentyOne for wardrobes, it's no surprise I became a bit distracted by the chairs.

That's when I found this gem.

More a work of art than something to sit on, Pole Position (strange name I feel - but hey ho, each to their own) is designed by Luigi Caccia Dominioni (wish my name sounded as deliciously Italian) for L'abbate

So, what do I love about this chair? Well, obviously I love the buttoned back, given my slight obsession with buttoned-backs but I also love the shape, the style, its definite regal feel.

I also love the colours its available in, too many interiors products are drab and dreary but not this.

It's been a while since I added something to my wish list but this is a definite addition - in fact, the purple one better be under my Christmas tree this year otherwise they'll be tears before the turkey...

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Spotted: A Rather Cool Chair

My parents being the nurturing, caring and supportive peeps they are took me to Art in Action in Oxford at the weekend.

"There's some really cool chairs that would look good on your blog" they said and so off we set to be surrounded by creative people.

I've never been surrounded by so many creatives in my life, and despite my rather inappropriate choice of footwear (flip flops and the grounds of a house subjected to a torrential downpour the night before do not mix) it was a brilliant day.

Ceramics creators, textiles geniuses, jewellery designers, artists, sculptors were all displaying their wares. I have to say it made me feel rather humble. Let's just say, art has never been my strong subject - my creativity has always displayed itself in the form of words and definitely not painting or drawing.

As much as I loved walking around all the tents, it was the woodwork one that drew my attention as that's where I knew the chairs would be.

So, after trying not to fall over in the mud for the 50th time that day, I entered the tent and was not disappointed.

I rather resembled a tourist wandering around London as I snapped pics of some of the coolest chairs I'd ever seen.

Those pictures of course remain on my camera, not yet downloaded (oh give me a break, I've been busy working) but while they still wait, here's a sneak preview.

This is the Lobi Loi chair by Chair Creative. I love the raw, almost unfinished quality - which I'm told by someone in the know is a very hot trend for AW09, presumably to make us all feel really guilty for our desire for bling and glitz.

I urge you to check out Chair Creative's other designs, because you definitely won't see these on the high street.

By the way, my Dad printed the first ever Art in Action catalogue over, erm, lots of years ago. You could say print's in the blood...

Monday, 13 July 2009

Guilty Posting

Do you know, I can't even bear to look at the last post I wrote because it was agggeeesss ago, which is not good.

After all, there's no one else to write this blog for me - no editorial staff of 10 (one day, one day...) to look after it for me - there's just me, myself and I and I feel terribly guilty about not having updated it since the middle of May...

...there, I've said it and it feels a bit like going to an AA meeting (by the way I do NOT know what happens at AA meetings) so "My name is Alexandra Toso and I haven't blogged for a long time" now on with the post...

Chairs haven't gone away of course since I last wrote, in fact I've discovered even more beautiful ones in my hiatus and this one comes from the discovery of a furniture design company new to me.

Benchmark (available at Furnish) is fast becoming a favourite of mine.

Simply because they make really stunning furniture, when frankly we live in a world where people think they can turn out any old tatt.

The Alvis chair has pretty cool design credentials given it came from the mind of the godfather of design Sir Terence Conran but that aside looks stunning too.

I love the clean lines, simple shape and above all I love the fact it can be upholstered in your own fabric. I think it would look pretty cool in velvet or perhaps a retro pattern.

I promise there won't be such a long space between postings not now I've got my mojo back...

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Lovely Leather

My poor chair blog has been somewhat neglected of late, which I of course feel extremely guilty about. There are fairly good reasons though; I've been doing lots of freelance work and working on two really exciting websites - one is greenmystyle.com (check it out for great, stylish eco buys) the other one is a bit of a secret but watch this space...

This week has actually been chair-filled in one way or another. Waiting to meet someone at the amazingly impressive One Canada Square, I sat on a Barcelona chair in reception, I've decided that I still want one and while on our way to a press show, my friend Roh and I walked past the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden which is being refurbished and discovered the developers were giving away the beautiful, Victorian seats from the circle. 

But anyway, chair of the week has to go to this rather beautiful specimen from Poltrona Frau (in fact I could happily live with any the chairs from Poltrona Frau) which is called Archibald (how do chairs end up with their names I wonder?) and is by Jean-Marie Massaud

I adore its delicate folds of leather, its simple design and  the colour, it would go perfectly in my new dining room. 

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Genius Idea

It's been a while since my last post. I'm not ashamed to admit that I was more than a little disappointed not to make it onto Caroline Taylor's blogroll  but hey, ho onwards and upwards. 

Thing is there are a lot more chair blogs out there than I ever thought there would be and don't even get me started on chair books. There are loads but there's still room for mine so if anyone's reading and fancies giving me a huge advance to travel round furniture shops taking snaps let me know. 

Anyway, I digress so on with this post. I've mentioned before how exciting it is to come across new chairs. Yeah sure, there's the classic thing, the cutting-edge, high end designer thing and as we know about my love of vintage furniture, the retro thing but it's always great to find out about someone coming up with a new idea. 

Which brings me on to this chair which is designed by Robyn Notley found via Glimpse Online (a great new design website) 

The idea, as all the best ones seem to be (and yes I am talking about my idea to start a smoothie and juice bar before they were popular) is simple yet deliciously wonderful. 

Robyn has transformed the humble Lanni chair from Ikea into something that every bespoke-aficionado would be proud to own. 

By making "add-ons"  such as spindled legs, backs and seats from acrylic, Robyn's idea turns a everyone's-got-one chair into the equivalent of a Dior couture dress. 

Ok, so that's not the fairest comparison in the world perhaps, but Robyn's concept does make something pretty ordinary look rather interesting. 

And that, ladies and gentlemen, as with all new (good) design should be applauded. Big round of applause for Miss Notley then!

Monday, 20 April 2009

I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside...

...but unfortunately for me, I'm in Streatham!

Well, you can't have it all and at least this week's meant to be sunny, sunny, sunny.

My better half (lots of people to testify this is definitely the truth) has spent the last few weekends sorting out our small, but perfectly formed garden.

Looks like I'll get lots of opportunity to sit in it, which means I'm on the hunt for some fantastic garden furniture. 

Top of the list is a gorgeous deckchair and this stripy treat from Southsea Deckchairs is the perfect choice. 

I love the colourful stripes and think it would be perfect for sitting and plotting my future (with a large G&T of course) 

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Poached, Fried, Boiled, Scrambled or Chocolate...

...none of those for me thank you.

I'd much rather be unwrapping a delicious new chair than a foil-covered chocolate treat.

It being Easter and all I thought I would share one of the most iconic chairs ever designed in the history of interiors. 

This is the Egg chair* (get the Easter connection now?) by Arne Jacobson, one of godfathers of modern design. 

I love this chair because it has a certain feel of power to it. The high back, comfortable seat, free flowing swivel (brilliant for those Dr Evil or James Bond baddie moments) 

But above all, I love it because its name, while being a little abstract, it so appropriate - sitting in this chair makes you feel coccooned and safe - a little like being inside an egg would I suppose. 

*This chair is from Go Modern 

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Library Chair

I clearly love chairs (and rugs and cushions) but I also love books. 

Fiction, non-fiction, biographies, crap novels, brilliant novels - I love them all. I love the way they feel, I love the way they smell, I love the way they look.

Books have had such a profound effect on me that I can still remember the first line of my favourite book when I was 15, I regularly dream about books I've read and my Facebook and Twitter password is the name of the protagonist of one of my favourite childhood books. 

In fact, books have such an effect on me that I once sat on a bus with tears running down my face reading one of the saddest books ever. 

So, imagine my absolute delight and urge to rush out and buy when I saw this chair. 

It's called the Bibliochaise (geddit) and is designed and manufactered by Italian company  Nobody & Co

Its ingenious designs features storage space for a wide number of books and I love it. How bloody clever - a chair that keeps your books in check. 

Monday, 30 March 2009

Snooker Loopy

I've certainly never made a secret of the fact I love retro and reclaimed chairs. 

The Internet is full of beautiful treasures and if I had the money, well let's just say, food, heating and water would be low down on the list of necessities... 

This chair is simply divine and is covered from none other than the cloth that is traditionally used for snooker tables. 

It comes from the ever-expanding stock at Retrouvius, where you'll find beautiful and carefully sourced furniture nestling among clocks, mirrors and lighting. 

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Danish Pastry or Danish Chair...

Tough call, right? But I know what one gets my vote and it's not a flaky, sweet treat. 

I've blogged before about loving Danish furniture. Let's just say it's an obsession of mine. 

In fact, it's probably a good thing I don't live in Denmark because I have a sneaky suspicion I would have snaffled up all the good stuff and not left much behind. 

Which would be a shame because then people wouldn't be able to find little treasures like this. 

This particular specimen comes courtesy of Fragile Design, a Birmingham-based vintage furniture shop. 

And as well as some beautiful 20th century furniture, they also have great range of vintage fabrics, glassware and ceramics. 

So, yet again, it's breakfast 0 - bloody lovely furniture 1 - well, I can always have a croissant...

Friday, 20 March 2009

Big Boned

Graham & Green is fast becoming one of my favourite destinations for on line, virtual chair shopping. 

Comfortable, beautifully designed pieces mingle with 20th century classics from Kartell

My latest discovery from their extensive catalogue is this Rams Head chair which is made from inlaying bone into wood. 

It makes for a very pretty occasional chair which would be perfect for a bedroom or hallway. 

Thursday, 19 March 2009

The Midas Touch

Oh sod the recession, I mean it. 2m people unemployed, companies collapsing all around us and a whole new generation of graduates facing a scary end to their degrees in a couple of months (jeez, it was hard enough to find work in 2000...) it's just way too depressing. 

So, in a bid to cheer myself up yesterday, I set about trying to find a ridiculously expensive and decadent chair. A sort of cathartic sticking two-fingers up to the economy. 

I DID find one of the most expensive chairs ever sold, it was Yves Saint Laurent's Dragons Chair by Eileen Grey which was sold for a whopping £19m but I have to say I don't really like it and even in my "bugger the recession" frame of mind, it is a ridiculous price tag. 

So, instead I've settled for this gold chair by Fredrik Mattson for Swedish design company Bla Station. 

Its covered in 24-carat gold leaf but I think it's anything but bling. In fact, I really rather love it and its sleekness while be  an unashamed show off. 

Right, that's me cheered up (well until I hear the news again), how about you? 

Monday, 16 March 2009

Dear Jim, Will You Fix It For Me...

...to be the designer of fabulous restaurants?

I know it's a bit far fetched but seeing though I never actually wrote in asking to be Kate Adie when I was 7 (always thought she might not want a small, inquisitive child following her round Gaza, Tiananmen Square et al) maybe I stand a chance of getting this "fix it"

The reason? On Friday I was whisked around London for a fabulous and planned-within-an-inch of its life Magical Mystery Birthday Tour. 

It included an amazing lunch at Skylon. Next to design, food is my other passion and knowing this my boyfriend had carefully selected a Conran & Partners designed restaurant. 

"This is the type of restaurant I would design" I gushed during my Bellini "look at the lights, the tables, ooh look at the chairs"

And just look at them. Sleek, show-stopping, beautiful and elegant. It's amazing how wrong people designing restaurants and bars get it sometimes. 

They should all take a leaf out of Skylon's book...

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Fares Please!

I'm not ashamed to admit that I cried on the day the last Routemasters made their journeys round London. 

Ok, I'd been to a press show and had a little champagne but as I boarded the last ever southbound 159 (Marble Arch - Streatham Bus Garage) I felt incredibly sad. 

The Routemaster was iconic feature of London, as much as Buck Palace or 10 Downing St, so much so that on my boyfriend's first trip to central London, he insisted on jumping on one going down the Strand, just for the hell of it. 

But the Routemaster meant a lot more to me than just being another tourist attraction. 

As a lowly and very badly paid editorial assistant, it was my main way to get into central London. I couldn't afford the tube or train, so instead would board the 159 at some ungodly hour and travel on this rickety, freezing or boiling vehicle (the temperature controls it seemed had never worked) and make my way from seemingly-suburban Streatham to the flashing lights and glamour of Piccadilly Circus. 

Please forgive me my indulgent trip down memory lane, there is a reason for it. 

That being, I adore, love and immediately had a nostalgic yearning for this deckchair. 

It's from fabulous interiors site Pedlars and designed by Tony Davis. It's made from a selection of original Routemaster destination blinds which actually rotate on the chair so you can choose what destinations you display. 

What a piece of genius and a wonderful way to remember these iconic friends of London. 

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Urban Myth?

Someone once told me that if you stand at the Eros statue in London's Piccadilly Circus for 45 minutes, you'll see someone you know. 

I'm not sure if that's true (and I've never had the time to hover for long enough) but I quite like the idea of this urban myth and have often wondered if I did have time to spare who I'd meet. 

What I really like and have since I started working in interiors, is the Eros chair by Philippe Starck for Kartell

It's available in a wide range of jewel-like colours - although my particular favourite is this dramatic red - strange seeing though it would go with nothing in my flat and I also recently talked some friends out of having a bright red kitchen. 

I love the way it looks and feels and how simple it is and of course being designed by Monsieur Starck it's bound to be in my favourites list. 

Thursday, 5 March 2009

All You Need Is Love

I know Valentine's Day is well and truly behind us but I just had to show off this chair from One Eco Home. 

The Senna Love Seat by Ami McKay is the perfect antidote to all the tales of doom and gloom that fill all our news outlets. 

After all, you might not have loads of spare cash at the moment, possibly you've lost your job but what does a bit of love cost? 

Ok, shocked myself a bit there with my over sentimental statements so let's look at the design nitty gritty of this chair. 

It's so deliciously vintage looking with ruched back and carefully turned slender legs but best of all, there's room for two - great if you're so in love you aren't even paying attention to the recession and even better if you can't afford two chairs...

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Glam It Up

Wanna put some glamour back in your life? 

Well, look no further than Jimmie Martin's pimped-up chairs. 

I must admit, at first I wasn't too sure about designers Jimmie and Martin's  treatment of antique furniture but I've come round to them and find them both stylish and amusing. 

I particularly like this chandelier one, although Jimmie and Martin also put images of dogs and birds on the backs of chairs. 

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Has Spring Sprung?

In contrast to the snow of a few weeks ago, it has felt positively Spring-like these last couple of days. 

And what a difference it seems to make in everyone. Smiling faces. Doors being held open. Although I have to admit the person I saw wearing flip flops on Friday was taking it a little too far. 

But with today the first day of March and it being Spring officially only just around the corner, I thought I'd choose this chair for today's post. 

I've always loved these "book"chairs from Purves & Purves what could be better than reading a book in a chair with a book's cover. 

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Bold And Beautiful

I've talked before about how I love the way fashion and interiors seem to intermingle and it seems this is happening even more now than ever before. 

Missioni are on the whole predominately known for their gorgeous clobber but they also do a mean line in interiors too. 

From rugs and cushions to china and towels, they've covered it all. 

But I didn't know about their furniture until I stumbled across American website Unica Home

Missoni Home's collection of seating ranges from exquisite loungers and comfy armchairs to this piece of design genius. 

I love everything about this chair. I love the shape. I love the colour of the wood. And I adore the bold print fabric. 

Ok, so now we've established I love it, I'm off to buy it (well, in my dreams anyway...) 

Monday, 23 February 2009

Every Cloud And All That

Although this chair is more silver covering than silver lining. 

But still, however tenuous my headline for this posting might be, it seemed more than appropriate for this gorgeous chair. 

Brissi, is a great interiors website, one that stocks beautiful and simple homes accessories and furniture. 

Sometimes in life, the simplest things are the most beautiful and this chair is no exception. It would be perfect for a bedroom, perhaps a hallway or if you were feeling particularly decadent as elegant dining tables round a simple table. 

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Degisn Maestro

Anyone who follows architecture or any aspect of design, will have heard of  Le Corbusier - he was one of the most important players in the world of modern architecture. 

To celebrate his work, the Barbican have put together an exhibiton, Le Corbusier - The Art of Artchitecture. Which, I can't wait to see and promises to be a real treat with talks, events and imagery of this amazing man's achievements. 

Of course, he also designed a chair or two as well! In fact, it seems everyone who's anyone in the design world, has at some point designed a chair.

I love this LC1 chair (design is now under license by Cassina) and short of being able to afford one of his buildings, I'll settle for this chair to add to my ever growing museum of design classics. 

Thursday, 19 February 2009

New Find

I blogged the other day about how Twitter is exposing me to American interiors blogs and so opening up a whole new collection of shops and websites. 

In fact I'm seriously considering cashing my pounds for dollars (although the exchange rate isn't exactly great at the moment) and heading for the states to stock up on gorgeous homewares

The newest one I've discovered is Brocade Home

Their furniture is simply beautiful and I particularly adore this pretty, cut work chair which is also available in white. 

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Vintage Vibe

It's no secret I adore vintage furniture. While I can appreciate modern designs and embrace new designers, it's vintage furniture that really gets me excited. 

There's something mystical about vintage finds. It's not just the fact they've survived the years (especially in a time when things are bought and thrown away without a second thought) but I love imaging who owned it, where it came from and what it was used for. 

Take this gorgeous desk chair from H is for Home for instance. Was it a writer who owned it or perhaps it sat at a lady's desk used for RSVPing to fabulous parties. 

I've been thinking a lot about desk chairs recently, which is odd seeing though I don't have a desk, but working from home for me at the moment means sitting on the sofa or leaning on the dining room table. 

Neither are ideal and I'm sure I'd be much more productive if I had one of these...

Monday, 16 February 2009

Wonderful Wood

Isn't the simplest things if life that often provide the most beauty and pleasure? 

Take these chairs for instance. Stunning as they are, they're no amazing design feat and they're not going to challenge you in the way some furniture can. But I adore them. 

They're by Bryce & Kerry Moore for Context Furniture and I love their use of different shades of wood and their thoroughly modern seats and backs complimented by the turned wood legs. 

Wouldn't they work beautifully with a chunky, battered old table for the perfect dining room set? 

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Gently Rocking

I think I'm becoming slightly obsessed with rocking chairs. 

It seems, I just can't get enough of sleek chairs on rockers and after the RAR chair by Charles & Ray Eames and Reno Bonzon's Gaivota design, now I've found this little gem by Blu Dot, an American design company which is fast becoming a favourite of mine. 

I love the way the wood has been moulded to look like fabric and how it appears to gently drape. 

This post is a bit exciting for me because it's the 60th one since I started back in October 08, I love blogging about chairs even more than I did when I started and I can't wait to write my 120th post...

Winging It

Tom Dixon is without a doubt one of our most prolific and important designers. After all, you would kinda have to be to be given the role of Head of Design at Habitat. 

So I decided it was high time, on this decidedly frosty Saturday morning, to feature one his creations. 

This is the Wingback Chair and I adore everything about it. 

Firstly, I love its shape, so dramatic and curvaceous, then I love its colour. I would usually steer clear of black furniture but you can't really imagine this theatrical chair in any other shade and lastly I love the fact that it looks so comfortable. 

It looks like it would swallow you up, not a bad thing when the temperature outside continues to drop. 

Friday, 13 February 2009

Miss Potter?

Not entirely sure Terence Conran for Content by Conran had Beatrix Potter in mind when he designed and named this chair as I fancy she would have preferred something a little more floral. 

I, on the other hand, love this Beatrix chair and everything about it. 

I love the shape (comfy enough but still with a design edge), I love the colour (most unlike me - I usually wouldn't have anything other than cream or dark brown leather) and I love its little spiky legs. 

I have to admit, when I first started this blog back in October 08, I worried I would struggle to find new chairs I liked. In fact, a few people even asked me if "I'd run out of chairs?" 

The answer is no. In fact a resounding no, because as fast as I can write about them, there are designers dreaming new ones up and long may it continue. 

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Just What The Doctor Ordered

I could really do with this chair at the moment. 

I'm in the middle of having my entire flat decorated, which has meant by day I tiptoe round the painters, trying (and failing miserably) to not get paint on my clothes and by night, me and the boyfriend re-shift all our stuff from room to room. 

You'd think it would be cosy sitting in one room all day but it's not - when I think of cosy I think of a chair like this. 

The Lansdowne by Terence Woodgate at SCP is possibly one of the comfiest chairs around. 

Observe (now I sound like David Attenborough) but anyway, look at how the arms would positively hug you and it's deep seat and button back only add to it's beauty. 

I think it's an all round winner so it's definitely going on the wish list/book...

Call It A Day

It's been a while since my last post. It's not been out of sheer laziness but more that I tripped and  dropped my laptop last Wednesday and the screen went blank. 

Panic set in, my Mum called and said she was glad I hadn't fell over (I know that's a Mum thing to say but personally, I wished it had been me that had landed with a thud rather than my brand new, beautiful machine) and try as I might it just wouldn't work. 

Anyway, it's back in action and so am I. It made me think though how reliant we are on technology and machines.

 Accessing email was a problem (no one talks on the phone anymore - so I was effectively cut off from the world) I couldn't have the access I wanted to Twitter or Facebook and most importantly couldn't check Gorkana (despite the lack of jobs - I like to regularly log on to the site - I think it's probably some weird kind of self-imposed torture! 

Sorry, clearly off on a bit of a tangent there. So here's the first chair for a week:

I thought long and hard about what my comeback chair would be; something large and traditional, something quirky, something bright or something serene. 

In the end, I plumped for something classic. 

Day Birger et Mikkelsen are best known for their fashion but they actually produce a great range of simple, classic homewares. 

I love this Woven Leather Camp chair. It's so simple in its design and but really, really beautiful. 

However, I think it's way too nice for camping (I definitely wouldn't risk it at Glastonbury) perhaps I could take it Glamping...

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Family Heirloom?

I'm sure we had one these chairs in the family home when I was growing up. I distinctly remember it sitting in the dining room, ready to accommodate unexpected guests. 

Thing is I don't know where it is now. Probably another casualty of my parents downsizing from a large Edwardian terrace house in London to a beautiful (but considerably smaller) Georgian cottage in Wiltshire. 

But I always loved this chair, so was really pleased to find out what it actually was. 

It's the 14 chair by  Thonet (available at SCP) and is made from bentwood, which was created by using steam to bend the wood. That was back in 1830 and since then has become a design classic. 

Annoyingly it would look rather good in MY dining room, so I'm off to call the parents to find out where on earth it is...

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

New Launch

I recently attended the PS Ikea launch which threw up some amazing finds. 

We all know Ikea is a trusted and much loved store (and you get to eat meatballs too!) but if you actually think about the design of their products, functionality is usually key. 

Sturdy bookcases, colourful, plastic moulded CD storage boxes and the student and first-time buyer staple, the Klippan sofa. 

So, it's always exciting to see they haven't lost their mojo when it comes to designing cutting edge and thought provoking pieces. 

Take this Slingra chair, at first glance, it wouldn't look out of place at Tent or 100% Design. It's elegant sweeping armrests, use of colour and texture and you have a statement piece on your hands. 

Much is written about mass produced furniture, usually with the design glitterati adding a condescending sneer but not everyone can afford designer furniture. 

That doesn't mean they don't know about style, that doesn't mean they don't want their homes to be just as beautiful. 

So for all its huge queues, sometimes unfathomable layout and screaming kids (my tip: never, ever visit Ikea on a Sunday) it seems Ikea has got it right. 

Affordable, stylish furniture that your average Joe can afford to bring into their homes. 

That definitely gets the thumbs up from me. 

Saturday, 31 January 2009

Let It Snow

It's supposed to snow this weekend/next and I'm rather excited about it. 

For one, I don't have to commute, so I won't be avoiding slushy pavements and battling with London coming to a standstill like it seems to every time we experience severe weather conditions. 

No, instead I'll be wrapped up in my cosy flat (ok, so a Victorian conversion with high ceilings isn't exactly cosy), watching the flakes fall, which made me think that sharing this chair was rather appropriate. 

This is the  Poltronas Showtime chair by Jaime Hayon for Bd Barcelona Design

And it made me think of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. Yes, I know the White Witch was pretty evil but I bet she'd want this as her new throne. 

I wonder if Jaime Hayon (who incidently is a prolific designer, having worked for companies such as Bisazza, Swarovski, Established & Sons and Moooi) had this in mind when designing  the chair? 

Maybe he'd let me know...

It's A Winner

Had a very indulgent read of the February issue of Wallpaper* the other night or should I say very early morning (I've been helping out on the launch of the brilliant smarta, which was a bit of shock to the system after having not worked for five weeks and also hence the lack of blogs)

Anyway, the reason I loved the issue so much was because it's their 2009 Design Awards.

Wallpaper* has long been regarded as the authority on cutting edge style and design and this issue was no exception.

And it was great to see chairs well represented in the awards.

But it was this Coen chair by Michael Young for Accupunto that really caught my eye, obviously the eyes of the Wallpaper* judges too, because it won the best dining chair category.

And I for one agree fully with the judges: It's so simple in it's design, it speaks volumes, much more than an elaborate, quirky design and also, surprise, surprise, I love it's slight homage to Scandinavian design.

Friday, 23 January 2009

Metal Magic

It's been a while since I've blogged about dining chairs, it seems this blog is always about cosy, armchairs so I wanted to share this one. 

I first saw these classic French cafe chairs in Isabelle Smith's house, which was recently featured in Easy Living

Manufactured by Tolix and designed by Xavier Pauchard, they're available from Graham & Green

While some might think they're cold and stark, I love their simple style and functionality. 

I think they'd look great around a battered, chunky wooden dining table or, as they are suitable for use outside, use them as your new garden chairs. 

And if the varnished steel isn't the look for you, they're also available in eight colours, including yellow, red, orange and blue. 

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Word Up

They say the pen is mightier than the sword and I, for one, think there has never been a truer statement made. 

This is quite possibly because while being relatively good with words, my fencing skills leave much to be desired. 

So how great to find a chair made up of words. 

This design is from Canadian design company Palette Industries and if you can't completely make out what it says, it reads: STAND.FORGET.BREATHE.AKNOWLEDGE & OBSERVE

Personally, I would call it my thought chair. I mean, what a great mantra to read (or sit on) when life gets a little bit too hectic. 

Palette Industries also have a great lamp with words too - but that will have to be for another blog...

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Cosy Up

Apparently, staying in is the new going out and the rise in pizza orders and DVD rentals are testament to this. 

People are feeling the pinch and entertaining themselves at home but if your social life is starting to take place at home rather than out of it, then you better get your furniture sorted. 

Chances are you're going to spend a lot of time on your derriere which means you'll need something comfy to sit on. 

But remember, we never repeat never should compromise style over comfort or vice versa. 

I mean, who wants an ugly but comfortable chair and likewise who could cope with the most stylish chair in the world if it was really not great for sitting on. 

So, bearing this in mind, I decided to try and find a really comfortable chair. 

And I came across this one from Ochre. I love it because of the colour (this soft blush tone looks great in almost any room and scheme) and because it's huge, perfect for snuggling up with a hot chocolate, a good book, a great film or even a loved one. 

Dotty About Chairs

A few years ago, I worked near Highbury Corner and at lunchtime would often have a wander up Upper Street, having a nose in the fashion and interiors stores. 

I used to call it research although truth be told I would find myself in a really cool (but very expensive) clothes shop more than I would all the second hand furniture shops. 

The exception to this was After Noah, it was always a favourite to have a mooch around, from it's children's toys to reconditioned Bakelite phones and simple yet stunning furniture. 

They also have most of their products online now, which means I can also do a virtual shop. 

Their selection of chairs is amazing but I've fallen for this Alfred tub chair which I just love in this spotty fabric. 

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Stick 'em Up!

I have to admit sometimes I get a little bit carried away with Chairs, Chairs, Chairs and start thinking about ways to make it a bit more abstract.

I've blogged before about chair products that aren't actually chairs, and while I said I wouldn't do it again I have.

It's all in a good cause you understand and anyway, I think it's good to have a bit of humour on a Saturday morning. 

So I would like to present for your delectation...

...chairs stickers! 

Ok, it's not as crazy as it sounds. Stickers are big in interiors at the moment. I'm not talking Disney ones that small children may stick to your wall when your backs turned. No, these stickers are far more elegant, intricate designs that are designed to brighten your home. 

So I was really pleased to find some chair stickers from Supernice

These ones are actually very practical. Bored of your chairs? Then you simply give it a makeover with one of the classic back stickers. 

And while I grant you, that these are a little bit more out there, they make a cool alternative to conventional wall art. I love the idea of putting a simple stool against the sticker to create an actual seat. 

So next time you can't decide on a chair or fit it in, put up a sticker instead...