Armchair, rocking chair, wing chair, children’s chair, lambing chair, deckchair, wheelchair, club chair, Baroque chair, Rococo chair, barber’s chair, fiddleback chair, tub chair, sedan chair, Gustavian chair, Empire chair, café chair, folding chair, Art Nouveau chair, Neo-Rococo chair, throne……..
The list goes on and on. If only we knew who once sat in these chairs and which were their own personal favourites.
There’s something rather wonderful about the old chairs that surround us in our lives. Occasionally we may catch a glimpse of them in fading photographs from days gone by. Perhaps we know where they originally came from, or who they once belonged to. That often makes us feel even more
closely attached to them.
Chairs play a big part in our lives; they are frequently at the centre of events. Sometimes they bring a smile to our face; sometimes the mere sight of them triggers a cascade of memories.
The nineteenth-century English author Eliza Cook had this to say about her own favourite chair:
I love it, I love it; and who shall dare
To chide me for loving that old Arm-chair?
I’ve treasured it long as a sainted prize;
I’ve bedewed it with tears, and embalmed it with sighs. ’Tis bound by a thousand bands to my heart;
Not a tie will break, not a link will start.
Would ye learn the spell? – a mother sat there;
And a sacred thing is that old Arm-chair.
Are you sitting comfortably? Then let me begin to tell you the stories of some
very special chairs that you won’t find
in any museum. Each has its own particular charisma and a unique story to tell and, somewhere in the world, each and every one is still sat upon today.
This extract was taken from the introduction of Please Be Seated – Historic Chair and The Tales They Tell, the first in the series of two books written by Art Historian and author Gun Bjerkander Handberg. Such is Gun’s insatiable passion for the humble four-legged furniture she is continually greeted by new and unique chairs, each with their own tale to tell.
This blog is an extension of the beautifully produced hardback books published by Vind & Våg Publishing, where the author can share more tales of inspirational chairs and musing of a four-legged variety! If you enjoy the blog, both books are now available online and at all decerning bookshops.
So sit back and enjoy more tales from Please Be Seated – Historic Chairs and The Tales They tell.
With warm wishes
Juliet Rees-Nilsson, Publisher