The Barcelona chair was designed in 1929 by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich. It was made as Germany’s entry into the 1929 International Exposition, which was hosted in Barcelona, Spain. Originally, the chair was designed for Spanish royalty using only the highest quality metal and leather, and it was even featured in Time magazine at the time of the International Exposition.
Over the years, the design has been adapted and improved and since 1953 only one company has manufactured the original chair. The frame is made with either solid chrome or stainless steel and uses only a single, molded piece of metal. The seat is made from high-quality bovine leather and has a very nice soft finish. The cushions also use a uniform pattern of solid buttons to give the chair a classy and sophisticated feel.
In to the modern era
In popular culture, it has been said that the Barcelona chairs were a necessity for all aspiring young architects and Barcelona replica chairs create a popular market today. These chairs follow similar design and manufacturing processes by using a single piece of metal for the iconic frame, and similar high-quality leather for the seating. When choosing a Barcelona style chair or replica, it is important to review your choices carefully. There are many poor-quality copies and fakes out there, so reviewing the choices first will ensure that you choose the right chair.
In more recent times the Barcelona chair has been paired with an ottoman footstool. The Barcelona chair and ottoman combination follow the same design principles and use a molded metal for the chair and ottoman frames. The ottoman also takes the solid button design creating a uniform furniture set. The iconic chair gives a sleek and timeless look that has remained at the forefront of home furnishing for almost 90 years. The Barcelona chair and Ottoman are also available as a replica, and there are some high-quality replicas on the market.
The replica market
Choosing a replica Barcelona chair can be difficult. There are many poor quality copies available, which may not look the part, or might use low-quality inexpensive materials. To help find the right replica for you, it is important to look key design and manufacturing processes. High-quality replicas will use the same single-piece metal construction as the original Barcelona chair and take advantage of the similar materials. The soft cushioning should use leather for the covering and feature hard buttons, not glued on plastic. Many poor quality replicas use faux-leather and plastic coverings, which is likely to fray and rip after a short period of time. A very important part in choosing the right replica Barcelona chair is the quality of the metal. The original chair uses solid stainless steel or chrome, but many replicas use cheap hollow metal, meaning your chair will not last for more than a few years. Buyers of the original Barcelona chair purchase one as an investment since each chair should last a lifetime.