I have developed a healthy obsession with Eames or Eames-like molded chairs with sheepskin rugs artfully tossed on them. It's a mix of urban modern and rustic coziness. Love it. Especially as the weather gets colder and the days get shorter.
My husband Matt and I are lucky to have a working fireplace, but we still have never outfitted the area with appropriate seating. I've been trying to find the right chair "mood" on a scale of antique/traditional to modern/non-traditional. We want something with some coziness to it but with a good deal of non-upholstery (e.g. wood or metal) to break up the seating experience in our living room (our living room is sectioned into "dining area," "TV-watching/living area" and "empty space around the fireplace area" - the dining area is all loaded up with wood and everything in the TV-watching area is heavily upholstered). So, how to achieve non-upholstered coziness? French antique Louis XIV/XV/XVI chairs with light upholstery? Or something more modern and bohemian involving wood or metal or - dare I say - plastic?? Mix in a little furriness for good measure?
Because I have a lot of antique French and Italian going on in my apartment with a touch of Asian, I wanted to mix the overall aesthetic up with something a bit more modern but with the ability to blend into what I already have going on. The Eames chair achieves all that I was looking for: modern, but not glaringly so, and with a vintage throw-back quality; plus it's got plastic, wood and metal! It's all so very American! (Well, the originals were Fiberglass, but I digress.) Add in a cozy sheepskin throw (faux or real), and you're set for winter-time cozy fireplace lounging.
Full disclosure: I would always prefer to own an original. I am not usually one to promote knockoffs. We could go over the pros and cons and IP issues, but at $500 a pop for the real deal, it's just not in the cards for me right now (if you want the real deal, go here at Design Within Reach - they have the rights and the original chair molds). But for you "chipper" chicken fans (go to 3:30 in the clip!), read on about my hunt for affordable Eames look-alikes and cozy furry throws.
I found a pair of Eames-style Eiffel armchairs with wood legs on Craigslist on Sunday for $100 that I was pretty excited about, but I LOST THE SALE to an even more eager beaver Craigslist shopper than me (the horror). Sigh. Slight devastation, but obviously it wasn't meant to be. Fresh off of this loss, I decided that I need to own these chairs immediately and under mainstream, mass-produced conditions (I couldn't deal with the anticipation and high/low that comes from auction or Craigslist shopping) - so to established online retailers I went. After some Google searching and some helpful advice (and snobby comments) from Apartment Therapy, I settled on the Retro-classic White Accent Chairs (Set of 2) from Overstock.com for $166.99 (down from $219.91) with FREE SHIPPING (little in this world makes me happier than free shipping) and a DISCOUNT CODE that gave me an additional $20 off (the only thing better than free shipping is an additional discount code for extra savings!). (Note: White on White had good recs, but for $320 a pop, I'd rather splurge and buy the real thing.)
Just for fun, let's compare the cost of purchasing the Overstock chairs v. the
real deal from DWR (excluding tax).
Pair @ $166.99 (or $83.50 each)
Shipping @ FREE
Additional Discount: $20 off for spending $150+
Pair @ $998 (or $499 each)
Shipping @ $79.84
Additional Discount: None
What do we save?? $930.85! Man, I love deal hunting.
In addition to that sweet set of cheapo chairs, I am buying two lambskin rugs from a charming Canadian company called Southern Cross Sheepskins Inc. (website: Sheepskinstuff.com) to complete the look. The size (24"x42") runs a bit larger than the rugs I've seen on Joss & Main, Overstock, Pottery Barn, Ikea, etc. (all 24"x36"), which I think will work well with the chairs (I want some of the rug edges to hang over the chair edges). And the cost is reasonable ($67 on sale, plus $23 shipping in Canadian dollars, which is around $150 in total for two rugs plus shipping in USD). (All of the other rugs except Ikea ran in the $70-$80 range and become significantly more expensive when you add square footage. Ikea at $30 might have won my vote, but the items aren't sold online or at any store near me.)
I also appreciate that 1) I'm ordering from an adorable, family-owned Canadian company; 2) it feels like the rugs are not terribly mass produced (and I have to offset the feel of my chair purchase), which means I can pretend that everything was done humanely; and 3) they showed me a photo of the backside of the rug, which is hard to come by online (and was stressing me out); and 4) upon checkout, I got a free pair of sheepskin mittens! Oh, Canada...!
I can't wait to receive all of my loot and to try it out! Here is a mockup of what I think the chairs will look like in my living room! We shall see what really happens!
'Til then, here is some photo inspiration of cool modern chairs with sheepskin throws from Pinterest to get you in the mood!
Happy shopping and fireplace lounging!
I am an artist/designer and former financial professional with a background in comparative literature, business and design. I live in New York with my overworked lawyer husband and my two boys Michael and Theo and spend much of my free time dreaming about how to enhance the aesthetics of our little world. I am endlessly inspired and always in search of something new. This is a blog about my search, my inspiration and things I just really, really like or want.