One of the icons of the 20th century, the Egg chair remains popular throughout the globe. From very humble origins in a hotel in Copenhagen, the carefully styled chair is now sought by many as a stylish addition to their flat or house. The chair was designed in the 1950s by Arne Jacobsen, one of the foremost furniture designers in the movement known as the Danish Modern furniture style. The main parts of the chair are fashioned using very light materials, intended to create a sturdy and yet light-feeling chair. It also uses traditional hand-crafting methods in the design of the chair.
The Egg chair was originally intended to be used in the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel. At first, the design was for interior features within the reception and lobby areas at the Hotel. People using these chairs, however, found that they were light, supportive and comfortable, and this made them want to use the chair in their own homes. From starting out as a lobby chair in 1958, the Egg design quickly became one of the icons of the 1950s, and is now a classic vintage chair design.
The chair is moulded using a combination of tradition and modern techniques. This modernity is mostly associated with the skills which make the egg chair so light and easy to move. For example, the steel structure of the frame is light and easy to carry, as is the injection moulded shape of the Aluminium base. Over the steel frame is a plaster shell which has plastic foam as a filler. This helps to prevent the Egg from being too heavy, and also provides a comforting softness. The chair is moulded into the frame easily enough, while the steel and plaster provide enough support to ensure that the chair keeps its shape.
Jacobsen’s design is completed with an upholstery which follows traditional forms. The leather outer cover is padded with foam, and there are also tilted fittings allowing the user to select the position of the chair. The softness of the leather and padding make the chair ideal for relaxing, but the tilting mechanism means that it can be used for a variety of purposes, including sitting at a desk and being used as an office seat. This adaptability means that the chair has recently become popular in home offices, and business locations where style is regarded as essential.
The Hotel chair is now a fashion and design statement for any home. It is the combination of the modern and the traditional which have turned it into a classic of the kind, and has made many people consider that they are looking at a chair which looks and feels great. Modern reproductions look to try and emulate the style and intentions of the original design, making sure that the chair is now available in a variety of different materials, including wool, leather and cashmere, making the chairs unique. With these reproductions complementing the original design, the Egg is likely to be popular for another generation of users.