Origin: English or French Period: Late 19thC Provenance: Unknown Date: c.1890-1900 Height: 34” or 16” at seat Width: 30” Depth: 32”
The comfortable and supple leather armchair with a flared shaped back the whole in chocolate brown leather having a button upholstered back and flanks, and gilled arms to tapering legs with ceramic castors surviving from the last quarter of the nineteenth century.
The chair is in largely original order making it hugely appealing, with the upholstery just on the right side of distressed. The leather is worn but appealingly so, now wonderfully supple to the seat, with a handful of repairs to the whole, which we have stabilized, please see photographs for visual reference. There are some areas where the leather has worn down to the suede base level, mainly to the top left flank and the roll back. There are some tears to the sides, which have been repaired at some stage. The castors are also original to the piece but are a little stiff. It proves a very comfortable chair indeed, perfect for lounging, reading or watching.
This chair could be grouped with that of ‘club’ furniture from the early twentieth century. The word "club" in club chair harks back to the gentlemen's clubs in nineteenth century England where a gentleman could go to get away from his household (including womenfolk). Once there, he would sink into a well-upholstered leather chair and relax with a drink and perhaps a cigar. The names of the fashionable London streets full of such clubs are still used to name classic club chairs : St. James, Piccadilly and so on. A dictionary definition of a club chair or sofa is "A heavily upholstered piece of furniture with arms and a low back".
The shape of its back and arms means that this chair is in its own category, simply of a good country house armchair. This particular example is attractive because of its design; the gilled arms and the flared back isn’t something you see all too often, it’s somewhere between club and tub.