Decorating With The Barcelona Chair



The Barcelona Chair designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich, was originally designed for Germany's entry to the International Exposition of 1929 which was hosted by Barcelona Spain. The two chairs in his design were offered for King Alfonso XIII and his wife Ena to rest comfortably on when visiting the Pavillion. 

In ancient Rome the curule chair ( from currus, "chariot") was the seat upon which imperial magistrates were entitled to sit.The form of the Barcelona Chair is thought to have originated from this Roman folding chair and upholstered stool.The Barcelona Chair took the world by storm in 1929 and has become a classic that never goes out of style. It is still in high demand today, especially for the current and stylish Mid-Century Modern style. 

Easily mixed in with any style decor from traditional to contemporary, this classic design has become one of the world's most recognizable furniture creations.




This classic masterpiece of furniture is well known as the Barcelona Chair. The greatest thing about the chair is that it can truly be mixed in with any style decor from traditional to contemporary. Here,  juxtaposed with antique classical elements, the Barcelona Chair becomes a work of art.

Tria Giovan Photography

The Barcelona Chair was manufactured in the US and Europe in limited production from the 1930s to the 1950s. The frame was initially designed to be bolted together, but was redesigned in 1950 using stainless steel, which allowed the frame to be formed by a seamless piece of metal, giving it a smoother appearance. Bovine leather replaced the ivory-colored pigskin which was used for the original pieces.


There are many manufacturers throughout the world making the Barcelona Chair. Knoll is the only company however who can call their chair the "Mies Van Der Rohe Barcelona Chair". Knoll licensed the design directly from Mies Van Der Rohe in the 1950's


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Designed in 1930, the Barcelona Daybed features the same simple elegance and upholstery style as the iconic lounge chair 

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There is something about the Barcelona Chair that allows for the perfect mix of antique and modern.

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I love back to back seating areas so this use of the Barcelona Chair is perfection as far as I am concerned.


This lovely room features classic architecture mixed with Mid-Century Modern iconic elements such as the white leather Barcelona Chairs and ottomans, the Arco floor lamp, and the Cherner wooden chairs. 

Allen Kirsch

The Barcelona Chair has gone through many changes over the years. This is largely because the chair was not originally made for the mass market. For example the pig skin leather and feather filled cushions were not fit for large scale production.

With its simplistic form and features, this amazing chair brings an artistic feel to homes, offices and public buildings. It is the perfect companion to interesting pieces of art or sculpture.


The sculptural design of the Barcelona Chair makes such an instant impact.

These bold Barcelona Chairs look wonderful in this red lacquered retro style room. The chairs and the animal print are two classics that work well together.


Tria Giovan Photography

The Barcelona Chair is an example of how a functional item can be turned into sculpture. Truly a work of art.


Double your pleasure.....two Barcelona Chairs, side by side, will steal the show!

Martyn Lawrence Bullard

You will find Barcelona Chairs and Daybeds in some of the most stylish interiors in the world. They are perfect here with the fur flooring choice and a striking agate patterned table.

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The Barcelona Chair was introduced in 1929. Even so, we tend to think of it's design as Modernist.



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I especially like the Barcelona Chair paired with hides or fur.

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It is hard for the eye to focus on anything else in the room when a Barcelona Daybed is present!

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Dont forget that the Barcelona Chair is also a beautiful addition to an outdoor entertaining area.




Tips for making sure your Barcelona Chair is the real McCoy.

The back cushion is slightly taller than the steel frame and angles with the curvature of the frame. Cushions are made of premium quality, highly resilient urethane foam with down-like Dacron polyester fiberfill.Two distinct, separate cushions that are fully upholstered with 40 individual panels that are cut, hand-welted, and hand-tufted with 24 leather buttons. The frame is made of premium grade 304 bar stock stainless steel that is hand-buffed to a mirror finish. The KnollStudio logo and Mies’ signature are stamped into the leg.Seventeen straps made of belting leather that do not include buckles are attached with aluminum rivets that are concealed when cushions are in place.



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This blog post was published by Lisa Farmer

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