What Happened To All Of The Pretty Club Chairs?



Uh Oh… something happened this week that really ticked me off. It has to do with my Wagner Club Chairs.

You know… these beauties.

christmas decorations that don

My living room with two Wagner Chairs from CR Laine.

Sadly, they’ve discontinued this chair and regretfully, they have changed their business model to one that is very designer UNfriendly, so I can no longer recommend them.

This is not to say that their furniture is inferior. But they canceled my account out of the blue recently. Despite my efforts to get the good word out about them for FREE, they closed the account due to “inactivity.” That is true. I’m a full-time blogger now.

“It’s not their business model,” I was told by my rep.

Okay. Apparently, they haven’t caught up with what’s going on here. So be it.


The side view is so pretty.

I used these club chairs on two of the new paint palette collection boards


CR Laine Wagner Club Chair


and then this white version on two others. When I got to the very last board a few days ago, to work on the text and add the links, I encountered a massive snag. I found the chair at Layla Grace. (retail)

But when I went on CR Laine’s website, the chair was GONE. Gone, as in discontinued, gone.

WHAT? That just can’t be true!  The Wagner is one of the prettiest club chairs in the market place. It’s beautifully scaled; I long to see more chairs like this, not have them taken away. #disgusted

I did not change all of the boards, but the last one, I substituted two other white chairs. That’s life. Furniture comes and goes but this is a piece that should never have gone.

I’m sure they would tell me that it wasn’t selling. Right. Of course not. Why buy this pretty chair when you can have one of these?


I call them FUBBBS


ugly club chairs do not pin

And no, these are not from CR Laine. These chairs are from another vendor who will go unmentioned.

This styling proliferates at numerous brands in the market place. Every market, I keep hoping for a glimmer of change. And yes, with some brands, like Hickory Chair and Century and of course, Lee Industries and others, I do see some very beautiful furniture. But most of it, IMO misses the mark and/or is downright horrendous


So, it’s time for a reset button.


Oh, I’ve written about this before. It comes up all of the time. And it comes up because every once in a while, I just have to let off some polyester batting.

And one reason is— There is soooooo much that needs to come together to make a beautiful room. You can have a gorgeous space with 12 foot ceilings and 8 foot windows, mouldings up the wazoo… And then you furnish it with the likes of those club chairs above.


It’s like a gorgeous woman in the world’s ugliest dress.

This is when you set fire to the house, just so that you can destroy the wedding albums. (or maybe she was trying to hide that she’s 7 months pregnant?)

Sorry. Where was I?

Oh yes, reset button.

You see… there are beautiful chairs out there.

But most of them are old. Or, a new one costs the same as a semester at an Ivy League College.


What makes for a beautiful club chair?







Let’s look at some gorgeous old, classic club chairs.


This is my favorite, favorite chair on the new Laurel Home Ultimate Paint Palettes and Home Furnishings Collection. (Coming out November 2nd!!!)


This beauty is a vintage or maybe even an antique chair that was reupholstered at Chairloom. (they were having problems with their website which hopefully will get cleared up soon) Do you know Chairloom? (not to be confused with Chairish). They have a fabulous business reupholstering old chairs they’ve found, your chairs that you give to them, or also consulting with you and providing gorgeous designer fabrics if you would like to update a cool chair you’ve found.

They are one of 40 rockin’ new sources on Laurel’s Rolodex. That update is also coming out on November 2nd.

Is this not the most divine club chair you’ve ever seen? If you don’t think so, then we’re going to need more than a reset button. I think we’ll need to go for a full detox session.*

*Exception. I know that a lot of readers live in that big, hot state where some think it’s a good idea to build a wall. And I know that y’all love your big houses and your big furniture. Not all of you, but in all fairness, if it’s all one’s ever known, then you are forgiven.

But, I’ll forgive you, in any case. However, if you are open to it, please hang with me…


I went on a hunt for the world’s most beautiful club chairs.


And yes, I found some new ones, but let’s take a look back in time to the beginnings of the beautiful club chair.

The club chair had its not-so-humble beginnings in the plethora of Gentleman’s uhhh clubs that sprang up in 19th century England. Although, I read that men’s clubs began in the 1600’s. But most chairs, didn’t have much upholstery until the late 1800’s.

Two companies date back to the earlier part of the 19th century. The most well-known one in the US is George Smith but it seems that another company, Howard and Sons has more antique chairs in the market place. Both companies are still in existence. Howard and Sons is now known as Howard Chairs.

Here are some of the original Howard and Sons club chairs. (and other less “clubby” ones too) These are from the late 19th century.




Those lines!


And a 3/4 view. As you’ll see… a lot of these chairs are upholstered in this pattern. These are quite dirty which is a shame. They are the classic Bridgewater style with an English Roll arm. I found them on 1st Dibs where you can read a bit more about them.


And original caster from one of these chairs. Looks like it’s lived through a lot.


A beautiful Howard and Sons slipper chair. Notice how the seat on this and the Bridgewater chair slopes down. I have found that chairs do this, feel deeper than they are. And it’s a beautiful look.



Above another Howard and Sons chair. This one is old, but has had a complete over-haul. This is from Dean Antiques. There are many, many beautiful, old refurbished chairs to check out. (and sofas too!)


I discovered later that the fabric is the original design known as “Howard Ticking.” Here’s a small swatch of it. I’ve seen it in green, blue, brown, gray and red. Photo via Selling Antiques.



This is another well-known Howard and Sons style found at William James Antiques. The seat is an exceptionally low 15″. And over the years, I’ve heard people gasp at the notion. But “the throne” is about 16″ and so is the average picnic bench seat. I admit, that 15 is a little low, but 17 would be fine. Most of the old chairs are only about 32″ high and some are even lower. The average width is under 29″.


Dean Antiques

These chairs are not the hunky club chair but very pretty and only 31″ high.


What about new club chairs?

Yes, there are chairs today that imitate these to some extent. But these old chairs are sleeker.

My point is… Can’t they make these kinds of chairs at affordable prices? I don’t know how much a George Smith Chair is now, but 20 years ago, they were at least $5,000. So, are they $10,000? It’s a lot of money.

Here are the expensive but insanely beautiful club chairs

George Smith Jules Chair in Lulu DK Bloomsbury from £2,050 (www.georgesmith.co.uk - 01423 563160)

George Smith Jules Chair in Lulu DK Bloomsbury



Beautiful, classic club chair from Jonas Furniture. Photo by Don Freeman


Above a pretty George Sherlock chair. This is another English company that makes the most gorgeous chairs. They are a relatively young company, starting only 50 years ago.

george-sherlock-club-chair-1st-dibs-dscn3233Another beautiful down-filled, new club chair from George Sherlock. Found on 1st Dibs. Down is lovely for seat and back cushions, but it does require a lot of fluffing. I prefer spring down. I do love the French seams on the seat cushions, in place of standard welting, too. The over-all height is again only 32″. I love that.

These are certainly wonderful chairs. And yes, they all have horsehair and all of that. But I can’t justify spending that much money for a chair, even if I had it.

There are also some lovely moderately priced chairs. Just not as many as I would like to see.

williams sonoma club chairWilliams Sonoma Home

This is lovely, but do you see the areas that are lacking somewhat in the refined styling of the Howard and Sons Chairs?


Serena and Lily

By the way, Lee Industries makes most of the upholstered furniture for both Williams Sonoma Home and Serena and Lily.

These are certainly pretty. I like them a lot.

In fact, these are two out of about 30 different chairs that are part of the featured furniture on the 40 boards for the Laurel Home Ultimate Paint Palette and Home Furnishings Collection. And are all lovely chairs and sofas, some new, some vintage.

I can’t wait to release this guide with the palettes and all of the pretty furniture and rooms.

And again, in case you missed it. The Paint Palette and Home Furnishing Collection is going to be released this Wednesday, November 2nd.

You can read more about it at the end of this post.

There will be a whole big thing on Wednesday, including some sample pages.

Also, coming out on Wednesday is an updated Laurel’s Rolodex with 40 new vendors.

Some of them are insanely fabulous! I will have them in the rolodex and as a separate chapter for those who prefer having them that way.

And very important. There will be a promo period starting November 2nd with a huge discount on the new paint palettes. That will only be sold however, with the Laurel Home Essential Paint Color collection because they are meant to work together. (see above for current paint collection owners.)

And then on November 14th, the price of everything is going up, so please be sure to take advantage of the lower prices.

Have to say that I’m incredibly proud of this one!



5th edition rolodex-post-graphic - November 2018 - A unique shopping guide with hundreds of sources created by Laurel Bern

  • Linda - November 7, 2016 - 10:57 AM

    What is with all the casters? I hate casters! They ruin floors and rugs. And they break. ok I’m done.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - November 7, 2016 - 4:42 PM

      Hi Linda,

      There are two types of people in the world.

      Love or don’t mind casters.
      Hate casters.

      They are historically accurate as it made moving the furniture easier. ReplyCancel

  • Emily - November 2, 2016 - 1:04 PM

    Are skirts on chairs/sofas out of style now? I noticed that none of the chairs pictured in your post have skirts. I’m so bad at this sort of thing!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - November 2, 2016 - 6:18 PM

      Hi Emily,

      It depends on the sofa and the style of the room.ReplyCancel

  • Debra - November 1, 2016 - 11:45 AM

    You’ve touched a nerve with this post, as you so often do. I’ve been agonizing over chairs for far longer than should be necessary. I live in a lovely 1918 English cottage style home in a historic district. My living room is also lovely – molding and baseboards are to-die-for, original pocket doors, beautiful mantel, original casement windows, and I’ve recently painted it BM Palladian Blue, which I think is the prettiest color ever created. My dilemma is that the whole experience is ruined for me by my furniture. My sofa is horribly uncomfortable and I’m embarrassed to say that I own one of the fuggly chairs you mentioned (the one with the odd ears – in leather). I’d really like to throw everything out (or sell it on Craigslist) and start over, but that’s not in the budget . . . at least not all at once. So, I had talked myself into living with the uncomfortable sofa (it’s not ugly, just uncomfortable) and decided I could live with the fuggly chair if I got a nice accent pillow to take my mind off of those ears. Then, I’d invest in one very nice chair and everything would be better.

    Easier said than done.

    I’m struggling with 1) finding the perfect chair – it needs to be a swivel because we have the tv in this room and the tv sits in the corner behind this potential new chair and 2) whether it’s ok to have mismatched chairs in what is otherwise a very symmetrical room. Should I just ditch the fuggly chair and buy 2 swivel/club chairs that match?

    Compounding the dilemma is that I live in a rural area, and I’m very hesitant to buy something without trying it out (I’m also 5 feet tall, so finding properly sized and comfortable furniture is not easy). My local furniture retailer carries CR Laine and Huntington House, but their showroom is still filled with the bulkier options from those lines. I’ve been considering the Whittier swivel chair from CR Laine, but am paralyzed by the prospect of making the wrong choice. And naturally, my local furniture store doesn’t have a sample of it for me to sit on. AND, as if I wasn’t already confused enough, the very nice salesperson I’ve been talking to there (who does not have a degree in interior design . . . I asked) thinks that it would be BETTER to have mismatched chairs. Could she be right??!! All of my instincts say no, but since that’s the cheaper option, I’m tempted to believe her.ReplyCancel

  • Rose DiNapoli - October 31, 2016 - 7:41 PM

    HaHaHaHaHaHa…..FUBBBS, adding that to my design lexicon, thanks for a great post!ReplyCancel

  • Naomi - October 31, 2016 - 3:10 PM

    Hi Laurel,
    I agree totally with everything you said and would love it if you could do another blog post more tightly focused on your comment, “This is lovely but do you see…?”
    I think all your readers would learn a ton of stuff. Thanks.ReplyCancel

  • Laura Tyson - October 30, 2016 - 9:58 PM

    I’m so glad someone is talking about furniture scale these days! It’s so hard to find good stuff anymore in retail stores. When we needed to furnish our family room- I decided to hunt the flea markety “antique galleries”. I was right to do so! I found our sofa and two great swivel chairs. Not a thing made before ’75 is my rule. The key is to totally ignore the fabric and even the cushions – focusing on scale, form and comfort only. The rest can be handled at the upholsterer! After (finally) finding our perfect 1970’s sofa – my husband almost gagged at the orange and brown zigzag velvet it was covered in. I rejoiced! I knew the hideousness would give me haggle room :). It was a perfectly scaled tuxedo sofa. Mine all miiiine for a cool $400. The movers almost got a hernia because that old wood frame was so solid!
    Now, beautifully covered in an Osborne and Little blue tweed, we love it! I had the upholsterer give us a down wrapped seat and down back cushions. It’s scrumptious! I ended up spending about as much as I would have on a restoration hardware sofa- but the difference is a mile wide! And it’s In the fabric of my own choosing! I’ll never buy retail again!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 10:32 PM

      Hi Laura,

      LOVE your comment! And this is the exact premise of Chairloom whose website is down. Damn! I wrote to them. I’m sure they know, but it’s a shame because I’m sure that they would’ve gotten a lot of hits today.

      I just love your sofa story! ReplyCancel

  • Joyce - October 30, 2016 - 4:58 PM

    Dear Laurel, I laughed out loud at those FUBBBS! Of course, all the other club chairs you included are beautiful. I love our club chairs, although the one from Drexel Heritage, although very pretty, is a bit too deep. A lot of these chairs seem too deep for me. But our 2 Barbara Barry slipper chairs (Baker)–they are divine! I can’t remember the name (she has more than one style for Baker), but they have very simple lines with squat fluted feet in front.ReplyCancel

  • Cathy - October 30, 2016 - 3:40 PM

    Do you like the Mercer Tufted Chair from Ethan Allen? It is a smaller chair.
    I’m curious, what you think of Ethan Allen Furnitur also?

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:34 PM

      Hi Cathy,

      EA tends to be too big. I was in a store a couple years ago and it hit me the second I walked in. Plus my neighbor had their furniture which she bought 10 years ago. Transitional. Too big.

      I looked up that chair. It’s not terrible and it’s not great either. These are the dimensions. Dimensions: 34″w x 36″h x 36″d

      34″ wide for a roll arm is really wide. I had one that was 31″. The over-all height should not be more than 34″. Seat height about 18″. This is already larger than the ones in the post. But fine. It can be a little larger for today’s world.

      But good luck finding that. It exists but it’s either custom-made or very high-end.

      The pitch looks a little upright to me.

      And the rails (the part between the seat cushion and legs is too long.)

      The legs are contemporary. What are they doing on a trad chair? They should either be turned or straight and tapered. The front legs, that is.

      The side rail here has a very slight curve. It should either curve or not.

      Then, there’s the seat cushion. The one that’s on the model is a piece of crap. I can see it from the image. It looks hard and will lose it’s shape quickly.

      They will get you on the upgrades and the price will soar several hundred dollars. They price it in the cheapest fabric that God ever created as a “base.”

      But, give Lillian August a whirl perhaps. I have to run now.ReplyCancel

      • MJ - October 30, 2016 - 9:26 PM

        Ah, but we must remember, so many people today are much larger than people used to be. They are neither dainty, nor delicate. Most are neither slender, nor stylish. And refined? I doubt that very much. The super size people might be able to afford a terrific chair, but it had better have a darn healthy frame. FUBBBS seen as if they might be sturdy enough for modern posteriors and girth.

        I’m thinking Ethan Allen people know their market–larger casegoods for larger people.

        At my age, a chair with a slopped back and seat would make my body ache. I need to sit upright in my favorite wing back that once sat in a reception room at a local business. When I get those Ralph Lauren sheets made into a cottage-y slipcover, I’ll soon be in chair heaven.

        Still, the missing chair you show in white, is stylish,attractive, and most likely one I could get used to. Were someone to give me one or two for Christmas……ReplyCancel

        • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 10:30 PM

          Hi MJ,

          You make a valid point regarding size, however, these chairs ARE very roomy inside because they are not puffy. And a chair that’s still standing after 140 years has to have something going for it. No?

          And conversely, just because a chair is big and bulky doesn’t mean that it could hold a mouse up. Okay, yes an exaggeration, but think spider web. How delicate it looks, except it’s not. Hope you can get those slipcovers made soon! I’m sure that your chair will be wonderful!ReplyCancel

          • MJ - November 1, 2016 - 11:25 AM

            Ah, 140 years old you’re actually talking?
            Any chair that old is, indeed, a keeper, human body size apart…..from now on i shall, thanks to you, look more closely at the unholstered chairs in my thrift shopping and maybe find one you will like. I can only hope for an affordable George Smith to show up……If it does, I’m keeping it. It won’t be in my neighborhood, but I have a friend in Boston area….and I can rent a vehicle big enough to move it…….or do you think I’ll have to go overseas?

            Cheers, sweetheart, keep up your good work….I love it!!!! MJ

          • Laurel Bern - November 1, 2016 - 12:05 PM

            Hi MJ,

            Affordable George Smith is an oxymoron if there ever was one. I’m not saying that the chairs should be cheap, but with a base price (without fabric) of $5,500, that’s nuts. Add in another 8 yards of expensive fabric and you could be adding in at least another 2k!

  • Christine Pajonas - October 30, 2016 - 3:27 PM

    Regarding a previous post about blue and white ceramics…I checked the website you mentioned http://www.taoaccents.com and found a perfect bowl measuring 25″ in diameter…I have been searching all my sources in Dallas for one at a price that is affordable with no luck. I will be using it on my new kitchen island which measures 10′ x 6′ 6″. I plan to use orchids to fill it. I’m having it delivered to my home in CT and can’t wait to see it. Thank you for the source information.ReplyCancel

  • Cathlin - October 30, 2016 - 2:49 PM

    Beautiful chairs, this is next on my “budget for this” list. I do wish it were easier to find new chairs as beautiful as the oldies, I just don’t have the time/resources to troll the interwebs for a great score. Plus, I always hesitate to purchase site unseen when I don’t really know how much work will need to be done. :/

    Having just purchased the CR Laine sofa (YAY) I asked them to show me some chairs for the living, and no dice. First, just because I’m a mom please don’t show me your rocker gliders. 😛 “Cute for a rocker glider” does not cut it.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:14 PM

      Hi Cathlin,

      I agree. I think the sofa you got is very nice, but some of the chairs fall short of the mark. Not all, but too many. I would check out Lee Industries. They have dozens of beautiful chairs.ReplyCancel

  • Constance - October 30, 2016 - 1:41 PM

    You are so right sister! I am stunned by the awful chairs offered by companies and purchased by some folks. I love Hickory Chair Co. and get excited when I find older vintage frames like I did last week, a pair of wing chairs with down fill seats, carved exposed wood feet and golden silk upholstery. I think I’ll go buy them tomorrow!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:12 PM

      Hi Constance,

      Yeah Hickory Chair is very lovely. I just wish they weren’t so expensive! But yes, gorgeous. And yes, go for the cool vintage wing chairs!ReplyCancel

  • Linda Leyble - October 30, 2016 - 12:26 PM

    Hey Laurel – great post!

    In my home staging business, I always encounter these FUBBBS and Cousin FUBBBS – those puffy recliners that go with their puffy sofas and sectionals that recline, have cup holders and pockets for magazines and remote controls! In living rooms, no less! Yikes! Someone should stop making those because they take up so much real estate in a room that potential buyers can’t determine the actual size of the room!

    I always learn a lot when I read your posts and today I now realize why I hate my great room sofa so much – it’s down-filled and not “spring down” and I really hate fluffing!!!



    PS, every time I typed “recline” spell check gave me reclusive!! If only!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:11 PM

      Hi Linda,

      Oh, I know what you are talking about. That is indeed another layer of FUBBB. It’s FUBBB-C – C for Cheap and horrible. I have no idea how anyone can possibly think that this is how a piece of furniture should look. It confounds me to no end!ReplyCancel

  • Tricia Heliker - October 30, 2016 - 12:19 PM

    I can relate to your snag. I had selected lighting for the two floors of a restaurant only to have the supplier go out of business the day before I placed the order. Moving on to chairs, yesterday I bought four chairs at a resale shop for the bar area of the restaurant. Not exactly club chairs but very comfortable and sturdy with beautiful lines. I’m very excited about choosing fabric to have them reupholstered. I have had two sets of club chairs, that I bought used, reupholstered for my own home. It really is the way to go, IMO. As always you are on the mark with your great advice. I look forward to Sunday morning and a new post from you.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:09 PM

      Hi Tricia,

      Thanks so much and sorry about the lighting company!

      My old boss from the early to mid 90’s would always say. “This business isn’t for the faint of heart.”

      I have a little wing chair that I picked up at a flea market for 70 bucks a few years ago. My upholsterer did a real number on it. I gave him some white cotton duck and it is so, so pretty sitting in the corner of my bedroom.ReplyCancel

  • Deedee - October 30, 2016 - 12:07 PM

    I LOVE your blog, Laurel. Thanks for all the very hard work you invest in education and entertaining us! Please come visit our “big, hot state” before you judge. We have surprisingly beautiful taste and extraordinary artisans (consider Leslie Sinclair segretofinishes.com and Joni Webb of CôtedeTexas.blogspot.com, as two quick and tasteful examples). Having spent the summer in NYC and upstate, I’d say bad taste abounds without geographic prejudice! How sad is that?
    You always give me new and thoughtful ideas, and a great laugh! Thanks again.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 7:05 PM

      Hi Deedee,

      I probably came across sounding like I was making a sweeping generalization which I did not mean to do.

      The worst taste in the world happens to be where I live! It’s bad in a different way. You would think since I’m just a few miles away from NYC, it would be different, but it’s not. ReplyCancel

  • Maggie - October 30, 2016 - 11:14 AM

    Wonderful post Laurel ! Oh dear, those FUBBS are bad alright.
    Of all the very lovely chairs posted here, I actually love yours the best, the CR Laine ones. The scale and proportion is perfect to me. That’s a gorgeous setting you have created for them, and I really love the fabric you chose. Why on earth would they discontinue this? Shame on them. Your new collection will be fabulous and I look forward to it all.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 11:42 AM

      Hi Maggie,

      Thank you so much. You always write the sweetest comments! The chairs aren’t normally in that location. Normally, my antique settee is there. I did that last December for my Xmas post. I’m sure if I had an audience, they would’ve been rolling on the floor with laughter watching me move the furniture around. And on the rug, no less. Then, I think I stood on a chair to get the shot. Of course, I had to put it all back. I think I did take a shot of the room with the furniture pushed out of the way. But, they do the same things in magazines. Sometimes I’ve noticed that they’ll use something in more than one shot and I know it isn’t normally like that!ReplyCancel

  • Gracie - October 30, 2016 - 10:59 AM

    All this talk has me recalling chairs I have known. My aunt had an imposing, antique, down-filled wingback, covered in a faded equestrian chintz….a pure beauty. As a child, the world seemed to disappear once I had settled into its deep, comforting arms. I’ll never forget nor replace that chair.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 11:38 AM

      Hi Gracie,

      Oh, I love that! In fact, I had a few wing chairs I was going to include as I love the old wingback chairs. I especially love the barrel back ones. I had 4 made 16 years ago (!) Two for a client and two for me. He had them 95% right. It’s not an easy thing to do.ReplyCancel

  • Marisa - October 30, 2016 - 10:56 AM

    You have a great eye Laurel. It’s the fine details of the shape of a frame that make a difference. Sometimes I can’t even put my finger on it. You nail it everytime.!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 11:36 AM

      Thanks so much Marisa! Yes, it’s definitely the frame. And it’s easier to make a box than a pretty curve. But once they have the template, it would not be so difficult. And I’m sure that some have taken apart an old chair, including the frame and copied it. ReplyCancel

  • Diana mclean - October 30, 2016 - 9:49 AM

    This is my funny story. The best chairs r on curbside as the new marrieds don’t want that “old look”. I have stopped many times loaded up the van and taken the chairs to my upholsterer. I restyle it and wham , less than $1500 or less I have gorgeous chairs. Check on special pick up days in areas which are obvious they r heading to get Suites of furniture. It will soon become obvious to u where they r.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 9:59 AM

      Hi Diana,

      In NYC, yes! (and probably other places too.) I have seen wonderful chairs that with a little TLC would be amazing!ReplyCancel

  • Atlantic - October 30, 2016 - 9:40 AM

    Hi Laurel,
    Have you ever looked at TRS Chairs (to the trade)? it has been some years but I had them make English roll arm club chairs in mohair velvet for me with spring down seat cushions and down-only back cushions. They actually sent them with spring down in the back cushions by mistake, which I detected on my first sitting (the rep came out and swore they were down…only to be disproven). Which is only to say that if properly made and really fully stuffed with high quality down the back cushions are not in constant need of refluffing. But the difference in comfort is immense. I was convinced of this at a young age in the house of a friend’s grandmother in England…and never looked back. Was also able to get a slightly taller back which my DH (6’6″ appreciates). Not cheap but not as expensive as George Smith! and although mohair is not much in vogue in the under 90 year old set, I have always loved it.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 9:58 AM

      Hi Atlantic,

      Yes, they are with Theodore Alexander. I was very impressed with the line when I first saw them at High Point a year ago.ReplyCancel

    • Atlantic - October 30, 2016 - 9:43 AM

      Lillian August also has some well made and well proportioned club chairs…have two of those as well with a tufted back which are lovely (also from some years ago but will last forever)ReplyCancel

      • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 9:55 AM

        Hi Atlantic,

        Yes, they do and they are also in Laurel’s Rolodex. :]ReplyCancel

  • Gigi - October 30, 2016 - 8:50 AM

    Hi Laurel,
    Congrats on the updates and the new palette collection! Are you familiar with TRS Upholstery, which is now under the TA Brand? They do make some lovely chairs and they are extremely well crafted.


    I love your blog and insites as a fellow designer, as well as your sense of humor. Wishing you continued success!


    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 9:54 AM

      Hi Gigi,

      Yes, I have visited Theodore Alexander twice in the past year. And they are in my rolodex. :]ReplyCancel

  • Pam - October 30, 2016 - 3:19 AM

    Ballard Designs has lovely English roll arm chairs and others that can be upholstered in a variety of fabrics. If I didn’t already have my favorite chair, I’d go with them.ReplyCancel

  • Kathi Philip - October 30, 2016 - 2:20 AM

    Another great post-what perfect timing for it-I spent several hours today shopping at high end consignment shops for 2 club chairs for my Directors office-It was depressing-there is nothing out there that wouldn’t cost a fortune to re-upholster and I spent a lot of time looking online for just some normal chairs at a reasonable price-I came up with a big fat 0-When did great, affordable club chairs become obsolete? There is some totally fugly furniture out there!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 9:50 AM

      Hi Kathi,

      Furniture in general, unless it comes from the far east, is very expensive. And yes, reupholstery isn’t cheap. But you get an entirely new chair. I’ve found chairs when I’m not looking for them. Maybe some estate sales? But it’s still difficult. Good luck!ReplyCancel

  • Ann - October 30, 2016 - 1:06 AM

    Fascinating, as always. And I’m in complete agreement. I Love a well- proprtioned and ” sunk back ” club chair.
    Your new collection is sure to be fabulous!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 30, 2016 - 1:18 AM

      Hi Ann,

      Thanks so much! Maybe we should start a chairvolution! hahaReplyCancel

  • mollie duvall - October 30, 2016 - 12:37 AM

    Laurel, what a wonderful post full of eye candy for upholstery lovers. I swear, I had a tiny chairgasm when I saw the George Smith Jules chair!ReplyCancel