Thursday, November 15, 2012


I don't know about you but I get a decent amount of Anonymous commenters most of which are spammers.
Remember when I showed you these chairs on my random stuff post?
Well, I got an Anonymous comment about the 2 chairs on the far left...
                                  Anonymous said...

The 2 orange chairs are the end are "Playboy" chairs by the great Jens Risom!

All comments go to my email.  When I first read it, I initially thought Spammer!  Okay, whatever playboy!   Most of the time, spam comments are caught and are blocked from appearing on my blog.  So when I saw that this particular comment wasn't blocked, I read it again.
For someone who loves mid century modern,  I'm embarrassed to admit that I don't know who Jens Risom is.

So I googled his name and found out that Risom is a Danish American furniture designer who designed the first Knoll chair in 1941!

Risom side chair - originally made of birch frame and parachute straps
(I've seen the chair before, but didn't know the name)

Jens Risom is 96!

The 2 chairs above are supposed to be the C 140 armchair and is nick-named the "Playboy chair" because Risom appeared standing next to it in the 1961 Playboy article on American furniture designers.

(From L-R:  George Nelson, Edward Wormley, Eero Saarinen, Harry Bertoia, Charles Eames and Jens Risom)

Aagghh!  I was hyperventilating at this time.  $20 for the 2. (Cost around $500-1000/per chair)
I immediately went back to the rummage sale hoping the chairs would still be there. 

They were!
In not so great condition.  One was wobbly and had some bite marks(maybe dog?), the other one was okay.
In my mind,  I wasn't convinced (even for $10!)

I searched for some images on my phone for comparison and found this...

Clearly not the same chair.  The wood, the cushion and the curvature are not the same.
Wah, wah, wah!

If it seems too good to be true, it probably is!
But hey,  I learned something new!  
I know how to spot a Jens Risom chair now.

Thank you Anonymous!

*Thank you for the well wishes everyone!  I feel so much better.
(I didn't wake up coughing last night.  Yes!)


elizabeth@themustardceiling said...

Ha! What a great story and interesting tidbit of furniture design history. I have never heard of Jens Risom, but I recognize the Risom side chair.

Tiffany Leigh Interior Design said...

I love this story, funny how one comment can spark a whole new world of knowledge for us. It's too bad the chairs were not the real deal though, could you imagine?

Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door said...

What a great story! Good eye anonymous, even if they were only Risom inspired. :) I love learning about new (to me) designers.

My Interior Life said...

Ditto what everyone else said. Love finding out about new (to me) designers. That photo from Playboy is great. As a girl of Finnish descent, I've always loved anything Saarinen and that chair is no exception. I find it odd I've heard of all those fellas except for Risom - maybe he needed a better PR person.

Albertina || MimosaLane said...

too funny!!! well that was an easy lesson for 40 bucks....but you can always resell and even make a harm done...funny though!

LiveLaughDecorate said...

Education by spam - or almost spam. Gotta love it. Quite the lesson lady and glad you're feeling better.

Nancy said...

Interesting! I didn't know him either, and Im as big a MCM fan as you! I probably would have passed also, I just dont need any more chairs.
xo Nancy

Designwali said...

very cool. I wish you were close could teach me how to hunt...

Carol@TheDesignPages said...

So close!!! You just never know and it's part of what we all love about thrifting and shopping on craigslist isn't it? One of us might hit the jackpot some day and find the gem in amongst all the trash.

CandidSense said...


Thanks so much for leaving a note on my blog. I just started a new job this week and I have been juggling computers. Anyways I was repeatedly checking your blog to see if you responded to my chair question and I never once checked my own blog. Shucks! Anyways I wanted to leave a brief note here and reach out to you via email to write something lengthier.

Thanks for responding about the pink chair!


Jessie said...

Thanks for the introduction. I have heard about the other designers except him. I love the original chair, though.

Glad you are feeling better! :)

P/S: Come by and enter my current giveaway for a chance to win an item of your choice ($80 or under) from NWD store! There will be 2 lucky winners!



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