Design & Real Estate

Retro Essential

Eames’ modern take on a 19th century club chair has not only endured for more than 50 years, but it’s become one of the most significant furniture designs of the 20th century — instantly recognizable and enduringly fresh.

When the Herman Miller Eames Lounge Chair & Ottoman set was introduced in 1956, there was nothing like it, and there is still nothing that compares. Charles & Bernice Alexandra “Ray” Eames’ home was the backdrop for the couple’s gracious hosting of a famously eclectic group of friends and associates, providing “a special refuge from the strains of modern living.” So, too, the lounge chair and ottoman were conceived to provide welcoming comfort. The designers wanted it to have the “warm, receptive look of a well-used first baseman’s mitt.” Stardom ensued for both design and designers after the set debuted on NBC. Today, to provide additional choices for complementing a range of interiors, the chair and ottoman are offered in all-black and all-white versions as well;