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...

Friday, 16 January 2009

Olive Pick

Jonathan Adler is fast becoming my favourite designer of the moment. Yesterday, I blogged about his innovative and quirky cushions, ceramics and lighting and today, it's his fantastic furniture range. 

I found it really hard to pick a chair from his collection; each and every one tickled my fancy but finally I settled on the Baxter Club chair. 

The first thing that grabbed me was the colour, you don't see many olive green chairs and being one of my favourite colours, the first box was ticked. 

Secondly, I love the shape. It just looks so cozy without compromising on style and of course, it's got a button back so it's bound to be a winner for me. 

Lastly, look at the legs. The sleek, steel legs are not the type you'd expect on a chair like this and I love to be constantly surprised by furniture. 

So all in all it's a winner all round. 

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Probably The Best Chair In The World...

So it's no secret that I adore retro chairs and even less of a secret that I'm a strong admirer of Danish design

This chair ticks both boxes, so when I found it whilst have a quick browse on MetroRetro, I was really pleased. 

I love this 1960s leather and rosewood chair for so many reasons.

1) It's leather and aged leather at that - don't get me wrong my obsession with leather furniture isn't some weird fetish thing. 

2) It's shape is so simple but just so exquisite.

3) It's got a tale to tell; the thing I really love about retro furniture is that you could spend ages thinking about who owned it and where it came from. 

MetroRetro is a treasure trove of retro delights, choose from chairs, sofas, lighting, desks and more. 

I also happen to think it's a good thing, MetroRetro is based in Essex as seeing though it's a county I don't frequent that often, both their stock and my bank balance is safe...


I've talked before about not liking traditional rocking chairs, they're jut a bit countrified for me and besides anyone who's ever seen The Woman In Black will understand my slight reluctance to like them. 

The RAR chair by Charles & Ray Eames for Vitra is completely different to my other alternative rocker and that's what I like about it. 

No horrible turned wood, but instead retro sleek moulded plastic, steel legs and delicate rockers. 

The chair is available in six colours all of them beautiful, I would like one in each, possibly as an alternative to my dining chairs, although I admit the rocking could hinder you slightly when eating soup. 

Charles & Ray are without a doubt  my favourite chair designers and I would have loved to have met them, that's not going to be possible of course, so I'll just keep writing about their creations. 

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

American Beauties

I'm having my dining room ceiling pulled down today, which means I'm pretty much trapped in the living room, still at least the TV and laptop's with me.

So while looking for new and exciting chairs, I thought I would share some delights I've found from across the pond. 

I actually found two new interiors sites while browsing American website CasaSugar (follow them on Twitter too for regular updates) 

This first chair is called Anson and is from Room & Board and I love its retro 50s shape, button back and sleek legs. It's available in five leathers and 11 fabrics and also with a matching sofa. 

This one's pretty gorgeous too. And ok, I admit it not dissimilar to the Anson. 

It's from Design Within Reach, which I think is a great name for an interiors company. 

Called Bantam, it's available in 15 fabrics and gives you the option to choose from four woods for the legs, allowing you to create a bespoke piece. 

And the good news is, that while both companies don't yet have stores outside the US, they do ship internationally. 

Now, what colour shall I choose...

Monday, 12 January 2009

Spot On

It's all very well and good featuring designer chairs and vintage delights but we're in the midst of a recession and I, for one, am counting the pennies. 

Apart from that, it seems it's becoming increasingly important to support our high streets what with the demise of The Pier and Woolies

So, it's refreshing to see that the aforementioned high street aren't resting on their laurels when it comes to designing and producing furniture. 

This is the Porto from the SS09 collection at Next but you could be forgiven for thinking it had come from a small upholsterer. 

I love the spot one for fun and the cream one for pure sophistication but what I really love is the shape. 

I love furniture with curves and these chairs seem to me to have a definite nod to the 1920s. 

So, well done Next for not churning out formulaic, furniture and instead coming up with something a little bit special. 

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Après Ski

It snowed in London yesterday, albeit for a nanosecond but deepest, darkest South London sure had a slight Narnia feel to it. 

So it was rather fitting I found this chair by David Linley; called St Mortiz after the ski resort and with its definite curve you can see how it was inspired by a ski jump. 

Personally, I think its got a little bit of both the Eames lounger and Barcelona chair about it. What with the padded, button leather upholstery and elegant dark wood. 

They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery and with this chair I think that's never been truer. 

Saturday, 10 January 2009

Fit for a prince

There seems to be a bit of a Danish theme going on with my two blogs at the moment; a cushion from Ferm Living on Cushions, cushions, cushions and now this chair from Louise Campbell, a designer who is half Danish, half English. 

You can read more about her esteemed and varied career on her website (this lady sure's got a lot of impressive design credentials under her belt) but what I really love of hers is this Prince Chair. 

Originally designed for a design competition - it didn't win (and I for one want to know why - had the judges perhaps forgotten their glasses that day?) but regardless of this, Danish furniture manufacturers, Hay put the chair into production. 

Made from laser-cut steel, rubber and felt, I adore its intricate design and that favourite combination of mine; something that should appear soft but is in fact hard as nails. 

This by the way, is my 40th post  since I started back in October, so perhaps as a little birthday present, Hay would like to send me one of these and I'll rename it Princess Chair...

Friday, 9 January 2009

Another Orla

I feel a little bit cheeky blogging  about another Orla Kiely for Heal's chair, but the truth of the matter is I just love them so much, I want to tell you about all of them! 

This is the Lusk armchair which is available in three colours: this gorgeous, vibrant Pumpkin, a delicious Moss green and an elegant purplely-brown Henna. 

I love the colours this chair is available in (mostly because they'd really fit in with my flat) but what I simply adore is the shape. 

I've blogged before about loving retro furniture and I love the way Orla has emulated the style in a modern day collection. 

However there seems to be a bit of a problem; this is my 39th post (just one away from the big 40) and I want all these chairs, so it seems I have one of three options: 

1) Win the lottery to feed my addiction

2) Move to that Cornwall mansion to fit them all in

3) Keep blogging about all of the world's most beautiful, innovative chairs

Oh sod it, I can't choose - it'll have to be all three! 

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Here's looking at you kid

I recently had some friends to stay with their two young children and I'm ashamed to say, they didn't really have anywhere to sit.

I know, I know, shock and horror, how can you write a blog about chairs and not be able to provide adequate seating for your guests.

So I started doing some research to see what I could find in the way of cool chairs for cool kids.

Not surprisingly Philippe Starck has it covered and designed miniature versions of the Louis Ghost chair he created for Kartell

The Lou Lou Ghost chair is available in red, black, white and clear and if you fancy one or two for your rugrats you'll find them at Nest

It's never too easy to start a child's love affair with Eames, which is why if you want your kid to be a design expert, you have to invest in one of these now!

The Eames Elephant (ok, it's more a stool then a chair but hey it's cool) was originally a prototype design by Charles and Ray that never went into mass production.

Luckily for us Vitra have recreated the original design in plastic. It's available in five colourways and if you fancy Nelly for your sprogs, you'll find them at Nest

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Baby it's cold outside

I can't quite believe how cold it is at the moment, being a southern softie (I fully admit I am) all this -5C or whatever it was the other night seems a bit wrong for south London.

I even expressed delight to my boyfriend that our neck of the woods had been mentioned on the news regarding the extreme weather (it takes very little to get you excited when you're on your own all day)

Anyway, what I'm getting at is that leaving my toasty flat yesterday was a massive shock to the system and when I got back I kinda looked at my beautiful leather sofa and armchair a little sadly.

Yeah sure they're sleek, stylish and comfortable, but well, in these chilly times, leather can be a little bit cold. Just like in the summer when it gets hot and sticks to the back of your legs, in the winter it feels like lying on a slice of ice.

So I started looking for cozy armchairs and found this little beauty from The Conran Shop (yes I know The Conran Shop is really expensive - but this IS virtual shopping)

This is the Eleonora armchair which is covered in mohair velvet (how cozy does that sound?) I love it and while I'm not about to chuck out my trusty furniture, I think this will be a welcome addition if anyone's feeling generous...

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Working 9-5...

...well actually, I'm not at the moment, more like working sporadically and job hunting.

But while waiting for replies to my freelance work requests, I thought I'd do some virtual office chair shopping.

I knew there had to be a silver lining to this being made redundant lark (and no it's not watching Jezzer - jeez can only imagine what his house looks like...) it's au revoir to nasty office chairs.

You know the ones, usually black or grey with nasty, scratchy upholstery encased in hard plastic that has ambitions to be a pilot ejector seat when you try and alter the height.

Thankfully, someones seen the dark side and combated it with this gorgeous stainless steel and white faux snakeskin design from Graham & Green, now where's my credit card...

Saturday, 3 January 2009

Rock on

I've always loved the idea of a rocking chair but find those country-style ones don't really do it for me, a little bit twee, a little bit Grandma but still I like the idea of gently rocking while reading a good book.

Which I was really pleased to find the the Gaivota chair by Reno Bonzon which I found while browsing Not On The Highstreet

I like the fact its streamlined while being classic but what I really like about it is that instead of that awful, orangey-pine so often used for rocking chairs, it's a gorgeous made from lovely walnut stained beech.

Now, where's my book...