Today, you wouldn’t exactly consider these wooden chairs with scrolls and contoured backs as modern, but when they first appeared they were light years ahead of their time. In fact, it was in the mid 1800s when German cabinetmaker-turned-chair-revolutionary, Michael Thonet, unveiled the silhouettes we’re so familiar with today – the bentwood chairs. It was the first time such a production method was used – heating wood to bend it into improbable chairs. The result was graceful, sculptural and surprisingly comfortable seating.
But Michael Thonet’s success had more to do with besides aesthetics. The chair’s popularity was also due to his efforts to decrease production costs by using only renewable timber and managing his own factory. Thonet’s bent wood chairs for sale were the 1800s equivalent of Ikea – making sophisticated, functional design more affordable. But the amazing thing about these chairs is that despite being old for more than a century, for some reason they are still current. It might have something to do with the fact that cafes and restaurants adopted the bentwood as their chair of choice, or it might be because the chair itself is so adaptable.
Still going strong today, Thonet’s classic design gets continuously tweaked and updated, remaining fresh and timeless. With the wide selection of bent wood chairs for sale in colours ranging from classic neutrals to bold shades, glossy or matte wood finishes, and various materials for the seat – they look equally at home in a chic bistro or your own dining room. The only thing you need to do is match them properly.
Picture these chairs amidst a traditional dining room setting. In a black or brown colour they pair great with classic-style tables and successfully capture that charming vintage appeal. French cottage and Victorian are some of the styles bentwood chairs fit perfectly in. But mix some extra curvy models together with a sleek Scandinavian table and now you get some variety. In fact, a blend of bentwood chairs with a Saarinen-style table always seems to be a match made in heaven. Both designs look like they’ve been created to compliment each other’s lines.
And if you’re feeling rather playful, one of these curved sculptures can look dreamy doubling as your nightstand. It really isn’t that far fetched – a chair is already a nightstand, only one with a back on it. A wounding matte bentwoord chair in a pastel shade can be quite the romantic décor piece complimenting the bedroom setting. However, do not place a lamp on it, since some chairs might not have a completely flat seat.