“Anything I can do, Ray can do better.” – Charles Eames
Charles and Ray Eames are celebrated midcentury modern furniture designers who contributed a lot towards the development of modern design and architecture. Their groundbreaking contributions completely revolutionized the way we perceive product design. Their innovation and stylistic execution was visionary, and many of their products have become trailblazing essentials in the field of interior design.
The husband-wife pair experimented with molded plywood – and later plastic – which resulted in some truly mesmerizing and pragmatic designs. Ray also dabbled in graphic designing and even designed 26 covers for the journal Arts & Architecture during 1942-1948. Some of their most recognized works include the Wire Chair, the Walnut Stool, the Eames Eiffel Chair, the Eames Storage Unit, and the Eames Lounge Chair with Ottoman.
One of the most ubiquitous piece of furniture in contemporary interior design, the Eames Lounge Chair has carved itself a permanent mark in the interior design world. It’s a product that literally defines customized luxury, and has been designed to emulate an aura of casual elegance within any interior setting.
Designed in 1956 by the husband-wife duo after years of experimentation, the Eames Lounge Chair has been in constant demand since its conception. It’s instantly recognizable – an exemplary product that has become a timeless classic and a trendsetter. To this day, there is no equal to its everlasting elegance.
One of the major attraction of this chair is that it ages gracefully. The expert blend of leather and molded wood features an ageless mid-century beauty that would look better with age. The Eames Lounge Chair wears its age well, and can add an instant oomph to any interior design it has been set up in.
Charles and Ray Eames had always wanted to design a chair that would spruce up the visual quality of any regular old and typical interior space. In their own words, they wanted to design a product which would complement, “the warm, receptive look of a well-used first baseman’s mitt.”
The result of their efforts was the Eames Lounge Chair, whose aesthetic was inspired by the traditional English Club Chair. With its aura of casual luxury, this chair instantly became an icon. It was heralded by designers and non-designers alike because of its classy elegance and refined aesthetics. Today, this chair is one of the most recognized and perpetually used products in several genres of interior designs.
The Eames Lounge Chair has been crafted from molded plywood and leather. It’s actually composed of three curved plywood shells, which are the headrest, backrest and the seat respectively. Initially, these shells constituted of 5 layers of plywood with a Brazilian Rosewood veneer on top. However, in 1990, this veneer was discontinued in the favor of more ecofriendly and sustainably sourced choices like cherry, walnut and Palisander rosewood.
Other than that, there were quite a few creative material uses that were featured in this chair. The shock mount technology and the zippered cushions was a decidedly new take on the whole design.
The design of the Eames Lounge was so instantly attractive that it was even featured on the Arlene Francis Home Show in 1956. Immediately after its debut, the Herman Miller Company – who manufactured the chair – launched an advertising campaign which further ended up highlighting the classic and versatile design of this chair. With frequent print ads and memorable cameos, this chair ended up becoming a complete and total phenomenon.