COTE DE TEXAS: Trendy Cheap Chairs

Trendy Cheap Chairs


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Remember the Ghost chair – it was everywhere from 2005 to 2010. 

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Even in this high-end home, the Ghost chair, or Louis Chair was the first choice – price wasn’t the object.

 
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A bit later, it was all about the Tolix chair, another inexpensive iconic choice for breakfast rooms and dining rooms.

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I like the mix of the industrial Tolix with the rough brick and shiny crystal chandelier.


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Another mix of the industrial, rustic, and glam.


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And then there was my personal favorite in the cheap dining room chair choices:  the Kubu wicker chair.  This dining room by Cynthia who owns Houston’s Indulge Decor was one of the first pictures of the wicker chair and probably helped start the craze.


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Here in my breakfast room are my budget Cost Plus chairs.


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And this famous dining room by Jill Brinson was another major catalyst of the kubu craze (and the double lantern craze and the cabinet grill craze and the white cowhide craze.)

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But today, nothing is bigger than the Eames Molded Plastic Dowel-Leg (DSW) chair.  The revival of this chair is like a mushroom fungus that has taken over the design world.  Wait.  I mean the design world for the under-40 year olds.  The younger set  absolutely loves this classic.  The chair really does look fresh.  It pops in every way it’s used.  It’s the chair of 2015.


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It comes in black too and lots of fun bright shades, along with light pink too.


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Here the contemporary Eames chair is shown mixed with brick walls and old vintage windows.


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An antique mirror, wood table, and modern light all mix in with the modern Eames chair.


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Here the Eames chair is shown in the kitchen with stainless cabinets and concrete floors.


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Here the chairs are mixed with a crystal chandelier in a Belgian styled paneled room.


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Mixed with brick floors and an old wood table – the chairs add just a touch of contemporary.


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Another mix of new and old.  The turquoise chairs would have been a good choice with the corner cabinet, but the white is nice too.


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I love this – the lime green Eames architectural leg against the straight lines of the stairs and the horizontal lines of the paneling.  Very nice. Very thoughtful design.


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Renovated home with rustic table and black Eames.  Again, the black looks good against the cabinet.


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I love this.  The black chairs on the antique rug with the sheepskin rug added for texture.  Love!


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The black chairs look really good in an industrial setting.

It’s interesting when you think about the popularity of these three chairs – all in just five years really.  It’s the cheap price that drives the mass appeal – especially since chairs used to be so expensive.  Dining room chairs were especially pricey.  And – you always need at least 8 or 10.   Even before the table is bought, the chairs alone can wipe out a normal budget.   And so, here comes the arrival of chic chairs – including the clear Louis Ghost chair.   
      
Since these trendy chairs are so inexpensive, people seem to move on quickly. Buying a new set every few years won’t break many budgets.  It seems the days of keeping dining room chairs for generations is slipping away.  I hope not!


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  I remember when I was buying my set of dining room chairs – I wanted antique French caned chairs more than anything in the world.  I found my vintage set on EBay.  Today they are hidden under slipcovers, but one day, I’m sure they will make an appearance, maybe painted?   But sell them for a more disposable set?  No.

What are some of the other styles of chairs that were recently trendy?

  More substantial than the previous cheap fill-ins is this chair in all price points from Ikea to Restoration Hardware.

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These are still nice but a little tired looking.


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Ballard Design still sells these.  There are also other versions of this chair.  I remember thinking these were fabulous 15 years ago.

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The dreaded Director’s Chair.  So uncomfortable.  Somewhere in the deep recesses of my attic are a set I took from my mother-in-law’s house.  She sewed me new covers made out of a blue floral fabric I bought in the sale bin at Joanne’s.  Ugh!!!!!


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I remember when these folding chairs came out – I wanted a set!  And they are pretty, really, but were never hugely popular.


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Design Within Reach has the Eames chair – but they aren’t dirt cheap like these.  Of course the DWR quality is wonderful, but 30 year olds are more price conscious, actually we all are!

World Market has this chair in white and black and turquoise – on sale.


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They are giving this away.  HERE


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For a younger look -  I really loved this one.  HERE



Here are two Eames chairs in white with arms for the same amount as the World Market pair.  Click on the picture for more information.



And in black.  


And one of my favorite bloggers - The Polished Pebble’s Kelley - has done it again.  Since she has started blogging – I think she has sold three homes with all her furnishings included – maybe two? – !!  But still.  After she sells her house and home, she then starts all over.  How fabulous is that?  This time in her temporary apartment while her new house is being renovated, Kelley decorated with a few iconic modern pieces likes this Eames chair.  She got hers at Design Within Reach – and in white leather – it’s simply gorgeous.  I’ve been drooling over it for months now.

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Fabulous, no?   Wow.  I love her orange and blue pillows mixed together against the white.  I love Kelly’s aesthetic.  To see more of the room go HERE.



I know this isn’t the quality of Design Within Reach – but wow!  In leather, with a light wood finish.  And it’s so reasonable!  How bad could it be???   But sssh.  Don’t like Mr. Slippersocksman see this!   He’d be throwing out all the French chairs for one asap. 



Here is the same chair for slightly less, with dark wood which has more of a contrast.  To order, just click on the picture!


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So, if 2015 is the year of the Eames chair – what will be chosen next?  What is the next reasonable, great design that will be all the rage for the next few years?  Any guesses?

36 comments :

  1. Interesting that so many of these chairs are featured in dining rooms (which makes them look like hip board rooms NOT dining rooms). I can’t imagine sitting through an entire dinner party without thinking constantly how soon could I possibly leave the table because I was so damn uncomfortable. The food and wine wouldn’t even be in my radar. At your dinner table, with those nice tufted seats? I could sit there forever while we talked, ate, and drank our merry way through the night.

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  2. The Barcelona, one of my faves!!

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  3. Joni, your blog is truly remarkable. I appreciate the (huge) effort you go to and the time you spend to post these beautiful, informative and educational posts. Thank you so much.

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  4. You know, I've never warmed to this "chair of the moment".
    I think it's the legs.
    Too insect-y for me.
    xo

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  5. I do think the wicker chair will be huge again. It looks like something that is "recyclable" because of the material but also Mark D Sikes did that collaboration with Soane Britain and I think it is only a matter of time before there are numerous copycat of his rendition which are very much like the ones that you have yourself. But like trouser styles - the same classics will just do a merry go round.

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  6. I'm not really interested in being trendy, so I think I'll stick with my vintage and antique Louis XV and XVI style chairs.

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  7. fun post, Joni,i always love reading your insights. I do love a well thought out mix.

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  8. Que bonitos espacios y muy bien resueltos.Si eres de los que disfrutais con el sol y te encanta la naturaleza… ¡quédate a ver! Elracodeldetall.blogspot.com, porque en este post os traigo un trocito de bosque con algunas ideas para decorar con troncos y ramas. Alucinarás con la de cosas originales que se puede llegar a hacer. Te espero !!

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  9. Yep, I vote Wishbone. I have been seeing them in lots of fun colors.

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  10. I love all those trendy chairs....if I were younger I would probably change them out on a whim every few years too. I don't care how popular the Eames chair is it will never appear in my home....I will take my tired slip covered chairs over those any day! I'm not sure what the next trend will be.......
    ~Des

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  11. Lloyd loom Stratford chair, or a cheaper knock off. It's the perfect combination of more sleek and modern that is so popular now, but it has texture and some curves at the same time.

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  12. I really like the chair and don't even mind sitting in it but when used in a house I can usually think of a better option in 9 out of 10 applications in which I've seen it used. I think it's perfect in an office setting or a nice lunch room but in a house it always imparts a vibe that I just don't like in a house. My dining room chairs are 155 years old and I think they're perfect so I'm probably not qualified to pick the next trendy chair.

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  13. I love the look of the dining eames chair but the splayed legs are a clunky nightmare....people wrestle back and forth when trying to get up at the table...it's a noisy tangled nightmare.

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  14. You made me realize why I don't like the Eames chair. They were in death mode when I first noticed them as a child. The association is one of stink-stank-stunk..... They were in friend's play rooms, public court house rooms, libraries, basements, sheds, all smelly places. And the colors. Oh dear.

    Garden & Be Well, XOT

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  15. I guess I'm off trend. I have both the Tolix chairs and the Ballard Design chairs although I bought them at RH. The Tolex chairs are easy to clean and indestructible, which is key when you have 2 boys and one very energetic lab. I have the other chairs in my very informal dining room. We rarely use it. When we do, I find them comfortable enough. Maybe I'll switch back to a more traditional dining set when my boys go off to college.

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  16. Ok I think my estate sale chairs are way cheaper and built to last I would recover rather than toss. I bought pt at an estate sale in Preston hollow 8 henredon French Louis xvi retro chairs circa the 60's for $150. I got them all reupholstered and have enjoyed them for the past 10 years and won't pitch them. Plus they are very comfortable to sit on and most of these chairs shown don't look comfortable. Sorry Joni I think you should do repurposed chairs not throw away design

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  17. Thanks so much for a fascinating post! I remember the Louis Ghost moment; how quickly trends come and go. And I remember also wondering about Anna Wintour's Tolix chair as seen in the September Issue; is it really comfortable enough to sit on all day?

    One question: what about the Jacobsen Series 7 chairs? How would you rank them? Are they an enduring classic or part of the midcentury modern trend?

    Thanks so much for an always informative and inspiring blog.

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  18. Maybe the Wishbone will be next - I was thinking about that one too but it seems too solid for mass? but maybe - it is really getting popular. ok - y'all made me feel good about my old chairs!!!! great comments!!

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  19. Don't change any of your chairs!! I love your wicker chairs; and I love your slipcovered chairs! I have my mother's Italian dining chairs; and they are comfortable classics! As you know, I avoid trends!
    Great blog post!!!

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    Replies
    1. Bless your heart, Penny! We all know you are doing the best you can--and we appreciate your efforts!!!! One day you will triumph..... again!!!

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  20. Sigh. Why is everything so ugly now?

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  21. Woven and rattan french bistro chairs. Yes.

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  22. You think like I do. The Danish wishbone chair is popping up a lot and can be purchased at a reasonable rate.

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  23. eames chairs are really comfortable. I wonder if the originals are still around every corner in Texas Instruments North building(wouldn't have 'em in my house because of that). tolix chairs leave horrible marks on light floors. So does this mean I have to get rid of my ghost chairs? they are pretty comfortable , too.

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  24. I think Breuer charis might be ready for a comeback. Also Thonet chairs.

    The wishbone is already back. I can find the knock offs at the local outlet for an online MCM furniture retailer.

    Whenever I find myself confronted with a Tolix chair and a long meal I know my bottom will be freezing. They are so cold!

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  25. What about the Emeco Navy chairs from DWR? For a while you couldn't open a shelter mag without seeing them as kitchen and bar chairs. I have two in my kitchen and they are actually pretty comfy, but only because I ordered them with walnut seats. I have two more with the original metal seats at a built-in homework desk in my basement, and there's a reason my kids never want to go down there to do HW -- they are so cold! I agree that many of these chairs look uncomfy for long relaxing meals, but I have that problem with the antique chairs in my dining room. On the rare occasions when we actually dine in there, I remember that I really need to look into adding additional padding to the seats. A nice padded seat can make a huge difference.

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  26. For those of us trying to tone down the "granny effect" of our antique-filled homes these cool modern chairs really freshen things up.

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  27. I like if the chairs are a different style from the dining table. I've had black wicker chairs in my kitchen for the past 18 years. I also replaced my expensive and formal dining room chairs with inexpensive slipcovered ones from Ikea about 6 years ago. Now I still need to find a spot for a Ghost chair.....

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  28. Eeecccch, I am with you, I'm sticking with my French dining chairs. I am thankful that my daughter, nephew & nieces love the classics and not all that plastic junk--hardly environmentally friendly.

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  29. Interesting post Joni! Always like a well done mix of styles and think the more modern chairs freshen these rooms. Not a fan of lots of spindle-y legs but thought a couple looked great in the photos were there were only a few chairs. Like the Tolix and Ghost chairs featured but like some of the other comments, agree that Eames chairs remind me of grade school lunch room.

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  30. My dining room chairs were a fortune and then I bought 2 slip cover chairs from Windsor Smith for the head, I would never get rid of them, just based on the cost.
    I always wanted the folding chairs from Ballard but thought my family would break them in a hot minute. I never did buy anything for extra seating.

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  31. Nice recap of trendy chairs. Not a fan of Eames design. Do you think 30 years from now they will resurrect the Ghost chair?

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  32. Nice post. Thank you for sharing this information.
    Cheap Furniture

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