Entries in furniture (11)
‘Benchmade upholstery’ is quite literal in its interpretation—still used today, it’s an old term that first described what a piece of furniture was placed upon while it was being built, made or upholstered.
A bench could have been as rustic as two saw horses, a low platform with a rotating top, or as elaborate as a table with adjustable legs or a hydraulic lift, allowing it to be adjusted for individual items—each different in construction or upholstery technique.
Depending on the product, more than one bench might be used. For example, a recliner is more complicated than a simple chair, so it may be worked on in more than one station.
Old school would be two specific people building a piece of upholstery—an ‘insider’ working on the seat, inside arms and inside of the back, and the ‘trimmer’ working on the outside arms, outside of the back, applying a black fabric underside, and the legs.
Today, pieces are most often made by many individuals—not just one or two—and each is held accountable for the specific quality standard that relates to their work.
While this can include sewers, who prepare sections of the upholstery, to an experienced framer, who builds the hardwood frame, ‘benchmade upholstery’ still refers to pieces that are not built in components and assembled together on an assembly line—but one that is hand-made piece by piece and hand finished detail by detail.
What’s so special about the backside of a credenza, bed or bookcase? Plenty if you live in a loft and use furniture to create walls, if you want to see how the cord management really works, or if you want to see absolutely everything you’re getting.
We pay special attention to every aspect of our products—including the back side—so new furniture pieces will now include a photo of this angle on our website. Check it out!
Similar to credence, or belief in Italian, in the Middle Ages credenza was the act of tasting or testing foods and wines so they could be served to a master—with assurance from a credible servant that they were safe to eat.
Later the term referred to the room for this tasting—probably between the kitchen and the dining room—and still later, to the furniture the food was placed on.
Originally waist-high for convenience, with storage cabinets to keep serving utensils and table linens, and often topped with a sheet of marble or a linen runner. Later, fine china and small treasures were protected behind glass doors of taller styles—going up as rooms were made smaller and less communal.
Since furniture has been commercially marketed, they’ve been included in dining room sets so all the pieces match—table, chairs and storage. Now synonymous with a buffet—where all food plates sit cafeteria-style on top of a sideboard, or credenza—this casual style of self-serving a large party versus formal table service for each guest, suits relaxed gatherings in modern, open-plan homes.
So just as formality has relaxed—an engraved invitation can be a simple evite or tweet—credenzas can be used for dining, media or office storage, and mixed with various woods or lacquer finishes.
Originally created in 1938 for an apartment building in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the designers of both named the BKF chair after themselves—Antonio Bonet, Juan Kurchan and Jorge Ferrari Hardoy.
In 1940, after seeing the chair on exhibit at the Salon de Artistas Decoradores, a sample was requested by MoMA and remains in the permanent Collection.
More commonly referred to as the butterfly chair, it was inspired by a folding campaign-style chair—the Tripolina. Many versions have been produced over the years—in both fixed and portable styles—and the design has gained worldwide popularity for its ease of assembly and transport, its light weight, and the variety of materials that can be used for production.
Whipstitched by hand, the natural leather sling of the 1938 butterfly chair covers a metal frame—true to the original.