With the second half of Mad Men’s final season set to premiere this spring, we decided this would be an opportune time to reflect on the beauty of mid-century furniture. Read on to check out some of the iconic seats that time period gave us.
A rare find in any episode, the Barcelona Chair is perhaps one of the most iconic pieces of furniture from the mid-century modern era. Designed by famed architect Mies van der Rohe, this chair highlights some of the key design elements of modern design such as witnessing the structural elements of the chair and the emphasis on clean, structured lines. Most Barcelona chairs found today are replicas, although some are produced by Knoll Inc. and considered to have greater authenticity at a much higher price.
Seen most often in the conference room of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, the Eames Executive Chair (also known as the Time-Life chair) is the product of design powerhouse couple Ray and Charles Eames. Part of their design philosophy was to create items that were functional and pleasing to both designer and customer. Featuring a plush leather seat and polished aluminum, this chair embodies the finer qualities of office furniture fit for executives.
Another classic Eames chair that received a lot of love on the show was the Eames Management Chair that sat at Don’s desk. A slimmer version of their other office chairs, this features curved, clean lines and a refined design that will go with most contemporary interior spaces.
The Knoll Sofas were predominantly featured in Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce’s creative offices in various colors, most notably in orange in the creative lounge area. This sofa (and it’s loveseat and armchair counterparts) feature the clean, straight lines and 90-degree angles often found in modern design but still embodies the essence such lounge seating should have. The timeless design and luxurious look of this sofa acts as an instant pick-me-up for any living room.
If you remember back to season three when Betty was redesigning the Draper home, she ultimately chose an over-sized, pink Victorian fainting couch to place in the middle of her newly furnished living room. While it may have represented her desire to be seen as a delicate woman to be doted on, it also looked monstrous when squished between her modern furniture. Perhaps a more fitting (and smaller) version that would still call back to the Victorian era would have been the Charlotte Lagoon Linen Chair in our collection. It contains similar design features, such as tufting and dark woods, but is easier to meld with more modern interiors.