29 MAY 2013

Curl up With a Good Book

In this kind of weather we want nothing more than to curl up in our favourite armchair with a good book and a mug of steaming hot chocolate.

So, to inspire you on those rainy afternoons, we have pulled together a list of our favourite mid century literature and armchairs. Designed and written from the 1930s to the 1970s these pieces tell the stories that defined the 20th century. So, go put the jug on and settle down for some good reading. 1939 - The Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck 1944 - Cantilevered Plywood Chair - Garth Chester Set during The Depression, The Grapes of Wrath follows the Joad family as they travel across America to California in search of a more prosperous life. Read this book in a Cantilevered Chair - NZ designer Garth Chester was a pioneer; using bent plywood and pursuing utter perfection in design. 1949 - 1984 - George Orwell 1948 - Rocker - Ernest Race 1984 is a dystopian novel set in Socialist England. The story follows Winston Smith as he seeks to undermine The Party who scrutinises and controls every part of the people's lives. Read in a Ernest Race rocking chair. Following WW2 and the scarcity of materials, Race had to be inventive, using such industrial materials such as tubular steel. 1951 - The Catcher in the Rye - J.D.Salinger 1959 - Heart Chair - Verner Panton The 1950s saw the emergence of 'the teenager' and The Catcher in the Rye has been heralded as an anthem of teenage rebellion. This whirlwind of a book follows a few days in the life of Holden Caulfield as he runs away to the city in search of a life that isn't 'phony'. Read in a Heart Chair. In celebration of passion and in rebellion of sleek lines and neutral colours, Verner Panton designed the iconic Heart Chair. This is the ultimate love seat. 1952 - The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemmingway 1950 - Halyard Chair - Hans Wegner The Old Man and the Sea is a simple novella about an old unlucky fisherman (Santiago) and his battle with a large marlin. Hemmingway's stark prose beautifully captures this small, thought provoking story. Read on a Halyard Chair. Inspired by the sight and sound of the sea, Hans Wegner designed this Halyard Chair. This cosy, texturally rich armchair is the perfect place to snuggle up. 1956 - Howl and Other Poems - Allen Ginsberg 1941 - Poet Sofa - Finn Juhl The post-war Beat Generation brought anarchy and revolution to the literary scene in America. Challenging poetic forms, the materialism of society and experimenting with every substance available, Ginsberg's poem Howl is the song of a generation. Read in a Poet Chair. How perfect is that? Finn Juhl's designs were controversial at the time of their creation in the 1940s. People hadn't seen the likes of these bold yet refined pieces and it took awhile for the general public to embrace his designs. 1960 - To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee 1963 - She (GJ) Chair - Grete Jalk Harper Lee's well loved novel To Kill a Mockingbird explores racial inequality in America during the 1950s. One of her main characters Atticus Finch has gone down in the history books as a kind of moral compass for lawyers and of the most memorable and influential characters ever written. Read in the She (GJ) Chair. This is Grete Jalk's most famous design. Intricate and complexly crafted from moulded plywood, there were only 300 chairs originally in production. 1964 - Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl 1956 - Marshmellow Sofa - George Nelson Roald Dahl's children's classic has been adapted into various films but nothing beats the original story. Dahl creates a magical world where anything is possible - from bubblegum that tastes like a whole meal, a river of chocolate and a Fizzy Lifing Drink. Magic! Read in the Marshmellow Chair. George Nelson's playful pop era designs have been capturing the imaginations of the world for decades now. This is a sofa to make you smile and is oh, so comfortable. 1966 - In Cold Blood - Truman Capote 1962 - Aluminium Group Chair - Charles and Ray Eames In Cold Blood is the first non-fiction novel written and was six years in the making. Truman Capote took detective fiction to a new level when he began a personal investigation into the murders of the Clutter family in America. Read in the Eames Aluminum Group Chair. This sleek office chair was the result of an investigation into the material possibilities of using lightweight aluminum for furniture design. Charles and Ray Eames - we this this is a great success! (And the perfect chair for a detective to use.) 1973 - The Princess Bride - William Goldman 1951 - Papa Bear Chair - Hans Wegner Leaving the best till last...The Princess Bride is a modern fairytale and everything you could want in a rainy day read. Action, adventure, humor, a gripping plot and romance. Join Wesley on a quest to rescue his beloved Buttercup from a trio of unusual thieves. Read in the Papa Bear Chair. Where better to read a classic than in the comfort of this plush and iconic design by Hans Wegner.

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