Ligne Roset's Pumpkin armchair pictured in Edition Toorak by Cera Stribley Architects.

Here’s why these iconic armchairs deserve a place in your living room

Seeking to update your your living space? From myriad designers, decades and milieux, these iconic occasional chairs promise the perfect finishing touch to any well-curated space and are exactly what we feel like curling up in this season.

D.154.2 Armchair by Gio Ponti for Molteni&C, available from Dawson & Co. Pictured in the Vaucluse Residence by Nina Maya Interiors. Photo: Felix Forrest.

Future Proof
Gio Ponti’s D.154.2 armchair reflected the futuristic ideas that the iconic architect and furniture designer gathered during his trips to Latin America in the early 1950s. Cosy like a shell but with modern touches, the chair looks good anywhere — and has complementary polyurethane frames and a plush cushion that can be upholstered in the Molteni&C textile range.

From left: Ligne Roset‘s Pumpkin armchair pictured in Elsternwick House by Chelsea Hing. Rolf Benz’s 594 Arm Chair available from Frobisher.

What Goes Around
When Pierre Paulin’s 1971 seating design for French president Georges Pompidou’s private Elysée Palace apartments was put into large-scale production, it quickly became an icon. Ligne Roset’s Pumpkin armchair — characteristic of Paulin’s revolutionary style, and evocative of a giant gourd — will draw you in with its generous curvature and keep you there with its soft upholstery.

Easy Going
From its soft, elegant curvature to its plush, velvet upholstery for extra comfort, Rolf Benz’s 594 Arm Chair exemplifies easy elegance. Eye-catching thanks to its high, broad back but not so attention-grabbing as to take over a space, this chair will be at home in any discerning living room. 

Chloè armchair by Giulio Marelli, available from Sarsfield Brooke.

Two’s Company
Simple, sophisticated and versatile, the Chloè armchair by Giulio Marelli features a unique bentwood structure in oak veneer that curves elegantly around its cushioned backrest. With the frame and upholstery both available in a range of sleek finishes, these chairs can be made to suit any space, and often work better in pairs.

Soriana armchair by Afra and Tobia Scarpa for Cassina, available from Matisse. Pictured in the Forest Knoll Residence by MASS Beverly.

Creature of Comfort
The Soriana armchair by Afra and Tobia Scarpa for Cassina changed the face of upholstered furniture. The year was 1969, and the use of polyurethane foam opened a door to new structural possibilities. This chair became the embodiment of casual comfort and was widely sought-after for its quirky shape. Now, the re-released design needs no internal support, and is made with specially-developed BioFoam so you can sink even further into the seat with renewed relaxation.

From left: Redondo armchair by Patricia Urquiola for Moroso, available from Matisse, pictured in Arent&Pyke’s Villa Amor. Lido by GamFratesi for Minotti, available from ECC.

Driver’s Seat
From its distinctive two-part shape to its padded shell and generous seat cushions, the Redondo armchair by Patricia Urquiola for Moroso mirrors the sumptuous interiors, soft body curves and on-road comfort of 1950s and 1960s American cars. Constructed to have no sharp corners and finished in a supple, quilted fabric this chair is made for those who love cruising through life.

Feet Up
Designed by Italian-Danish duo GamFratesi for Minotti, the Lido is a 1950s-inspired basket-shaped seat with sweeping, continuous curves that immediately draw the eye. Available with a sculptural x-shaped base, or a more subtle one with legs in solid timber, this chair marries Brutalist lines with plush comfort and feels complete when paired with its matching footstool.

Nuvola 09 lounge chair by Paola Navone for Gervasoni, available from ECC. Pictured in the AAP Residence by Mim Design.

Make a Statement
In the otherwise male-dominated Italian design world of the 1980s, Paola Navone was the exception, active in the avant-garde design movements. Her multi-layer Nuvola 09 lounge chair for Gervasoni features a hidden solid wood frame which is covered by a fibre quilting made from goose down and polyester to lend it unique shape. A choice as bold as its designer, this chair will add confident flair to any living space. 

From left: Poliform’s Mad Queen Chair, available from Studio Italia, pictured in the Toorak Garden Residence by Conrad Architects. Saarinen Womb Chair by Eero Saarinen for Knoll, available from Studio Italia.

Diamond in the Dark
It’s all in the name for the Mad Queen armchair by Marcel Wanders for Poliform. As part of the open-minded Mad collection, it’s a regal style with comfortable curved lines and a voluminous shape. The top-quality upholstery, including diamond quilting, is suitable for the matriarch of any distinguished home.

Fine Form
Eero Saarinen set a new design precedent in 1948 when he designed the Womb Chair at Florence Knoll’s request for “a chair that was like a basket full of pillows”. The sweeping form of this mid-century classic supports countless positions, so you can embrace relaxation in any way you prefer.

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