You’ll be sure to find the Eames Moulded Plastic Chair in the home of any mid-century Modern furniture lover. Introduced in year 1950 and manufactured by Herman Miller, it is the first-ever mass-produced single-shell plastic chair.

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Image: XTRA

Why we love it

The chair’s elementary form features a supportive yet flexible back and a deep seat to cradle your bum. This allows for comfort, even through extended hours. The chair has proven itself the epitome of versatility and practicality over the years, and continues to take pride of place in offices, libraries, schools, cafeterias, museums and auditoriums for its easy handling and stacking ability.

Who designed it

The husband-and-wife team of Charles and Ray Eames were popular and influential mid-century Modernist designers. Known for their sense of adventure, the couple used their boundless curiosity to explore new materials such as moulded plywood, fibreglass and wire mesh, and experiment with manufacturing methods to produce some of the most innovative creations of the 20th century. The sculptural, organic and playful nature of their furniture makes them design icons.

What it inspired

In June 2012, the iconic chair returned to its roots as Herman Miller reintroduced the Eames moulded armchair and side chair in the more sustainable fibreglass. This came more than 20 years after Ray Eames and Herman Miller halted production of the chairs, after discovering the health hazards of the original fibreglass material. In 2000, they began producing the chairs in polypropylene. Now, thanks to environment-friendly developments in manufacturing, the chairs are made using an emission-free and fully recyclable fibreglass. First seen at the Neo Con furniture fair in Chicago, the new version is offered in its nine original colours and a variety of bases. Also creating a buzz in the design world is the recently launched Eames moulded wood chair, which is created with 3-D veneer technology.

The Eames Moulded Plastic Chair is available at XTRA.