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3 Iconic Chair Manufacturers You Should Know

Updated: Nov 11, 2022

We love all types of chairs here at Lady Griddlebone. From the antique pieces to the modern inspired designs. That’s why we couldn’t turn down the opportunity of exploring more about chairs at the V&A Museum to inspire our next upcycled vintage chair.

1. Frank Lloyd Wright

Born Richland Centre, Wisconsin, 1867. Died Phoenix, Arizona, 1959.

Frank Lloyd Wright is widely viewed as the foremost American architect of the 20th Century. He designed more than a thousand buildings during his career.

Furniture was integral to Wright’s design philosophy. He believed that architecture, interiors and furnishings must arise from the same conceptual principles – an approach he described as ‘Organic Architecture’. As his career progressed, Wright experimented with sleeker, more futuristic aesthetics, as a precursor to modern, minimalist furniture design.

2. David Kirkness

Born Papa Westray, Orkney, 1855; Died Kirkwall, Orkney, 1936

David Kirkness, like his father and grandfather, trained as a joiner in Orkney. He set up a general joinery workshop, making traditional straw-backed Orkney chairs as a sideline. Twenty years later the Orkney chair had become the workshop’s main product. Over his lifetime, Kirkness made 14,000 chairs. The demand came from a fashionable clientele far removed from local Orkney families. After the Second World War, Reynold Eunson, a fellow Orcadian carpenter, bought the workshop and continued manufacturing the Orkney chair in the traditional manner.

3. Thonet and Sons.

Michel Thonet (1796-1871) was born in Prussia and trained as a traditional cabinet-maker. In the 1830s. as an alternative to the laborious technique of carving, he began bending wood to create furniture. The road to success was not an easy one. Following bankruptcy and aged nearly 50, Thonet was forced to move to Vienna with his wife and five sons. It took nearly another decade to finally establish the family business, Gebrüder Thonet in 1853. The firm went on to mass-produce ‘bentwood’ furniture in unprecedented numbers, manufacturing up to 1.8 million pieces a year by 1912.

This type of research is what helps us shape our future furniture designs. We're excited to share with you our next collection of unique furniture designs, just like this vintage library chair - Summer Isle

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