Eames Lounges

Written by Sarah Provost
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The category of Eames lounges is more extensive than you might think. Designers Ray and Charles Eames titled many of their chairs as "lounges," not reserving the term for those chairs which support the legs. They made their lounges in a variety of materials, including plywood, tubular steel, steel mesh, fiberglass and aluminum.

The most famous of all the Eames lounges is the one they designed for their friend Billy Wilder in 1956. A bent-wood shell, originally of rosewood, is topped by black leather cushions. A matching ottoman provides support for the feet. This chair has been in constant production by the Herman Miller Company since its inception, and can now be ordered in a variety of wood shells and colors of leather.

Other Eames Lounges

Another ubiquitous design for Eames lounges is the simple plywood chair titled LCW, for Lounge Chair Wood. The Eames' facility with plywood is never more obvious that in this piece, so perfectly curved to the contours of the body that no padding is necessary. Though this design has been copied and imitated incessantly, no knock-off has been able to duplicate the original's comfort.

Eames also created the LCM (Lounge Chair Metal), which is similar to the LCW except that the plywood shell comprises two pieces rather than the original single shell. Chromed tubular steel forms the frame that holds the pieces together and also forms the legs. Acrylic, fiberglass and aluminum were also used by the designers to create lounge chairs that were comfortable with or without padding.


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